Junior Year

Dear ’23,

Welcome to your junior year! 

This year you will begin the process of really delving into your major courses, preparing for senior year and possibly studying abroad. 


As you embark on the next chapter in your Wes journey, here are a few general thoughts:


Clarify your goals. Think about what you’ve accomplished so far, what the connective threads are in your experiences, both academic and co-curricular, and what your values are. Use those threads as a guide to craft a path for this year and next. 


Strengthen your connections, both in academic and co-curricular circles. The deeper your connections, the more people you’ll have to support you in your independent work and future planning.


Identify and cultivate a faculty mentor. Touch base with people who might write your recommendations over the next year. Have you grown close to someone in your department? Who has taught your favorite course? Visit that faculty member during office hours. Ask questions about their research, talk with them about your summer experience, and discuss plans for the year.


Start considering whether you’ll write an honors thesis. I’ll be hosting an event to discuss this, but it’s also a good idea to connect with those seniors you know who are writing a thesis and with faculty members to see if they would be willing to advise your thesis.


Meet with a Gordon Career Center counselor to explore your options, create a plan, and continue to develop your resume. If you haven’t done so already, consider attending a workshop to consider next steps for this coming summer, senior year and beyond.  If you’re considering professional school, there are particular counselors who can be of help.


Consider whether you might want to apply for graduate school—seek out your instructors and advisor to discuss this—and whether you might want to apply for fellowships to support further study.


Make sure that you’re keeping degree requirements in mind; each of you has a Credit Analysis Report in your WesPortal. There are instructions for reading the report at the link. 


To reiterate, the degree requirements for Wesleyan are:


  • 32.00 credits, without oversubscription 


Oversubscription means that of the total 32.00 credits required for graduation, no more than 16.00 credits in any one subject can be counted toward the degree requirements.


For example, if you are an ENGL major with 18.00 ENGL credits, only 16.00 of those will count toward the 32.00, so that student must make sure that they’re taking enough credits to still have 32.00 (so, for example, the student in this case would need to have earned 34.00 credits). 


I realize that this can be confusing, so we’ll continue to discuss this throughout this year and next. There are also other categories for oversubscription, such as tutorials, pre-matriculant credit, etc., which are all described here


  • Major requirements fulfilled: make sure that you’re working very closely with your faculty advisor in your major to determine where you stand vis a vis the major requirements
  • A GPA of at least 74.00
  • Semesters in residence

-at least six semesters in residence at Wesleyan for students who entered in their first year

-at least five semesters in residence at Wesleyan for students who transferred during their sophomore year

-at least four semesters in residence for students entering as midyear sophomores or junior  year transfers

(Please note: remote semesters at Wesleyan also count as semesters in residence)

  • 16.00 credits earned at Wesleyan


 If you have any questions, just be in touch.

My drop-in hours start on Monday.

Take good care,