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Frequently Asked Questions
What are the Undergraduates Colleges?
The Undergraduate Colleges (UGCs) were designed to help incoming first-year students acclimate to college life. With nearly 2,700 students in the freshmen class, it would be easy to feel overwhelmed and lost in the shuffle. So instead of being one of several thousand students, you are essentially one of only four hundred.
There are 6 UGCs, each with their own unique theme: Arts, Culture and Humanities (ACH); Global Studies (GLS); Human Development (HDV); Information and Technology Studies (ITS); Leadership and Service (LDS); and Science and Society (SSO).
How do I get assigned to an Undergraduate College?
Upon acceptance to Stony Brook University, freshmen will be asked to fill out their online preference form. On this form, freshmen rank their UGC preference based on the level of interest they have in each of the themes. Once this form is completed, every attempt will be made to honor a student’s first choice.
Should I select my Undergraduate College based on my intended major?
You should select your UGC based on the level of interest you have in that college’s theme. The theme may or may not reflect your major or field of study. Each UGC has students from a wide variety of majors. While you would think all Biology majors would select Science and Society as their UGC, there are a large number of Biology, Chemistry, and Engineering majors who opt to enter the Undergraduate College of Arts, Culture and Humanities to explore their passions outside of their major.
Once assigned to an Undergraduate College, is it possible to switch into a different one?
Once you have been assigned to a UGC that affiliation lasts throughout your first-year student year at Stony Brook University. You should not feel that this limits your Stony Brook experience, since many students from one Undergraduate College participate in events hosted by the other UGCs. While each UGC has its own unique and specialized theme, the Colleges have far more similarities than differences.
Will my Undergraduate College affiliation last for all 4 years?
There are ways to maintain your involvement in your UGC beyond the first year. Students are only required to live in their assigned Undergraduate College quad during their first year. Most students find that they make lasting friendships with those in their Undergraduate College.
I’m not going to be living on campus. Do I still need to select an Undergraduate College?
Yes, the Undergraduate Colleges are also for commuter students. The Undergraduate Colleges place commuter students in contact with faculty/staff members who can assist them with a variety of issues. In addition, every Undergraduate team has a liaison from Commuter Student Services who can assist with issues specific to commuters. For more information on Commuter Student Services, please visit their website.
I received my Undergraduate College placement. Does this determine which residence hall I’m going to be living in?
Your Undergraduate College placement determines which residential quad you will be living in, but does not determine which individual residence hall you will be housed in. Each Residential Quad is home to a variety of residence halls. For more information on campus residences, please visit their website.
If I am part of a specialized program at Stony Brook (EOP/AIM, University Scholars, Athlete, Honors, WISE) will my Undergraduate College placement be different?
For most specialized programs (with the exception of the Honors College and the WISE program) your Undergraduate College placement will not affect your special group status. However, those residential students in the Honors College will all live together in Toscanini College in Tabler Quad and the residential students in the WISE program will live in Mendelsohn Quad.
My friend and I would like to room together. Can we do this even if we are not in the same Undergraduate College?
No. Since each Undergraduate College is assigned its own residential quad your friend will not be able to room with you.
I did not get assigned to my first choice, is it possible to switch Undergraduate Colleges once the semester starts?
Once you have been assigned to a UGC that affiliation lasts throughout your first-year student year at Stony Brook University. You should not feel that this limits your Stony Brook experience, since many students from one Undergraduate College participate in events hosted by other UGCs. While each UGC has its own unique and specialized theme, the Colleges have far more similarities than differences.
What is different about my Undergraduate College from the others?
All colleges will have programs and activities geared towards their respective themes. Each college has a unique color that is assigned to it, and on UGC-themed days students are encouraged to wear the color that corresponds to their college. In addition each college is attached to a specific residential quad and each has a specific culture of its own.
Who are the important contacts for my Undergraduate College?
Each college has an assigned faculty director, quad director and college advisor(s). You will get to meet and interact with them at orientation and they will continue to support you during your first year. You can even see the Undergraduate Colleges team.
Are there specific Undergraduate College classes that I am going to be taking as a first year student?
Yes. All students, regardless of what college they are in, must take a first year seminar 101 course in the fall and a first year seminar 102 course during the spring semester. The 101 class is geared toward educating first year students about the resources available to them at Stony Brook, and also familiarizing them with the campus culture. The 102 course is a unique opportunity for first year students to interact with tenured faculty (which usually only happens in a students’ junior or senior years at college) in a small group setting. The 102 courses are designed around a very specific topic that the faculty has expertise in.
How can I get more involved in my Undergraduate College?
Each college has a wide range of programs and activities. We encourage all students to attend as many as possible. There is also an opportunity to become an Undergraduate College Fellow. College Fellows are peer mentors and leaders in their undergraduate college. In addition there are many student councils and programming boards in the colleges. Opportunities for involvement are abundant, and those students interested in taking advantage of them should contact their Advisor or Quad Director.