Category Archives: Uncategorized

Ready…Set…GO! Sophomore Transition Series

During the Spring semester, VCU Academic Advising launched a new sophomore transition experience for first-year students. In addition to one-on-one advising appointments, the sophomore transition series included workshops about:

  • Creating strategic academic and career planning maps
  • Paying for college
  • Developing relationships with departmental advisors
  • Maintaining academic goals
  • Creating strategic academic and career planning maps
  • Housing – living on and off-campus

The final part of the series is taking place throughout April for first-year students within their colleges/schools. For more information on upcoming “Go!” sessions in your students college, visit: https://uaa.vcu.edu/sophomore-transition-series/

Sign up for the VCU Alumni Families List

If your Ram is about to graduate this spring or has already graduated, we have a different listserv for you to be a part of! The VCU Alumni Families listserv will provide you with information about how alumni and their families can engage with VCU after graduation through opportunities like Homecoming, VCU Alumni Month, etc. You will only receive a few emails per year and it will allow you to stay connected to VCU!

Sign up for the VCU Alumni Families Listserv.

To stop receiving emails intended for the parents and families of current students, all you have to do is unsubscribe. Either click the unsubscribe link at the bottom of your email or unsubscribe below.

Unsubscribe from the VCU Parents and Families Listserv.

May Commencement

Congratulations to all the May 2018 graduates and their families!

This year’s Commencement will take place on Saturday, May 12, 2018 at 10:30 a.m. at the Richmond Coliseum. You can find all the information and details about the VCU May 2018 Commencement at the VCU Commencement website. Don’t forget that students may also have specific events going on for their departments in addition to the Commencement Ceremony. For information about departmental ceremonies please visit the Departmental Ceremonies tab on the Commencement site.

For more information about graduation, you may contact Records and Registration at (804) 828-1917 or rar@vcu.edu.

Summer Courses Still Available

There’s still time to register for summer classes! Course registration for the summer 2018 semester opened for all students in February. A listing of summer courses can be found on VCU’s Summer Studies website. Classes start and end at different points over the summer, with the first courses starting on May 21. Encourage your student to talk to his or her advisor about summer courses. This can be a great chance to get ahead academically or to repeat a course that a student has struggled with previously.

Ready for Spring Move-Out?

Get your boxes and tape ready; for students living on campus in nine-month halls, spring move out is just around the corner! All nine-month halls will officially close Saturday, May 12 at 10 a.m. Residents are required to leave within 24 hours of their last final exam, or by 10 a.m. on May 12, whichever happens first. Students should make travel arrangements to ensure they are checked out of their building by this time. To receive specific details on your building/floor move-out, students must attend their floor move-out meeting with their R.A.

The check-out process is simple! Hall Directors will send out building-specific instructions to the students’ VCU emails in mid-April. Residents must sign-up for a checkout time at least 48 hours before their planned departure.

During the check-out inspection, R.A.s will be looking for the following things:

  1. All personal belongings are removed from the room and common spaces (living room, kitchen and bathrooms);
  2. All trash has been removed and placed in trash rooms;
  3. All tape, staples, thumbtacks, etc., from walls, ceilings, floors, and furniture;
  4. Rented microfridges are defrosted, cleaned, dried, and and left with the door open;
  5. All original furniture is accounted for and in good condition;
  6. General cleanliness of the room and any damages that might have occurred.

If the room has damages that are not considered general wear-and-tear, the residents of the room will be billed to have the damages repaired. If one roommate does not take responsibility for damages during check-out, both/all roommates will be charged.

The following are things that residents could be charged for, but not limited to:

  • Excessive housing keeping charge: $50.00 per space
  • Packing of left behind items: $75.00 per hour
  • Rekey room key: $65.00
  • Rekey mailbox key: $20.00
  • Improper Check-Out: $35.00

Here are some tips to help residents avoid extra charges to their student account after they move out:

  1. Remove all personal belongings. Housing will have donation bins on the first floor of each building for any unwanted, usable items.
  2. Remove all trash, sweep the floor, and leave the room “move-in ready.”
  3. Take special care when removing tape and items from walls, so that walls are not damaged during the removal process.
  4. Remember to turn in room and mailbox keys. Any keys not turned in by 10:00 a.m. on May 12 will result in charges and rooms being rekeyed.

If you have any questions about spring on-campus move-out, please email vcuhousing@vcu.edu, call (804) 828-7666 or visit www.housing.vcu.edu.

Spring Fever

The sun is shining, birds are chirping and the weather is getting warmer every day. Now that we have sprung forward and spring break is behind us, the spring semester coming to a close before we know it. Warmer weather means planning more outdoor activities on campus and around Richmond. Places like Belle Isle and Maymont come to life again in the spring and are enjoyed by people of all ages in the city.

Encourage your student to go enjoy the sunshine, fresh air and moderate temperatures. This time of year is great for taking a study break and walking outside. While it’s great to be able to stretch your legs and breathe in the fresh air, it’s important students find balance between work and play. After all, it can be tempting to let go of all responsibilities and enjoy the outdoors, festivals and other events happening around campus and in the city. Here are some tips to help your student stay on track while still taking time to enjoy the weather.

Include free time in the calendar.

Students should review their syllabi and mark out important dates for the rest of the semester — from classes, tests, and final exam times to presentations and important due dates. They also can block out specific times that are just for studying and getting work done. Encourage your student to schedule some free time as well. Sticking to these schedules allows students to enjoy both the sunshine and academic success.

Take it outside.

One of the greatest pleasures of Richmond during the spring semester is simply being outdoors. Students can fully charge their laptops, fill their backpacks with books and snacks, and grab a blanket to study and work outside. This can help the feeling of being isolated from all of the fun to be had outside. VCU’s campus is full of great places to get the best of both worlds. There are courtyards and patios for almost every residence hall and plenty of green spaces that offer a great place to have a picnic study session with some friends.

There will be more sunny days.

When nice days first begin, it can feel like this is a student’s one and only chance to be active; however, the great thing about Richmond is that there is always another sunny day around the corner. Students can plan their pickup football game or walk to Carytown when they aren’t supposed to be in class or to take a break from studying.

Roommates or Rivals?

The midpoint of the semester can be an enjoyable but also stressful time. Midterms are approaching and soon enough students will be facing finals, end-of-the-year move out and summer vacation. When stress is in the air, things that may have started as little quirks can become a little more unbearable for roommates. Here are some tips to share with your student about how to deal with stressful situations during the final stretch of the semester:

Refresh the roommate agreement.

As a part of living in our residence halls, students complete a roommate agreement in the beginning of fall semester. Now presents a great opportunity to revisit this agreement and talk about how it’s working and to communicate about any issues that may have come up since the beginning of the school year.

Be mindful of each other.

With so much to get done, students can forget that they are living with other students dealing with similar stresses and deadlines. Remembering that each student is dealing with stress can help create a more compassionate environment. Encourage your student to be empathetic about what his or her roommate may be experiencing.

Support each other and ask for help.

During such busy times of the year, students may let certain household tasks take a backseat to other ones. Laundry, doing the dishes and cleaning up after oneself can seem less important than gaining an extra 15 minutes of sleep. Scheduling time to get these tasks done will create a less stressful place to relax and get work done. If your student is having a tough time handling these everyday tasks, encourage him or her to ask a roommate for support. Doing dishes is always easier (and more fun) with two people!

Make plans for next year.

After going through the first year of school, students have had a chance to meet a lot of new people. While getting ready for the upcoming year and thinking about where to live next year, students will want to choose a roommate that will be a good match.

Tax Season

Tax season is in full swing and the deadline to file is fast approaching! Did your student work during the previous tax year or have any investments? Now is a good time to talk to your student about whether or not to file a tax return. For some tips to pass along if your student is filing a tax return for the first time, check out this blog post from NerdWallet.

Tax credits may be available for students or families based on qualified educational expenses paid for tuition and fees. In January, the VCU Student Accounting Department issued 1098-T forms and Tuition Statements to eligible students. Students may access a copy of their forms through the “Tax Notification” option under the “Student Accounts” menu in  VCU eServices.

For additional information on tax credits, check out VCU Student Accounting website.

Off Campus Housing Events

Is your student planning to move off campus next year? Encourage them to join Off Campus Student Services (OCSS) for upcoming events this semester to help them locate off-campus housing, find roommates, learn about the rental process and create a budget.

Housing Fair

The Housing Fair will take place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday, Mar. 16 in the Commonwealth Ballroom, located on the second floor of the University Student Commons. Area landlords will be available throughout the day to inform students about their housing options.

Roommate Mixer

The Roommate Mixer offers an opportunity for your student meet other students who are also looking for roommates for the upcoming year. The session will take place in the Richmond Salons on the second floor of the University Student Commons from 5-6 p.m. on Wednesday, Apr. 4.

Students can also log in and utilize the online Roommate Finder and search for available apartments on the OCCS website.

Budget Workshops

These workshops provide students with information on how to create a spending plan, including how to plan for living expenses, savings, pay back debt and incorporate their personal values into the planning process. Each session is hosted on Monroe Park Campus from 2-3 p.m. in the Alumni Boardroom in the University Student Commons (907 Floyd Ave). Dates for upcoming workshops include:

Thursday, Apr. 5

Wednesday, Apr. 18

Thursday, May 3

Renter’s Workshops

We strongly encourage students to attend one of the Apartment Hunters: Renter’s Workshops hosted throughout the spring semester. At this workshop students will gain knowledge, including but not limited to: the tools to be able to choose housing that is appropriate for their needs and wants, and the ability to know what type of roommate they would enjoy and how to decide who covers different cost. In addition, workshops will cover the rental locations that are within a plausible distance to campus, and other important things to think about when searching for their new residence. Representatives from OCSS will also take questions and address any concerns that your student may have.

OCSS also offers students support beyond their brief educational session by providing additional assistance and services throughout the search process and with situations that might arise after students have settled in to their new place.

These workshops run throughout the rest of the semester and no registration is required to attend. All workshops are held on the Monroe Park Campus at the University Student Commons (907 Floyd Ave.), in the Alumni Board Room (Near the POD) from 12-1 p.m. on the following dates:

Tuesday, Mar. 20

Wednesday, Apr. 5

Monday, Apr. 9

Tuesday, Apr. 17

Wednesday, Apr. 25

Thursday, May 3

In addition, if students are interested in finding roommates, talking to landlords in the area, or about learning to budget their finances appropriately, the OCSS also offers sessions addressing these topics. You can find more information at the OCSS website.