Student Academic Resources is hiring!

Are you interested in working as a Peer Advisor, or other position with Student Academic Resources? Do you have questions about what the positions include?

Talk to current Peer Advisors at Usdan Tables this week!

Wednesday, February 22nd
Thursday, February 23rd
11:30 – 1:30 – stop by during lunch!

Peer Academic Support Applications Open

Student Academic Resources (SAR) is hiring!

  • Enjoy learning new skills to improve your experience as a student?
  • Find fulfillment when helping others to learn something new?
  • Want to provide support to your fellow Wes peers?

Apply to be a Peer Advisor, New Student Orientation (NSO) Peer Advisor, or a Peer Technology Specialist and provide Peer academic support with SAR!

You do not need to be an expert; you only need a desire to learn and an aspiration to help your peers!

Currently accepting applications for:

Academic Peer Advisor

APAs are a resource to students during Orientation regarding the course registration process, and throughout the year they provide support related to improving academic skills and Wes student systems, such as WesPortal and Moodle.

Peer Technology Specialist

PTSs help Wes students to learn how to use digital tools like dictation, text-to-speech, and Google calendar to increase productivity and improve their learning strategies.

NSO Peer Advisor

NSO Peer Advisors work during NSO (New Student Orientation) to assist incoming students with schedule planning, preparation for faculty advisor meetings, and support participation in other Orientation activities.

SAR Peer Support Positions work as a team, collaborating with other campus departments, in order to support other students in their academic pursuits. Learn more about each position, and get the Handshake links on our Website.


Please contact Crystal Rose via Zoom Office Hours or email (

A Note from Your Academic Peer Advisors

We hope that your semester and classes have been going smoothly this semester! The Academic Peer Advisors are reaching out to offer our support. Even as life seems to be improving around us, we know that classes, homework, papers and tests are still causing stress among our community. APAs are here for one-on-one meetings, to help with various academic skills like time management, organization, study strategies, and reading or note-taking, as well as connecting you with any other resources you might need, but might not know about!

We encourage you to reach out to us with questions or concerns you might have about anything. You can email us at or our personal emails, which are linked to our bios on the Wesleyan website linked here.

Hope to hear from you, please don’t hesitate to ask for help!


The Academic Peer Advisors

Office Hours with Orientation Intern Anya Kisicki

Hey Hi Hello Incoming Students!

As January Orientation approaches, I imagine that you might have some questions about the orientation program, preparing for campus arrival, and getting involved in the Wesleyan community! Feel free to reach out to me through the orientation email ( and I can get back to you. Additionally, I will be holding office hours on Mondays from 1:00 – 3:00 PM EST. Feel free to hop in and ask a couple of questions, get advice about preparing for move-in, or just say hello! As an Academic Peer Advisor and Orientation Intern,  I love meeting incoming students and I am psyched to help you all get ready for your arrival to campus. As always, never hesitate to reach out!

Office Hours Zoom Meeting ID: 968 6827 6721

Warmest wishes,

Anya Kisicki
Orientation Intern

Meet Anya Kisicki, Winter Orientation Intern

Hey Hi Hello! My name is Anya Kisicki (she/her), I’m a junior at Wes, and I’ll be creating and facilitating the Winter Orientation for incoming students!

A little bit about me: I hail from Phoenix, Arizona and I am double majoring in Government and in the College of Letters, a three-year multidisciplinary program that merges the studies of history, literature, and philosophy. I am also pursuing a minor in Film Studies. Outside of Orientation Work, I work at Wesleyan’s Office of Student Activities and Leadership Development to help plan student events on campus and as an Academic Peer Advisor. You can also find me stirring up beverages at the local coffee shop, Perkatory, on Pocotopaug Lake with the Sailing Team, or on a film set designing the lights for student-run thesis productions. Additionally, I am currently working to build a new campus group that focuses on creating space for non-cis males (womxn) interested in Film to network and hold campus-wide events.

I interned for Orientation after my freshmen summer and stayed on the team during my sophomore year. I look forward to planning and actualizing a fulfilling and manageable virtual orientation program for you all! Until Orientation officially begins in January, I will be holding office hours on Mondays between 12:00 PM and 2:00 PM EST. Feel free to drop by or shoot me an email ( with any question or concern you have about starting at Wes in the spring. I am here as a resource for you, so don’t hesitate to reach out!

And this is the zoom link for my office hours:

Getting and Giving Good Advice: A Conversation between Dean Phillips and the Academic Peer Advisors

This Friday, August 21, from 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m. EDT, Dean Phillips and the Academic Peer Advisors will be hosting a Zoom panel on the topic of “Getting and Giving Good Advice.”

Life at Wesleyan, as with life in general, is full of ups and downs, which is why every Wesleyan student needs to know where to find help on campus, whether for themselves or for a friend.  During this Zoom session, Dean Phillips and APAs Darshana Banka ‘22, Anya Kisicki ‘22, Chaiyeon Lee ‘22, and Andi Wiley ‘22 will discuss the variety of academic and personal support services that are available to students, and will give advice on how to recognize when you or a friend could benefit from asking for help.

The recorded session can be viewed through this link:

Finding Balance as a Student-Athlete

By Aidan Winn ‘18, Peer Advisor

One of the most common questions peer advisors get asked is simply, “Will I have time to get all my school work done if I’m also an athlete?” Being a student-athlete at Wesleyan is an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling way to spend you’re time here, but it can also be stressful. But not to worry! There are tons of resources at your fingertips to help you stay on top of your responsibilities on and off the field (or, for me, in and out of the pool).

Going into my freshman year, my greatest anxiety about starting school came from my fear that I simply would not have the time to finish homework or study for tests while swimming nearly year-round. I quickly realized that the key to balancing my time was to make a detailed schedule at the start of every week and stick to it. I would write out everything that needed to be done for each of my classes at the start of the week, include all the time I had committed to training, and make sure I had time to myself to have fun and relax. You would be surprised at how helpful laying out your schedule can be, especially when it feels like there aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done.

But not everything has to be done on your own. I asked my swim coach if he had any advice or if he could help me stay on top of everything. Communication was key. Not only did he assure me that I was capable of completing everything and achieving goals in the pool, he made it clear that he was as committed to my success in the classroom as he was to my success as a swimmer. He would have my support if I needed extra time to study and had to sit out a practice or if I needed to leave practice early in order to make it to Biology lab. Though it may not even be necessary to have to miss a practice, it is comforting to know that your professors and coaches are not fighting for your time – they are fighting for your success.

But perhaps you are worried less about staying on top of schoolwork and more worried about having some time to yourself outside of the library or the gym. As I’m sure you know, Wesleyan is full of opportunities to have fun and be free outside of both of those venues.  I strongly encourage every student-athlete to try something new! Between theater, music, dance, clubs, and many others, there are definitely ways to divide your time and have fun away from a sports team.

There is no doubt that student-athletes have busy lives. There are times when we have to make sacrifices, but it is always worth it. Not only do we get to be proud of our success in school, but we also have a whole separate part of our life, with a second family, that has our backs. Though having two demanding commitments can be stressful, we (the peer advisors), class deans, our professors, coaches, and are all here to offer support. Our number one goals are to see you achieve and to make sure you’re happy during your time at Wes. I am confident you will do great things as a student and as an athlete!

Tips for Transfers from Jane Herz ’20, Peer Advisor

I transferred to Wesleyan as a sophomore in 2017, from Wake Forest University. I knew that transferring out of Wake would be the right decision for me, but I had no idea if Wesleyan would be the right fit. I knew that I wanted to come back to the Northeast (I’m originally from NYC!) and go to a smaller school, and while I was interested in Wesleyan, I didn’t know what kind of experience I would have there. Ultimately, I decided to accept my offer because of Wesleyan’s super-strong English and creative writing program. Transferring can be unsettling and a little bit intimidating, because, like most schools, you can’t really tell what it’ll be like until you get there!

Luckily, transferring to Wesleyan was definitely the right choice for me. I love my major, my friends, the campus, and all of the amazing opportunities that Wes provides, such as the study abroad programs! I’ve grown so much as a person throughout my time here, and learned so much about myself.

However, even though I love Wesleyan, the first few months as a transfer student were a bit of an adjustment, and there were so many things that I wish I had known during my first semester. Looking back on my time here, I’ve gathered my top 6 tips to help navigate being a transfer student:

Tip #1: Things take time. Like anything in life, things take time and it may be a little while before you feel completely settled in at Wes. That’s what happened to me, and it’s so normal! You may feel frustrated that you aren’t making friends quickly enough, or that you still don’t know where the best study spot is, or what to do on a Friday night. Try not to stress about this stuff, because it just simply takes time, as annoying as that may be. The longer you’re at Wes, the more comfortable you’ll feel, the more people you’ll get to know, and the more accustomed to campus you’ll be.

Tip #2: Put yourself out there. This is probably something that people will tell you over and over again, but it’s true! As a new student, it’s important to put yourself out there. Don’t be afraid to ask to grab lunch with people, or invite classmates to study together in Exley. Students at Wesleyan are very open to meeting new people, so don’t be hesitant to initiate that. I met so many of my friends by simply just asking them to grab lunch after we had only met once or twice–it’s totally normal, and will help you meet a ton of new friends and connections on campus!

Tip #3: Go to the pre-planned campus events and activities. As a transfer student, you may feel apprehensive about going to some of the activities or events that are typically advertised to freshmen, such as the clubs fair. However, it turns out that people of all ages and grades go to these events! Don’t be concerned that you’ll be the only sophomore or junior there, because that’s not the case. Joining a club or another on-campus organization is an awesome way to make friends and get involved at Wesleyan. Also, try to go to the events that are planned for transfer students throughout the semester, because it’s a great way to connect with different students in the transfer community.

Tip #4: Figure out how your credits will transfer to Wes. This was one of my biggest mistakes as a transfer student! I had no idea how my credits from Wake were going to transfer to Wesleyan, and I ended up being slightly behind in credit hours when I came in. I had to take a course over winter session, which wasn’t a big deal (it was actually super fun!) but just make sure you know this early so you can plan accordingly. My class dean helped me navigate this, but your advisor will also be able to help.

Tip #5: Try not to compare Wesleyan to your old school. In the beginning, there were times when I found myself comparing certain aspects of Wake to Wesleyan. Instead of doing this, try to embrace Wesleyan as much as you can!

Tip #6: People want to help you. There are so many resources on campus for transfer students, including CAPS, academic peer advisors, your RA, and professors, just to name a few! Don’t be afraid to use these resources, because they are here to make your transition as smooth as possible. People want to help and support you as much as they can!

Reflections on “First Year Matters” from the Peer Advisors

The “First Year Matters” (FYM) program has always been one of my favorite parts of New Student Orientation. FYM gives incoming students the opportunity to have a shared experience and introduction to the intellectual life at Wesleyan. This year’s FYM viewing is “This Changes Everything,” a powerful documentary that explores the intersection of capitalism and the global climate crisis, as well as the role individuals play in fighting for change. One aspect of Wesleyan that I love is the spirit of activism among students, and this documentary speaks to the importance of advocacy and everyone’s responsibility in demanding the changes that they want to see from people in power.

As you prepare to start your Wesleyan journey under extraordinary circumstances, FYM becomes increasingly important. Many of you in the class of 2024 will already share more common experiences than most students entering Wesleyan under typical circumstances, by virtue of the fact that the entire world shut down and with that came the loss of proms, high school graduations and so much more. You can use your experience viewing the documentary to further find common ground with your peers, to make connections and establish relationships during a time in which doing so has become so hard. While there are typically structured small group discussions during orientation devoted to the FYM reading or viewing, don’t let the conversations stop there. The more you discuss what you’ve seen, the more you’ll learn about your classmates, and their past experiences and viewpoints. We all bring vastly different perspectives with us to college, and FYM is the first time, and one of the only, your entire class will get to fully engage in the same conversation and you will get to see all the different ways people may interpret and understand the same thing.

In your WesPortal, there is a link to submit a brief response to the documentary. This is due on August 21st – your first assignment of college! You can use this response as an opportunity to engage critically with the documentary and be prepared to discuss it with your peers. I am excited to hopefully discuss the documentary with some of you and hear your thoughts!

If you have any questions about FYM, please don’t hesitate to reach out – my email is! Additionally, please feel free to reach out to me or any other peer advisor with any questions or concerns you may have about the semester ahead or beyond. You can email us at, or find an individual peer advisor’s email here. If you are interested, you can learn more about groups on campus that address climate change and sustainability and ways to get involved here. I hope you enjoy “This Changes Everything,” and that it helps instill a sense of activism that is very much alive on the Wesleyan campus!

Don’t Be Nervous

By Rachel Earnhardt, Peer Advisor 2016

It was in the Container Store, standing among clearance laundry baskets and desk organizing supplies sometime in early August, that I had a *minor* meltdown about starting college. Somehow, browsing for reasonably priced, but sturdy dorm necessities had made college feel so suddenly imminent and terrifying. If you find yourself having a similar experience, whether it be in Target or Bed Bath & Beyond or anywhere else really, I’m here to say that’s completely normal.

If you are totally chill and prepped and ready for college, then I envy you. Likely though, if you have traversed the internet to find this humble peer advisor blog post titled “Don’t be Nervous,” you are feeling anxious or excited or overwhelmed or some combination about starting college and would like to hear from some “wise” not much older soul who’s been there. I hope you find my personal narrative and unsolicited advice reassuring.

Okay, let’s rewind to the weeks leading up to the Container Store Incident. The summer before my first year at Wesleyan, I had my first real job working as an assistant camp instructor at the natural science museum. For several weeks, I stayed gloriously busy doing bug-themed crafts and making dinosaur footprint cookies and leading nature hikes and deliberating about how long I could avoid washing my staff shirt, but then, abruptly, camp ended. And the whole month of August was empty. It stretched out…a painfully open, unplanned void. This unscheduled month meant that I had four weeks with nothing to do other than think about heading off to college.

Let us rewind a bit more to April of my senior year. I had made an exhaustive spreadsheet, titled “The Decider.” With nearly 25 categories (like food, climate, “do I have to take a math class?”, faculty to student ratio, etc) I had meticulously input data about all the schools to which I had been accepted. I had been blessed with several wonderful options, many very similar to Wesleyan. But after careful analysis, Wes emerged as the clear choice. The last (and most important) category of my spreadsheet was titled “good vibes?” Next to other colleges, I wrote things like “too cold” and “too radical.” By Wesleyan, I had written the succinct, but completely confident: “Yeah.”

Yet still, even though I had penned this definitive assessment and highlighted the Wesleyan column in green on the spreadsheet, sent in my deposit, and bought my “Wesleyan Girls: Making Connecticut Beautiful Everyday” shirt, throughout the month of August, I woke up wondering. Wondering about each of the other schools from my spreadsheet, and even ones that I had not even applied to. For example, I had to remind myself that I crossed colleges in the state of Minnesota off my list for a reason (I’m sure it’s a great state, but I’m from the South and I’ve always just pictured a frozen hellscape). In retrospect, I realize that channeling my energy into my college choice stemmed from a general anxiety about going 900 miles away for school, where I didn’t know anyone.

Side note: It was also in August 2013 that I discovered College Confidential, which is sort of the underbelly of the internet. I stayed up for hours consuming the crowd-sourced anxiety about selecting a school and prepping for college. I also read countless Buzzfeed articles and mediocre blogs about the first year of college. *This was ultimately counterproductive and I do not recommend it.

But back to the story, fast-forwarding a bit to late August. After returning several items purchased in the heat of the moment to the Container Store, I had acquired everything on the packing list (and a bunch of things I didn’t need). We packed the car and began the eleven-hour drive from North Carolina to Connecticut.

I arrived in Middletown the day before move-in and led my parents on a tour of my new home. Draped in the flowers of late summer, the verdant campus was even more welcoming that it had been during our first encounter. (Okay, here comes the corny part): As I stood on the top of Foss hill looking out at College Row under the dome of blue sky, I knew that I would have the incredible opportunity to grow in profound ways over the next four years. I had picked a wonderful place to learn and prepare to make positive impact in the world.

I would be lying if I said that every ounce of anxiety evaporated during the first days or weeks or even months on campus. Eventually, I found my community and I can confidently predict that you will, too. Here is a whole paragraph of encouraging, very sincere reassurance:

If you are wondering if Wesleyan made a mistake admitting you: they didn’t. Or if you made a mistake in choosing it: you didn’t.  You are intelligent and capable. You will be surrounded by 780 interesting, smart, creative, idealistic people in your first year class. You will be able to find common ground with plenty of other people (even if you may not find those souls on your hall). It may take a few days or weeks or months, but you will meet friends and find professors with whom you connect. You may get overwhelmed by the coursework or, on the other end of the spectrum, find that some your courses are not what you expected, but there are plenty of people around to commiserate with and more importantly, to provide support and guidance. You will change your mind and your major and likely your haircut several times…and that’s all expected and celebrated!

Because I didn’t know where else to put it—here it is the obligatory list of unsolicited advice about preparing for college/the first few weeks (in no particular order) that you will probably ignore:

  • Go to different club meetings and activities. It might take a little time, but you will meet people who share your interests. I don’t want to minimize your unique personality, but there are plenty of other folks who are interested in science AND movies!! And yes, there will be at least one other person interested in starting a band.
  • Your hall will likely fuse together for a few days. That’s totally normal. Try to expand a little…Ask people from your classes or activities to lunch or coffee or to the Film Series or a WesBAM class. (Please feel free to contact me for other friend date suggestions.)
  • If you are unsure about ANYTHING, reach out to the peer advisors, the RAs, CAPS, OSRL, the deans, your orientation leaders or any the other groovy resources available.
  • Orientation specific: Go to all the events! Maybe you feel like you met your new bae or best friend and you will never hang out again if you separate to go to the meetings….but more than likely, you will learn something important at the orientation event.
  • Real talk: Across the nation, the first two months of the fall semester see an unsettling spike in alcohol hospitalizations. Please, please take care of each other.
  • Your residential advisors and orientation leaders are so excited to welcome you to campus. Maybe you don’t connect with them on a spiritual level and that’s totally fine.
  • ******Academics don’t happen in a vacuum. Your emotional, physical and mental well-being are all intimately a part of your experience and affect your ability to succeed (whatever success means to you). ******

So let’s wrap up. You’ll recall several paragraphs ago I explained that in my spreadsheet, by Wesleyan I had written: “Yeah.” I will now artfully use that as a nice frame for this post.

Is there an expansive network of resources and people (students, faculty, staff, peer advisors, the list goes on…) to support you throughout your Wesleyan journey so that you can get the most out your time here and go on to be a thoughtful and engaged citizen? Is the entire Wesleyan community so jazzed to have you join us?


The title of the post is “don’t be nervous,” but I had plenty of people tell me that and I didn’t listen. If you’re nervous, there’s not much I can say to change that. Nervous or not, either way, you will arrive in Middletown sometime between August 24 and 31 and more than likely you will thrive here.

So, again, if in the next couple weeks you have any moments of doubt or anxiety or maybe you just get so excited you can’t breath, please feel free to reach out to the peer advisors (or one of the many aforementioned resources).

And of course, I invite you to have a last minute existential crisis in your local dorm supply depot. It can be quite cathartic.