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Jan. 17, 2023

Welcome new students and welcome back to those returning! 

I hope and trust that you had a wonderful break and are starting anew from a place of rested wellness. If your break was challenging, you are not alone. Many people juggled holiday travel complications, challenging family dynamics, work, and the rest of life’s commitments and hurdles. The great thing is that with a new semester comes a brand new fresh start.

As you join your clean slate of courses for the first time this week, now is a good time to set a workable plan and lock in good habits. Grab a sheet of paper or your online calendar and map out your weekly schedule. Build in the study time you know you’ll need to reach your goals. Be honest with yourself. Commit to investing time in your studies. There are no shortcuts. Get your books, meet your faculty, and open yourself to new friendships, new information, ideas, and perspectives.

If you do these things, you are in for a great term. If you journeyed with us for the fall term, you know it took resilience and persistence to stick to your plan for success. You also know how quickly the semester can fly by. The spring term can slip by even faster.

One wonderful thing is that if you are here in Fairbanks, at any of our rural or community campuses, or anywhere in Alaska, you’ll be riding the coming weeks up and out of darkness to our summer world of near-constant daylight. It is a remarkable ride. Today, we are at about five hours and 20 minutes of daylight and gaining rapidly. By the end of the month, two fast weeks from now, we’ll gain another hour and a half and be at six hours and 50 minutes! I love this time of year. Anticipating and tracking this change is one of my favorite things to do. If you want to see and learn more, I like this site. The return of our daylight is a literal ray of sunshine and hope in our daily world. 

Things to do: 

Pay your bill before Jan. 27. If you aren’t 100 percent certain everything is paid and complete, make sure to check in with Financial Aid or the Bursar’s Office. If your bill isn’t paid by Jan. 27, you can be dropped from classes and housing - so it is worth making sure this step is complete. 

Check out the Nanook Events page for all kinds of things happening within our community. 

One of the great benefits we offer UAF students in Fairbanks taking six or more credits is a Ski Land Season Pass. Ski Land will be at the Outdoor Adventure office in the Student Recreation Center (SRC) on Jan. 19 from noon to 5 p.m. Stop by during these times to verify your credit load and get your pass printed. If you miss this window, come to the SRC to get a voucher to bring to Ski Land. Getting it done on campus will save you and Ski Land time compared to doing it on the slopes. Grab a friend, get your pass, and head to the mountain!

Welcome to the spring 2023 term. I am so proud of you. More importantly, be proud of yourself. You are on the path to a brighter future. The light is coming!

As always, don’t hesitate to send me your comments and suggestions. I am at obguthrie@alaska.edu

— Owen Guthrie, vice chancellor for student affairs and enrollment management


UAF is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer, educational institution and provider and prohibits illegal discrimination against any individual: www.alaska.edu/nondiscrimination/.