First-Year Experience

Students on College Day

The College of Allied Health Sciences provides an exceptional and experiential first-year experience. First-year experience is the cornerstone upon which your university learning experience is built.

We offer a yearlong first year seminar: Success in allied health I & II. The faculty, advisors, peer leaders and student ambassadors are dedicated to supporting and helping you succeed by learning to utilize resources, resolve problems and taking full advantage of your time on campus during your first year at UC.


College of Allied Health Sciences First-Year Experience Objectives

  1. We support and advance efforts to improve student learning and transitions into and through college at the University of Cincinnati
  2. We strive to set a standard of excellence for supporting student transitions and facilitating academic & social success
  3. We engage our first-year students in deep learning and exploration of focused topics in seminar settings
  4. We have undergraduate peer leaders along with seasoned faculty and academic advisors using active and collaborative teaching and learning which gives value to our success seminars

We want you to have the very best transition into the university setting. Should you have any questions or want additional information, please feel free to contact us at

All freshmen are required to attend one Bearcats Bound Orientation during the months of June & July the summer before the start of the academic year. At orientation, you will learn about academic policies, college procedures and graduation requirements for your program. You will meet with academic advisors and receive academic advice, learn the web registration process and register for fall semester classes, learn about campus life and student activities, and meet new and current students, faculty and administrators. You will have the option to spend a night in one of the residence halls. You will be given advice how best to succeed in your college program. There will be parent sessions for your family to attend as well.

Welcome Week begins one week prior to the start of classes and includes various events and activities. 

During Welcome Week first-year students will attend New Student Convocation, a ceremony to officially welcome all new students and their families to the UC community. All new students are expected to attend and are encouraged to bring their parents with them. Convocation is typically held the Friday prior to the first day of the fall semester. 

All incoming first year students will also attend College Day, which takes place immediately following New Student Convocation. Lunch will be served at University Commons on the Academic Health Center Campus (AKA East/Medical School Campus). You will meet with ​your faculty mentor, instructor, peer leader,  and learning community classmates and have a welcome by the Dean and Department Heads. You will need to bring a copy of ​your Fall schedule that shows your building and room numbers.  

All students in the College of Allied Health Sciences participate in learning communities (LC) and interact with other students who have the same major. There are approximately 18 - 23 students in a learning community, which is led by a Peer Leader (upper division student in the major). 

You are enrolled in two or more university courses together and share common experiences around your academics. Getting to know other students and making friends right away with the same interests is one goal of learning communities. Learning Communities assist you in making a large campus feel smaller.

All students complete 22-23 hours of service in the Greater Cincinnati area during spring semester of their first year. The College of Allied Health Sciences hosts an annual service learning Fair in the fall, where first-year students can meet with various community partners to learn about the service learning opportunities available to them.

Just a few of the community partners our students volunteered with last year are: Good Samaritan Hospital, Forever Fitness, Girl Scouts, Free Store Food Bank, and Bearcat Buddies.

Each first-year student is assigned to one of the academic advisors in our college. Our academic advisors assist students in planning college core requirements, degree progress and graduation certification needs. Our college requires mandatory advising during the first year, so all freshman have a block on their registration until they meet with an advisor to go over their schedule. The CAHS advisors are located on the 3rd floor of French East and appointments can be made with any of them through Starfish.

We understand and know that families play an important role in student success. The Director of First Year Experience in the College of Allied Health Sciences sends out an electronic newsletter each semester to families describing what students have been doing in our college and answering commonly asked questions. The email addresses of parents are obtained during the summer in Bearcats Bound Orientation. If you are not receiving a newsletter and would like to receive one please let us know.

Headshot of Carney Sotto PhD

Carney Sotto PhD

Director of First Year Experience, College of Allied Health Sciences

(513) 558-8528