Your Guide to UC Davis

Are you ready to connect but not sure where to start? These Connections are perfect for you! These Connections focus on how to transition well at UC Davis and serve as a guide to campus life. 

#SoBasic(needs)

This Connection will focus on the four pillars of basic needs: access to healthy food options; affordable housing; mental wellness; and financial stability. Participants in this Connection will learn about food resources on the UCD campus, learn how to budget financial aid, find affordable housing options, and learn about renter's rights!

  • Day & Time: Tuesdays (12:10-2:00pm)
  • Format: This Connection will be hosted in-person, on-campus  in 121 Olson Hall
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is for credit and open to all new students (first-year freshman, transfer, and international students). Registration for #SoBasic(needs) is now closed. 


Aggie Traditions

Looking forward to seeing the adorable cows or learning about the UC Davis Olive Oil?  Well, did you know that if you keep track of essential and quintessential UC experiences, you can earn a medal? Aggie Traditions, one of Davis’ best-kept secrets, is a compilation of 50 fun and unique "must experience" activities that every Aggie should know about and do during their time at UCD. Upon completion of the 50 traditions, students can earn a medal to wear during commencement (which is also one of the traditions)! This Connection is open to anyone looking to learn about UC Davis, immerse yourself in campus culture, and work towards earning your medal!

  • Day & Time: Wednesdays (11:00-11:50am)
  • Format: This Connection will be hosted in-person, on-campus. Classroom location will be provided before the first meeting. 
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is not for credit and open to all new students (first-year freshman, transfer, and international students). Registration for Aggie Traditions is now closed.


Campus Cat Safari: Exploring UCD & Cats on Campus

Not able to bring your furry best friend to college? Then join us as we learn about the community cats that call UC Davis home. Take time out of your busy schedule to learn more about campus and connect with fellow cat-lovers. We'll be spotlighting the Veihmeyer cats, Cheeto the Physics cat, Compost the student farm cat, and many more! We'll even connect with feline behavioral researchers and explore academic, volunteer, and research opportunities at UC Davis related to cats. Please be aware, we will be walking around campus during each week's meeting in search of cats. This Connection is facilitated by two crazy cat ladies (both named Rachel)!

  • Day & Time: Thursdays (9:00-9:50am) 
  • Format: This Connection will be hosted in-person, on-campus. Classroom location will be provided before the first meeting
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is not for credit and open to all new students (first-year freshman, transfer, and international students). Registration for Campus Cat Safari is now closed. 


Car(e)free Aggies

Biking is one of the most iconic aspects of UC Davis culture and tradition and Davis is a special place with bike infrastructure that most cities don't have. The vast majority of first-year students don't have access to cars, and three-quarters of regular Davis commuters don't bring a car to campus. So don't feel trapped without a car because at UC Davis bicycling and other methods of transportation aren't "alternative," they're the norm!

This Connection is hosted by two experienced and knowledgeable bicycling enthusiasts and is a place where students who are new to campus can come learn about bicycling in Davis, campus culture, and simple rules of the road. Come learn how to keep your bike healthy, how to maintain the three most important parts (chain, tires, and brakes), and how to work less for more speed as an efficient and effective rider. This is an inclusive group for experienced bicyclist, those who are "bike curious," and those without any experience who may be intimidated at the thought of navigating a campus bike circle. Sessions will consist of group discussions and on-campus fieldtrips to places like the Bike Barn, we will not be riding bikes during group meetings.

Additionally, we will learn how to use Unitrans (the Davis bus system) so you can get anywhere around town without a car, even go shopping at Target! We'll learn how to use the Yolobus system (county transit) to get to-and-from the airport (save $50 on that Uber trip!). We even have the Causeway Connection bus to the UCD health campus, which is the quickest and easiest way to get to Sacramento for FREE. You'll gain knowledge of ALL of your transportation options so you can go anywhere you want without a car, which most students only learn how to do into their second year.

  • Day & Time: Wednesdays (4:10-5:00)
  • Format: This Connection will be hosted in-person, on-campus in Transportation Services conference room A (North of the Pavilion parking structure).
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is not for credit and open to all new students (first-year freshman, transfer, and international students). Registration for Car(e)free Aggies is now closed.


Finding your passion and purpose: leadership to create change

Many students express that they want to be a part of something bigger than themselves. When thinking about how you can create change, do you often ask yourself: What can I do, I am only one person? Many of us feel that the problems we face are too big to tackle or wonder if our individual actions can really make a difference. This Connection will help you begin shaping your passion and purpose by 1) demystifying what it means to be a leader, 2) exploring your identity, strengths, and unique talents, 3) understanding different pathways for service and community engagement, and 4) creating an Aggie Action Plan! Come ready to engage and have fun as we help ignite the change maker within!

  • Day & Time: Tuesdays (5:10-6:00pm)
  • Format: This Connection will be hosted in-person, on-campus (1310 The Grove)
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is not for credit and exclusive to freshman students only. Registration for Finding Your Passion & Purpose is now closed.


First-Gen & First to Know

Are you the first in your family to attend college? Do you find yourself wishing you heard about opportunities sooner? Join this group and connect with fellow first-gen students as we learn how to navigate campus resources (both academic and non-academic), connections to careers and graduate school, and how to be a successful Aggie right out the gate! Each week's topic varies and we will be tailoring some class topics to what YOU want and need to know. Past themes have included: "what are office hours?", how to self care, finding community at UCD, balancing jobs with school, how to get an internship, the importance of networking as an undergraduate, scholarships, study abroad, and many more!

  • Day & Time: Wednesdays (2:10-3:00pm)
  • Format: This Connection will be hosted in-person, on-campus. Classroom location will be provided before the first meeting
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is not for credit and open to all new students (first-year freshman, transfer, and international students). Registration for "First-Gen & First to Know" is now closed. 


First-Gen Guide: Exploring opportunities at UC Davis

In this Connection we will explore opportunities and resources for first-generation students at UC Davis. Join us as we enrich our UC Davis experience through discovering the Craft Center, the ARC, the Center for Chicanx and Latinx Academic Student Success, the Center for African Diaspora Student Success, the Asian American and Pacific Islander Retention Initiative, the Native American Academic Student Success Center, the Cross Cultural Center, and the Global Learning Hub - Study Abroad. Come ready to make social connections in a supportive group environment, demystify UC Davis terminology, and explore the large UC Davis campus.

Come join me, Fernando Gama, a first-gen, Hispanic, college graduate and past reentry student as I answer your questions about life as a first-gen college student and lessons learned along the way. Through this experience, I hope to instill the idea that you do not need to travel the world to find happiness; you need to explore the world around you to enrich your experience and your identity.

  • Day & Time: Mondays (9:00-9:50am) 
  • Format: This Connection will be hosted in-person, on-campus in 125 Seminar Rm. Art Building
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is not for credit and open to all new students (first-year freshman, transfer, and international students). Registration for "First-Gen Guide" is now closed.


How to Decode the Library

Get oriented to the Library and learn information research tips from UC Davis librarians so you will excel as a student. Knowing how to navigate the Library will help you produce quality projects and assignments and enhance your confidence as a scholar.

  • Day & Time: Mondays (2:10-3:00pm) 
  • Format: This is a hybrid Connection with a mix of both in-person/on-campus and virtual meetings. Classroom location and Zoom link will be provided before the first meeting.
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is not for credit and open to all new students (first-year freshman, transfer, and international students). Registration for How to Decode the Library is now closed. 


Life Group: Life Lessons Beyond the Classroom

Congrats, you made it to college! Prepare yourself to learn A LOT from textbooks, lectures and labs. But what about lessons on life? Negotiating through conflicts? Living life with integrity? Skills that go beyond the classroom? Come learn and discuss some life lessons distilled from best-selling books "Ride of a Lifetime" by Bob Iger (CEO of Disney), "Never Split the Difference" by Chris Voss (former FBI hostage negotiator), "Made to Stick" by Dan Heath, and "Integrity" by Henry Cloud. Meetings will be discussion-based, so just come ready to hang out, make new friends, and equip yourself with some practical tools for success in your academic career and beyond!

  • Day & Time: Tuesdays (11:00-11:50am)
  • Format: This Connection will be hosted in-person, on-campus. Classroom location will be provided before the first meeting
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is not for credit and open to all new students (first-year freshman, transfer, and international students). Registration for Life Group is now closed.


Pics or It Didn’t Happen: Capturing Your First Year Through Photography

Is your Instagram feed fire and your snapchat & IG stories always blowing up? Whether you take your pics on your camera phone or a Digital SLR, this Connection is for you. Explore tools you need to navigate your first year at UC Davis while documenting every step of the way. #New2Davis #ourUCDavis #AggieInstaMeet

  • Day & Time: Tuesdays (4:10-5:00pm) 
  • Format: This Connection will be hosted in-person, on-campus. Classroom location will be provided before the first meeting
  • Registration (closed): This Connection is not for credit and open to all new students (first-year freshman, transfer, and international students). Registration for "Pics or it Didn't Happen" is now closed.