First-Year Tips


  • Ask questions and ask for help whenever you need it
  • Check and read your RIC email regularly
  • Go to class and be an active participant (sounds like a no-brainer, and it does contribute to better grades)
  • Join at least one club or organization your freshman year – you never know where it might lead
  • Positively promote Rhode Island College – this is your college!
  • Remember these words and a number: General Education, Major, 120 Completing each of these requirements will keep you on track to graduate – and the easiest way to reach 120 credits in four years without summer classes is to take 15 credits each semester
  • Remember your peer counselor – he or she will be a great resource for you
  • Make a habit of attending events on campus
  • At least occasionally, call or talk to your parents – they do want to hear how things are going
  • Maybe… just maybe, consider walking the quad once in a while, look up from texting, and make eye contact with someone, smile or say hello.


  • (Don’t) Doubt for a minute the quality of the education you will receive at RIC – our graduates go on to the finest grad schools in the country and are found throughout the U.S. and abroad in corporations, boardrooms, hospitals, schools, non-profits, agencies, and even on Broadway.
  • (Don’t) Forget that our RIC grads have helped pave the way for you. The first black woman to earn a doctorate from Harvard graduated from RIC in 1919. She’s Rose Butler Browne, and one of our residence halls is named for her. The father of modern trademark law is a RIC grad from the 40’s named Frank Campbell. A retired Navy Rear Admiral – who happens to be a woman, is RIC grad Pauline Hartington ’53. And President Obama appointed Brenda Dann Messier ’73, as assistant secretary for vocational and adult education.
  • Then there’s the 2012 Commencement speaker, a Class of ‘81 art major with minors in English and theatre. He’s 6-time Emmy nominee, Danny Smith, who just happens to be the producer and head writer for “The Family Guy.” He told the graduates that the skills he learned as a RIC undergrad earned him numerous awards and success as a television writer. And I’m sure you’ve heard of Oscar-nominated Viola Davis, also a RIC alum and a Central Falls native who makes a point of visiting the college and meeting with RIC students when she’s in town.
  • Alumni success will constantly increase the value of your RIC degree and 10 years from now, when you are established in your chosen career, your success will benefit the next new group of freshmen.
  • Don’t pass up any of the educational and social opportunities available to you as a college student.
  • Don’t stay in your room or car between classes – there are lots of great places to hang out (just ask your peer counselor)
  • Don’t forget you can always go to OASIS with questions

Page last updated: Monday, August 29, 2016