Sunday, June 28, 2015

What's there to do here?: Intern Involvement on Grounds

Go on any admissions tour and you'll be sure to hear about any number of our 800+ CIOs on Grounds. Tater tot club? Check. Harry Potter club? Check. Salsa dancing, blindfold rubix cube, baking, photography, sailing, singing, debate? Check, check, and check. With almost a thousand clubs to choose from, you're sure to find something you enjoy. Here are a few activities that the summer interns do throughout the year:


Cavalier Daily: When I came into UVa I knew I wanted to get involved with the student newspaper, the Cavalier Daily. My first semester I wrote for the Arts & Entertainment section, covering concerts, speakers, and cultural events on and off grounds. I ended up writing so much that I became editor that January, a position that lasted for two semesters. I learned so much being on the CD staff and it was a wonderful way for me to meet people from all classes, schools, and majors just a couple of weeks into the school year. Whether you're interested in writing, editing, graphics, or advertising, there's certainly a place on staff for you!

Madison House (Cavs in the Classroom): Last semester I joined Madison House in a program called "Cavs in the Classroom." I went once a week to an elementary school in town and tutored a first grade student in reading and math problems. This was always the highlight of my week as my student was always enthusiastic about our lessons and it was nice to work on homework that was a lot easier than what I was doing in my own classes!

University Guide Service: After taking a course called The History of Mr. Jefferson's University, I wanted to learn even more about UVa and share that history with others. I tried out for the Guide Service in the spring and spent a semester in training - learning everything from the number of libraries on Grounds to Thomas Jefferson's mother's maiden name. By the end of the semester I was giving both Admissions and Historic tours to prospective students and other visitors. Because of Guides, I learned of this internship and I've been able to continue my tours throughout the summer before studying abroad.


After signing up for at least 20 student organizations at the Student Activities Fair my first year, I tried out many different activities and going into my third year at UVa, I have finally narrowed it down to a handful of activities.  I am a Support Officer for UVa's Honor Committee and spend my time advising, investigating, and representing both students who have been referred to the Honor Committee for an alleged Honor offense and those who have reported possible Honor offenses.  Because UVa's Honor Committee is entirely run and governed by students, Support Officers do the case processing and have a hands-on role in the Honor process.

In addition to Honor, I am in Aletheia Christian Fellowship Group here at the University.  Aletheia Christian Fellowship meets for worship once a week and then there are smaller Bible study groups that meet weekly as well. This fall I will begin leading on of the Bible study groups and am looking forward to meeting and leading incoming first years!

As a way to get involved with the Charlottesville community and see people outside of the age confines of 18-22 year olds, I volunteer through Madison House (UVa's umbrella volunteer organization) for Cavs in the Classroom where I go to a local elementary school once a week and volunteer as a teacher's aid for an hour.

Theses are just a few of the organizations I am involved in at UVa, but they give you a glimpse into the breadth of different organizations offered to students here at UVa!


Black Voices: This is the only gospel choir on Grounds. BV has been around for almost 40 years and has remained stronger than ever. I joined this group my 1st year here at UVa and they're like a second family to me. We sing at various churches in the Charlottesville community as well as hold concerts on Grounds. This group was created to sing about Christian love both within the choir and to everyone we encounter. Practice is every Thursday from 7-9pm during the school year.

Early Visions: This is a mentoring program that occurs every Spring. 1st through 4th year students can apply to be a Big Sister or Brother to children (around the ages of 5-11) from the local Charlottesville Boys' and Girls' Club. The UVa students take their Little Brothers and Sisters to the Fralin Museum of Art (a museum located on UVa grounds). We tour the museum together and meet in Fayerweather Hall (the Art History building) and create art imitating what we just saw in the gallery. It is a great program and so much fun!


Cavalier Marching Band: The Cavalier Marching Band (CMB) is one of the major musical ensembles you can choose to join here at UVA. We have over 300 students in the band, representing almost every major within the school (our biggest single major is actually engineering). Each week, we learn a new show that we perform at the football games—you can highlights from last season here. We play two shows at every home football game (the halftime show and a pregame show), and we also travel to one or two away games each year (but we normally don’t perform a field show there). This year, we will be traveling to New York City to perform in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade! The camaraderie that is built between the students during band camp (which takes place the week before classes start) is unparalleled—what other organization will allow you to enter college with over 300 new friends? The CMB has defined my college experience so far, and I look forward to continuing playing with them!

Engineering Students Without Borders: Engineering Students Without Borders (ESWB) is an organization dedicated to combining engineering skills with service-based projects. In prior years, ESWB projects have dealt with problems in all fields of engineering, from implementing a biogas digester in Charlottesville to working with the UVA Hospital to design medical equipment. There are also several projects that take place abroad, including an annual trip to Nicaragua. In keeping with student self-governance, ESWB encourages students to start their own project if they perceive an unsolved problem, be it in the community of Charlottesville or on a broader scale. Students can then form a team of fellow ESWB students and work towards solving this goal. ESWB also has several workshops and conferences throughout the year for students to observe other projects as well as learn about the importance of servitude in engineering.

Project DAEDALUS (formerly known as Xplore Engineering): Project DAEDALUS (Discovering All Engineering Disciplines And Learning Under Students) seeks to assist first year students in determining which engineering major is right for them. It is meant to supplement the ENGR 1620 courses already in place by allowing students to utilize the engineering design skills learned in the classroom on hands-on activities in the different majors. By experiencing broad-based, upperclassmen led seminars in the majors, students will have an easier time finding their passions for a major while invoking their inner creativity and curiosity. This club for me is especially close to home, since I am one of the founding members! It just goes to show that if you have an idea for a club or organization that doesn’t already exist yet, we encourage you to start it! It’s part of this concept of student self-governance that we value so highly here at UVA—the idea that you should take charge of your education and make it the most that it could possibly be!


During my time at the University, extracurricular activities have played a large role in my development, providing me with countless social opportunities, valuable experience, and numerous skills. 

My primary involvement at UVa is with Alpha Phi Omega co-ed service fraternity (APO).  Predicated on the principles of leadership, friendship, and service, together we perform over 2000 hours of service every semester in the Charlottesville community, and have opportunities for service every day of the week. Our largest, typically construction-based projects take place on Saturday mornings and can be anything from building a chicken coop, a boardwalk, or a greenhouse. Additionally, we put on a large, semester-long projects twice a year that require extensive planning and fundraising. APO has provided me with the sense of community I was searching for at UVa; in addition to service work, we also have a variety of social events a strong sense of community. 

Additionally, I serve on the executive board of UVa’s College Council, the governing body of the College of Arts and Sciences. With a budget of over $80,000 the council allocates funding for various student groups and events around Grounds, as well as planning and executing our own events with the intention of representing the needs and interests of College students.

Finally, I have served as a site leader with the Alternative Spring Break organization (ASB). Run entirely by students, ASB plans and executes 30-40 service trips throughout the United States and beyond for University students each March. As I participant my first year, I spent a week volunteering at Mammoth Cave National Park (in Kentucky), ultimately deciding to plan and lead my own trip to Pt. Reyes, CA the following year. Not only has ASB taught me valuable leadership and planning skills, but it’s also a blast and has afforded me long lasting friendships (camping without showering for a week will do that.) 


Over the course of my time at UVA, I’ve become involved in three main organizations. Firstly, I am a Program Director for Madison House, a student-volunteering organization with sites and programs all throughout Charlottesville and the surrounding area, working with the program at the Boys and Girls Club. I work on organizing volunteers and assisting the Boys and Girls Club with their after-school programs. 

I am also involved in One in Four, which is an all-male peer advocacy group dealing with sexual assault prevention, bystander intervention, and how to help survivors. We present to students in halls, groups, and teams at UVA and we have also presented to high schools around the country in combination with working with various organizations with similar causes.

Finally, I am also a member of a fraternity in the UVA Greek System. About 30% of the UVA student body is affiliated with a Greek organization. UVA also operates on a system of Deferred Recruitment, which means that students cannot rush until their second semester at UVA. This method of “rush” helps students become involved in the UVA and Charlottesville community outside of the Greek system, while also providing time to figure out if “rush” is something in which they would like to participate. 


Here at UVA, I have two passions that I have been able to easily express in the Contracted Independent Organizations (CIOs) that I am involved in. 

The first passion that I have is working with first-generation/low-income/minority high school students and encouraging them to apply and attend premier universities, like UVA. I am a first-generation college student and a QuestBridge College Match Scholarship recipient and I work closely with various low-income high schools giving presentations showing my encouragement and support. I am also expressing this passion through my internship with the Department of Admissions by working in the Outreach Office. In this office, I work closely with Dean Gregory and Miss Cathy Ames on special projects, mailings, internet chats, and various other programs to make UVA a more inclusive and diverse institution of higher education.

My second passion that I am able to express here at UVA is bridging the gap between the LGBTQ+ and the  Christian communities. I am a gay Christian and I am advocate for inclusion, equality, and anti-discrimination in both communities. I am a member of Chi Alpha Christian Ministry and express my religious beliefs through study, worship, and service and I am also a member of the Queer Student Union here at UVA. Through QSU, I helped organize the spring Drag Bingo event which was very exciting and it was amazing to see the large LGBTQ+ community here at UVA and its allies. 

Whatever your passions are, YOU can express them through the activities that you participate in. We have over 850 different ones, so there is definitely a place for you here at UVA! 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

"Need a Caffeine Fix...or Not?"- Coffee Houses in the UVa and Charlottesville Community

UVa and the greater Charlottesville area is home to many coffee houses and cafes! Most of these places have extensive menus as well as quiet little areas to study (definitely necessary, especially during the school year!). You also don't have to drink coffee to really appreciate these different cafes. Below are some of the UVa Summer Interns' favorite coffee places:
1. Greenberry's (On-grounds location Alderman Library):
I’ll confess: I know next to nothing about quality of coffee. I could not for the life of me tell you which coffees are “more nimble” (I read that in some fancy coffee review once) or even the difference between a light and dark roast.

That said, my favorite coffee spot in Charlottesville in the Greenberry’s in Alderman Library right here on UVa Grounds. While I can’t speak to the quality of the coffee, this location has more than a few perks that make it my go to spot. For those who find themselves in the same situation (coffee snobs, you can stop here), read on.

  • LOCATION, location, location. Greenberry’s is located in Alderman library, which is centrally located with regard to the University. For the vast majority of students, it’s the closest in proximity to both classes and housing.
  •  Plus Dollars! This Greenberry’s location accepts Plus Dollars, which come with the meal plans offered by the university. READ: you don’t have to spend real money.
  • Study Spaces. Greenberry’s is located right in the lobby of Alderman- perfect for socializing, group projects, etc. Additionally, there are silent spaces throughout the building for serious studying. There’s no need to procrastinate studying by leaving the library to grab a coffee.
  •  Friendly Employees. If you find yourself a regular at Alderman (which many do, especially during finals) many of the employees will get to know you, make conversation, and remember your order.
  • Hours. This location is open during most library hours, and even stays open late during finals.

-Casey Eilbert

2. Greenberry's Cafe (Barracks Road Location):
Displaying coffee.jpg
Greenberry's is a local coffee chain and there are multiple locations on Grounds and around Charlottesville. The ones that are on Grounds are good to grab a quick cup of coffee and go into the depths of the libraries. The Greenberry's in Barracks, however, offers a large seating area inside as well as quaint tables outside. This is the perfect place for you to get away from Grounds and complete assignments, essays, or express your creativity through creative writing
The menu is also more extensive than the Greenberry's on Grounds by offering breakfast and lunch sandwiches and burritos which are delicious and made fresh to order. My favorite is the Vegetarian Burrito. Take note, however, that the kitchen closes at 2PM. Warm muffins and pastries are available whenever, during all hours. This is a nice place to have a light breakfast or lunch with family or friends. Another idea is to order a burrito or sandwich and take it with you on a hike. Overall the selection of food is extensive and definitely made with quality in mind! 

Coffee-wise, I feel as though the Barracks location has fresher and stronger coffee than the ones on Grounds. If you are staying and enjoying your coffee inside, be sure to ask for your coffee in a mug. They will make your drink in a ceramic mug which is (1) super classy and (2) perfect for Instagram. 

The Greenbery's at Barracks is an excellent option for you if you want a classy, but casual coffee house experience. The Charlottesville Area Transit routes 5, 7, and 8 all stop in the Barracks. Barracks is also about a 15 minute walk from Memorial Gym if you'd prefer that. The atmosphere is relaxing and perfect for either doing work or having long conversations. Enjoy!

-Tyler Cox

3. Mudhouse:
There are multiple Mudhouse coffee shops located around the Charlottesville area
that students often frequent. Firstly, students can hop on the Charlottesville free trolley or
walk to the Downtown Mall, which is a outdoor pedestrian mall located about a mile from
Grounds, to grab a café drink or a pastry while exploring downtown. Often time, students
will travel out to Mudhouse as a good way to get away from Grounds or from any
distractions so that they can focus on work and studying in a different setting than what
they are accustomed to. Students also travel out to the Mudhouse in Crozet, a small town
about 15 minutes from Charlottesville, to study or to grab a cup of coffee after going on a
sunrise hike at Humpback Rock or any of the other Blue Ridge Mountains. Mudhouse offers
a variety of drinks and food options and is a very common place for students to travel to when exploring Charlottesville

- Connor Andrews

4. Starbucks (On-grounds location Nau-Gibson)

This is a great coffee shop for UVA students since it is on grounds, conveniently located in Nau-Gibson Hall where many politics and history classes are and its only a few minutes from the Lawn. Even more important than its convenience, it's location on grounds means they take plus dollars as payment! This is also a great place to study because Nau-Gibson has many seats and tables just outside the Starbucks, along with the seating inside the Starbucks itself. Professors and TAs (Teaching Assistants) will often take advantage of these and have office hours close to the Starbucks. The employees at Starbucks are great and are always a pleasure to chat with in between classes while you stop for a quick coffee fix!

- Erik Morlock

5. Starbucks (The Corner location):

While Charlottesville offers a multitude of different coffee houses to try out, my favorite has to be the classic (and non-UVA specific) Starbucks. Located on the Corner, the Starbucks is surrounded by a variety of other shops and eateries as well—it isn’t uncommon for students to grab a Starbucks coffee and then head right next door to Bodo’s Bagels for a bite to eat. 

Not only is the Starbucks a great place to stop if you’re in a hurry, but they also have lovely upstairs area for dining inside. With free Wi-Fi, comfy chairs, and numerous outlets, it’s no wonder that many students flock to this area during finals week. The nice ambient music is conductive to all situations, from studying for a test to catching up with an old friend.

I struggle to make a recommendation only because of the plethora of different options, each of which is pretty good (believe me—I’ve tried them all)! On a hot summer day, I highly recommend the Peach Green Tea Lemonade. If you want something caffeinated and sweet, try the new S’mores Frappuccino. And of course, the classic Caffè Mocha is a great way to warm up on a cold winter morning. If you feel like going on an adventure, Starbucks also has a “secret menu”, a fan-created list of various Starbucks drinks you can custom order—I have yet to try any out, but they all look scrumptious.

From classic favorites to novel recipes, the Starbucks on the Corner is a great way to satisfy that coffee need for any “Starbucks lover”, Taylor Swift fan or otherwise.

- Catherine Pollack

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

UVa From A to Z: The "Urban Dictionary" of UVa Lingo

Thanks to an awesome group of upperclassmen, incoming first-years* now have a quick and easy guide to UVa lingo. Here's everything you need to know about UVa culture from A to Z! 

  • A-School: The School of Architecture. Explore the building if you get a chance, even if you are not an architecture student. It’s very interesting and beautifully designed.
  • A cappella: Tons of people, literally hundreds will audition in the fall. There are 9 official (ACPC) groups, but probably about 20 total groups including: all male, all female, co-ed, christian, choral, broadway, rock, jewish, indian, and many more. Some are better than others, but if you are passionate about singing, audition for lots of groups.
  • Alderman:
    • Alderman Library (nicknamed Aldy)
    • Alderman Road: The road that new dorms, Courtenay/Fitzhugh/Dunglison, and Gooch/Dillard are on, as well as the SAB, AFC, and Scott Stadium.
    • Alderman Dorms (New Dorms):  Great dorms if you like air conditioning and elevators. Just like in any dorm situation, the social aspects are truly what you make of it, but the amenities to facilitate great interactions are plenty (lounges on every floor). High quantity of study rooms also a plus for those who don’t want to trek to the library. Get ready to eat a lot of O-Hill.
  • Amphitheater: An amphitheater in Central Grounds. There are often events and concerts held here, although it is also a great place to sit and study or just hang out during the day. Rallies, protests, and vigils often take place here.
  • Arch’s Tuesday: Arch’s is the FroYo place on the corner, near Subway and Christian’s Pizza. They have “Pile It High Tuesday” where you get to put as much as you want in the cup and only pay $5. The best.
  • Aquatic and Fitness Center (AFC): The gym and pool facility that has the most visibility and usage among underclassmen. You can check online for pool deck hours and gym hours, as well as classes that are hosted here. The indoor track is great in the winter.
  • Big/Little: commonly used by Greek life but other organizations like using these terms. You can have a big (aka older brother/sister like figure), a grand big, a great grand big, etc. They’re meant to help you integrate into whatever organization you’ve joined.
  • Beta Bridge: Bridge over the railroad tracks to the left of Madison House. People paint everything from “Go Hoos!” to wedding proposals on the thing, and it is always changing. Feel free to paint whatever you would like on it, just make sure you paint “Thx Beta!” somewhere on the bridge when you are done. Avoid painting over more serious banners until it’s been up for a few days or so; for example, memorials of students who passed away.
  • The Biltmore: Their cookie pie will change your life. Ask for it with extra ice cream.
  • Biochemistry: Think organic chemistry on steroids. Every pre-med’s worst nightmare
  • Block Party: A massive party held during one of the first nights of the year where most houses on Wertland Street hold some sort of party.  You essentially walk around the  Corner and the entire neighborhood parties.
  • Bodo’s Bagels: Crafted from the gods themselves, these bagels are your salvation. Incredibly cheap and incredibly delicious. Severely overrated though. Try the feta spread if you like to be happy.
  • Boylan Heights: Bar on the corner. Also called Boylan (No one calls it Boylan Heights). The crowd here is older and more laid back than Trinity. Order the Wahoo (but not if you are underage of course ;) ). If you come at lunch, be sure to build your own burger with a side of curly fries!!
  • Brown College: One of the three residential colleges at UVA. This is a dorm created with the sole purpose of creating a sense of community in such a large university. You must apply to get in, but all four years, and even grad students and faculty, live here. It’s full of quirky people. Brown plans many events for its residents with the use of its budget including monthly banquets, carnivals, and hikes. Residents are called “Brownies”.

  • Campus: Heresy. Don’t say this, just “Grounds.”
  • Campus Cookies: Pretty good cookies, slightly expensive, but worth the price if you order them to Clem at 2:00 am.
  • CAPS: UVA’s counseling and psychological services. Whether you are feeling overwhelmed and alone or you have ADHD and are in need of a medication refill, they are a great source.
    • Also if it’s not you, but your friend that is need of help remember that you are not in it alone. There are trained professionals that can guide you in helping your friend through a difficult time.
    • Never be afraid to go here or seek help, more students than you think utilize CAPS, it’ll save your life.
  • CAT: Charlottesville Area Transit. This is the city’s bus system that will take you pretty much anywhere you will ever need to go in Charlottesville. It is free for all UVA students, just show your student ID card to the driver when you get on. The Free Trolley is a great way to access the train station and the Downtown Mall.
  • Coupe DeVilles: Bar on the corner. Almost always called Coupe’s. Better in the warmer months, as their outdoor area is the best. Swing by to see Reggae Greg play some good summer tunes.
  • Crozet Pizza and Buddhist Biker Bar: Do yourself a favor and call it Crozet. Nothing too special about this place, but again, a great warm-weather bar. Awesome outdoor seating. Order the Fresh Zen. Lots of local bands play the upstairs and on the outer patio when it’s nice. Great place for date functions.
  • Clemons: One of the main libraries on grounds, the floor you walk in on is the 4th floor.  1st floor (basement) is completely silent.  2nd floor is usually for group work. (Also known as Clem or Club Clem). You will learn to both love and hate it.  
    • Club Clem: The coolest club in my opinion. Seriously it is where I have met most of my friends. It is the library near Alderman library and Newcomb dining hall.
  • The Corner: A row of shops, restaurants, and bars within walking distance. A great place if you want to go out to eat, but can’t make it into town. Arch’s, Boylan, Bodo’s, Trinity, and Christian’s are all here, among others.
  • The College: Aka CLAS aka A&S aka The College of Arts and Sciences.
  • CMB: The Cavalier Marching Band. They perform at all of the football games, a select few play at basketball games, and will be performing at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade this year. Worth coming early to a few football games to see the pre-game show.
  • Campus Story: a UVA snapchat feed. Your ticket for 24 hours of fame every time you’re posted. Don’t go buck though and keep us entertained
  • Cav Daily: Short for “The Cavalier Daily” — the University’s completely student-run, independent newspaper. Its coverage spans the University and the greater Charlottesville area, and the offices are located on the lower level of Newcomb Hall.
  • Chemistry: More than just that spark you’ll feel when you see your first true love on Grounds. Study a bit more than you think you need to for the first test - that’s where a lot of students take it too easy
  • Christian’s Pizza: Pizza restaurant on the Corner (next to Boylan). Hawaiian with extra cheese is easily the best flavor, although Spinach & Feta is up there too. 10/10 would recommend.
  • CIO: Contracted Independent Organization.  These are simply student clubs, but they’re called CIOs to keep them at arm’s length from the University for legal reasons.  You can browse a complete list of clubs here.
  • Collab: online resource for all of your classes; this is where some assignments, tests, powerpoints, notes, etc. can be found; some teachers also use the Gradebook function, which allows you to see all your grades from the class (same concept as Blackboard).
  • Copeley: Upperclassmen apartments right across the street from the law school. Even though people will look like someone died when you say you live here, it’s not as far as it seems! Master the bus schedule, and you’ll be just fine.
  • Comm: Where you can find all your missing third year friends.
  • Connect: An online homework program that several different classes use that will take up all of your time, while not actually learning anything. Try to get the best out of this program by actually paying attention to what you are typing and not just going through the motions.
  • Crossroads: (aka Croads) the convenient-store/late night food place below O’Hill. If you go late at night, you can use a meal swipe for things like sandwiches, pizza, burgers, etc… They also have a bunch of snacks that you can spend plus dollars on and some medicine (which requires Cav Advantage or cash to pay for).
  • Darden Court: courtyard between all the wings of Thornton (Engineering school). There are picnic tables to sit at and a lot of groups will meet there when the weather is good. Great place to study if you want to study outside but don’t want to risk getting distracted by a bunch of people walking by
  • David Kittlesen:  Eccentric intro bio professor.  Voice cracks galore. Mom jeans lover.  Passionate and awesome professor.    
  • Dean Groves: UVA’s Silver Fox. High five him whenever you see him. You’ll think it’s awkward at first but he’s gotten used to it.
  • Declaration: The Declaration is an alternative newspaper here on grounds. Definitely a lot more quirky than The Cav Daily, but the satirical jokes and tidbits of it definitely make up for the low keyness of the publication.
  • Dumpling Truck:  The most popular place to get dumplings on/near grounds. Available by food truck during weekdays, parked by the Amphitheatre (11-3:30, be prepared for a ridiculously long line if you go during class change times), or by their in-store location (formerly known as Berry Berry) on the Corner (which also happens to be the only place near UVA to get bubble tea/boba). Common place to spend your plus dollars when you don't feel like dining hall food (plus dollars only accepted at the food truck). Lady who runs the business is a Comm School alum.
    • One of the quickest ways to use up your plus dollars. They sell dumplings and it’s delicious. ‘Nuff said.
  • Double Swipe Dean: Dining employee at Ohill. Uses some interesting tactics to keep the line moving. Always try to answer the music trivia.
  • Downtown: Mall strip - one of the largest outdoor pedestrian malls in the nation. You should go to all the restaurants here.
  • Emmanuel: The best dining employee on Grounds. Emmanuel resides in Runk and cooks the best $5.00 steak you will get anywhere.
  • E-school: The School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS).  See also “Thornton Hall”.
  • Elliewood (Avenue): A side street on the corner, behind Starbucks.  Location of Para/Grit coffee shop, Marco & Luca, Take It Away, HackCville, Crozet, and N&K Print Shop, where you’ll probably have to buy a “reader” for a class, once school starts. There is a small parking garage here too [paid].
  • Electric Tuesday @ Trinity. Great fun and good music.
  • Faulkner: Upperclassman apartments (not to be confused with Copeley). A lot of athletes live here because it’s so close to JPJ.
  • Final Friday: An event held at the UVA art museum (The Fralin) on the last friday of every month. There is free food (really, really yummy food and a LOT of it--cheeses, breads, fresh fruit, cookies, salsa, etc), live music, cool art exhibits, and spotlight talks by the docents.
  • First-floor Clemons: (See Clemons) Where you go when you really need to study. Super quiet with long tables as well as a sea of cubicles. Do not eat chips or people will hate you. Bring a power strip during finals week and everyone will love you.
  • **First-year student: The equivalent to "freshman" at other colleges. Thomas Jefferson believed that learning is a life-long process and therefore no one could ever be a "senior" in learning. Thus, he preferred to number the years of his students as first-year, second-year, third-year, and fourth-year.
  • Foxfield: A horse race in the Spring. There are many organizations who buy group tickets and lots. The location is about 15 minutes away from UVA, but due to heavy traffic it might take you a couple hours to get there. Make sure to drink lots of water and take a picture next to a horse!
  • Fourth Year 5k (4Y5K): On the list of things to do before you graduate, a 5K on the morning of the last home football game.It is in the memory of Leslie Baltz, a UVA student who died in the 90’s from an alcohol-related incident. Free food will be provided before the race (usually Bodo’s), and when you register you get a t-shirt. They also hand out prizes to runners with the quickest times.
  • French House: Located next to the Spanish House, this victorian style house is beautiful inside and out, and you can apply to live there after your first year. You must speak French in the house and attend some events throughout the year. There are weekly “Pause Cafe’s” where any French-enthusiast can visit the French house for coffee, tea, and biscuits, and chat in French. There are also weekly movie nights that are also open to the public.

  • Ginkgo: A casual Chinese sit-down restaurant on the Corner. A staple in the diet of international Chinese students (how you know the food is pretty authentic), Asian American students, and anyone who feels like taking a break from all the take-out Chinese food.
  • Gooch-Dillard:  If you live here, be sure to learn the shortcuts (through E-school and the parking lots). If you’re planning on taking the Northline by Hereford and Runk, beat the crowd by getting on at the bottom of the hill instead. If your thighs are ready for it, a bike is also highly recommended.
  • Good Old Song: The school song that everybody sings: when we win, when we lose, all day, every day. Learn it well. Protip: it’s worth staying after the football games to sing with the marching band.
  • Got Dumplings:  See “Dumpling Truck”
  • Greens to Grounds: A good resource when you get sick of dining food. They deliver local fruits and veggies to grounds and you can buy them for cheap. They also sometimes give special codes to students who have significant ACCESS UVa aid, so the food is free!
  • Greenberrys: On-grounds coffee shop located in Clark Library and Alderman Library. Get a reusable mug punch card where you get a free drink for every 6 drinks bought with a reusable mug, because you will likely be buying a lot of coffee.
  • GroupMe: The most common form of communication in college. If you get involved, you will end up in more than you can keep up with. Also a place where embarrassing selfies will be shared with everyone you know. [be careful though, this takes up lots of data plan usage …]
  • Girls in pearls (Guys in ties): The unofficial dress code for football games! Not everybody dresses up though, and many students will show school spirit in blue and orange or a school t-shirt.
  • Greek life: About ⅓ of students are involved in greek life. UVa has “delayed rush”or spring rush meaning that formal rush starts 2nd semester for both guys and girls.
  • HackCville HackCville is a member-run, member-supported clubhouse and community of designers, makers, programmers, creatives, and the just plain curious. They are located on the Corner and throw networking sessions, hackathons, and seminars. They also host StartUp trips and have an extensive alumni network.
  • HRL: Housing and Residence Life- They run the first-year and upperclassmen dorms.
  • Honor Code: This is taken fairly seriously by faculty and many students. It is a pledge not to lie, cheat, or steal at UVa. There is also a pledge that most professors require students to write before turning in tests or exams. Honor code allows for a community of trust at school, for example, many students feel comfortable leaving their laptop in the library while they go grab food.
  • Hereford:  coming from a past resident: Has beautiful mountain views, on a high hill next to Runk and Gooch/Dillard. Many people will give you a look of pity when you live here because of the distance and assumed isolation, but it has two northline stops. It offers a large lawn, hammocks, a community garden, a private study/recreation building, opportunities to meet professors, research grants, and 1 credit classes reserved for residential college students (if you end up living here, take Bill’s Bugs on infectious disease!!). It has its own Student Senate (HSS) that plans LOTS of events for residents (SO SO much free food!!). Hereford has a large budget so the events are pretty impressive. Big ones are the Hereford Cup flag football tournament and Halloween Movie on the Hill, plus field trips to DC and Busch Gardens. Hereford also provides a sense of community, and a very quiet, peaceful place to live. If you’re into partying/socializing however it’s not the best place because of distance. It’s a haven for those really into the environment, introverts, and international students (for some reason lots live there and there were many cultural events). Most students there are also really into social activism, and there are events to accommodate that interest.
  • Hoos Riding Hoos Driving: A great facebook page for UVA students to organize carpools to and from Charlottesville.
  • Humpback: A mountain that a lot of people go up on to hike at sunrise and (inevitably) take pictures on Humpback Rock
  • iClicker: The little white TV remote you’ll use in big lectures to answer questions and get participation points. Otherwise known as the only reason you’ll bother showing up for class sometimes. Don’t give yours to a classmate to use for you in a class you don’t attend or vice versa - that is cheating and Honor has found students guilty of Honor violations for doing it. Expensive and easy to lose! There is a Facebook group called “UVA Student to Student Textbooks. Try looking there for an Iclicker (or anything else) before the bookstore. They’re usually cheaper!
  • IMPs: a rowdy but fun and philanthropic secret society
  • IRC: International Residential College, one of three residential colleges and an incredible melting pot of cultural and linguistic diversity. There’s TONS of free food as well as a range of events and activities and it is a uniquely multicultural housing experience.
  • JPA: (ie Jefferson Park Avenue)- Street that rounds around grounds.  Does not stand for John Paul Jones Arena, as I initially thought. It stands for Jefferson Park Avenue, and along it are a lot of apartment buildings where students live, as well as Student Health, Nau Hall, New Cabell, and the Shea House, French House, and Spanish House. Outer Loop and Inner Loop buses go down JPA if you ever need to visit upperclassmen friends.
  • JPJ: Officially John Paul Jones Arena. Basically, the basketball arena, but concerts are held here and even wrestling meets. Gets super hype during basketball games.
  • Ken Elzinga: ECON 2010 professor, great man, very religious too, collects cool old cars.
    • ECON 2010=Microeconomics, a pre-requisite for all pre-comm students (not just offered by him)
  • Last Lecture Series: Organized by the UVA residence staff as an opportunity for distinguished professors to give a lecture like it was their last chance to pass on knowledge to students. It’s a great experience that can be very eye opening!
  • Lawn: Basically the heart of the University, a lot of cool stuff happens here. See: Lighting of the Lawn.
  • Lawnies: Someone who lives in a lawn room. Very selective.
  • Lambeth: The old football field that still makes for a great place to catch a quiet moment. Over by University Circle and the art campus.
    • Also an upperclassmen housing area, mostly for second-years
  • LGBTQ Center: Located in the center of Grounds, in the Lower Level of Newcomb Hall, the LGBTQ Center is both a physical space and a programming center for the university. Whether you’re questioning, coming out, queer, or an ally, the LGBTQ Center has something for you.
  • Lighting of the Lawn: aka LOTL An event held just before break. A capella groups perform and there is a lightshow that accompanies what is, at loss of a better word, a tame rave.
  • Listservs: You will join a ton, you will leave a ton, and someone will inevitably “reply all” at least once (which doesn’t always work, but when it does, it’s very entertaining).
  • Little John’s: Fantastic sandwich shop on the corner, open 24 hours. Order the Sailor or the Ranch Hand with chicken. Sounds terrible, tastes great.

  • Mad Bowl: The field across from the art museum that is surrounded by Greek houses. Great place to play a pick-up game of football or bring your dog.
  • Malibu Garden Burger: Best food option when it comes to dining halls
  • Mainwaring, Jake: The former lead singer of the Hullabahoos, the top male a capella group on Grounds. Jake resides in Richmond, VA.
  • Marco and Luca Dumplings: A store on the Corner (Elliewood street, between Starbucks and Mincers). Arguably the best dumplings around, open late (til 2:30am) on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Heaven. Thicker dumpling skin than the Dumpling Truck’s. These dumplings have more for late-night appeal whereas Got Dumpling/dumpling truck’s dumplings are nice for lunch.
  • McGregor Room: Themed room in Alderman Library on the second floor, housing the collection of Tracy McGregor. A great place to go if you want a super quiet space to study. If you talk, whisper, unzip anything, walk too loudly, type too furiously, or really make any audible noise you will get death stares. This is the room that looks like a Common Room from the Harry Potter movies. A must-visit - the couches are really comfortable and the atmosphere is beautifully ambient. A nice contrast to the stark fluorescent lights of Clemons next door.
  • Meal Exchange Swipe: Comes under both meal plans.  Basically, for one meal swipe, you can get a variety of food combos during certain hours on certain days (e.g. chicken sandwich at Chick-Fil-A).
  • Michael’s Bistro: A restaurant on the corner above Little John’s. It’s probably the best food on the corner, and it’s a good place to have your parents take you to when they come visit because it’s great food and a bit pricy for a college student.
  • Miss Kathy: One of best people you will ever meet, period. She will send you biblical verses if asked and will always accept your friend request, buttkicker. She works in Newcomb Dining Hall. Usually there for the breakfast and lunch crowd (give her a hug!)
  • Michigan State: Public enemy #1 during March. (And all other times too)
  • Madison House: Volunteer organization that is situated on Rugby Road. There are so many different programs, you are bound to find one that interests you. Getting involved in the community isn’t just a resume builder, it really exposes you to the outside world, past the bubble of UVA grounds. You will develop skills that you can never learn in a classroom setting.
  • Mem gym: Short for Memorial Gymnasium, one of the gyms on grounds. Located on Emmet street across from IRC. Not very busy. If you like free weights and empty gyms, go here. Has several tennis courts and two sand volleyball courts outside.
  • McCormick Road: A street you’ll become very familiar with. This road runs all the way from new dorms and O’hill down to the corner. Old dorms are also located off this road, as are many academic buildings.
  • McLeod: pronounced “Mc-cloud”; nursing school building a little past Student Health off of JPA. It’s not as far away as everyone will warn you! (It’s like a 3 minute walk from the Lawn).
    • Visit the McLeod Cafe for a meal exchange sandwich deal. They have tasty sandwiches and you won’t have to use Plus Dollars.
  • Monroe Hall: Holds the undergraduate advising office in addition to many math classes.  This where you will find the offices of the associate deans. There is walk-in advising at given times and advising by appointment.
  • N2GO - A really good to-go food option outside of Newcomb. It counts as a meal swipe and they give you a lot of food that tastes good and is healthy
  • Nau/Gibson Hall - Arguably one of the most confusing buildings on Grounds to navigate. Lost lecturers/visitors are sometimes spotted wandering around with a confused look. Upperclassmen still haven’t figured this place out yet.
  • NoVa: Short for Northern Virginia. Not to be confused with Villanova University, which is what people north of DC tend to think when they hear this. Or with NOVA Southeastern, which is what people in the southeast think of (because only people from NoVa refer to their home as “NoVa”).  Or with the community college in NOVA - Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA).
  • Nameless field: The field behind Memorial Gymnasium across from the IRC
  • New Cabell: pronounced CAH-bell. Building opposite the Rotunda at the other end of the lawn.  Has amazing study rooms.  Check them out.  
  • New South Lawn: Area of grass located between Nau Hall and the back of New Cabell Hall.
  • New York City Startup Trip: Largest student led trip from UVA every year. Organized by the Entrepreneurship Group & hackCville, students spend a fall weekend in NYC visiting the hottest startups and coolest tech companies like Pinterest, Facebook, Google
  • OAAA (O-Triple A): Office of African Americans Affairs. The building is by Old Cabell and is one of the only places where you can print for free. If you are a part of OAAA, or even if you’re not, try to go there at least twice a month and do your homework in the main room with other students. This is a great way to meet new people and introduce yourself to the OAAA deans.
    • OAAA peer advisors are assigned to entering and transfer African American students to help them transition successfully to university life. Become friends with your peer advisors. They will be a great resource to you not only your first year, but until they graduate. You can apply to be one too after your first year!
    • OAAA also provides tutoring for Calculus and Statistics so don’t hesitate to ask for help if you need it. Travis Elliot is a fantastic tutor as well as a great person to know!
  • O’Hill: Shortened term for Observatory Hill Dining Hall. Also coined as “O’Hell”... due to the lackluster quality of the food sometimes served here. If you have the choice between here, Newcomb, Runk, or any other source of food, you should probably go for the other sources of food. Some people prefer OHill.
    • OHill has a better-kept and cleaner salad bar than Newcomb and Runk dining halls, partially due to the fact that one side is sectioned off for staff to refill the salad bar containers. There seem to be more options too. The egg/potato salad is amazing when they do have it. The hummus is too!
    • The orange juice is almost always too diluted. Go for the apple juice instead.
    • Also, the Meat-lovers pizza and the Stromboli are always great. One time near the end of the Spring semester, they served omelettes around 2 pm.
    • Double Swipe Dean is great.
  • Old Dorms: First-year dorms that are super coveted because they’re closest to all the classes and main part of grounds. Generally a great community forms in old dorms. Enjoy the quad while you’re a first year! Unfortunately they lack AC.
  • PAC: Where the councils stay, at the bottom of Newcomb along the wall with stairs
  • The Pav: Don’t call it by the Pavillon blah blah blah, it’s at the bottom of Newcomb and has sushi, Chick-fil-a, thank us later (will have Subway and Five Guys in Fall 2015)  Careful here, you’ll probably end up with too few plus dollars and too many pounds if you frequent it too much.
  • PHEs: Stands for Peer Health Educators. They are a group of 45 students that are trained to counsel and educate fellow undergraduates on four general health topics: sex, alcohol/drugs, nutrition, and mental wellness. They’re a great resource for impromptu health questions and it’s nice to talk to someone your own age. They have an office in the bottom of student health and provide office hours where students can come talk to them. Gynecology often sends first-timers down to a PHE to discuss birth control options/first time visit procedure. They also give presentations/FOAs and plan fourth year 5K, mental wellness screening day, and other health-related events. Recruitment for the group is during spring semester and they accept 1st and 2nd years.
  • Pint Night: $2 pints at Mellow Mushroom on Tuesday nights (ID required)
  • PLSB:  Physical Life Sciences Building: Better than all study places on Grounds.  Good luck finding it.  
  • Qdoba: A mexican restaurant on the corner, get the burrito bowl. Usually is empty during meal time hours...perhaps not as tasty as the other Corner food options.
  • Rapinchuk, Andrei – The best math professor at U.Va.  Andrei will change your life.
  • Rice Hall: This is the primary Computer Science building (even though it only has one lecture hall). If you’re an engineer or stuck over on the engineering side of campus, the study spaces in this building are awesome. There are tons of outlets here  so you can recharge your phones and laptops. There’s also an Einstein's Bagels on the first floor.
  • Rising Roll: Cafe on the second floor of New Cabell. They sell sandwiches, wraps, etc., and there’s an adjoining Caribou Coffee in the same little area.
  • Rotunda: No definition necessary. Inaccessible due to renovations.
  • Rugby Road: street that serves as the center for Greek life at UVA, also holds Madison House, and the A-school
  • Rush/Rushing: Recruitment for Greek organizations.
  • Runk Dining Hall: The best dining hall on grounds.  Freshest foods and most swagged-out employees (s/o to Emmanuel and Nevada).  Come for the brunch, stay for the good times.
  • SAB: Student activities building, located across Gooch-Dillard. Orientation was held here. Not to be confused with the SAC (the Student Activities Center)!  
  • SAC: Where the CIO’s stay, at the bottom of Newcomb along the wall of the Pav
  • Safe-ride: Does not go to Barracks, contrary to popular misconception.
  • Shea House: One of the language houses on Grounds. They have different floors for language immersion in different languages such as - Arabic, Chinese, Hebrew, Hindi-Urdu, Italian, Japanese, Korean or Persian.
  • Shenandoah Joe’s: Coffee roaster in CVille. They have 3 coffee shops (Preston, Ivy, and the Corner) and supply coffee to numerous other places in Charlottesville including Para Coffee, Atlas Coffee, Fellini’s, and Hotcakes
  • SIS: The Student Information System- pronounced “sis” and essentially holds all your important information related to the University, also known as “Scrollbars inside scrollbars.” This is where you’ll pay your tuition & housing fees, sign up for classes, and see your final grades. No one really knows how to use it.
  • Slaughter Gym: The itty bitty gym allllllll the way back behind New Dorms. Usually much quieter than the AFC. Great for shooting hoops or indoor soccer practice. Has a whole hall of racquetball rooms and one wallyball room that are usually empty. If you don’t like working out in public, their gym is a good place to go because there are usually less than 5 people in the workout room.
  • St Maartens: Bar by Bolyan. Every time Joe Harris visits he stops here to avoid crowds. Also has great brunch without the wait Sunday mornings. Their cheese fries are killer. They also do trivia on Tuesday nights (starting at 8!). But it also does not have windows. Claustrophobes, think twice.
  • Stacks: The shelves upon shelves of books in the libraries that you can get lost in. ex- Alderman Stacks. (Note: If you are in the engineering school, “Stacks” refers to the study room which formerly contained stacks of books, not Alderman Library’s stacks. See Thornton Hall.)
  • Streaking the Lawn: A tradition at UVA. It involves taking off all of your clothes and running down the lawn to kiss the statue of Homer’s butt. It’s not as legitimate right now with the Rotunda under construction, but it’s still fun and a must do before you graduate.
  • StudCo: Student Council. Think free food and T-shirts. Go to these events if you’d like to avoid the dining halls for the day.
  • The “Stud”: aka the Center for Christian Study. A really cool place where a lot of people study and hang out. It’s open 24/7 (there’s a punchcode for after the day time) and there’s free coffee/tea/hot chocolate. Pro-tip: they have free meals 3 times a day during exams. GO TO THESE (think, Bodo’s, Take-it-Away, Chick Fil A breakfast, Chipotle)  128 Chancellor St.
    • located by the Bank of America and across from the Chi Omega house on the corner. Awesome study spaces, awesome hospitality and you can print for free if you bring your own paper. They have free exam snacks during exam periods and generally house pretty nice people.
  • Survivor Hour: $1 rails at the Biltmore on Thursdays from 8-9.
  • “Suspicious Package”- Expect plenty of emails containing this phrase throughout the school year. You’ll see what we’re talking about soon enough. One fun thing to do is count how many times this phrase shows up.
  • Take It Away: A quick, casual and DELICIOUS sandwich spot located on the Corner (Elliewood;) they’re known for their house dressing, a bit pricey compared to its competitors.
  • T. Sully: Our lovely University President. Count on her to be somewhat late announcing snow days and issuing apologies for University mishaps. She loves to mention CAPS in these emails.
  • Terry Leung: The reason most first years drop pre-med. Has an awesome earring and makes some pretty cheesy (but great) jokes that distract you from your failing grade. If you prefer not to fail, go to his office hours (trust me). Beware his thick Hong Kong accent, as it can be hard to understand (his grammar is fine though, don’t worry).
  • Thornton Hall: The central/administrative Engineering building, designed by someone who had no idea what they’re doing. Facing from McCormick: A-Wing: front. B:Wing: connected to A wing on the right. C-Wing: Connected to A Wing on the left. D-Wing: follow B Wing and keep going. E Wing: follow C wing and keep going.
    Inside this building is a room called “Stacks,” (Top floor of A wing. After entering through the main entrance, take the stairs to the left, turn right, and look for a room on your left with lots of tables)  where there are a lot of group meetings and office hours for classes like Computer Science. The APMA workshops are also held next to the stacks.
  • Thirsty Thursdays: alliteration is a friend not a foe, clubs don’t only go up on Tuesday
  • TLP: Technology Leaders Program - An interdisciplinary undergraduate program for Engineering students looking to gain foundational multi-disciplinary knowledge from the Electrical, Computer, Mechanical, and Systems Engineering fields.
  • TOG: “Triangle of Grass” in front of Brooks Hall, beside the Corner
  • Tom Tom Founders Festival - huge week long festival in Charlottesville based around music, innovation, and technology. Big name tech speakers come to talk as well as business and pitch competitions occur. Great opportunity to spend time downtown learning and hearing great music/seeing great events. They also have a block party in the Fall.
  • TPEGS: The grading system used by some classes (most in Engineering and especially in CS) that allows your paper, short-answer tests to be graded electronically and returned as a PDF.  Developed by our very own Professor Aaron Bloomfield from the CS department.
  • Transloc: mobile app that gives you real-time updates on where the UTS buses (UVa buses, essentially) are and when they’ll arrive at your stop. Not always reliable FYI
  • Trolley: A free bus that comes by every 15 minutes or so. Not exclusive to UVa students; an alternative to UTS buses (share some stops); what you’ll take to get Downtown and to the city (farmer’s) market. Use CAT Bus app to see its stops and when it’s coming.
  • Trinity: Another bar on the corner. Also called Trin. Known for being a bit (very) shambly at times, but has great music on weekends. Also Trin Tron.
  • Trick or Treating on the Lawn: Every year a bunch of families from the town come to the lawn during Halloween with kids and costumes to get some candy. The CIOs have tables where they get to pass out candy to the kids. There are a lot of fun and cute costumes worn by kids, parents, and students alike.
  • UCS: University Career Services/ UVA Career Center.  It is located in Bryant Hall at Scott Stadium. It is a place that holds resume building workshops, mock interviews, and graduate school guidance. A great resource if you just need to talk to someone about the steps you need to take as pre-health or pre-law student.
    • Actually, great resource for anyone. They have walk-in hours Monday through Friday where you can spend 15 minutes talking to a UCS counselor about just about anything. Come here if you’re curious about internships, want to take a personality assessment to better understand yourself and how you work best, want to learn how you can get experience outside of class, etc.
    • If you’re in the Engineering School, there is an additional career services called Center for Engineering Career Development.  This may be a better bet, given that they deal solely with engineers.
  • U-Guides: The student run tour guide group on grounds
  • ULink: A student run peer-mentorship program on grounds created to help incoming first years make the academic and social transition to college.
  • Undergraduate Research Network:
  • UTS: the University Transit System.  Runs the buses that go through grounds.  Not to be confused with CAT (Charlottesville Area Transit), which goes around all of CVille. The Outer Loop and Inner Loop run the same route but in opposite directions and the Free Trolley takes you from dorms to the Corner and continues to the Downtown Mall. See below for more information on route. Also, UTS is always hiring students starting at $10/hour if you need a job (paid training).
  • Ubikes- One of the most efficient ways to get around grounds if the buses are busy. $30 for 180 days and 12 different “hubs” near your classes. 90 free minutes a day. Very helpful for when you're running late!
  • Venmo: An App- The fastest and easiest, and a really common way to pay friends for things (think: splitting a check, paying someone back, etc.) using your debit card (free), a credit card (small fee), or your Venmo balance from when other people have paid you.

  • Washington Literary Society and Debating Union (The Wash): A group that meets every Thursday at 8 p.m. in Jefferson Hall on the West Range of the Lawn. People debate funny and serious topics and present original and non-original literary pieces. Provisional members are accepted during the first three meetings of the year. Membership more open/less selective/laid back than the Jefferson Literary and Debating Society.
  • Waze- An app similar to google maps. For all you out of staters, stay up to date with traffic, and other obstacles on your way back to UVA.
  • WebWork: A website that many math courses use to to assign online homework
  • White Spot: Super greasy! Famous for their "Gus Burger"
  • Women's Center: A great place to go for counseling and help. CAPS is often full but it is not the only option. The Women's Center has wonderful options available, and is not exclusive to just females; they are very welcoming to anyone looking for help.
  • Xylophone Club – Some of the greatest people you will ever meet. Harder to get into than most top-tier frats.
  • YAR: Young Alumni Reunion (on Homecomings weekend). Not so important for 1st years, but any alumni or 3rd/4th years that you meet
  • Yik Yak: all your time will be gone, download the app though.  An app like Twitter, but allows anonymous posting.  Shows posts based off of location.  Apparently, Blue Balloons are popular.
  • YSI: (Youth and Social Innovation) New major at the Curry School of Education. Great fit for people interested in innovative education policy, nonprofit work, youth development programs, etc. “Learn by doing” through service learning and designing innovations of your own.
  • Zs: Another of the many secret societies
  • Zipcar: Basically a car rental service through UVa that any student who signs up can use. They’re parked all around Grounds and can be pretty useful if you don’t have a car and need to make occasional shorter trips.