NEWS

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September 22, 2020

When You Need a (Virtual) Hand: Resources at UChicago


Pete Grieve / The Chicago Maroon

While college is a time of increased independence and freedom, it can also be intimidating for those very reasons. Remote learning poses its own challenges, so to help you out, we’ve put together resources you can turn to—whether you're tackling college on campus or at home.

Academic Resources

UChicago is known for its rigorous coursework, so it is completely normal for students to seek help or additional resources to be successful in their classes.

Academic Advisers: Academic advisers are automatically assigned to you upon your enrollment in the College. To find out who your adviser is, you can check your my.UChicago homepage. Your adviser is your first stop when it comes to any questions you have regarding your academics. While all first-years are required to meet with their advisers once a quarter so that they may complete course selection for the next quarter, it is a good idea to keep in contact with your adviser outside of those meetings and throughout your time at the College.

Program/Department Directors: When it comes to questions about majors/minors, speaking to primary major contacts—often a graduate student or recent College graduate from the same department—is the best way to get your questions answered and will give you a better idea of what the program will be like. Contacts will have their email addresses listed at the bottom of their page on the course catalog.

College Core Tutors: The College Core Tutors program can help you with many of the core classes that you will be taking. Autumn quarter tutoring, normally operating out of the Harper cubicles, will start on October 5 and run through finals week. As it does when we are on campus, the program will consist of drop-in Zoom meetings that run from 7–11 p.m. CT Sunday through Thursday. To accommodate students who cannot attend the traditional timings, there will also be sessions held on Wednesdays and Sundays from 9 a.m.–1 p.m. CT.

College Core Writing Tutors: Adjusting from high school to collegiate-level writing can be a daunting task. College Core Writing Tutors can help make your first few Hum papers go smoother by aiding in the brainstorming process, reviewing drafts, making suggestions, and catching mechanical errors. Hum TAs are also very good at this—don’t be shy about approaching them for help!

Academic Skills and Assessment Program: If you are having trouble with procrastination, study skills, time management, or anything else related to academic habits, the Academic Skills and Assessment Program (ASAP) can help. ASAP resources and individual appointments with ASAP counselors can help you work through difficulties you are having.

Remote Study Groups: While it is harder to reach out and form study groups due to remote learning, it’s still worth trying to contact one or two people in your classes over Canvas and see if they’d be willing to form a study group or perhaps form a group chat with the people in your class. Either way, someone is probably hoping that a group chat or study group will be made just as much as you are.

Listhosts: Listhosts are a great way for you to keep track of things that are happening in the majors that you are interested in, along with staying in the loop with various campus offices, such as the Center for Research and Fellowships, Career Advancement, and more. You can find all available listhosts at lists.uchicago.edu.

Residential Resources

College Housing: In normal times, one of the first things you’ll do as a new campus arrival is meet the leadership of your college house, including student Resident Assistants (R.A.s) and faculty Resident Heads (R.H.s). These helpful individuals will be great resources throughout your time at UChicago, whether it’s easing the adjustment to college life, planning trips and outings, and looking out for your safety. Though your individual level of engagement with house culture is up to you, getting to know your R.A.s and R.H.s is a great resource for any student.

Students will also have the opportunity to run for House Council in their respective house. House Council helps plan social events for their house, which are available for students to attend for free thanks to annual funding granted to each housing community. House Council also coordinates with other houses, plans inter-house competitions and sports, and coordinates annual events such as Scav teams and prospective student overnights.

Health and Wellness

COVID-19: The University has outlined a UChicago Health Pact to address the preventative measures it expects members of the campus community to take to prevent the transmission of COVID-19. These include provisions for universal face coverings, frequent hand-washing, social distancing, and self-monitoring for symptoms. All students living on campus will be subject to mandatory testing upon coming to campus and weekly testing thereafter. Other individuals on campus will have access to voluntary testing, and the University has also put together a contact tracing team. Additional information regarding the University’s COVID-19 procedures can be found here.

UChicago Student Wellness: Through the payment of your Student Service Fee, you can access many services—such as vaccines, STI testing, and physicals—through Student Wellness at no extra charge. For more immediate concerns, Student Wellness has a 24/7 nurse advice line, which can be called at (773) 834–WELL.

UChicago Medical Center (UCMC): UCMC’s emergency room is the closest campus resource for urgent care. You can either call 911 or walk to the ER, which is located on East 57th Street and South Maryland Avenue. However, keep in mind that there often are additional costs associated with visiting the ER and/or taking an ambulance that are not covered by insurance.

Counseling and Support

UChicago Student Wellness: Student Wellness is suited for students who are suited to a short-term therapy model, generally lasting 10 weeks. Student Wellness is covered by the Student Services Fee and appointments can be made by anyone who requires counseling support. However, Student Wellness generally does not provide long-term treatment, and instead refers students who would benefit from long-term treatment to Chicago-area therapists. While the Student Wellness office is open during the autumn quarter for scheduled in-person appointments, it is possible to schedule virtual appointments by calling (773) 702–9800.

Lean on Me: Beyond formal school-offered resources, the UChicago-student run Lean on Me program offers confidential text-based counseling for “non-crisis support.”

Social Resources

A Word on Being Social: Having a meaningful social life at UChicago means many different things to many different people, and there are many different ways to make friends, from peers in your classes to your housemates to fellow members in a Greek organization to people you happened upon by chance at a dining hall or a coffee shop. The people you meet during your first week at school are never the only friends you’ll ever have a chance to make, even if it feels like they are in the moment. If it feels slow going at first, don’t worry. Your social life is a marathon, not a sprint.

Registered Student Organizations (RSOs): Registered Student Organizations, or RSOs, are formally registered clubs made up of and run by your fellow peers. RSOs range from cultural organizations, such as the Taiwanese American Student Association (TASA) and South Asian Students Association (SASA) to selective pre-professional groups like Eckhart Consulting or The Blue Chips to hobby and interest groups, like Phoenix Farms, which maintains a garden and beehive. There are over 450 unique RSOs on campus!

Note: The Maroon is not an RSO, as the paper is financially independent from the University. However, we encourage everyone interested in writing, photography, editing, finance, computer science, illustration, and radio to join us over Zoom or, hopefully, in our office in the basement of Ida Noyes!

Greek Life: UChicago has an active Greek scene. Interested individuals should inquire with students currently involved in Greek life about rushing. In the pandemic environment, however, students should always heed relevant state, city, and school policies about large gatherings.

Center for Identity + Inclusion (CI+I): The CI+I houses multiple programs. The Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA) is a resource for students from underrepresented racial and ethnic backgrounds, and the Office of LGBTQ Student Life supports LGBTQ+ students and hosts events for the community. Student Support Services provides advising and aid to students who are first-generation, low-income, or undocumented.

Spiritual Life at UChicago: Spiritually-inclined students at UChicago can find community through Spiritual Life, “a destination for all things spiritual and religious at the University of Chicago.” There are also a wide range of student groups dedicated to the worship of various faiths, such as Calvert House Catholic Center, InterVarsity at UChicago, and the Hindu Student Sangam.

Crisis Support

UChicago Safe App: University students can download the University of Chicago’s UChicago Safe mobile application, which offers a multitude of safety-related services, including one-tap dialing of both University of Chicago and Chicago police, crime reporting, and mobile blue light—a feature that, in the event of an emergency, shares your location with UCPD and calls them in real time. The app also provides links to emergency medical and counseling phone lines.

University of Chicago Police Department (UCPD): In the event of an emergency, the University of Chicago Police Department can be reached by dialing (773) 702–8181.

Therapist-on-Call: UChicago maintains a 24/7 therapist-on-call hotline at (773) 702–3625. The therapist-on-call provides acute help and can offer support as well as direct the caller to additional resources, such as formal appointments with UChicago Student Wellness.

UChicago Student Wellness Walk-Ins: Between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, UChicago students may visit the offices of Student Wellness, located at 5555 South Woodlawn Avenue, to access counseling and psychiatry services. Students can call (773) 702–9800 to make an appointment.

Dean-on-Call: A University of Chicago administrator can be reached at any time by dialing the UCPD at (773)702-8181. The UCPD “will page the Dean-on-Call for you,” according to Campus & Student Life. The Dean-on-Call can provide general advice and directions to further support to individuals experiencing a crisis or an emergency.

Nurse Line: In the event of a medical emergency, a registered nurse can be reached at any time by dialing (773) 834–WELL. The line can be used to answer urgent health-related questions, seek further information regarding care, and to evaluate whether one should report to a hospital to seek in-person emergency care.

Office of the Provost Misconduct Reporting: One can confidentially report misconduct by university students, staff, or faculty to the Office of the Provost online via this form. University administrators will conduct a thorough investigation. In the case of faculty or academic personnel misconduct, such an investigation is generally conducted by the member’s chair or director, but in the case of more serious incidents, there may be referral up to the respective dean or even the provost.

Student Ombudsperson: A University ombudsperson, or neutral representative, can be reached to provide informal and confidential advice and assistance regarding University-related concerns. Note that the Office of the Ombudsperson is not a replacement for psychological counseling or legal representation.

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