Nicole Maurantonio (Rhetoric and Communication Studies), Coordinator

First-Year Seminars (FYS) provide entering students the excitement of engaged learning through a diverse array of seminar topics. With small classes, a variety of topics, and close contact with faculty, First-Year Seminars offer a hands-on introduction to academic inquiry.

A wide variety of seminars will be offered each year, drawn from every school of the University. Each entering student will take a FYS in the fall and spring of the first year.

First-Year Seminars serve as an introduction to academic inquiry and the modes of expression that lie at the heart of a liberal arts education. They foster habits of mind fundamental to students' intellectual and academic development, including critical reading and thinking, sharing ideas and research through discussion, and the ability to write and think clearly and effectively. Integrating explorations of specific questions and topics with the development of skills, seminars aim to foster intellectual curiosity and students' ability to act on it.

All First-Year Seminars have the same five common goals:

  1. expand and deepen students' understanding of the world and of themselves

  2. enhance their ability to read and think critically

  3. enhance their ability to communicate effectively, in writing, speech, and other appropriate forms

  4. develop the fundamentals of information literacy and library research

  5. provide the opportunity for students to work closely with a faculty mentor