Apr 01, 2023  
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog 
2018-2019 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Special Academic Programs

Special Academic Programs

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Central Academic Advising

Rivier provides professional academic advising to students in order to assist them in course selection and program progression requirements. Students are advised by faculty in their major regarding course selections relative to the major. Academic Advisors provide guidance for course selection in the core, electives or exploration areas that balance out their major selections. The goal of the academic advisors is to assist students in selecting courses that will best meet their major progression requirements, as well as facilitate their scheduling needs and serve as a facilitator of identifying and connecting academic and campus support services to ensure each student’s academic success. The academic advisors also provide registration services, add/drop services, graduation requirement assistance, withdrawal assistance, and academic counseling and referral assistance. Students are required to meet with their academic advisors when withdrawing from classes or the school, in order to receive counsel regarding the impact of their decision on their financial aid, housing, athletic status, and other campus-related issues. The Office of Academic Advising is open full-time for day and professional studies students.

Faculty Office Hours

All full-time faculty announce and post office hours during which they are available for student consultation. Students should take advantage of this opportunity for clarification of class material and guidance in instruction. At the beginning of each semester, part-time faculty announce the manner in which students may consult with them. Students are invited to consult often with their instructors on course matters. Those who may be experiencing academic problems are especially encouraged to discuss the matter directly with the instructor involved.

The Employment Promise Program

The Employment Promise Program, started in the fall of 2016 for all full-time undergraduate students, is intended to provide career preparation and employability of students in all academic disciplines. The program includes mentorship through Rivier’s Office of Career Services, an agreement of investment goals and expectations, and a specialized four-year, academic and professional development plan that incorporates experiences proven to increase overall employability and success in the job search process.

The EPP is structured around academic, leadership, professional development and service experiences which are woven throughout students’ four years at Rivier. In the program, students focus on a progression of development goals, from first year to final year: Acclimate, Leverage, Prepare and Succeed (ALPS). Advisement throughout the program is provided by faculty advisors in all disciplines, academic advisors, and career services advisors. Career investment goals include graduating with a bachelor’s degree with a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA; involvement in leadership, community service and internship experiences; and participation in career counseling and professional development opportunities.

For more information, students should contact the Office of Admissions, Office of Career Services, or the Office of Academic Advising.

English for Speakers of Other Languages

Rivier University is committed to building a community of learners that encourages an awareness and understanding of multicultural ideas and issues. The ethnic diversity on campus enriches the University by allowing both students and faculty to think on a global scale. Rivier University provides support to international students and students whose native language is not English to help them adjust to learning at the University level, including tutorials as needed.

Students who meet admissions standards and have a score of 500 or better on the Test of English as a Foreign Language are admitted directly to the School of Undergraduate Studies and will receive additional language skill support as needed from the Writing and Resource Center.

Service Learning

Coordinator: Donny Guillemette

The Service Learning Office provides resources and individual support for the students, faculty, and community partners interested in participating in active community service directly linked with a course. The office works with faculty to help to incorporate meaningful service opportunities that are connected to the course concepts in various courses. Additionally, the office oversees the SL100: Serving the World course. The service-learning experience involves a student participating in a minimum of 20 hours of service and reflection on that service in the context of the course. Additional requirements are determined by the instructor and may include a class presentation, documentation, or journaling. Examples of service-learning experiences include: teaching Internet skills to senior citizens, alternative spring break trips, organizing children’s activities in a homeless shelter, tutoring math to middle school students, assisting in a literacy program, and helping non-native English speakers with language practice and basic writing skills.

Students who are interested in service learning or enrolling in the SL100 course may contact their academic advisor or the Coordinator for Service Learning (897-8658).

Global Scholars Program

Director: Dr. Brad Stull

Applicants for admission to Rivier College who have distinguished themselves in high school and on national standardized tests are invited to apply to Rivier’s Global Scholars Program. Global Scholars Program students participate in a program combining interdisciplinary academic inquiry, leadership development, and cultural/service immersion. Global Scholars Program seminars focus on an essential question, linked to Journeys of Transformation, Rivier’s undergraduate Core Curriculum. The fall term seminar is classroom-based; the spring-term will include cultural immersion/service components. In addition, Global Scholars will work on their leadership portfolio with course faculty and the staff from Career Services, dine twice each term with campus and community leaders, and engage in other activities and events.

Writing & Resource Center

Director: Leslie Van Wagner

The Writing & Resource Center provides individualized academic services and is staffed by professional writing consultants, graduate students, and peer tutors. Programs include weekly writing appointments reserved and drop in hours for writing assistance, and reserved and drop in hours for content-specific tutoring (including math, history, nursing, modern languages, psychology, biology and chemistry). All services are offered at a variety of times weekdays and evenings.

The Writing & Resource Center also sponsors special workshops for faculty and students and maintains files containing current course syllabi, assignments, and sample papers for faculty and student use. There are no fees for undergraduate and graduate students who take advantage of the Center’s  services.

Office of Disability Services

Director: Darcy Murphy

Rivier University recognizes that learning styles differ from person to person. Physical, perceptual, or emotional challenges experienced by students may require additional supports and accommodations to equalize their opportunities for academic success. Those students who have a documented disability can access support services by meeting with the Director of Disability Services (897-8497) at the beginning of each semester.

Pre-Professional Studies

Pre-professional courses of study are designed for students who intend to prepare for advanced study in the areas of law, social services, dentistry, medicine, and other careers requiring study beyond the bachelor’s level.


Law schools welcome high-achieving college graduates of extremely diverse academic backgrounds. A prescribed Pre-Law course of study is considered neither desirable nor necessary. Consequently, at Rivier University, Pre-Law students are urged to major in whatever challenging academic subject most interests them personally.

Students of any major may elect Pre-Law status by contacting the University’s Pre-Law Advisor who is the Director of the Criminal Justice Program. Students who elect Pre-Law status may receive regular notices of workshops and events planned specifically for the law school-bound. They have access to a large collection of law school catalogs and admissions information maintained for their use.

For additional information on law-related academic options, see the section of this catalog entitled ‘History, Law, and Political Science.

Pre-Med, Pre-Vet and other Health Related Professional Fields

Preparation to enter post-graduate education in a health-related discipline includes foundation courses in many disciplines. Although an undergraduate degree in a particular discipline is not a prerequisite for most fields, the majority of students successfully applying to medical, veterinary, dental and related fields will have undergraduate degrees in biology. The biology degree obtained at Rivier University will prepare students to succeed when entering graduate school as well as provide technical and problem-solving skills that will be an asset throughout the individual’s life, regardless of his/her professional interests.

Most post-graduate programs require undergraduate work in general chemistry, organic chemistry, physics, English, and mathematics, in addition to upper-level biology courses in genetics and physiology. In order to have the interpersonal skills that are a prerequisite for success in any field involving human interaction, most graduate schools prefer to accept students with an educational background that includes traditional liberal arts courses in English (usually two courses), the humanities and social studies. The core curriculum at Rivier University insures all of our students are well educated in all areas of human endeavor prior to graduation.

The formal application process for professional schools usually does not begin until the end of the third year or beginning of the fourth year when students take the appropriate admissions test (e.g. MCAT) followed by application to the school or schools of the student’s choosing. However, course selection at Rivier University will always be done in consultation with departmental faculty, keeping the goals of the student and requirements of the professional schools at the forefront.


The U.S. Army Reserve Officers Training Corps program is designed to prepare top-quality men and women to become commissioned officers in the U.S. Army, Army Reserve, or Army National Guard. Military Science training is designed to complement the students academic classes and is integrated into the regular academic curriculum.

Rivier University students may enroll in Army ROTC through the University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH. at (603) 862-1078. Contact your local Army ROTC unit for further information.

Air Force ROTC

AFROTC is a commissioning program designed to educate and train men and women from all academic disciplines to be officers in the United States Air Force. The Air Force offers over 200 different career specialties. The AFROTC program is divided into two phases: (1) The General Military Course (GMC) and (2) the Professional Officer Course (POC). The GMC lower division courses consist of one hour of class per week. The POC upper division courses consist of three hours of class per week. These courses teach communications, leadership, management, and organizational skills which can apply to either a military or civilian environment.

In addition to the GMC and POC classes, students who are members of the Reserve Officer Training Corps must also enroll in a Leadership Lab meeting weekly. For commissioning, a student must complete either a four- or five-week field training course during the summer between sophomore and junior years. Students are highly encouraged to participate in AFROTC for the full four years (GMC + POC) as there are significant advantages in education and scholarship opportunities for four-year cadets. For acceptance into the POC, students must pass a physical examination and fitness test, an officer qualification test, possess an acceptable academic record (2.0 or better), and be able to meet all Air Force commissioning requirements. Uniforms, equipment, and textbooks required for AFROTC will be supplied free of charge.

Once all POC and academic requirements for a degree are completed, the student may be commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Air Force. Commissionees must serve at least four years on active duty. Any student may take ROTC academic classes without obligation to enter the Air Force. Student pursuing a commission normally become obligated to the Air Force upon entering their junior year of undergraduate studies. Students on scholarship, however, may incur an obligation earlier. Scholarships, which are available on a competitive basis, may pay tuition and most laboratory, textbooks, and incidental fees.

Additional information on Air Force class schedules, scholarships, and eligibility requirements is available by calling AFROTC Detachment 345 at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, (978) 934-2252 or e-mail: afrotc345@uml.edu.

Students may enroll in the Air Force Reserve Officers Training Corps (AFROTC) program through the University of Massachusetts at Lowell. Students attend Air Force ROTC classes at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, MA.

Listed below are courses offered at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell.

General Military Course (GMC) Subjects

AS 101 - Heritage and Values of the United States Air Force - Part 1         1 credit

AS 101 is a survey course designed to introduce students to the United States Air Force and provides and overview of the basic characteristics, missions and organization of the Air Force.

AS 102 - Heritage and Values of the United States Air Force - Part 2         1 credit

Completion of the material described in AS 101.

AS 201 - Team and Leadership Fundamentals - Part 1               1 credit

AS201 focuses on laying the foundation of teams and leadership.  The topics include skills that will allow cadets to improve their leadership on a personal level and within a team.  The courses will prepare cadets for their field training experience where they will be able to put the concepts learned into practice.  The purpose is to instill a leadership mindset and to motivate sophomore students to transition from AFRoTC cadet to AFROTC officer candidate.

AS 202 - Team and Leadership Fundamentals- Part 2               1 credit

Completion of the material described in AS 201.

Professional Office Course (POC) Subjects

AS 301 - Leading People and Effective Communication - Part 1     1 credit

AS301 teaches cadets advanced skills and knowledge in management and leadership.  Special emphasis is placed on enhancing leadership sills and communication.  Cadets have an opportunity to try out these leadership and management techniques in a supervised environmnet as juniors and seniors.

AS 302 - Leading People and Effective Communication - Part 2     3 credits

Completion of the material described in AS 301.

AS 401 - National Security Affairs/Preparation for Active Duty - Part 1   3 credits

AS401 is designed for college seniors and gives them the foundation to understand their role as military officers in American society.  It is an overview of the complex social and political issues facing the military profession and requires a measure of sophistication commensurate with the senior college level.  the final semester provides information that will prepare the cadets for Active Duty.

AS 402 - National Security Studies - Part 2                        3 credits

Completionof the material described in AS 401.

ROTCL Leadership Lab                                                    non-credit

All students must enroll in the Leadership Lab to be eligible for a commission in the United States Air Force. The lab must be taken each semester.


Army ROTC courses are available through UNH and are also accepted as general electives.