The First-Year Experience
Bowling Green State University believes that students’ first year in college is a very special experience. We are not alone in recognizing our commitment to the first-year experience; U.S. News and World Report’s America’s Best Colleges has recognized BGSU’s first-year programs in its “Programs to Look For” each year the recognition has been available.
The first college year is a time for our first-year students to form new relationships, discover new interests, and build a sense of pride in themselves and in the fact that they have chosen BGSU. We are committed to helping students feel that they belong and will succeed at BGSU. We demonstrate this commitment through offering a variety of first-year programs and services to students. Our research confirms that students who have taken advantage of these activities generally get better grades, are more satisfied with their first-year experience, and are more likely to persist in obtaining a college degree.
Our residential learning communities link academic and residential experiences at BGSU. These programs help students to connect with faculty and staff members and other students who share their interests. Our residential learning communities include the Army ROTC Community, the Arts Village, the Aviation Community, the Batchelder Music Community, the Chapman Community at Kohl, La Comunidad, the Global Village Community, Greek housing, IMPACT (Integrating Moral Principles and Critical Thinking), La Maison Française, the Natural and Health Sciences Residential Community, and Partners in Context & Community, and the Wellness Communities .
UNIV 1000 is a two-credit hour course for first year students that exposes them to the resources of Bowling Green State University, diverse cultures and ideas, and promotes the development of intellectual, personal and social skills that will assist in future semesters at BGSU and beyond. Theme sections of the course are also available and serve as an opportunity for new students to strengthen their connections to an academic major or interest.
The BG Experience Program is an innovate academic program required for all first-year students. During the introduction sessions before the start of classes, students participate in small group discussions along with a faculty member and a peer facilitator that help them learn about expectations, introduce them to concepts useful in exploring their values, and examine the role values play in decision-making. Once the semester begins the student groups enroll in a general education class along with the same faculty member and peer facilitator that focuses on critical thinking about values in the context of the academic discipline.
BGSU provides a variety of academic support services for first-year students, including the Writing Center, the Math and Stats Tutoring Center, the Study Skills Center, Pre-Major Advising, the University Program for Academic Success, the Center for Multicultural and Academic Initiatives, services for student athletes, the Counseling Center, Disability Services, Nontraditional Student Services (NTSS), Off-Campus Student Services, Information Technology Services, the Residential Computing Connection, University Libraries, Student Money Management Services, and the Career Center.