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Making sense of the UArizona Alphabet Soup

18 Oct

The University of Arizona (UA or Arizona) has many abbreviations and it can be really confusing when you aren’t used to them. All of these acronyms can often look like alphabet soup. What if you asked about getting involved in something on campus and someone said “Sure, just go to the SUMC, to ASUA and ask about WEB.” That means nothing.

You will find some abbreviations that are used on campus below. 

24/7 help desk for computing issues

AASA-African American Student Affairs

ABOR- Arizona Board of Regents

ADA-American Disability Act

ADMIN- Administration building

AG- Agricultural and Life Sciences

AGEC-Arizona General Education Curriculum

AHSC-Arizona Health Sciences Center

AME-Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering

AP- Advanced Placement

APASA-Asian Pacific American Student Affairs

ARC- Advising Resource Center

ASUA- Associated Students of the University of Arizona

AZSO-Arizona Sonora Dorm

Bio5- Institute for collaborative bioresearch

BMPI- Biology, Mathematics, and Physics Initiative

BUMC- Banner University Medical Center

CALS-College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

CAPLA- College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture

CAPS- Counseling and Psych Services

CATS Academics- student athlete services- advising, tutoring

CESL- Center for English as a Second Language

CFA- College of Fine Arts

CHSA-Chicano/Hispanic Student Affairs (Guerrero Student center)

CLEP- College Level Examination Process

COH-College of Humanities

D2L-Desire 2 learn-learning management system

DOS-Dean of Students

DRC-Disability Resource Center

ECE-Electrical and Computer Engineering

EFC- Expected family contribution (FAFSA)

ENRB/ENR2-Enviromental and Natural Resources Building/2

FAFA- Free application for Federal Student Aid

FERPA-Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act 1974

FSO-Financial Services Office

FSP-Fraternity and Sorority Programs

FWS-Federal Work Study

GRO-Grade Replacement Opportunity

ILC-Integrated Learning Center

INDIV-Individuals and Societies (general education subject area)

ISRC- Immigrant Student Resource Center

LGBTQ+-Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Queer, and Questioning Affairs

MESA-Mathematics, Engineering and Science Achievement

MLK-Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Student Center

NASA-Native American Student Association

NATS-Natural Sciences (general education subject area)

NCAA-National Collegiate Athletics Association

NSC-Next Steps Center

NSE-National Student Exchange

NSO-New Student Orientation

OSCR- Office of Student Computing Resources

OSFA-Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid

PA/PM-peer advisor/mentor

PAC12-Pacific 12 Conference

PAS-Physics and Atmospheric Sciences

PDB- Past due balance

PFA-Parent and Family Association

PSP-Posada San Pedro Dorm

PSU-Park Student Union

PTS-Parking and Transportation Services

QTR-Qualified Tuition Reduction

RA-Resident Assistant

RHA-Resident Hall Association

ROTC-Reserve Officer Training Corps

S4S- Schedule for Success

SALT-Strategic Alternative Learning Techniques

SAPR- Student Academic Progress Report

SBS-College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

S.O.S- Student. Opportunity. Success-it really means just ask them any question

SSN-Social Security Number

STU210-Transfer strategies-Course taken at Pima Community College

SUMC-Student union memorial center

TA- Teaching Assistant

TCE-Teacher/course evaluation

The Rec/Rec Center-Campus Recreation

TOEFL-Test of English as a Foreign Language

TRAD-Traditions and Cultures (general education subject area)

UPAD-University of Arizona Police Department

UITS- University Information and Technology Services

VDP-Villa Del Puente Dorm

WEB-Wildcat Events Board

WGRD-Women Gender and Resource Center

WSIP- Writing Skills Improvement Program

Hopefully this list helps clear up some of the confusion on acronyms at UA, if you ever have a question on any you can reach out to SOS.

Frequently Asked Questions and SOS

18 Oct

During your time at the UA you will probably have a question that you need answered. Below you will find some FAQ’s and info about SOS a resource for students to use to get help answering their questions.

How do I see holds on my account/Why do I have a hold on my account?

Login to UAccess (netid and password). Once you are on your student center on the right hand side you will see a box that says “holds” and the word “details” click details to see the holds that you may have. Typically if you have a hold it will give the instructions on what to do about it.

Who is my academic advisor/where do I find their contact info?

Login to UAccess (netid and password). Once you are on your student center on the right hand side you will see a box that says “advisor(s)” and the word “details” click details to see your advisor(s) and their contact info.

Where can I print on campus?

There are a lot of places to print on campus and at this link you can see all the different CATPRINT kiosk locations.

Where is the post office/Fed Ex/UPS?

There is a USPS aka “post office” located in the basement of the Student Union Memorial Center “SUMC.” At this link you can learn more info about the USPS.

When is the last day of classes for fall/What day do classes start in January?

Classes end on December 11, 2019 for the fall semester and for spring semester they begin January 15, 2020. The 2019-2020 academic calendar is provided at this link.

What are shuttle options to take to Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport that leave from campus?

Groome Transportation is the most commonly used shuttle option. This link has more info on shuttles to the Phoenix airport.

Is there a club for …?

The UA has over 600 recognized clubs and organizations. You can see all university clubs at this link.

Where can I go to apply for on campus jobs?

This link is a great first step to look and apply for on campus jobs.

These FAQ’s won’t cover everything, so if you have any other questions reach out to SOS.

Support. Opportunity. Success. (SOS) is for UA students who find themselves facing questions or issues and are unsure about where to go for answers. ANY QUESTION. JUST ASK

Whether a student has too much information or too little, SOS will help. Every student has a different experience at the University of Arizona, and maybe the FAQs don’t apply. Reach out to SOS for answers to fit your needs or any old question you may have.

Contact SOS:

-Text SOS to 97779


-Visit SOS at the Gallagher Theater window M-F 10-3

Chat with SOS at

Weekend Adventures

7 Oct

This weekend (Oct 11-Oct 13) there will be so many things happening on campus and off campus. Whether your family is coming to town or not, there will be plenty to do.

Weekend long events

Tucson Meet Yourself- “Tucson Meet Yourself is a folklife festival. We focus on presenting artists and communities that carry on living traditions rooted in a group’s own definition of identity, artistry, and cultural significance.” At Tucson Meet Yourself you can see performances, art, try different foods, and so much more.  

Film Fest Tucson- “Film Fest Tucson is a destination film festival, a place for filmmakers and audiences to meet, discover and experience unique and important stories told on film. The festival is for the community of Southern Arizona, as well as for visitors to the region to experience the unique environment, heritage and culture of Tucson and the surrounding area, while seeing new and important films. A unique and home-grown Tucson film festival for those passionate about movies. programming at Film Fest Tucson includes both short and feature-length narrative and documentary films that have been selected for their quality, timeliness and subject matter.” *Oct 10-Oct 12

Flu Shot Clinic- “Our flu campaign this year is Beat the FLU and ASU! We are in a competition to see who will give more flu shots –  UofA, ASU, NAU or GCU.  Flu shots will be administered by Campus Health Staff to UA students only. They need to show their student ID and insurance card if they have a billable insurance. We bill United Healthcare, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Cigna, and Aetna. If students do not have a billable insurance they can bursar the $27 cost of the flu shot.”


Farmers Market- Check out the Food in Root Farmer’s Market on the UA mall from 10am-2pm.

Bear Down Fridays- Catch the UA spirit every Friday before home football games when Zona Zoo and Main Gate Square host Bear Down Fridays from 4-7 p.m. Join the community as we cheer on our football team. Every pep rally begins at 6 p.m. and features the Pride of Arizona marching band, Wilbur and Wilma, UA cheerleaders, the pom squad, and twirlers. A variety of University of Arizona coaches make guest appearances at each pep rally.”

Bear Down Sale- Every Friday before home game days get 25% off UA apparel at the bookstore.

Moonlight Hike- “Outdoor Recreation is offering a beautifully lit moonlight hike in Tucson Mountains.  Come de-stress and enjoy Tucson’s glowing nature at its most peaceful! This trip is appropriate for people without previous outdoor hiking experience. The trail is light with minimal hills.  This excursion is an excellent way to relax, hangout with friends, and get outdoors! Instruction will include: guidance on the path.$10 for students and $12 for non UA students. Register here.


Mount Lemmon Day Hike- “Enjoy the cool breezes, the shade of the trees, and excellent views from several high vantage points, all while getting a good workout hiking along the high mountain ridges.” $35 for students and $45 for non UA students. Register here.

UA football gameThe Arizona Wildcats will be playing the Washington Huskies


Gallagher Theater- Eighth grade will be playing at 8pm, free with a CatCard!

There are much more events going on that you can see on the calendar at this link.

Have fun exploring Tucson and campus this weekend Wildcats!

Foodie Nation

2 Oct

Tucson is an incredible place with a diverse selection of foods. Keep reading if you want to know about some of the tasty options we have right here in Tucson.

Sonoran Hotdogs 

You might be wondering what is a Sonoran Dog. It just so happens it is a Tucson delicacy and crowd favorite. Watch the video below to learn all about what goes into a Sonoran Dog and visit this link to find a few places sell them so you can try one too.

Best 23 Miles of Mexican Food

Visit Tucson sums it up perfectly. “What is The Best 23 Miles of Mexican Food? It’s an adventure of incredible food and a wide array of dining options, from fine to funky. It’s a line drawn in the sand of the Sonoran Desert: you won’t find better Mexican food anywhere north of the border. We’re happy to try out the competitors, but we stand by the claim. If you love Mexican food and you haven’t eaten in Tucson, you haven’t tasted the whole story. With hundreds of Mexican restaurants in town, scattered across the city, where does someone looking to explore this culinary adventure start? Where are the Cliffs Notes to the 23 Miles? That’s where the Tucson 23 Festival comes in. The Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance in partnership with Visit Tucson conducted the first annual Tucson 23 Mexican Food Festival – a one-night celebration of the best Mexican restaurants in Southern Arizona.”


Eegee’s frozen drinks are perfect for those hot Arizona days. Luckily for UA students they don’t have to travel far to try them. You can find them in the Arizona Market in the Student Union Memorial Center (SUMC). Or you can visit one of the many Eegee’s establishments in Tucson. Every month there is a new flavor of the month in addition to their four daily flavors.

UNESCO City of Gastronomy

Tucson was the first city in the US to get the designation of UNESCO City of Gastronomy. Visit Tucson explains this more: “Tucson received this distinction from the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), because the food here dates back 4,000 years. The city’s culinary heritage is a tapestry of Mexican and Native American traditions. Eating local means honoring history, and each bite is an experience.” Visit this link to learn more about why we received this distinction from UNESCO.

Check out Tucson Foodie for additional suggestions on places Wildcats should try out.

Campus Pantry

2 Oct

Did you know that the UA has a Campus Pantry right on campus in the Student Union Memorial Center (SUMC)?

1 in 3 college students face food insecurity at some point during their academic career. The Campus Pantry’s goal “is to reduce food insecurity in our Wildcat Community. At our distribution events, students and staff can grab important food staples at no cost.”


Turn left at the information desk located next to the UMart in the Student Union. Proceed down the stairs and you will see a sign for the UA Campus Pantry. If you get lost stop by the info desk across from the bookstore or the SOS window in Gallagher Theater and they can help you find it.


Tuesday: 2-6

Wednesday: 11-3

Friday: 10-2

How it works:

  1. When you arrive at the Pantry you will swipe your CatCard which will grant you access to the Pantry.**
  2. Pantry users can currently take up to the daily number items. Depending on donations for the week, we will offer additional items when available.
  3. Items always available at the Pantry include: canned foods, peanut butter, bread
  4. When you leave the Pantry, a Campus Pantry team member will weigh your grocery bag. These weight estimates assist us in sharing the story of the Campus Pantry to ensure that no Wildcat goes hungry.

**Please note that students will never be asked to identify themselves through StudentID, CatCard number or any other identifier as part of the Campus Pantry community. Students do not need to “qualify” to visit the Pantry. Any CatCard holding member of the UA community is welcome to visit the Pantry.

Additional information:

Instagram: @uacampuspantry


If you need help now check out this tab on their website. It has links to local places that provide hot meals and groceries as well as additional info on resource to utilize.

Free Things to do on Campus

23 Sep

Being a college student can be extremely expensive. Check out this list for free things you can do on campus.

Gallagher Theater

Did you know you can see movies and get a small popcorn for free with your CatCard right here on campus? Check out their schedule here. Don’t forget your CatCard!

Rec Center

Some of the student fees you pay allow you to use the rec center. There are so many things you can do at the rec. They have a new app called UActive that allows you to see the best time to go to rec through their live webcams and it allows you to see all the different schedules of their facilities. To learn more about Campus Recreation visit their website.

Museums on Campus

The University of Arizona is home to a bunch of different museums and most of them are free with your CatCard. Visit this website to explore the different museums and to see their hours so you can plan your next visit.

Campus Arboretum Tours

The Campus Arboretum has free guided and self-guided tours you can take on campus. This is a great way to explore campus and learn more about the trees and plants we have on campus. Visit their website to learn more and to see when the next tours are happening.


Looking to give back? Then you should consider volunteering. If you visit this website it gives you the contact for Volunteer Services. The Campus Pantry is also looking for volunteers and you can find more info here.

Follow different orgs on Facebook or join listservs

One way I have found a lot of info about events happening on campus is by joining listservs, most of the cultural centers have listservs that you can join by going to their websites. They send newsletters every week with info about upcoming meetings, events going on, and other helpful information for wildcats at UA. This website has a link to them.  Another way I have found out about events on campus is by following them on social media. Some of the ones I follow are ZonaZoo, Cats after Dark, ASUA, Thrive Center, and a lot more.

Check out the UA Calendar

There are always a variety of events that you can see on the UA calendar.

If you need help connecting or finding other free things to do on campus just contact SOS.

Loneliness in College

23 Sep

Loneliness in college isn’t something the media often portrays. When you see a movie about college you see all the students having a great time with all of their friends. Everybody has a squad and it all seems picture perfect. Maybe you’ve even seen Youtubers or Instagram influencers post about their perfect college life. But what the media in general and social media don’t portray is that a big percentage of college students feel lonely; that it isn’t always you and 35 thousand of your closest friends. Sometimes it feels like just you and 35 thousand other people who have already found their crew. Watch the Youtube video below and you’ll see what Emery figured out about loneliness in college. Maybe you’ll relate to it, I know I did.

If you watched the video and was like wow this is me, what do I do now? Then keep reading because this blog will address some ways you can combat loneliness.

Have you heard of the power of YET? The power of yet can be seen in these statements:

“I haven’t made friends… Yet”

“I haven’t found my fit… Yet”

“I don’t know what I am doing… Yet”

Yet implies a future because some things don’t happen overnight, they take time. Think of your hopes and dreams, many of them you probably know will happen, they just haven’t happened…yet. Maybe you want to be an elementary school teacher, but it hasn’t happened yet because you’re still in school.

Zoe Forest wrote about ways to combat loneliness here and Dr. Cohan wrote about loneliness here.

Here are a few of the things they suggest:Realize you are not alone in feeling lonely in college. Many students have experienced it and are experiencing it currently.

  1. Keep in touch with family and friends. Just because you start a new adventure at the University of Arizona doesn’t mean you can’t keep in contact with your friends and family from home.
  2. Meet new people. Join a club, attend an event in your dorm or one on campus, talk to people in your classes, or if you have a roommate get to know them.
  3. If your loneliness starts to become overwhelming and interferes with your academics, job, or relationships then it might be time to seek out help. You can talk to a friend, family members, mentor, someone at CAPS (Counseling and Psychological Services),etc.

If you need help connecting to a resource on campus, joining a club, or anything at all don’t hesitate to contact SOS. SOS is here to answer any question at all, just ask. At you can see all the ways to contact them whether it be in person, email, chat, text or over the phone.

Growth mindset? I don’t know her…yet.

20 Sep

Have you ever heard of the terms fixed mindset and growth mindset? The YouTube video below gives a quick explanation and the graphic gives you a comparison of the two.

Fixed Mindset vs. Growth Mindset

Now that you’ve learned about the two mindsets, let’s talk about how you can apply growth mindset to your life and how resources on campus can help you grow.

Ways to incorporate Growth Mindset into your everyday life

Embrace Challenges- The CatTran drops you off too early for class, but if you take the next one you’ll be late to class. Take the early one and use your extra time to read over your notes or book.

Learn from Mistakes- You keep staying up late and missing your 8am. Try setting a schedule for when you go to bed and extra alarms. Also, next semester you could consider not taking 8ams if you can avoid them.

Treat Feedback as an Opportunity– If your professors are writing feedback on your assignments, make sure to read it. By reading the feedback especially on papers it can help you do better next time.

Celebrate the Successes of Others- Maybe your roommate did better on a test than you and that is okay. Celebrate their success and possibly ask if you can study together next time.


Before you came to the UA you might have had certain study skills or a grasp on how to do your homework. Now that we’re a few weeks into  the school year you might be thinking that you need to change your ways to get the grades you want. Think tank offers free and fee based services. They have tutoring, workshops, academic coaching, test prep and so much more. Think Tank is available online ( or at a variety of locations all over campus. About 30% of UA students use Think Tank and many report that they felt more confident and gained new skills.


Brene Brown once said “We don’t have to do all of it alone. We were never meant to.”  SOS is for UA students who find themselves facing questions or issues and are unsure about where to go for answers. ANY QUESTION. JUST ASK. Whether a student has too much information or too little, SOS will help.  Every student has a different experience at the University of Arizona, and maybe the FAQs don’t apply. Reach out to SOS for answers to fit your needs or any old question you may have. SOS is happy to help you navigate through any questions or processes that you need help with. Visit to see how you can contact SOS.

Get Involved to Give Back

29 Jan

How you get involved on campus truly influences and enriches your college experience. There are many ways to make your campus involvement serve a dual purpose- both improving your life and contributing to the University and Tucson communities. Many extracurricular activities provide you with an automatic group, making giving back even easier if you haven’t really done it before.

Here’s a breakdown of ways that you can get involved on campus that often facilitate giving back!

Fraternity and Sorority Programs: One aspect of fraternities and sororities is their partnerships with philanthropic organizations. Those partnerships offer opportunities to impact complete strangers’ lives across the nation. You also don’t necessarily have to be a member to help out! By attending our chapters’ philanthropic events, you are able to make a small contribution.

Honoraries: There are several honoraries on campus! Some are based on eligibility by GPA, year in school, or are focused specifically on service to others. Regardless of the honorary, all of them arrange service projects for their members. In addition to the benefits of membership, you get the bonus of feeling good after participating in such projects.

ASUA Clubs: Joining clubs that are focused on your interests such as academics or hobbies are a great way to make new friends and network! In addition, many of these clubs provide opportunities to engage with the Tucson community and encourage children to consider going to college.

Housing and Residential Life: Joining Hall Council, getting involved with RHA/NRHH, or becoming an RA or DA isn’t just for people wanting to work in student affairs later in life. These leadership opportunities are also a chance to improve the daily experiences of students living in the residence halls.

On Campus Jobs: Many departments on campus hire students to work on-campus. These are also wonderful opportunities to gain leadership experiences and network if Housing isn’t your thing. This can be a very rewarding experience because you are helping your fellow students get the most out of the U of A. 

There are many avenues to focus your energies. If you are already involved with some of the groups I discussed, start taking advantage of the opportunities for service! Since it’s the beginning of the semester, it’s a great time to join something new.



29 Jan

Now that it’s the new year and y’all have your fitness routines and such all worked out, it’s time to focus on your hearts. VOLUNTEERING! YAY! Okay, yeah, I get it, you did that one thing, that one time, and you’re set, right? NO. WRONG. It’s always a good thing to volunteer, and let Lili lay some knowledge on why.


get readdddddyyy

    • Look, let’s be real. You know you feel good when you volunteer, or help someone. Maybe not in the moment, but you know you helped someone who needed it. So, why on earth wouldn’t you want to feel good? Your conscience is calling you! It wants you to help put a smile on someone else’s face!giphy.gif
    • Who says you don’t have to benefit from the volunteer work? You can definitely mention these experiences on your resume, cover letters, and interviews! After all, the things are building your character, so y’know, GO BUILD SOME CHARACTER. 


      you’ll be dancing once you know you have some solid resume builders!


    • Whether you’re helping someone mow their lawn, or you’re tutoring other students, you are making a difference. Although it may not feel like it for the big picture, you are changing someone’s life. It may not be the world, but if enough of us do one kind act like that, it builds up to change the world in the end. 


      don’t be surprised! Someone out there needs help!


    • Networking is the way of the modern world; you need connections to get places, letters of recommendations, and anything else of the sorts. Volunteering opportunities open windows where you can meet new people! This, again, is another way you can benefit from volunteering. 


      you recently when people ask if you have built some networks lately.



  5. IT’S FUN
    • Who said you would have to do it alone? I volunteer all the time with a group of my friends! You really get to bond with your best mates while also helping the community. It’s a win-win!


All in all, life is what you make of it. Why not help someone who needs it? You can have fun, gain experience, and benefit the community all by one opportunity. So, hop to it!


Much love,

Lils xx