By Kerry Thomas, Academic Advisor College of Liberal Arts

We are now right in the middle of fall term and I’m sure you all have had a chance to turn in a paper, take a test or do a large project in each of your classes.  After looking at those grades, you may be overjoyed with your grades and feeling optimistic about the GPA you are going to earn this term.  Others of you may be getting concerned. You may be getting lower grades than you had wanted in one or more classes and are contemplating either S/Uing or Withdrawing from a class. There are a few things you should consider before making this decision.

1. Calculate your term GPA assuming the grades you currently have in your classes are your final grades.  If you are not sure how to do that, look at this worksheet for instructions on how to calculate your GPA. It is important for you to earn at least a 2.0 in the term to maintain good academic standing at the university, but there may be other GPA requirements for scholarships or your major that you need to consider as well.  If the GPA that you compute is below where you need to be and you don’t think you can bring your grade up in a class, it may be time to look at options that will help you salvage your GPA.

2. S/Uing a class- If you are doing poorly in a class that is not in your major but you think you will successfully pass it, you may be able to S/U it.  Changing the grading basis of a class to S/U means that if you earn a C- or better in a class, the grade that will show up on your transcript will be an S.  You will earn credit for the class, but the S grade will not impact your GPA.  If you earn a D+ or below in that class, you would earn a U.  Earning a U does not impact your GPA and you do not earn credit for the class.

Once you decide to change a class to S/U, you cannot change it back.  In other words, if you change to S/U grading, and end up earning an A in a class, you will not be able to change your S to an A.  To S/U a class, you need to go to your advising office and get the S/U form signed and take it to the registrar’s office  in Kerr by 5:00 pm on Friday, November 9th. You do not need an advising appointment to do this, but if you want to talk through whether or not it’s a good idea, you are welcome to make an advising appointment with a CLA advisor by calling 541-737-0561.

3. Withdrawing from a class- If you are in any class that you know you will not be able to successfully complete, you have the option to withdraw from it.  You can withdraw from a course, even if it is in your major.  You do not need to fill out a form to withdraw from a class, you just need to go to your “Register, Add, Drop” menu in student online services.  Find the drop down menu next to the class you want to withdraw from, select withdraw and press the “submit changes” button located towards the bottom of the page. Refresh the page and make sure that the class is now listed as withdrawn.  I recommend withdrawing from a class if you are sure that you cannot pass a class.  It saves you from earning an F that brings down your GPA and you can get rid of a class that is causing you stress which will provide you more time to focus on improving the final grades in all of your other classes.

4. Check with financial aid- Withdrawing or S/Uing may or may not impact your aid, loans, scholarships or other funds you are using to pay for your tuition at OSU. If you are concerned, make sure to contact the financial aid office and find out if your aid will be affected.

5. Seek help from the Academic Success Center– That’s right people, there is a whole center on campus dedicated to helping undergraduate students be more successful! They are located in Waldo 102 and offer services from Academic Coaching, workshops on success skills, tutoring, supplemental instruction, the writing center and different strategies that will help you be a better, more effective learner.

At the end of the day, you have to make the decision that is right for you.  Just remember, you do have options to help save your GPA and your advisors in CLA would be happy to help you choose which option is right for you.

By Morgan Willer

It’s that time of a year again when all the Oregon State dads and families come to visit their kids in Corvallis. That’s right, it’s Dad’s Weekend! Our wonderful MUPC event coordinators have planned some great things for you all to do with your dads, and of course there is the football game that everyone will be attending. For an official list of all of the Dad’s weekend activities, click here.  But just in case you have a few hours to spare I have some other ideas for you:

Go Out for A Delicious Meal:

According to an expert on the TODAY show, Oregon State University and the town of Corvallis is a great place for foodies. Pretty much anywhere you eat you can’t go wrong. My dad loves breakfast at the Broken Yolk Café located in downtown Corvallis and the burgers from Downward Dog and Block 15. There are the classics like American Dream for some amazing pizza and Local Boyz for some tasty Hawaiian. Anywhere you go you’ll get some great food!

Check out the Farmers Market:

Corvallis prides itself on being a sustainable community, so why not show your dad the farmer’s market and our beautiful downtown at the same time? This market shows off the best of Corvallis and it’s a nice walk. Bring your dad on down to 1st and Jackson for some people watching and a great time on Saturday morning!

Go to the first Basketball Game:

So your dad is into sports? The Beaver Basketball team will be playing Lewis & Clark right here in Corvallis at 7:30 pm on Sunday, November 4th! Go ahead and take the nice walk through campus to Gill Coliseum and show your dad how spirited OSU can be! You can find tickets on our Beaver Athletics’ page.

Do a Brew Tour (21 and older):

I know my dad enjoys a good beer and I’m sure yours does too! If you’re 21 or older go ahead and take your dad down to Flat Tail Brewing. You can enjoy the Beaver memorabilia, taste some beer, and watch the game!

And finally….

Do a Day in the Life Tour:

What is this you ask? Well it’s when you give your dad a tour of what you do just about every day. Walk him around campus, show him your favorite hang outs, and show him where you have classes! My dad is always curious about what I do and I am sure yours will be too, even if this isn’t is first time down here at OSU. They love seeing our gorgeous campus and learning more about what makes you tick as their kid!

I hope these suggestions are helpful to do when you’re planning out your weekend. I hope you all have a great time with your dad, I know I will!


By Katy Krieger

So it’s week 5 and you’re all probably tired, sick, or both. The midterms are piling up and you haven’t started on those research papers due Friday. Your mom is calling, you’re working extra hours, and your roommate won’t clean up. Stressed out, right?! Well here are some tips on how to get through life without crying every 5 seconds.

1.        Spotify/Pandora: I know the ads can get old, but music is a great way to unwind. Make a playlist or simply find a station and away you go. Warning- Avoid anything that is super energetic, loud, or whose lyrics are being screamed by a cat.
2.        MindSpa: They have massage chairs, meditation programs, and counselors. The works! Need I say more? Oh wait! Yes I do, it’s free (well actually your student fees pay for most of the service)!
3.        Work out: Hitting Dixon Rec, McAlexander Field House, or Legacy Park is an easy way to let off steam. Go with a group of people, take your best friend, or go alone. Again, the best part is that it’s free!
4.        Blog: It’s easy to write about your life, some people will read it (probably just your significant other and your parents), and you can let loose.
5.        Yoga: Find yoga classes at Dixon, at other gyms/studios, or buy one of those amazing 80’s yoga videos where everyone is in various colors of spandex.
6.        Go see a movie: There are some great ones out there and certainly a little Kristen Wiig in your life can’t hurt.
7.        Clean out your DVR list: Watch those movies you recorded! Start the new season of Mad Men you’ve been dying to see! Even if you have to do it one episode at a time it’s still better than reading your Stats notes.
8.        Dance: DDR your stress away. Or hit up the Peacock and get down! Host a dance party in your living room for all I care, just dance!
9.        Spontaneous Road Trip: Grab a friend and get in your beat up car (please check it for safety purposes) and travel. It doesn’t have to be far, go to Portland and eat your weight in Voodoo doughnuts. If you are truly the spontaneous type, please make sure to take a map, gps, iphone, or sundial so you don’t end up in the backwoods of Idaho staring at a bear.
10.        Talk it Out: Call your poor mother and talk about life. Or Skype your friend cross-country on a Saturday afternoon. Write a letter to your Nana about college life. Sometimes we ignore the people around us when we get stressed.
11.        Pinterest: Yes, that’s right; I am condoning your addiction to this magical website of craftiness. Spend hours on it finding delicious recipes and adorable crafts. Warning: actually make the food or do the crafts, don’t just pin it and be proud of yourself.
12.        Organize: Clean out your car, clean your apartment, organize your study materials. It all adds up and you will feel productive. Plus your roommate won’t call HAZMAT to drag away your stuff!

13.          Game Night: Host a game night at your place and Apples-to-Apples your stress away!

14.          Plan: Make a battle plan for the next couple of weeks. Write down due dates, events, and anything else major in your life.

15.          Spend some time in nature: turn off Facebook and go outside (weather permitting). Go on a hike or go to Avery Park and stretch your legs.

I know sometimes it seems like it’s impossible to make time for these de-stressing activities, but it’s important to try! Doing so will enable you to be even more energized, present and committed to all of the other important things you do in your life. Good luck with your midterms and remember, woo-sah, serenity now, ohm or whatever helps you relax your way through stress!

By Alison Blazer,

Greetings from South America!

For those of you who don’t know, I am currently studying abroad in Chile for fall term! Although abroad, I am still trying to reach out to the Oregon State student body- this time, by encouraging you all to go abroad yourselves!

My study abroad program is offered exclusively for Oregon State students, meaning that the
credits transfer easily and students are able to spend three months bonding with their fellow Beavers! Set in the small city of Chillán, Chile, this program offers the entire 200 series of Spanish (Second Year) in just three months. Many students pursing a Bachelor of Arts travel down to Chile in order to complete their foreign language requirement. I myself am pursing a Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communication with a Spanish minor, as well as the International Degree. Like many other students, I was less than enthused with the foreign language requirement at first glance. However, that all changed during my first year of Spanish at Oregon State.

My sophomore year I started the 100 series of Spanish and quickly found that I not only had a knack for the language, but really enjoyed speaking it! Students who have previously travelled to Chillán visit the 100 level Spanish classes during fall and winter terms to promote the program and offer details to interested students. I first learned about the program when Lucia Robelo, the program coordinator, spoke in my Spanish 111 class. After that, I attended an informational meeting, filled out an application and was interviewing before I knew it.

Now, already half way through my term abroad, I can hardly believe it’s going by so fast. I have been living with a host family (whom I adore) and learning Spanish at an alarming rate. There are 17 other Beavers here, and all of us attend the same university four days a week, and typically travel together on the weekends. It’s hard to say what the best thing about this program has been thus far because I’m still experiencing it, but having other Oregon State students here with me has definitely been a plus. Knowing that other OSU students are in the same city, experiencing the same things as me is extremely comforting. The close-knit aspect of this program has allowed me to step out of my comfort zone with more confidence.

That being said, each day here is certainly an adventure. One of the best parts of the Chillán program is that it overlaps with Chile’s Independence Day on September 18th. Chileans typically have the entire week off of work and school and spend their time having huge family gatherings until late in the night. Just three weeks into the program, I was surrounded by over 30 members of my extended Chilean “family” experiencing the culture in the most hands on manner. We danced, ate Chilean foods and played typical Chilean picnic games.

Since that holiday week, the program has continued improving along with my Spanish. Hitting the half way point has made me realize how little time I have left here, with my new family and friends. I plan on continuing Spanish classes until I graduate from Oregon State and sincerely want to learn more about Spanish-speaking cultures. My career plans, as of right now, are to work as a bi-lingual Speech Pathologist in an elementary school for native Spanish-speaking students.


Although I am sad to be so far away from Corvallis during the Beavers’ historic winning streak, I strongly encourage each and every student to find the program that is right for them and step out of their comfort zone! If you have questions about this program in particular, please feel free to contact Lucia Robelo or myself.

By Angel Martinez

Hello there my fellow CLA majors. It’s already week 4, crazy! Can you feel those midterms creeping up on you?

When coming to college there were some new concepts and terms that I wasn’t familiar with. One of the big things was that before my sophomore year of college I never knew the difference between a bachelor of arts, and a bachelor of science, and I’m sure I wasn’t alone in this confusion. So for your benefit I would like to clear up a couple things.

First, there is no such thing as “just getting a bachelor’s degree”. It doesn’t exist. When you graduate, regardless of your major in the College of Liberal Arts, you will either walk away with a bachelor of science or a bachelor of arts.

Second, neither one will affect your major requirements. There are some majors in CLA that make the choice for you based on the desired outcomes of the degree. If you are majoring in English, History, Art History, French, German, or Spanish, you are required to do a BA. The rest of you get to choose which option suits you best. Picking one over the other won’t make some of your required major classes magically disappear.

Third is that neither one is “better” than the other. Sometimes I’ve caught myself thinking that since I opted to go with a bachelor of arts instead of science, somehow I was taking an, “easier route” that wouldn’t be viewed with value or respect. But that isn’t the case at all! I want to go into social work, and I am confident that having another language as part of my skills will make me more effective in my future career.  It is important for you to choose what makes the most sense between these two options.  You should pick what fits your interests, your career goals, and what you want to get out of your college experience.

Finally, let me break down the difference between the BS and BA.  With a bachelor of science, you are required to take 3-4 credits in computer science, 3-4 credits in any course from the College of Science, and 8-12 credits in in math or statistics. With a bachelor of arts you have to either take two years of a foreign language or demonstrate proficiency at the second level in a language.  If you have any questions about which of these options works best for you, call 541-737-0561 and schedule an appointment to talk with a CLA advisor.


By Kendra Kintz

Just because it is time for you to go to college, you are expected to know what you want to do with the rest of your life. Then, when you attempt to choose a major, people bombard you with questions that can be overwhelming and exhausting to think about: “What are you going to do with that degree?” “Are you going to graduate school?” “You know nobody makes a career out of that, right?”

Nobody likes to juggle all of these questions, and nobody should have to. A lot of people come to college and panic because they think it is expected of them to know exactly what they want to do with the rest of their lives. What I want to convey to you is how important it is to study what you love; the rest will fall into place. Some people have known what they want to do for a living since they were five years old, but for most of us, that is just not the case. And that is okay!

Declaring a major does not need to be as intimidating as it is made out to be. Over eighty percent of students change their major at least once throughout college, so clearly the majority of students at OSU know what it is like to have a change of heart. I encourage you to be flexible, and allow change to take place if something does not feel right for you. There are so many careers that exist that do not fall under the category of lawyer, doctor, or teacher. As long as you are excited to learn and enjoy how you spend your time, you will attract positive outcomes and situations into your life to help you along your journey. So try different kinds of classes, get outside of your comfort zone, and start learning about yourself so you can really know what you want out of life!

I want to share my story briefly, just so you can get an idea of how much following your heart can lead you to the right place. I came to OSU before I was ready to make any big decisions; it was convenient, and I was not ready to be proactive with my life. I started as an Engineering major, and went through the motions of taking classes for over two years before I stopped and asked myself, “What do I actually want to do with my life?” I had never taken the time to think about what I wanted to do; I was just going along mindlessly. I ended up changing my major last winter to Sociology, and following my major change I was able to study abroad in Ireland last summer where I literally fell in love with life all over again. Because of my journey abroad, I realized I did want the challenge of Engineering in my life, as well as my new-found interest in Sociology. I have now decided to finish both degrees, creating a path that works best for me and suits all of my interests. If I had kept powering along without questioning my interests or trying to figure out what I really wanted, I would have never been able to go to Ireland and travel Europe, nor would I have realized that I really did enjoy my engineering classes as well as Sociology. It has all worked out perfectly, though if someone would have told me that sequence of events my freshman year I would have never believed them! Trust your feelings and be honest with yourself and you will be successful, I guarantee it.

I have two quotes I want to leave you with, all awe-inspiring and cute-like to get you motivated. The first quote is probably in my Top 5 for favorite quotes of all time: “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive, and then go and do that. Because what the world needs, is more people who have come alive.” I think this one speaks for itself.

One more for the finale, and please don’t judge me too harshly for referencing a Twilight movie, but this graduation speech is hard to beat:

“When we were five, they asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up. Our answers were things like astronaut, president, or in my case… princess. When we were ten, they asked again and we answered – rock star, cowboy, or in my case, gold medalist. But now that we’ve grown up, they want a serious answer. Well, how ’bout this: who the hell knows?! This isn’t the time to make hard and fast decisions; it’s a time to make mistakes. Take the wrong train and get stuck somewhere chill. Fall in love – a lot. Major in philosophy. Change your mind. Then change it again, because nothing is permanent. So make as many mistakes as you can. That way, someday, when they ask again what we want to be… we won’t have to guess. We’ll know.”



By Daphne Gill

Howdy everybody, and welcome to the College of Liberal Arts!!

I know it’s already the end of week three and you all have already started getting into your routines and such but don’t engrave them in stone just yet. Our lovely college has so much to offer and it isn’t limited by what degree you’re interested in. One of the great things about the Liberal Arts in general is how much all the fields of study feed into each other. For example you could memorize as many dates as you could fit into your brain in your history class however what happened in those historical moments might not stick unless you understand what kinds of things were happening in that societal or cultural setting.

Not just the knowledge is interdisciplinary though; many of the CLA’s professors and instructors combine knowledge and theories from their areas of studies and combine it with knowledge or theories from other areas in the Liberal arts, or vice versa.

One of my favorite examples of this is Dr. Patti Watkins in the School of Psychological studies. She is a Clinical Health psychologist, one of many branches of psychology and has more recently been focusing on Body image disorders. In both her teaching and research she has combined her psychological background and has incorporated a Womens studies approach to body disorders. This is shown in a class she recently developed and is teaching, Women, Weight & Body Image.

Dr. Watkins is not the only professor that does this though. It is actually part of your Bacc Core requirements to take a Synthesis Class which combines at least two areas of study outside your major. Gender and Science (WS 340) is a class I am taking this term that fits into the synthesis category. The class focuses on how gender and inequality are shown in scientific literature, methods and theories.

Interdisciplinary studies and research are not just limited to the Liberal Arts; all fields of study rely in some way on another area. So if you are an engineering major interested in research on foreign politics or a Women’s studies major (such as myself) interested in Oceanic Animal Behavior Studies, don’t be afraid to take a class outside of your major, talk to a professor about research opportunities, go abroad and study an international perspective, get a work study job in a lab, and the list goes on. What is really important is that you take opportunities of diversifying your Oregon State experience and make your education the best it can be.

SO don’t settle into the study, class, eat, sleep routine just yet. Go talk to a professor, look at classes for next term and utilize the opportunity for interdisciplinary learning opportunities with professors, their research, classes and perspectives so that your college experience can be the best it can be.

By Katy Krieger

It’s the beginning of week 2 and there are a lot of things to get done! But where do you go and who are you supposed to see?

Professors: If you are in need of a specific professor for one of your Fall term classes utilize their office hours and go see them. Adding a class during week 2 is possible but make sure to discuss with the professor of the course about your options for getting in (various courses do things differently). Professors will list their office location and hours on your syllabus or you can find their information by searching the OSU website.

Advisors:  Maybe you are unsure about your major, interested in a minor, want to talk about future terms, or just want to find a direction in this big OSU world. Go to either your major advisor or to a CLA advisor! These wonderful people are at work each and every day to find answers to such questions and would love to see you in an appointment. Don’t know your advisor? Go here to the CLA advising page!

CAPS: Feeling a little stressed? Need  someone to talk to? CAPS offers a variety of services including the Mind Spa and Counseling sessions. Go to Snell 500 or visit their website.

Student Health: Starting the term off with a cold or just need some advice on healthy eating? Students Health Services provides an array of resources that students have access to. There are flu shot clinics, dietitians, nurses, doctors, annual exams, and a pharmacy to name just a few of the services you can find at SHS!

Paying Tuition: Yes it’s that time again, tuition bills are going to be arriving! You can pay online or go to Kerr 100 and visit windows 13-16 to pay in person.  Make sure to pay so that you can register for Winter term classes without any problems.

Football Tickets: Can’t wait for the next Beaver game? Go to the Southwest ticket booth at Reser Stadium (Gate H) from 9:00AM to 5:00PM! You can get tickets all week but get there early because they go quickly. Reminder: Bring your OSU ID and a sweater or rain jacket if you plan on waiting in line

Working Out: Want to get back into shape? Looking to relieve some stress? Hit up Dixon Rec for some classes, cardio equipment, weights, or pick up sports! McAlexander Field House (by Kerr Administration) is another great option as well as Legacy Park (across from Dixon and Gill Coliseum).

I know there are a million other places to go at OSU, so, when in doubt, check the OSU website for information! Have a great second week and be sure to join CLA on Facebook so you can keep up on all of the current OSU news!