Additional Parent Resources

Department Contacts and Information

Student Success Center: 315-268-2209
Student Support Services (SSS)
Point(s) of contact: Kate Mikel, Associate Director & Tutor Coordinator or Cathy McNamara, Associate Vice President of Student Success Center 

  • First Year Seminar, Academic Recovery, and Academic Skills
  • Campus wide tutoring
  • SafetyNet - reporting students of concern or in crisis

Community of Underrepresented Professional Opportunities (CUPO) and Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP)
Point of contact: Marjorie Warden, Director


  • Academic support for underrepresented, first generation/low income students in STEM
  • Ten (10) week, in residence summer research program


  • Access and support for qualified NYS residents who hail from disadvantaged backgrounds
  • Four (4) week Summer Bridge program (SPREE) to assist students with transition to college

International Center: 315-268-3943
Point of contact: Tess Casler, Director of International Students & Scholars

  • Study (semester, short-term) & internship opportunities abroad
  • Visa support and engagement services for international students

Accessibility Services: 315-268-2012
Point of contact: Troy Lassial, Assistant Dean of Students

  • Provide services for students with temporary, long-term & permanent disabilities
  • Testing services coordination

Campus Safety & Security: 315-268-6666
Point of Contact: Pat Gagnon, Director of Campus Safety and Security

  • Parking, incident response and documentation, emergency first-aid, emergency response
  • Knightwatch - anonymous tips /reports

Career Center: 315-268-6477
Point of Contact: Heather DiFino, Director of the Career Center

  • Professional experience documentation through Handshake
  • Co-op Program, career advisement, job/internship search, employer/alumni connections

Counseling Center: 315-268-6633
Point of Contact: Coreen Bohl, Director of Counseling

  • Student mental health services, including consultation, single session, therapy sessions, sexual assault advocacy and counseling, as well as psychiatric medication evaluation
  • Crisis intervention/support - For any safety concern (threat of loss of life to self or others), please contact Campus Safety at (315) 268-6666 or 911 immediately

Dean of Students: 315-268-6620
Point of Contact: Kelsey Pearson, Dean of Students 

  • SafetyNet/Student wellness and safety
  • Student advocacy & student conduct system
  • Student Affairs Family Newsletter (subscribe here)

Health Center: 315-268-6633
Point of Contact: Kelsie Fournier, Director 

  • Health care services (Chronic and acute care)
  • Connected with Canton Potsdam Hospital for needs which are beyond a typical primary care

Office of Student Life: 315-268-6680
Point of contact: Kristen Avery, Director of Student Life

  • Greek organizations, CUSA Senate (student gov’t), and CUB (campus programming board)
  • Orientation, Convocation, Family Weekend, service opportunities, Student events & programming

Residence Life: 315-268-6647
Point of contact: Emma Blaiklock, Residential Housing Manager

  • RAs receive extensive training, and are equipped to handle most extreme crisis situations
  • All first-year students reside on one of 18 theme-based floors

Clarkson University's Dining & Catering Service is managed by the Sodexo Company.  

First Year Students

The following (general) data points were adapted from the NACADA Monograph Series—Academic Advising: New Insights for Teaching and Learning in the First Year, edited by Mary Stuart Hunter, Betsy McCalla-Wriggins and Eric R. White (2007). Clarkson University statistics are also listed to provide internal context and information. The first year student experience is characterized by continued development of identify and intellect.

One third of first-year students regularly feel isolated from campus life - involvement, integration, and engagement are critical components of student success.

  • 77% of incoming Clarkson students are receptive to social engagement
  • Due to their positive associations with student learning and retention, certain undergraduate opportunities are designated "high-impact." Examples include:
    • Learning community or some other program where groups take two or more classes together
    • Courses that included a community-based project (service-learning)
    • Work with a faculty member on a research project
    • Internship, co-op, field experience, student teaching, clinical placement, study abroad
    • Culminating senior experience (capstone course, project or thesis, portfolio, etc.)
  • 72% of incoming CU students have concern over their ability to finance college
  • At Clarkson University, 81 percent of full-time undergraduates receive some kind of need-based financial aid, and the average need-based scholarship or grant award is $32,061 (US News & World Report)
  • 63% of incoming Clarkson students are receptive to financial guidance according to the CSI

Expectations play a role in the experience of new students because they serve as a filter through which students evaluate and make sense of the information they are presented, and also shape subsequent behaviors.

  • 78.4% of incoming CU students expect to work on a research project with their professor
  • ~19% of CU first year students feel they need remedial work vs. ~27% in our comparison group
  • 62.1% of incoming CU students intend to study abroad vs. 82.3% at our comparison school group
  • 52% of incoming CU students are receptive to Academic support

Students may need additional guidance on how to make healthier life choices and about the utilization of campus services designed to support emotional and physical well-being during the transition to college.

  • 81% of incoming CU students have “felt overwhelmed by all that they have to do”
  • Total CU appointments for Student Health & Counseling Centers in 2018 - 2019: 5,754
  • Top Diagnoses for CU students: Anxiety, Depression, PTSD, ADHD
  • 79.35% of students at CU stated that going to SHAC helped support their academics and class attendance
  • 51% of incoming CU students are receptive to personal counseling

Upper Division Students

Sophomore Year is characterized by student reflection and what has been identified as the “Sophomore Slump.” This often refers to the withdrawal of required support services and the expectation of 2nd year students to self select resources. Thus, it is important to take a proactive approach and ensure that sophomore students are fully integrated into the academic experience.

  • Consider encouraging students to enroll in the Sophomore seminar at CU, a voluntary seminar that focuses on career exploration, personal wellness, and professional competencies
  • Advising sophomores: crystallizing academic plans, assessing career interests, furthering development through student experience (i.e. web resources, internships, lectures, seminars, and faculty assistance)

Junior Year is characterized by a clarification of future plans and goals. More of the responsibility for academic success is placed on the student; however, they often desire mentoring by faculty and staff.

  • Advising themes for junior year include: integrating academic plans with career plans, clarifying career goals, achieving competence in field of study, and considering a graduate education
  • Over 60% of students indicate an interest in advanced education when they enter CU
  • Encourage students’ engagement with the Career Center, if they have not already - data indicates that students who do not have an internship or co-op are less likely to obtain employment prior to graduation

Senior Year is characterized as a time of transition into either graduate study or an applied position.

  • Consider recommending the student seminar - Thriving after College, CU’s student seminar that focuses on civic engagement, transitioning to work/grad school, and leadership identity.
  • Advising themes include: preparing to transition to work or graduate school by updating a resume, applications, and interview skills, working with the career center, and networking with alumni.

We have seen a significant shift in our graduate students’ needs. Internal and national survey data indicates graduate students are increasingly interested in a student experience similar to that of upper-class undergraduate students (in terms of social engagement and personal enrichment opportunities). Since Clarkson offers diverse academic programs and delivery modalities, graduate students most often desire
accurate and timely answers regarding academic program specifics, policies, career information, degree timing, and financial information.

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