Letters to admitted students and parents

Letters

  • Dean of the Faculty and Vice President for Academic Affairs

    Dear Admitted Student,

    Congratulations on your admission to Union College! I am delighted to welcome you to the Union community. Come to Union and be part of a long and distinguished history of excellence and innovation in the liberal arts. Union was founded in 1795 and has pushed out the boundaries of the liberal arts throughout its history, as one of the first U.S. colleges to give modern languages a central curricular role, as the home of the first analytical chemistry lab, and as the first liberal arts college to offer an engineering degree. Today, as our society becomes increasingly global, diverse, and technologically complex, we continue to find innovative ways to provide an education that will equip you to make your mark on the world.

    Our recently renovated and expanded Feigenbaum Center for the Visual Arts and a brand-new, cutting-edge facility in our Integrated Science and Engineering Complex will welcome you upon your arrival on campus this fall, bringing physical form to this spirit of innovation. These projects, among others, will touch not just students in the arts, sciences and engineering but will benefit all Union students.

    Union is a place where you can explore many different subjects and learn how they intersect and interact with each other. There is flexibility here to combine different majors or even to design your own. We want to help you find your intellectual passion and put it into action through hands-on research, off-campus experiences, and close work with our outstanding, dedicated faculty.

    You will be able to find many communities within a community here among our many housing options and active clubs. There’s a place for everyone. Union students are active in and out of the classroom, often making surprising connections across wide-ranging pursuits.

    The Academics web page provides links to information about all aspects of our academic program and allows you to read about our broad and deep liberal arts curriculum and to explore opportunities for our students, both at Union and beyond.

    I hope to see you soon!

    Strom Thacker
    Stephen J. and Diane K. Ciesinski Dean of the Faculty and
    Vice President for Academic Affairs

  • Career Center

    Parents,

    Congratulations on your student’s acceptance to Union College! Our professional staff at Becker Career Center is here to guide your student throughout their four years here and beyond, with a focus on developing confidence and independence so they can direct their passions toward fulfilling work.

    We can help your student explore what they want to do and what major to declare, develop professional documents, find internships and research experiences consistent with their interests, make connections for networking, figure out what they need to do to prepare for graduate school, and much more. 

    We have many online tools students can utilize to find internships and jobs, network, and prepare for interviews. Additionally, students can join our Union Career Advisory Network (UCAN), where they have access to 13,000+ Union Alumni to learn from and build connections with. 

    As you’ll see, we’re not a placement agency or merely a place to go once for a document review. We’re advisors and coaches who get to know your student’s unique capabilities and desires, work with employers and alumni to open doors, and guide students in competing effectively for opportunities that await in today’s dynamic, diverse, and global society.

    Whether your student is taking the first tentative steps toward figuring out life after Union or has known all along what they want to do, we encourage you to stay involved. Parents play a vital role in helping their children navigate the process, and we are excited to welcome you to Union College.

    If you ever have any questions please feel free to contact us at careercenter@union.edu or (518) 388-6176.

    Bob Soules
    Director of Becker Career Center

  • Dining

    Parents,

    On behalf of Union College Hospitality, I want to congratulate you on your student’s acceptance to Union College! A truly warm and welcoming community awaits you here. Parents are uniquely connected to our College and we look forward to working closely with you in the coming years. My door is always open if you should ever have a question or concern.

    Union College Hospitality strives to offer your student a wide variety of dining options on campus. Healthy, Vegan, Vegetarian and Halal choices are abundant and our campus Chef works closely with students who have any dietary concerns. We take a personalized approach to dining and we are always available to meet with you to discuss an individualized meal plan for your student.

    What’s available? Two all you care to eat dining halls, Upperclass and West, offer a wide range of choices. In addition to an extensive salad bar at both, you can find stations such as Elements (our allergen free station in Upperclass), The Noodle Bowl, Homestyle (a taste of home featuring feel good favorites), Stacked (burgers and unique sandwiches), the deli and more. Our fully interactive cooking station, Chef U in Upperclass, gives your student the opportunity to cook their own creation daily. Other dining options include: The Garlic Nott (made fresh daily pizza, pasta specials, Stromboli and our popular Garlic Notts), The 807 Deli (delicious sandwiches and salads with a focus on locally sourced ingredients) and Dutch Hollow (offering all day breakfast, sandwiches and grilled items). The Market (located in the Reamer Student Center) offers fresh fruit and vegetables, complete combo meals, frozen yogurt and ice cream along with other unique items only found at this location. The Rathskeller is a Union College tradition and one of our most popular destinations for students. Offering a comfortable and relaxing atmosphere in a historic building, its brick walls and extensive sandwich menu make it a campus favorite. Starbucks is also available to wake them up for those early morning classes. The Kiosk at College Park Hall offers made to order salads and a variety of sandwiches, Paninis, delicious soups and other food on the go.

    Special theme meals and events are held throughout the year and we also offer an Educational Series. Past classes included: Thai Fruit Carving, Vegan Cooking, Make Your Own Pizza, Pasta Making and Soup 101. Our allergen free room at West ensures that your student always has safe and delicious choices and highlights our commitment to working with students who have dietary restrictions. First-years are required to be on the 30 meal plan but also have the ability to switch to the unlimited as well. The transition from home to college is a big step; we want to make sure that their options are abundant as well as delicious!

    As you consider putting your student in our hands for the next several years, know that our steadfast commitment is to always be there to listen and to care for them in their home away from home. We look forward to working with you!

    Sincerely,

    Jim Meagher
    Director of Union College Hospitality
     

  • Health Services

    Parents,

    Health Services at Wicker Wellness would like to congratulate you on your child's acceptance to Union College. Our staff is committed to helping students maintain a healthy, well-balanced lifestyle.

    I would like to take this opportunity to let you know about some of the services that we offer here at Wicker. Students are seen for physicals, sick visits, gynecological care, immunizations, and lab work. There is no charge to be seen at Wicker, but there may be incidental charges for in-house labs and medications which can be billed to tuition.

    We offer nutritional counseling with a dietitian on Wednesdays and medication management on Thursday afternoons and Friday mornings. We offer term abroad physicals for a nominal fee every term. A local pharmacy, Lange’s, delivers medications to Wicker Monday through Friday.

    One of our most popular programs is our therapy dog program. You can find Goldendoodles— Jenna, Murphy, Eve and Tusker—here during center hours. They are available for cuddles or walks.

    Please visit our website for a more complete overview of our health center. Again, welcome to Union College!

    Angela Stefanatos FNP, PMHNP
    Director of Health Services

  • Residential Life

    Parents,

    The Office of Residential Life at Union College is excited that your student is considering Union for their college career! We strive to support both the mission of the college and that of the division of Student Affairs by providing an inclusive living environment that fosters personal development and cultivates opportunities for student learning that complement the academic curriculum. The residential experience encourages social responsibility, cultural competence, and develops engaged citizens during their time at Union and beyond.

    In your student's time here at Union, we will work to create a home away from home for them. Trained professional and undergraduate student staff live in each residence hall, and provide many opportunities for students to relax and connect with peers outside of the classroom. Your student's learning will not just be academic—they will grow and develop as adults in their time at Union. They will learn to negotiate, compromise, and build lifelong friendships with other students within their community. Our staff provides social programming, but also events dedicated to helping guide your student's growth and development as a person. Residential Life will engage students around four core values, and will develop skills in these value areas progressively throughout the students’ careers at Union. The four core values at the center of our mission are: achievement, citizenship, engagement and wellness.

    You have done an excellent job raising your student and guiding their development up to this point. It is our hope that you will entrust them to us to help them become the amazing adults we know they can be.

    Amanda J. Bingel
    Director, Residential Life

  • Writing Programs

    Dear Admitted Student,

    Congratulations on your acceptance to Union College! I’d like to take a moment to tell you about the vibrant community of writers that you will be joining if you choose Union. Whether you are a poet or journalist, whether you write fiction, essays, or academic papers, Union is the place for you. Our students engage with writing both inside and outside the classroom. There are many ways to get involved.

    Union students who are interested in creative, academic, and professional writing can take courses in our Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) program. WAC courses are writing intensive and taught by expert writers in a wide range of disciplines, from English to Engineering, from Philosophy, Neuroscience, and Biology to Economics, Religious Studies, and Mathematics. These and other courses will help develop your capacity for creative and critical thought, as you write in a variety of styles, genres, and contexts. Writing prizes at Union recognize exceptional student work, and there is ample opportunity for independent summer research and writing projects. Union students publish creative writing, journalism, and academic essays in a range of student publications across campus. Writing workshops, colloquia, and lectures are held throughout the academic year.

    You can also get involved at Union’s College Writing Center. The Writing Center is a peer-led program designed to provide one-on-one assistance to students at any stage of the writing process. The Writing Center is staffed by students just like you, who are specially trained to work with their peers in an open, supportive, and enthusiastic learning environment. The Center promotes excellence in writing across campus, paying special attention to the close relationship between writing and thinking in the liberal arts, sciences, and engineering disciplines at Union. Exceptional student writers are recommended by faculty and invited to apply for a position in the Writing Center each year.

    Union is a great place to be a writer. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you would like to discuss your future as a part of our community. I look forward to hearing from you!  

    Sincerely,
    Joseph M. Johnson, Ph.D.
    Director of Writing Programs
    Union College
    Schenectady, NY