Dear Parents Newsletter: November Edition

Dear Parents Newsletter November Banner

Greetings from The Office of Student Transition at UTM!

Thank you for your continued investment in your students' journey through university.  Your continued interest is essential to help support and guide your student as they transition in and through the university experience.

This month we are hosting a workshop for parents and families to provide you with an opportunity to learn more about your student's continuing journey through university.  Our monthly session will focus on "Helping Your Student Bounce Back." Learn more about our workshop in our "Parent and Family Workshop" section.

In this issue...

We hope that you and your student are continuing to enjoy your transition to life at UTM.

Office of Student Transition

Roadmap Banner

What a busy time for you and your students!  As we continue on this journey through your student's first year at UTM, we will break down some of the common experiences that a student may face during the month of November.  

In October, your student may have completed their first assignments, tests, and midterm exams.  By November, they may have earned some grades in their courses, and have experienced a variety of emotions related to their achievements.  Some students earn marks that are lower than they were used to in high school.  If this is the case, this may be a good opportunity to have conversations about expectations, and strategies to support their growth and development.  As your student nears their first exam period, they may become tired and physically drained.  Encourage them to plan ahead by setting up a study schedule and including time for sleep, rest, friends, and physical activity.

During November, your student will need to pay their Winter Term fees, which can cause financial stress for both you and your student.  Having a conversation about your student's finances, their expenses, and looking for areas of savings or financial aid can help you to make some realistic goals and identify opportunities together.

Some of the conversation starters you can use with your student include:

  • How many times have you been to see your professors and/or teaching assistants during their office hours?
  • Have you created an exam study schedule?
  • Have you turned in all of your assignments?
  • Are you taking time to rest, exercise, and meet up with friends?
  • What type of system do you use to track your spending? 

If your student lives in residence, some questions to ask could include:

  • What type of activities do you and your roommate do together?
  • What events in residence have you participated in?

If your student is commuting to campus, other questions you could ask:

  • How can I support you in creating an environment that is conducive to your learning?
  • Have you found somewhere on campus to study between classes?
  • Are you participating in events and activities on campus?

These common experiences and check-in strategies can help you and your student to keep on track with important details, deadlines, and keep communication open during the year.  Many of your students may experience disappointment at this stage of the university life cycle and will need your positive support and problem solving skills.  This month, we are offering a workshop for parents and families on "Helping Your Student Bounce Back."  More information is provided in our section “Parent & Family Workshops” below.  

Parent and Family Workshops Banner

Helping Your Student Bounce Back Workshop
Thursday, November 10, 2016
7:00 - 8:30 PM
Davis Building Room 3130 CC

Join us in a panel discussion with faculty, staff and students and hear stories of resiliency and grit!

Come and explore the UTM Campus. Meet other UTM family members and student service representatives. Student Housing and Residence Life staff will be available to provide specific information for families of residence students, and the Office of Student Transition staff will provide specific information for the families of commuter students.

Upcoming Sessions

You are also invited to join us in December for our session, “Health, Wellness and Your Student,” on coaching your student to maintain good physical and mental health in their first year at university.  More information will be posted soon!

Register now at

Featured Offering Banner

Robert Gillespie Academic Skills Centre (RGASC)

Conveniently located on the third floor of the library, the Robert Gillespie Academic Skills Centre (RGASC) supports UTM students through academic workshops, seminars, and individual consultations to provide them with the tools to succeed in their studies.

This month we would like to highlight a resource that your new student may find useful.  The RGASC offers a program tailored to students in their early years of study, called Peer Facilitated Student Groups (FSGs).  These groups give students the opportunity to review course material in an organized and regularly-scheduled format. Your student can compare and review study notes, discuss concepts with peers, develop study strategies, and prepare for tests and exams.

Schedules for FSG sessions are available online at the FSG Schedule.

For more information about the Robert Gillespie Academic Skills Centre, visit

RGASC Contact Information:
Phone: 905-828-3858
Hours of Operation: Monday - Friday: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Location: Room 390K, Hazel McCallion Academic Learning Centre (Library)

 Important Dates Banner

November 1
Deadline to apply for a Letter of Permission to study at another Canadian university in the Winter term.

November 1
Deadline to apply for the University of Toronto Advance Planning for Students (UTAPS). This program is for full-time students to assist with filling the financial gap for full-time students who have received the maximum amount of government financial aid available but who funding does not cover all their university costs. More information including eligibility is provided on the UTAPS Website.

November 8
“Lecture Me!” Seminar with Professor Stephen Scharper titled “Falling in Love with the Earth: Pope Francis, Bees, and the Quest for an Integral Ecology”. Lecture Me seminars are a chance for the whole family to learn more about the research done by our very own UTM faculty in a fun and engaging way! Future seminars here:

November 9
Last day to drop a fall course from academic record and GPA or to cancel or select Credit/No Credit option. NOTE: Students can use this option for a maximum of up to 2 credits of their degree program.

November 9
For students paying course fees: Last day to drop a year-long course and receive a 50% course fee refund.

November 10
"Helping Your Student Bounce Back" workshop! A Parent and Family workshop to help you aid your student in navigating the challenges of their transition. Register at  

November 10
For students registered in the Fall term ONLY: last day to submit OSAP related documents.

November 30
For students registered in the Fall/Winter session: Deadline to pay fees for Winter term to avoid service charges (if you were registered by paying at least the minimum payment).

November 30
Deadline to pay the second instalment of residence fees.

For more important dates and deadlines, visit the Office of the Registrar's Website.


  UTM Lingo Banner

An online tool to help your students manage their learning. With blackboard, students can access their course materials, post on discussion boards, read announcements from course professors/teaching assistants (TAs), and more!

Is the sum of the grade points earned, divided by the number of courses in which the grade points were earned.

Credit/No Credit
An option students can select, in which up to 2.0 credits that are not program requirements can be assessed for either a credit or no credit. To achieve a status of CR (Credit), a student must achieve a final mark of at least 50%. Marks below that will be assessed as NCR (No Credit). Courses with a final status of CR will count as degree credits but will have no effect on the student's GPA.

 Historical Facts Banner

Did you know?

The first female astronaut to go to outer space was UTM alumna Roberta Bondar. Bondar had completed her doctorate in Neurobiology at UTM and later went on to work for NASA where she had the opportunity to conduct microgravity experiments on their 1992 mission. During her lifetime, she has amassed 22 honorary degrees at universities in North America as well as earned herself a place in the Canadian Medical Hall of fame. Despite this extraordinary level of achievement, Bondar has kept the UTM community close by returning to give guest lectures at seminars and conferences held on campus. 


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This service is provided through funding from the Ministry of Training, Colleges & Universities in support of first generation students.

You are receiving this newsletter as a new UTM parent or family member.  If your student is no longer attending UTM, please disregard this message. Please note that this newsletter will stop when classes end in April. To be removed from the mailing list, send an email to 

Our mailing address is:
3359 Mississauga Road, Mississauga, ON L5L 1C6 Davis Building, Room 2090