February 2017

Associate Dean Newsletter - February 2017


Tracy Isaacs, Associate Dean (Academic)
Faculty of Arts & Humanities 

Dear Arts and Humanities students,

I hope everyone is having a great winter term so far. Every term has its challenges and its perks. The best winter term perk is Reading Week (February 20-24). The biggest challenge of the winter term is, well, winter! As I write this we’ve been blessed with very little snow but oh, the grey skies and dark mornings! This type of weather can have a draining effect on people’s moods and energy levels, so please take that into account and make sure you’re looking after your well-being in healthy ways. Spring is just around the corner.

In this month’s issue of the Associate Dean’s Newsletter, I’ll be covering:

• Important Dates
• Intent to Register
• Reading Week
• Marguerite R. Dow Canadian Heritage Award
• Applying to Graduate
• Summer Courses
• Upcoming events
• Student artwork on display in the Academic Counselling office
• Resources for students struggling with physical or mental health
• Volunteer Opportunities in Arts and Humanities


February 1st – March 30th – Intent to Register
Feb 6th – Summer course registration
Feb 20th -24th – Reading Week
March 1st – deadline for Marguerite Dow Award
March 7th – Last day to drop a second term half course


The Intent to Register (ITR) period starts February 1st and runs until March 31st. If you are planning to return in September, you must complete your Intent to Register online through the Student Center. By completing your ITR online, you are letting Western know that you are returning and will also be choosing the program that you plan to take next year. It only takes a couple of minutes to complete this, so there’s no need to let the task overwhelm you! If you do not complete your on-line ITR on time, you will not be able to register for courses. Here’s some useful information about ITR, from the Arts and Humanities Counselling website:

ITR is a very useful opportunity to review the courses you've taken so far and what you plan to take next, and is best done, if possible, in consultation with one of our Academic Counsellors in IGA 1N20.


Reading Week is happening from February 20 to February 24 (that includes Family Day). I encourage everyone to take a time out from your studies for a least part of this week as a way of hitting the “reset” button and feeling fresh for the second half of the term. Please be aware that the Academic Counselling Office does not grant accommodations for students who miss classes, assignment due dates, tests, or anything else missed as a result of taking an extended Reading Week. If you decide to extend your break by leaving early or returning late, you are responsible for any academic penalties you may incur. In other words, remember that Reading Week is just a week.


Please note that the deadline for the Marguerite R. Dow Canadian Heritage Writing Award in Creative Writing, valued at $1,000, has been extended to March 1st, 2017. The eligibility and application details are as follow:

Awarded to a Canadian citizen or permanent resident registered in any undergraduate or graduate program at Western who submits, in English or French, any personal and recent work of creative writing, in any genre or length, on a theme of Canadian Heritage, that has not so far been published or entered in any other competition. The treatment of this theme may focus on any subject (such as place, relationships, history, circumstances, etc.). One of the following would be a suitable submission:
-a poem, or a brief series of linked poems
-a one-act play, or scenes from a longer work
-a short story or novella, or selections from a longer work of fiction
Established through the generosity of Marguerite R. Dow, Professor Emerita, The University of Western Ontario, who taught English and Drama in the Faculty of Education from 1965 to 1985. Value: Up to $1,000.


If you are intending to complete all of your degree requirements by the end of this term and graduate in the Spring, please visit the Convocation information page at
http://convocation.uwo.ca/preparing_to_graduate/student_checklist.html This outlines what you need to do to ensure that you receive your diploma and are eligible to walk across the Convocation stage in June. Applications begin February 1st through to April 30th.


If you plan to take any courses during the summer, you'll need to activate yourself for summer registration. You'll be able to do that as of February 6th by logging in to your Student Centre and clicking on "Summer Activation" (right side under Student Services Links > Summer and PT Activation). Here is the link to this information:http://registrar.uwo.ca/course_enrollment/activation_services.html


Putting off Procrastination Presentation: Learn how to move from avoiding important academic tasks to taking purposeful action that brings you closer to your goals.
Date: Monday, February 6, 2017
Time: 11:00 am - 12:30 pm
Location: Western Student Services Building (WSS) Room: 3134
Cost: Free

Turn Your Degree into a Career: What are you doing after graduation? Have you considered a Western Post-Degree Program? Visit us in the UCC Atrium to find out more about our one year career focused programs with hands-on work placements that add valuable experience to your degree.

Date: Tuesday, February 7, 2017
Time: 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
Location: University Community Centre (UCC)
Room: Atrium

Writing in the Arts and Humanities
Date: Monday, February 13, 2017
Time: 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Location: Western Student Services Building (WSS)
Room: WSS 3134
Cost: Free

Writing Multiple-choice Tests Presentation: Learn about different types of multiple-choice questions and ways to approach them. Sample questions from university courses are used to demonstrate effective strategies for this exam format.
Date: Tuesday, February 14, 2017
Time: 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
Location: Western Student Services Building (WSS)
Room: 3134
Cost: Free

Therapy Dogs!: Come cuddle a St John's Ambulance Therapy Dog, brought to you by Student Health Services.
Date: Monday, February 27, 2017
Time: 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
Location: University Community Centre (UCC) Rm 11, Health Services Resource Room
Cost: Free


We currently have some beautiful pieces on display which can be found on our website: http://www.uwo.ca/arts/counselling/about_us/office_art.html


Across campus we have various activities and resources to assist students. If you feel overwhelmed or stressed, please reach out to someone and be aware of the resources available to you.

Student Development Centre: http://www.sdc.uwo.ca/

SDC has many resources, from individual counselling to learning skills. They are located in Western Student Services Bldg (WSS), Room 4100 and their hours are 8:30 – 4:00.

Learning Skills Services: https://www.uwo.ca/sdc/learning/index.html
Learning Skills Services offers valuable resources to help students with challenges including exam preparation and time management. They also host ongoing workshops to improve writing and learning. To find out more about what’s being offered and to sign up, visit their website: https://studentservices.uwo.ca/secure/workshops/learningWorkshops.cfm

Wellness Education Centre: http://se.uwo.ca/wec.html
The Wellness Education Centre (in the basement of the UCC) is a safe environment where you can discuss the various resources available on campus.
Wellness events can be found here: http://www.events.westernu.ca/events/wellness/?dateType=start_date&startDate=11/1/2016&endDate=11/30/2016

Student Wellness Guide: http://westerncalendar.uwo.ca/pdfs/mhwrg.pdf

Mental Health and Wellness Resources: http://www.uwo.ca/health/mental_wellbeing/resources.html


If you’re an Arts and Humanities student who feels enthusiastic about what we’re doing here in the Faculty and would like to help us spread the word, there are some upcoming opportunities for volunteering. These include:
• helping represent your departments by volunteering to speak to prospective students and their parents at March Break Open House on March 11 (free pizza lunch for volunteers!)
• helping out with our phone campaign where we call students who applied to us and have received an offer from Arts and Humanities at Western (co-curricular credit; refreshments)
• helping out with Arts Day (April 7th), when we welcome grade 11 students to campus for the morning to give them a taste of what it means to be a student in Arts and Humanities.
If you’re interested in helping out at any of these events, please contact Carrie Connelly at arts@uwo.ca.

In closing, I’d like to wish everyone well for the remainder of the term. Remember that all of us in the academic counselling office are here to help you succeed. If you need guidance from an academic counsellor, please don’t hesitate to drop in to see Amanda Green or Ben Hakala any time during counselling hours. As always, I encourage you to take time out from your studies for leisure and rest. In the words of comedian Lily Tomlin, “For fast-acting relief, try slowing down.”

Yours sincerely,

Tracy Isaacs, Associate Dean (Academic), Faculty of Arts and Humanities