Student Success

In an effort to maximize potential success and satisfaction for each student throughout a very challenging academic experience, the faculty and staff are committed to providing a high level of support and individualized attention every step along the way.


Prior to the beginning of the fall and spring terms, Orientation is held for new students.  As part-time students, juggling the commitments of work and family, many of you will encounter challenges on the way to your degrees.  Orientation is just the first step in connecting with the team of people, including your fellow students, who will help you navigate as you embark on this exciting journey. 

Transformations Course

 “Transformations: Reading, Thinking, and Communicating in the Liberal Arts” is a specially-designed course required of students in their first semester to orient them to the BIS degree and the resources of the University. The course is designed to help students develop the skills they will need to complete their degrees, such as critical thinking, effective writing, and strong verbal expression. The course will also help them learn how to use library resources, cite sources, and present research so that they are prepared for their additional coursework in the BIS program. 


All students are assigned a faculty advisor. Students work together with faculty advisors to build an advising relationship that becomes an important element in an overall support system that enables them to meet and surpass their educational goals.  Prior to registration every semester, faculty advisors and students will connect, usually via email, to talk about enrollment in the upcoming term’s classes, as well as progress towards meeting the requirements for graduation.

Peer Mentor

New students are assigned a Peer Mentor before their first classes begin.  The Peer Mentor Program is designed to help new students become acquainted with the program, support those students further along in their degrees, and foster a sense of community by hosting events and aiding in Orientation. As a student-run organization, the Peer Mentor Program unifies peers as a community of thriving and successful students, and is guided by the foundational principles of the University of Virginia: honor, trust, integrity, and respect.