First Year Success Courses

A student at graduation [View Image]

VCU strongly encourages all incoming first year students to enroll in at least one "First Year Student Success" course. These courses count towards graduation requirements and meet only once a week for 50 minutes. National research shows that these first year courses greatly impact the overall grade performance of students and also improves how connected a student feels to their university (thus improving their persistence in college and their GPA). These courses are taught by our academic advisors, financial aid counselors, campus leaders, and student affairs professionals interested in connecting to first year students based on their interests, fears, aspirations, and career goals.

Fall 2020 courses

First Year Success Courses to be offered in fall 2020 include:

  • Introduction to the University (UNIV 101)
  • I Want to Get Involved on Campus But I Am Not Sure How?
  • “I Can Get Help With That?” Stronger Study Strategies and Less Procrastination
  • How Can I Pay For College?
  • Introduction to Career Planning & Management
  • Dynamic Principles for Professional Development: For Men of Color
  • Leadership Development for Women of Color
  • Navigating LGBTQ Pride at VCU and RVA
  • Maximizing VCUarts Foundation
  • Maximizing Your Study Abroad
  • Urban Education and Experience
  • The Science of Recovery
  • Exploring Diversity, Social Justice, and Identity
  • Profiles in Leadership: Deepening your Influence at VCU (LDRS 200 – Section 001 or 901)
  • From Locker Room to Classroom
  • Getting Connected
  • Professional Planning for Pre-Nursing Majors
  • Undergraduate Options in Healthcare
  • F.I.R.S.T Generation in Healthcare
  • Finding Your Voice

For descriptions of each of these programs, please see our full menu of courses


Here's what a few of the students who have taken First Year Student Success courses had to say about their experience:

  • "Great class that really made me discover myself and what I believe in. Thanks for a great half semester!"
  • "I really enjoyed taking this class and experiencing a space for LGBTQ+ friendly talk and discussion"
  • "Very knowledgeable, and helps nurture an inclusive learning environment where discussion is heavily promoted."
  • "[My professor] was a fantastic professor for this course and helped me acquire useful knowledge in regard to resources and opportunities available from VCUarts. He also did a great job giving us more information about the various majors offered next year."
  • "This class helped me with the struggles often associated with being a freshman and I was able to take away key techniques to cope with stress and concentration."
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