Signature Programs of the First Year Experience

The First Year Experience (FYE) at Saint Mary's is designed to asist in laying the foundation for academic and personal success by providing programs, support and resources to first year students.  These opportunities enchance a student's understanding of Saint Mary's academic and co-curricular programs and guide student learning through the first year.  

Weekend of Welcome (WoW)

Scheduled before Fall classes begin, WoW formally welcomes incoming students to our academic and co-curricular communities through a variety of programs, social events, and academic activities.

For more information, visit Weekend of Welcome.

First Year Common Reading

As part of a collaborative process between the Campus Deans & Directors Committee and Student Life, a book is chosen each year. The reading, first given to new students at their summer orientation session provides an avenue of engagement for students through the WoW and residential experience programs.

For more information, visit FYE Theme & Common Reading.

First Year l First Six

Recognizing the first six weeks of their first semester as a crucial period for new students, the First Year l First Six initative is designed to provide community building opportunities. Activities planned within the first six weeks include tailgates, pool party, BBQ's and so much more!

For a schedule, visit First Year l First Six

First Year Advising Cohort (FYAC)

All new students are assigned to a First Year Advising Cohort taught by a faculty member. This faculty member becomes the student's academic advisor for the entire first year, providing the student with academic support during his or her transition to higher education. Students are most often assigned to an advising cohort based on perceived academic interests, although those who are enrolled in a specific campus program, such as the High Potential Program and the Honors Program, may be placed with an advisor representing that program. FYACs are taught as a .25 credit class that meets over the course of both fall and spring semesters for a minimum of 21 hours (usually in sessions of 1.5 hours). Most FYACs are scheduled during the Monday or Friday 12:40-2:10PM class time.

For more information, visit First Year Advising Cohorts.

First Year Fair

During the Spring semester, New Student & Family Programs in partnership with Student Involvement and Leadership hosts the First Year Fair. At this involvement fair style event, first year students engage with departments and organizations offering involvement and employment opportunities for first year students. 

For more information, visit First Year Fair.

First Year Olympics

Organized by their residence hall, first year students compete in various recreational and athletic competitions.

For more information, visit Athletics.

First Year Class Elections, Associated Students of Saint Mary's College 

First year students who would like to serve their classmates as class representatives have the opportunity to run and be elected for an office in the Associate Students of Saint Mary's College senate. The Freshman Class President introduces the First Year Author during their lecture in the fall semester.

For more information, visit Student Government.

New Student Orientation

Providing new students and their families with information on orientation and testing dates, campus housing and medical information, and an introduction to the FYE's programs and resources.

For more information, visit New Student Orientation.

Transfer Student Welcome Events

In collaboration with a variety of campus offices, New Student and Family Programs offers several welcome events for transfer students new to Saint Mary's College.