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About University Studies

Mission Statement

University Studies is an inclusive educational environment that empowers students to explore possibilities, confidently make decisions, and prepare for the future.

Vision Statement

University Studies will empower students to collaborate with academic advisors, mentors, and campus partners to take ownership of their education and engage in intentional exploration of majors, interests, and skills.

Our Services

Our History

The University Academic Advising Center (UAAC) began operation in July 1989 under the supervision of the College of Arts and Sciences and advised General Arts and Sciences (GASC) students as well as entering freshmen in a new major University Studies. The staff consisted of a Director, 3 full time advisors, and one admin and was located in Williams Hall.

In 1990, the UAAC became a separate entity, recognized as its own college and department, with the Director acting as the Dean for students in University Studies and GASC. At that time, offices were relocated to Burruss Hall and 6 part time advisors were added.

In 1996 the UAAC moved to its current location in Femoyer Hall.

In 2007, the University Academic Advising Center was the recipient of the University Exemplary Department Award, for excellence in developing and sustaining innovative and effective departmental approaches to advising at the undergraduate level.

In 2017, University Studies expanded to include a new major, Explore Technology, for students who identify an interest in technology based majors.

In 2020, University Studies created a brand new scholarship mentoring program in collaboration with Enrollment Management, the Office of Scholarships & Financial Aid, existing Scholarship Mentoring Programs at Virginia Tech, and Undergraduate Education. This new program was called HUB Scholarship Mentoring. This program was designed to mentor students who are first-generation, underrrepresented, and/or students with financial need identified by the Office of Scholarship and Financial Aid. In short, HUB help students pursue academic success to renew their annually awarded scholarships.

In 2021, Explore Technology is no longer offered as a major for incoming students.

In 2021, University Studies changed names to University Studies & Scholarship Support to become more aligned with the variety of services offered within the department including HUB Scholarship Mentoring.

Major Change Data

Many students and families ask, which majors students choose after University Studies. The following infographics provide more information about future majors after University Studies.

Major Change Data for all University Studies students :

First-Year Experience for University Studies Majors

As early as 2007, University Studies offered a first-year experience course to students. During these first years, the course was taught by US advisors but housed in courses owned by other departments. The first course was UNIV 1004, College Success Strategies, and credit for the course did not count toward graduation. In 2010, the course was re-designed to comply with QEP and VT’s Pathways to Success initiative and was offered in a variety of delivery modes including traditional, online, and blended sections. In 2011, the course was offered under a new number and as a special study, UNIV 2984.  

After a lengthy review by the University Curriculum Committee, University Studies was ultimately awarded its own course first taught in Fall 2014, UNIV 1824-Pathways to Success and it was offered for credit toward graduation. The course enrollment and the number of sections offered has increased to accommodate student interest and demand.

Starting in Fall 2019, UNIV 1824 officially counts as a General Education course. This means students who take UNIV 1824-Pathways to Success for 3 credit hours receive a Concept 3: Reasoning in Social Science course. The UNIV 1824 course completes 3 of the 6 credit hours needed for Concept 3 for Pathways to General Education.

Starting in Spring 2020, a specific section of UNIV 1824 started for Transitional Students and continues today. This section is 3 credit hours and counts towards Concept 3: Reasoning in Social Sciences in the Pathways to General Education curriculum. The difference between this course and the traditional UNIV 1824 course is that lesson plans are designed for students who are beyond their first semester at Virginia Tech and all students are Transitional Students (students with majors outside of University Studies or students who recently changed to University Studies from another major).