First Year

The Husky Experience Toolkit is a series of weekly messages in MyUW designed to help students in their first year. To learn more about the Toolkit or provide feedback on the project, contact Michaelann Jundt, Associate Dean, Undergraduate Academic Affairs at mjundt@uw.edu.

While there are many things to do as you adjust to campus life, these just-in-time tips can help you know when and what to focus on during the coming months. Created by experienced students, faculty and advisers, the messages provide pointers on how to explore opportunities and make the most of your learning experiences, meet people and connect to important campus resources, and create the foundation of your university career.

About the Toolkit

The Husky Experience Toolkit is one of many efforts of the Husky Experience — an initiative designed to help all students opt in to the kinds of experiences that comprise a vital and well-rounded 21st century education. Its focus is on the broad skills, knowledge and abilities gained through classroom learning, as well as through high impact experiences such as study abroad, jobs and internships, research and leadership projects, and participation in clubs and community organizations.

For Freshman Students

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autumnWeek 0Learning Network

Make Connections

Welcome to UW! Meeting others is your key to success and happiness. Research shows that if you are connected with just a few other people, you will feel a sense of belonging at UW. And that helps you be the best student you can be.

Try this: Go to three Dawg Daze events that interest you. Find someone friendly and introduce yourself. People all over campus are excited to welcome first year students.

Learn more:

autumnWeek 1Life & Wellness

All the Time in the World?

With just a few hours of classes a day, how will you spend your free time? The best way to fit in your coursework, fun, and self-care is to structure it.

Try this: Create a weekly schedule. Include classes, time for study and your job, but also time for socializing and self-care. Leave room to tweak your schedule to meet academic demands and accommodate unexpected events.

Learn more:

autumnWeek 2Learning Network

Find Your People, Make Your Place

Student organizations, campus events, and volunteering are just some of the ways you can find community and build skills beyond the classroom.

Try this: Look for engaging activities that also have a strong, welcoming community. A student organization, a performance group, or sports team is a place to start. You'll make friends and learn and grow from the people around you.

Learn more:

autumnWeek 3Study Skills

Study Smarter, Not Harder

Studying well doesn't always come naturally, but it's not an impossible skill to master.

Try this: Pro tips from UW Faculty: attend all classes, review lecture notes promptly, join a study group (meet 90 mins/week), and become comfortable asking for help. Try forming a study group or attending office hours–both are a great way to deepen your understanding of course material.

Learn more:

autumnWeek 4Study Skills

The Write Stuff

Faced with your first college writing assignment or paper? The Odegaard Writing and Research Center (OWRC) can help.

Try this: Bring a draft to the writing consultant at OWRC (make an appointment today!) or CLUE (drop in tonight!).

Learn more:

autumnWeek 5Planning & Goals

Advisers Can Help!

Need help clarifying interests and goals? Want more information on a course of study? Partner with a general or departmental adviser to shape your academic career!

Try this: Drop in or make an appointment to see an adviser. Questions you could ask: How do I choose classes if I'm thinking about multiple majors? How can I make a balanced schedule for winter quarter?

Learn more:

autumnWeek 6Life & Wellness

Feeling Stressed?

It's normal to feel anxious your first quarter. Thankfully, there are easy and constructive ways to help yourself feel better.

Try this: Get outdoors, exercise, eat well, and get good sleep. Talk to supportive friends and family members. You can also try meditation or simple breathing exercises.

Learn more:

autumnWeek 7Planning & Goals

Choosing Classes? Get Curious

What intrigues you? What do you care about? How do you want to make a difference? Curiosity is at the heart of learning, so tune in and follow where it leads!

Try this: Find issues you care about and then browse related suggestions or search for courses and see what speaks to you.

Learn more:

autumnWeek 8Life & Wellness

Money, Money, Money

Dining dollars dwindling? Coffee consuming cash? Now's the time to get a handle on your finances.

Try this: Track your spending for a week. Then create a realistic budget (see tips below).

Learn more:

autumnWeek 9Study Skills

Finals Prep

The key to success, especially during finals, is to both study on your own and with a study group. It's not too late to get a group together.

Try this: Talk to others in your class! Use your group to review lecture notes, predict test questions, and practice essay responses.

Learn more:

autumnWeek 10Life & Wellness

Take Care

Finish the quarter strong by making healthy habits a priority. Research has shown that better sleep = better exam grades. Take care of yourself and your brain will thank you.

Try this: Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Balance individual studying with group work. Take 10 minutes to recharge every hour. Snack smart for brain power. And when you're done, celebrate!

Learn more:

winterWeek 1Planning & Goals

Welcome back!

What are your hopes and aspirations for the new year? What did you learn in your first quarter at UW that you can build on?

Try this: Set aside time to think about your resolutions. Connecting with new people and activities might also inspire you!

Learn more:

winterWeek 2Planning & Goals

Global Impact

Many students who study abroad say it changed their lives, and sometimes their course of study. Interested? Browse the student study abroad stories below!

Try this: Talk to a study abroad ambassador about their international experiences to learn what might be in it for you. Or if you're ready to start planning, check out the Getting Started resource or start looking for a program.

Learn more:

winterWeek 3Planning & Goals

Fund Your Future

Scholarships may still be available for this year, and many others offer funding next year for school and related activities.

Try this: Search the scholarship database based on your interests and activities. Use the filters to find scholarships that apply to you.

Learn more:

winterWeek 4Learning Network

Being Your Best Self

Develop your skills while making a difference in your community. Your passion and commitment are needed.

Try this: Commit to a new experience, like volunteering or a leadership conversation, and reflect on what you learned.

Learn more:

winterWeek 5Exploring Directions

Getting Experience through Internships

Want to explore an interest, gain practical experience, and add to your resume? Find an internship, or craft your own!

Try this: Learn about internships, and reflect on what you want out of the experience. Use this knowledge to guide you as you explore.

Learn more:

winterWeek 6Exploring Directions

Revisiting Plans, Exploring Options

Thinking about courses for next quarter? Now is a great time to revisit plans you had when you arrived at UW. Have your interests changed? Are you drawn to something new?

Try this: Browse department websites, talk with an adviser, and take courses that interest you. These steps can help you explore majors and potential back-ups. Use MyPlan to track your course options.

Learn more:

winterWeek 7Life & Wellness

Battle the Winter Blues

With dark skies, cold weather, and more time indoors, winter can impact your mental and physical health. Reach out if you're sad, rest if you're sick. Take steps to boost your winter wellness.

Try this: Prevent illness and improve your mood by exercising regularly, connecting with friends, eating healthy and staying hydrated, getting plenty of sleep, and, if you need to, talking with a counselor.

Learn more:

winterWeek 8Learning Network

It's Not Too Late to Get Involved

Remember what they said at orientation? Getting involved on campus is the way to meet people, gain skills, and have an impact. It is not too late!

Try this: Check out different ways to connect and learn outside the classroom -- experiential learning opportunities, student activities, and leadership experiences await.

Learn more:

winterWeek 9Study Skills

Finals Prep

Prep smart for finals by planning your study strategy: solo review, time with study partners, and time for self-care.

Try this: Check out the tips below and make a study plan. Strategizing now can help you decrease stress and better retain what you've learned.

Learn more:

springWeek 1Life & Wellness

Fail Forward

Viewed in the right light, challenges–even failure–can help you develop an attitude of healthy resilience.

Try this: Learn the difference between a "fixed" vs. "growth" mindset. How can you apply these concepts to your own life? Learn about the efforts of the UW Resilience Lab.

Learn more:

springWeek 2Planning & Goals

Experience is Golden

Internships and summer jobs can help you gain experience for your resume and money for your bank account.

Try this: Make a plan for networking and/or looking for an experience that will help you learn about the world of work.

Learn more:

springWeek 3Learning Network

People Power: Connections Count

Want to add breadth and depth to your Husky Experience? Find people who will challenge and expand the way you think.

Try this: Choose intriguing classes. Connect with instructors and peers–ask them about their research and ideas.

Learn more:

springWeek 4Study Skills

Writing & Research Rescue

Anxious about an upcoming paper or project? Get expert advice at any stage.

Try this: Chat with a librarian (real-time help 24/7). Visit a campus writing center.

Learn more:

springWeek 5Planning & Goals

Classes: Thinking Ahead

Thinking about summer classes or what you might want to do next year? Now is the time to plan ahead.

Try this: Make several different plans and talk them over with your adviser. This is also a time to consider talking with departmental advisers. Check on transfer credit before deciding to take summer classes at another institution.

Learn more:

springWeek 6Planning & Goals

Make the Most of Your Summer

There are lots of ways to gain experience over the next few months. Have fun trying something new!

Try this: Consider research, volunteering, mentorship, or a unique summer job. Begin with the resources below, but also ask friends, family, and advisers, "What's the best summer you ever had?"

Learn more:

springWeek 7Life & Wellness

De-stress with Mindfulness

Practicing mindfulness can boost immunity, increase attention span, and decrease stress. And it's simple enough to do anywhere.

Try this: Mindful breathing can help calm nerves. Close your eyes; take ten slow, deep breaths. Inhale through your nose; exhale through your mouth. Focus carefully on each breath.

Learn more:

springWeek 8Study Skills

Finals Prep Refresher

Prep smart for finals by planning your study strategy: solo review, time with study partners, and time for self-care.

Try this: Check out the tips below and make a study plan. Strategizing now can help you decrease stress and better retain what you've learned.

Learn more:

springWeek 9Planning & Goals

Coming back Strong

Take some time this summer to reflect on what you have learned and prepare for a great next year.

Try this: Think about your plans and goals. Are you taking classes you love? Have you found a community? What steps are you taking toward future goals? Do you have the support and resources you need to continue to shape your Husky Experience?

Learn more:

springWeek 10Life & Wellness

Celebrate your Growth

You made it!! Take a moment to appreciate all the ways you've grown–in classes and beyond–during your first year at UW.

Learn more:

For Newly-Transferred Students (Autumn)

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Week 0Learning Network

Make Connections

Meeting others is your key to happiness–really! The more people you meet, the more you'll feel a sense of connection and belonging at UW.

Try this: Go to three Dawg Daze events that interest you. Find someone friendly and introduce yourself. People all over campus are excited to welcome transfer students.

Learn more:

Week 1Life & Wellness

Welcome to UW!

Welcome to your first week at the University of Washington. Remember that lots of people are here to help you as you transition, not to college, but to UW.

Try this: Talk to people in your classes, visit the office hours of one of your professors, make a weekly schedule, and check out the Commuter and Transfer Commons.

Learn more:

Week 2Learning Network

Find Your People, Make Your Place

There are many opportunities for learning and connection outside the classroom. Build your skills and broaden your network by connecting around campus.

Try this: Maintain your connections from before UW but also take advantage of your new community. Talk to a professor during office hours, strike up a conversation with someone on your commute, or explore an interest by attending a student group meeting.

Learn more:

Week 3Study Skills

Study Smarter, Not Harder

Making the academic transition to UW can be challenging. Figuring out what works for you early in the quarter is a good place to start.

Try this: Pro tips from UW Faculty: attend all classes, review lecture notes promptly, join a study group (meet 90 mins/week), and become comfortable asking for help. Try forming a study group or attending office hours early in the quarter -- both are a great way to deepen your understanding of course material.

Learn more:

Week 4Study Skills

The Write Stuff

Faced with your first UW paper? Put your best foot forward by visiting The Odegaard Writing and Research Center (OWRC) to amplify and refine your skills.

Try this: Bring your paper draft to a writing consultant at OWRC–make an appointment today!

Learn more:

Week 5Planning & Goals

Advisers and Career Coaches Can Help!

Developing a good relationship with advisers and career coaches can be helpful on many levels. Get help in planning for your major, exploring classes of interest, and making connections to internship and career opportunities.

Try this: As you prepare to register for next quarter, investigate information sessions, attend a workshop, or make an appointment to see an adviser or career coach.

Learn more:

Week 6Life & Wellness

Feeling Stressed?

It's normal to feel anxious your first quarter at UW. Thankfully, there are easy and constructive ways to help yourself feel better.

Try this: Get outdoors, exercise, eat well, and get good sleep. Talk to supportive friends and family members. You can also try meditation or simple breathing exercises.

Learn more:

Week 7Planning & Goals

Money, Money, Money

Funding your higher education journey can be overwhelming, but there are lots of resources to help you make the most of your time (and money!).

Try this: Scholarships may still be available for this year, and it isn't too early to start thinking about next year. Remember that for financial aid, you need to have your FAFSA completed by January 15 for the 2019-20 year.

Learn more:

Week 8Study Skills

Finals Prep

The key to success, especially during finals, is to study on your own and with a study group. It's not too late to get a group together.

Try this: Talk to others in your class! Use your group to review lecture notes, predict test questions, and practice essay responses.

Learn more:

Week 9Life & Wellness

Battle the Winter Blues

With dark skies, cold weather, and more time indoors, winter can impact your mental and physical health. Reach out if you're sad, rest if you're sick. Take steps to boost your winter wellness.

Try this: Prevent illness and improve your mood by exercising regularly, connecting with friends, eating healthy, getting plenty of sleep, and keeping hydrated.

Learn more:

Week 10Life & Wellness

Take Care

Finish the quarter strong by making healthy habits a priority. Research has shown that better sleep = better exam grades. Take care of yourself and your brain will thank you.

Try this: Balance individual studying with group work. Take 10 minutes to recharge every hour. Snack smart for brain power. Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep a night. And when you're done, celebrate!

Learn more:

skipping week 11

For Newly-Transferred Students (Winter)

weekcategorymessage
Week 1Learning Network

Welcome to UW!

Welcome to your first week at the University of Washington. Remember that lots of people are here to help you as you transition, not to college, but to UW.

Try this: Talk to people in your classes, check out the Winter Dawg Daze schedule, and visit the Commuter and Transfer Commons.

Learn more:

Week 2Planning & Goals

Money, Money, Money

Funding your higher education journey can sometimes be overwhelming, but there are lots of resources to help you make the most of your time (and money!).

Try this: Scholarships may still be available for this year, and it isn't too early to start thinking about next year. Remember that for financial aid, you need to have your FAFSA completed by January 15 for the next academic year.

Learn more:

Week 3Learning Network

Find Your People, Make Your Place

There are many opportunities for learning and connection outside the classroom. Build your skills and broaden your network by connecting around campus.

Try this: Maintain your connections from before UW but also take advantage of your new community. Talk to a professor during office hours, strike up a conversation with someone on your commute, or explore an interest by attending a student group meeting.

Learn more:

Week 4Study Skills

Study Smarter, not Harder

Making the academic transition to UW can be challenging. Figuring out what works for you early in the quarter is a good place to start.

Try this: Pro tips from UW Faculty: attend all classes, review lecture notes promptly, join a study group (meet 90 mins/week), and become comfortable asking for help. Try forming a study group or attending office hours early in the quarter -- both are a great way to deepen your understanding of course material.

Learn more:

Week 5Planning & Goals

Advisers and Career Coaches Can Help!

Developing a good relationship with advisers and career coaches can be helpful on many levels. Get help in planning for your major, exploring classes of interest, and making connections to internship and career opportunities.

Try this: As you prepare to register for next quarter, investigate information sessions, attend a workshop, or make an appointment to see an adviser or career coach.

Learn more:

Week 6Life & Wellness

Battle the Winter Blues

With dark skies, cold weather, and more time indoors, winter can impact your mental and physical health. Reach out if you're sad, rest if you're sick. Take steps to boost your winter wellness.

Try this: Prevent illness and improve your mood by exercising regularly, connecting with friends, eating healthy, getting plenty of sleep, and keeping hydrated.

Learn more:

Week 7Study Skills

The Write Stuff

Faced with your first UW paper? Put your best foot forward by visiting The Odegaard Writing and Research Center (OWRC) to amplify and refine your skills.

Try this: Bring your paper draft to a writing consultant at OWRC -- make an appointment today!

Learn more:

Week 8Life & Wellness

Feeling Stressed?

It's normal to feel anxious your first quarter at UW. Thankfully, there are easy and constructive ways to help yourself feel better.

Try this: Get outdoors, exercise, eat well, and get good sleep. Talk to supportive friends and family members. You can also try meditation or simple breathing exercises.

Learn more:

Week 9Study Skills

Finals Prep

The key to success, especially during finals, is to study on your own and with a study group. It's not too late to get a group together.

Try this: Talk to others in your class! Use your group to review lecture notes, predict test questions, and practice essay responses.

Learn more:

Week 10Life & Wellness

Take Care

Finish the quarter strong by making healthy habits a priority. Research has shown that better sleep = better exam grades. Take care of yourself and your brain will thank you.

Try this: Balance individual studying with group work. Take 10 minutes to recharge every hour. Snack smart for brain power. Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep a night. And when you're done, celebrate!

Learn more: