Skip to main content
Expand AU Menu

SOC First Year Leadership and Academic Success Seminar

SOC Week 2012

What is the SOC First Year Leadership & Academic Success Seminar?

The School of Communication offers an opportunity for new first year students to participate in a 1-credit seminar in their first semester, geared toward academic success and leadership in communication. The seminar provides a support network for SOC students as they transition from high school to college.

Student participants will develop relationships with their peers in the seminar, the instructor, and the peer advisor (a current SOC student). They establish a knowledge base of campus resources to help acquire basic leadership and academic skills for success.

In addition, students enrolled in the program will participate in a two day activity during "Welcome Week" (the week prior to the start of classes) designed specifically for students in the School of Communication. Students will make site visits as a cohort group to communication-related companies in DC in order to gain insight into the leadership and career opportunities available in these organizations.

Students admitted to the seminar have the opportunity to:

  • begin meeting other SOC first year students in the program during the summer months via social media;
  • participate in an experiential learning opportunity during Welcome Week (the week prior to the start of classes), visiting four communication organizations in D.C. with the students admitted to the program;
  • take a 1-credit seminar on Wednesdays from 1:10-2:25pm in a small group setting, focusing on leadership and academic skills (class meets from August 29 - November 14);
  • be part of a small community of 20 SOC first year students to include a peer advisor who is an upperclassman in the School of Communication.

Priority Application Deadline: Thursday, May 17, 2012

If you are interested in enrolling in the SOC First Year Leadership and Academic Success Seminar, please complete the application available at the link below.  The application requires a short essay (up to 250 words) that briefly describes your interest in the program and what you hope to gain from it.  It is recommended to write the essay in a separate application and then copy/paste the text in to the application.

After the priority application deadline, applications will be reviewed on a space available basis.

APPLICATION: SOC First Year Leadership and Academic Success Seminar

Important Dates

Priority Application Deadline:  May 17, 2012

Students will be admitted to the seminar on a space available basis after May 17th.

Students in First Round Notified of Status:  May 21, 2012

Admitted Students Must Register for COMM-196-002 by:  June 15, 2012

Experiential Learning Opportunity (required): Tuesday, August 21 - Thursday, August 23

First Day of Fall 2012 Classes:  Monday, August 27

What will you gain from the seminar?

To serve as a leader, you must have an understanding of who you are, what you know, and what you can do. You must have a good understanding of human nature and have excellent interpersonal, communication and decision-making skills.  The main objectives of this seminar are to help you clarify your goals and hone the skills it takes to be a leader.  This seminar will also help you develop relationships with others in the class including the instructor and peer advisor, and establish a knowledge base of campus resources to help you acquire basic academic skills for success.

Upon successful completion of this seminar you will increase your ability:
  • to identify your strengths  for leadership skill development;
  • to identify techniques to utilize your strengths for success during your collegiate career and future;
  • to obtain greater self-awareness through examination of skills, values, interests, and personality;
  • to develop a network of supportive SOC peers, faculty, and staff;
  • to identify factors that affect academic success;
  • to identify the resources available to you within the University community and explore opportunities for connecting with the University community;
  • to understand how to be responsible and active in the career development process;
  • to be knowledgeable about SOC and AU majors, minors, and other academic programs;
  • to be responsible and involved members of the university community;
  • to live, work, and learn respectfully with people of diverse backgrounds and beliefs;
  • to understand and apply University policies and procedures;
  • to better understand yourself.

Welcome Week Program and Costs

One aspect of the SOC First Year Leadership & Academic Success Seminar includes the chance for students to participate in a two and a half day communication focused leadership opportunity.  The activity begins on the evening of Tuesday, August 21, 2012 and runs through the evening of Thursday, August 23, 2012.  This program takes place during "Welcome Week", the week prior to the start of classes.

Students will visit four communication organizations in D.C. to learn about leadership and career opportunities within each.  Sites include NBC, the Newseum, and two additional sites from the following list: the Associated Press, USA Today, Smithsonian Museum of American History, and/or the Washington Post.

Program costs associated with this two and half day program are $115.  These program costs cover some meals, transportation, program materials, activities, and staffing.  Students should plan to bring approximately $15 per day for lunch and other personal expenses.

If you have any questions, please contact Jill Heitzmann at or 202-885-2038.