Sophomore Year

What Can I Do to Help My Sophomore Student?

The sophomore year can be an exciting time for many college students:  they've survived their first year in a new environment and learned a lot about the University, themselves and other students in the process.  However, for others, the second year can be one of the most challenging to endure. 

Students experiencing what's known as the "Sophomore Slump" may begin to lack motivation; feel confused about the future; or become saddened by the end of the "honeymoon period" of the first year, when every day presented a new and interesting experience. 

Here are some tips on how you can help your student persevere through the sophomore year: 

Remind your student of all she or he has accomplished by completing their first year at the University of New Haven.

Cheer them on as they seek to answer questions related to their academic, professional, social and spiritual identities and goals.

Know that the "Sophomore Slump" is normal. Your student is not alone and there are many student leaders, faculty and staff members who are here to support them.

Encourage your student to make use of all that the University of New Haven has to offer in terms of academic resources, support services, events, and student clubs and organizations.

If you (or any of your older children) had similar experiences during your sophomore year, it may be helpful to share this with your student.

Encourage your student to take care of their physical well-being by getting enough sleep, eating healthy, and becoming involved in REC Sports or fitness and wellness classes at the David A. Beckerman Recreation Center.

If your student is having academic difficulties, encourage them to consult with their academic advisor and/or with the staff in the Office of Academic Services in Maxcy Hall 208 and the Center for Learning Resources in the lower level of the Marvin K. Peterson Library.


The Sophomore Year: Month-by-Month


If your student did not get involved with a club or organization last year and is interested in doing so, have them stop by the club fair this month to check out the more than 150 clubs and organizations the University of New Haven offers!


Students typically use this time to reacquaint themselves with friends and with what the University of New Haven has to offer.

So that your student gets off to a good start academically, encourage them to attend any of the fall semester workshops offered by the Office of Academic Services.  If appropriate, they should also consider getting assistance from the Center for Learning Resource FREE Peer Tutoring program. The CLR also provides writing skills assistance to help students with good grades who want to do even better as well as those who are struggling and want to improve. 

Consider attending this year's Family Day on October 1st!  There's limited availability for some of the events, so register today! 

Most college students are expected to understand the fundamentals of personal financial management. Developing budgeting skills, understanding the role of credit management, renting vs. buying a home, long-term financial planning and meeting the expenses of daily living are all key areas that students must be ready to address. 


If your student is interested in studying abroad, encourage them to visit the Career Development Center in the Bartels Student Activities Center (aka BSAC).


If your student is thinking about applying for a summer internship, have them visit the Career Development Center before the end of the fall semester.  Visit the Charger Career Management System to find out more!

The Office of Intercultural Relations, located on the top floor of the Bartels Student Center, also maintains a listing of internships that may be of special interest to students from certain identity groups (i.e., female students, students of color).


Students who are thinking about changing their major should schedule an appointment to meet with their academic advisor.

The Career Development Center website provides links which may help students think about how their interests and skills translate into possible majors and careers.

They can also make an appointment with the Counseling and Psychological Services to take a vocational interest exam to help inform the process of selecting a career or major. 


Consider sending a care package or gift certificate to local stores or restaurants to perk up your student's week! Contact Dining Services for more information about surprising your student with tasty treats.


Students should be on the look-out for upcoming deadlines related to on-campus housing, study abroad and summer internships.

Students who are interested in applying for a Resident Assistant or Orientation Leader position should seek out information about these leadership opportunities from the Office of Residential Life (located in Bixler Hall) and the Office of Student Activities (located on the top floor of the Bartels Student Center), respectively.


Spring Break! Remind your student that they're almost done with their second year of college!


If your student is planning to live off-campus next year, they should start deciding where they want to live and with whom. Sometimes students may need to sign their lease before leaving the area for the summer, so they should start thinking about how they and their new room-/housemates will budget for this. A sampling of off-campus listings can be found on the Center for Graduate and Adult Services website. They can also get recommendations from current commuters.


Students planning to apply for summer jobs may want to visit Career Services for assistance with fine-tuning their résumé and gaining interviewing tips.