By: Katherine Snyder
NIAGARA UNIVERSITY, N.Y. – Coming to college can be an exciting yet scary process. Meeting new people, doing new things and learning more advanced things about the world. Niagara University Beginnings is a class to help ease the transition into college. It is a required class for all incoming freshmen to take in the fall semester for an 8 week period, either one or two times a week. I met with Terri Vaughan, co-coordinator of NUB and chair of the theatre department, to discuss the new changes implemented to this year’s new curriculum.
Many past students have not taken NUB seriously or thought it was a joke. The past curriculum has been implemented for years, until now when Vaughan realized that the curriculum needed some improvements to help the freshman understand NU’s mission. One of the changes made to the curriculum this year was tying most of what they learned back to the Vincentian mission of NU. They have also changed the required reading to an article about poverty and how to decrease it. Another improvement was having the required group project due earlier on in the semester so the students can get to know each other sooner.
Bigger changes to the curriculum include removing the SALT financial literacy program and replacing it with a program for teaching students about plagiarism and how to avoid it when writing papers for their classes. “We hope this beefs up the academics for the students, so that they’re more prepared for their future endeavors.” Vaughan stated. The students in NUB, as well as all around campus, are required to do Title IX’s program about sexual assault. A major reason for this program is that it focuses on the campus mission.
In addition, all the videos shown in NUB will be updated and recorded by the theatre department to be valid with current times, as the videos in the past curriculum are far outdated. The freshman also received new “NUB Swag” that included a new set of highlighters, water bottle and sunglasses.
We will continue to see many improvements over the next coming years to the NUB program to be more inclined to NU students and the Vincentian mission.