Student News photo collage

The biweekly CFANS Student News features events, college updates, and timely scholarship info for CFANS undergraduates.
This is the last issue for spring 2016 - we'll return in September. Enjoy the summer!

New Advising Model for CFANS Undergraduates

A letter from Michael White, Associate Dean for Academic Programs and Faculty Affairs

Dear CFANS students,

Congratulations on completing your spring semester! I’m writing to let you know about some exciting changes happening in advising and how this will improve your advising experience as you work with your staff and faculty advisors starting next fall.

Under this new system, all CFANS undergraduate students will be assigned a professional academic advisor for their entire undergraduate career and will communicate with the advisor each semester. This will allow you and your advisor to navigate academic requirements for your major and for timely graduation.

That’s not to diminish the role of faculty; you’ll still have faculty mentors in your major to help you choose courses, internships and connect with other people in your field. In fact, because faculty relationships are so important, you’ll be required to meet at least once a year with a faculty mentor. Your major coordinator can tell you more about specifics of that requirement for you.

Perhaps the most noticeable change will be that all of CFANS’ staff advisors will be located in a new centralized Advising Center in 130 Coffey Hall. We’re adding a new drop-in advising service that will help you get simple questions answered quickly (although you’ll still need to make an appointments with your advisor for more complex issues). To further streamline the advising process, we’re also considering new communication tools such as video-call appointments and enhancing the advising information that’s available online.

As part of this transition, we’re expanding the advising staff so that each major has at least two advisors who understand your major. Two advisors per major means your advisor will have more time to spend with you, and if your advisor goes on leave or changes jobs, you’ll still have an advisor available to help you.

We’re making these changes because we heard from many of you that advising is key to your academic success in CFANS, and because they are best-practices in higher education. I hope that you’ll let me know how the changes are working as we roll out this new system.

Have a great summer!


College News & Announcements

Congratulations CFANS Graduates!
Congratulations to our graduating students for their hard work and accomplishments! The CFANS undergraduate commencement ceremony is May 13 at 7 p.m. in Northrop Auditorium.  Although the event is at full capacity, you can watch the Commencement Ceremony live online.

Take on a Grand Challenge for Fall 2016
The University’s new Grand Challenge Curriculum (GCC) offers interdisciplinary, solution-oriented courses about important global issues. All GCC courses:

  • Are 3 credits
  • Open to undergraduate and graduate students from all academic disciplines
  • Meet a Liberal Education (LE) theme
  • Fulfills an Honors Experience for Honors students

To learn more about what makes GCC courses unique, check out the Fall 2016 Grand Challenge course descriptions, or watch this short video.

Study Abroad Next Year with CFANS

As summer approaches, take this time to consider a CFANS’ short-term program for the 2016-17 academic year. Many programs explore important CFANS topics and Grand Challenges themes while fulfilling degree requirements. Travel and learn from a CFANS faculty or staff member while exploring a unique destination. Here is a sneak peak of next year’s program locations and topics.
Winter Break

  • Thailand: Tiger Conservation and Vertebrate Field Methods
  • Ecuador: Sustainability of Its Peoples, Lands and Waters
  • Germany: Energy in Transition: Creating a Sustainable Economy through Collaboration

May & Summer Term

  • Belize: Wildlife Medicine and Conservation
  • France: From Farm to Fork, Sustainable Food Systems 
  • The Taste of Germany: Food Education and Production 
  • Italy: Sustainable Food Systems 
  • The Natural History of Norway 
  • Switzerland: Mountain Agriculture
  • Bahamas: Tropical Marine Biology and Shark Ecology

Questions? Contact the Office of International Programs in CFANS at

Upcoming Scholarship Deadlines    

Izaak Walton League of America Scholarship
Apply by: May 15
The Minnesota Division Izaak Walton League of America will award scholarship(s) of up to $1,000 to assist applicants who enter or continue in an education program in Environmental Education, Environmental Law, Wildlife Management, or some other conservation-oriented program. See the scholarship application.

Minnesota Pork Industry Scholarship
Apply by: May 15
The Minnesota Pork Board will award up to five $1,000 scholarships to individuals who are pursuing careers with an emphasis in pork. Among qualifying educational pursuits are agribusiness, agricultural engineering, agronomy, animal science, animal physiology, environmental sciences, nutrition, livestock reproduction, large animal veterinary medicine and other related fields. To download application material, visit the website.

Syngenta Agricultural Scholarship
Apply by: May 26
Syngenta is awarding a total of $20,000 in scholarships for students majoring in an agriculture-related field. Students must write an essay as part of the application. Access the scholarship application and additional information.

National Poultry & Food Distributors Association Scholarship
Apply by: May 31
The NPFDA awards $1,500-$2,000 scholarships to upcoming juniors and seniors in the fields of poultry science, food science, agricultural economics/marketing, nutrition and all other areas of study related to the poultry industry. Learn more and apply.

For other external scholarships related to CFANS majors, see our External Scholarships page. The scholarships listed above have deadlines coming up within the next month.

Key Academic Calendar Dates

-May 9 - 14: final exams
-May 14: end of semester!
-May 23: May session begins
-May 30: University closed for Memorial Day

U of M academic calendar

How to submit content to CFANS Student News: The Student News focuses on events and news that are accessible and valuable to most CFANS students. It's posted online and emailed every other week. For details and a submission/publication calendar, see our submission guidelines.

May 12, 2016: CFANS Student News

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