AUS FYE coordinator says FYE Connect helps new students socialize, ask questions

FYE ambassadors attend the virtual event organized for freshmen from the College of Arts and Sciences. Picture Credit: Erica Lee Payne

By Malika Kaloo

In an online interview today, American University of Sharjah First Year Experience Coordinator and Senior Adviser, Erica Lee Payne, said that First Year Experience Connect event provides freshmen with an opportunity to ask questions and make new connections.

“Our goal is for every first-year student to meet one-on-one with a junior or a senior ambassador from their college. The reason it came about was that during orientation, students do not have any questions besides registering for classes,” she said. 

The Academic Support Center organizes the FYE Connect event for freshmen as a part of the FYE program.

Payne said that 20 ambassadors from each college meet new students and answer their questions during the FYE Connect. 

She added that some faculty members, including heads of departments and deans, also join the event. 

“Around 98% of students say that they learned something valuable during the event. We do have a survey in which students can respond and nearly everyone responds that they learned something new,” said Payne.

The first three events of Fall 2021 FYE Connect were hosted virtually between 5- 8 p.m. from Oct. 17- 19 and the two upcoming events will be organized on Oct. 24 and Oct. 26. 

FYE Connect is a mandatory event for first semester students at AUS.