For Parents of First Year College Students

During their first year or so of college, students will be involved (formally or informally) in assessing their skills, interests, and abilities. They will do this through finding success (or failure) in courses they take, involvement in campus activities, discussions with their friends and faculty, and generally being exposed to and trying out different ideas and experiences.

Most students enter college with a very limited knowledge of the vast array of courses and majors available to them. When they begin to delve into studies that are new to them, even those who entered with a plan may be drawn to different options. This is an exciting time for students!

Here's what you can do to help:

  • Support your child's exploration of new areas of study and interests. This, after all, is what education is all about!
  • Affirm what you know to be areas of skill and ability he or she has consistently demonstrated. Sometimes students overlook these and need to be reminded.
  • Talk with your son or daughter about the courses and activities he or she is enjoying and how well your student is doing. Students discover new things about themselves throughout the college experience. Your willingness to listen and be a sounding board will keep you in the loop.
  • Don't panic if your student is excited about majoring in something like English, history, or art. These can be excellent choices, particularly if they are a good match for a student's interests and skills.
  • Support your son or daughter's responsible involvement in campus activities but urge this to be balanced with maintaining achievement in the classroom
  • Urge your child to seek assistance in UAB Career Services. Career Services has assessment instruments and counselors to help students to define their skills, interests, and abilities.


Reprinted from an article by Sally Kearsley (Article from

UAB News

  • UAB holds ribbon cutting for new freshman residence hall

    UAB has officially dedicated its new freshman residence hall with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. It will allow more than 700 students to join the 2,180 students housed in UAB’s five other residence halls.

    University of Alabama at Birmingham administrators have officially dedicated the new freshman residence hall.

    On Wednesday, Sept. 2, President Ray L. Watts, along with other administrators, hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony to formally present the 217,000-square-foot residence hall. Located at the corners of Ninth and 10th avenues south and 16th and 17th streets south, the U-shaped building consists of an eight-story tower and a four-story wing that contains common space and multiuse office space in addition to housing.

    The new freshman residence hall will help meet increased demand for on-campus housing, which has been filled to capacity for the last four years, and will allow more than 700 students to join the 2,180 students housed in UAB’s five other residence halls.

    “It sends a phenomenal message that we’re at the beginning of the next phase of the development and growth of UAB,” Vice President of Student Affairs John Jones, Ph.D., said. “We want to provide a robust experience for our students, and part of that experience is providing a residential component that allows them to develop outside the classroom.”

    The new residence hall is the first on campus to be universally designed, which will provide its residents and visitors with an environment that is equally accessible and adaptable to all users of the building.


  • UAB DAAH presents “Hither and Yon” lecture and panel discussion Sept. 12

    “Hither and Yon” is a two-part exhibition and panel discussion featuring four artists, presented by The Fuel and Lumber Company in collaboration with the UAB Department of Art and Art History.

    Craig Drennen, "Servant 12," 2013; graphite, acrylic, oil, alkyd, cigarette burns, aluminum foil on paper; 20x20 inches; image courtesy of the artist"A panel discussion with four artists, “Hither and Yon” is set for 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12, at the new University of Alabama at Birmingham Project Space, 900 13th St. South.

    “Hither and Yon” is a two-part exhibition and panel discussion presented by The Fuel and Lumber Company in collaboration with the UAB College of Arts and SciencesDepartment of Art and Art History. The Fuel and Lumber Company is a curatorial initiative founded in the summer of 2013 by Schulte and Amy Pleasant to facilitate exhibitions and related events.

    Co-moderated by Lauren Lake, UAB DAAH chair, and Fuel and Lumber co-founder Pete Schulte, professor of drawing, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, the panel will feature artists Jane Fox Hipple, Astri Snodgrass and Jered Sprecher, whose works, along with those of artist Craig Drennen, are featured in the accompanying exhibition. Exploring unique approaches to contemporary painting and drawing, these four artists share roots in the Southeast and have exhibited nationally and internationally.

    The exhibition will open with a reception from 6-9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 11, at The Fuel and Lumber Company, 1805 Third Ave. North. The show will run through Oct. 10, and is open by appointment only. Call 205-369-8329 or email

    Project Space is an adaptive space that will provide an alternative platform for students, faculty and community to engage teaching, research, public service and visual art practices. New events have been planned there for fall 2015.

    Project Space is in the UAB Humanities Building, 900 13th St. South, on the first floor. It is open during project-specific dates and hours or by appointment. For questions, to schedule use of Project Space or to arrange a visit, contact Project Space director Jared Ragland at

  • School of Nursing re-designated PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center

    Designation indicates that the school’s research and clinical programs have superior scientific and technical leadership in nursing.

    The University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing has received re-designation as a Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization Collaborating Center on International Nursing for four years (2015-2019). The school is one of nine WHO Collaborating Centers in Nursing in the United States and one of 43 in the world.

    UAB’s School of Nursing was first awarded its PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center on International Nursing designation in 1994. The School was re-designated in 1997, then again in April 2011 for the four-year term of 2011-2015.

    “This designation continues to help put our School’s global outreach work, here at home and throughout the world, on the map nationally and internationally,” said Doreen Harper, Ph.D., dean of the School of Nursing and director of the UAB PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center for International Nursing. “Since its founding, our School has been on the forefront of enhancing nursing education, practice and research with the ultimate goal of improving health locally and globally. Our continued designation as a PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center for International Nursing provides us an exemplary platform to continue this important work for our community, our state and the world.”

    A PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center for International Nursing is a special designation given by the organizations to recognize a school’s sustained involvement and interest in global nursing development. The PAHO/WHO designation indicates that the research and clinical programs in the UAB School of Nursing are nationally and internationally recognized, and that UAB has superior scientific and technical leadership in nursing.

    As a PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center, the UAB School of Nursing participates in an international network that works toward realizing the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals and the WHO’s major goal of “Health for All” by developing and sharing education and research materials that will help achieve these goals. The UAB School of Nursing collaborates with nurses in other countries to develop programs to enhance nursing education, practice and research and ultimately to improve global health. 

    For this next four-year term, the school’s work will focus on collaborating with PAHO/WHO to strengthen the quality of nursing and midwifery education, including in the agenda priority topics such as Universal Health Coverage, Universal Access to Health Care and Primary Health Care, and collaborating with PAHO/WHO to enhance the use and dissemination of knowledge resources to strengthen nursing and midwifery capacity and quality improvement in nursing and midwifery education program outcomes.

    “Our school has always been a leader and trendsetter in improving primary care, access to care within inner cities and rural communities, and improving quality of care in Alabama and beyond,” said Lynda Wilson, Ph.D., the center’s deputy director and School of Nursing professor. “Our re-designation for the next four years enables our school to collaborate with our global partners to promote nurses’ contributions to universal health coverage and universal access to health care to improve capacity, access and outcomes to help improve the lives and quality of life for millions of people.”

    The UAB School of Nursing is among an elite group of these centers in the Western Hemisphere. The United States belongs to the “AMRO” of the World Health Organization. This region comprises all the countries from Canada to Chile and is administered by the Pan American Health Organization. As a part of the AMRO Region, the School’s Collaborating Center is a member of PANMCC, the Pan American Nursing/Midwifery Collaborating Centers. Currently, PANMCC has 19 centers. The 43 worldwide WHO Collaborating Centers for International Nursing are organized into a global network. For further information visit the Global Network Website.

    The school also has many other global initiatives in addition to the PAHO/WHO Collaborating Center work, including visiting scholar programs, study away, global service learning and integration of global health content across the curriculum. The School’s collaborative relationships with Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Guatemala, Honduras, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Zambia and many other countries have included visiting scholars, visiting professors, student exchanges and international research programs.

    More information is available on the School of Nursing website.

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