An Academic Guide for New Students
Message from the Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs
Dear New Student:
On behalf of the University of Massachusetts Amherst faculty, I am delighted to welcome you to campus. Our world-renowned faculty are not only teachers, but also scholars who are actively pushing back the frontiers of knowledge through their research, scholarship or creative expression, so at UMass Amherst, you will be studying with scholars who are discovering or creating new knowledge, not just disseminating the discoveries of others. Looking forward two or three years, you will have opportunities, if you choose to take them, to engage in independent studies and thereby to participate in the process of discovery, in new analysis or synthesis, or in new creative works, directly under the supervision of one of our teacher/scholar faculty members.
In the meantime, there is a big university for you to negotiate. UMass Amherst is large and complex, with eight schools and colleges that offer undergraduate programs, and which together offer more than a thousand different courses each year. Do not be shy about asking advisers for help in choosing your curriculum. They understand General Education requirements, prerequisites for majors, and pre-professional requirements, so they can guide you in making course selections that will help you set out on the right pathway to meet your goals.
Finally, enjoy your UMass Amherst undergraduate experience. The university offers great richness out of the classroom as well as in. Indulge yourself in the life of the mind!
With all best wishes,
James V. Staros
Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs