October 2, 2020

Student services – virtual style

UCR welcomes students with an assortment of digital programming and support services 

Author: Sandra Baltazar Martínez
October 2, 2020

The global pandemic has shifted services to a digital world, but UC Riverside staff, student workers, and student volunteers are still supporting dozens of programs.  

New and continuing students can still access services such as tutoring, career and mental health services, and the libraries. Many of these services are operating in a virtual capacity, and are available via email, phone, video conference, or in-person as needed, said Brian Haynes, vice chancellor of Student Affairs


Student Affairs is also introducing Highlander Connections to incoming students and transfer students this quarter. Highlander Connections helps students transition to life at UCR by creating a personalized program led by staff advisors and peer facilitators, Haynes said, adding that many of the campus’s ethnic and gender programs are hosting weekly Unity Hours, virtual office hours for one-on-one appointments, and virtual events hosted by ASPB. 


“Our goal is to provide an enhanced student experience, while ensuring the safety and well-being of every student is met,” Haynes said. 

Students are encouraged to visit the Student Affairs website for a list of all services and their hours of operation. 

In the coming days, undergraduate and graduate students will participate in an assortment of virtual orientations, presentations, and gatherings. Among those offering services is the Academic Resource Center, which continues to provide academic support services such as tutoring and peer mentoring. The center, also known as the ARC, has 200 student employees and 15 staff members dedicated to assisting students digitally, said Rena Burton, ARC director. 

“The Academic Resource Center has an unwavering commitment, now more than ever to ensure students have every opportunity to be successful in all of their academic pursuits,” Burton said. “While tutoring appointments, supplemental instruction sessions, and peer mentor meetings look very different this year, the quality of our services have not been altered.”

Academic Resource Center

The Academic Resource Center continues its services, including tutoring in writing and mathematics, as well as Supplemental Instruction, an academic assistance program that uses peer-led group study. 

October’s ARC calendar includes the following programming: 

  • Monday, October 5: “I’ve Transferred, Now What?” at 2 p.m. 
  • Tuesday, October 6: “Addressing Conflict and Processing Emotions” at 11 a.m.
  • Wednesday, October 7: “Unpacking The Imposter Phenomenon: Challenging Self Doubt” at 3 p.m. 
  • Click here to register for these events.
African Student Programs 

The office supports students with finding scholarships, mentoring programs, tutoring, and more. Students interested in obtaining more information regarding ASP's Mentor Program or to find more details regarding the Pan-African Theme Hall, visit African Student Programs website, asp.ucr.edu

Asian Pacific Student Programs

Its Fall Welcome series allows new and continuing students to meet staff, make new friends, and participate in an election information roundtable.  

Click here for event dates and details. 

Basic Needs

Here are some of the virtual services provided by The Well, UCR’s nonclinical health promotion center for students.

COVID-19 Wellness Kits and Masks/Face Coverings

Developed by the Well’s health educators, and with generous contributions from campus partners, these COVID-19 Wellness Kits provide students with the items for well-being usually distributed at the office. The kits contain face coverings, hand sanitizer, condoms, period products, a stress ball, sleep kit, and more. 

  • Individual students: Get your kit at an R'Pantry appointment (link below)
  • Faculty and student groups (classrooms, student organizations, residence halls): fill out this request form for bulk Wellness Kits and/or masks. 
  • Email thewell@ucr.edu for additional pick-up options.

GO! Program

This online program is open to students, staff, and faculty members.  Track your daily physical activity — like taking a fitness class online, gardening, walking, jogging, hiking, or however you get your exercise, and earn prizes as you go.

Virtual Health Education Meetings

  • Meet with a mental health educator: Would you like to get some basic information on mental health, self-care, time management, or managing stress? Book a 15-minute appointment with The Well's mental health educator to learn more about skills and the resources available to you. This is a nonclinical/nontherapy resource.
  • Meet with a Peer (Peer-to-Peer Health Education Coaching): Are you interested in talking with a student peer educator on topics related to physical and mental health? Set up a 15-minute meeting with The Well's Certified Peer Health Educators to get tips and learn resources related to well-being. This is a non-clinical/non-therapy resource. Make your appointment here.
Campus Advocacy, Resources and Education (CARE)

CARE, an intervention and prevention support program committed to ending sexual violence, has information regarding consent, healthy relationships, peer educators, and much more.  Visit CARE's site for details. 

Career Center

UCR’s state-of-the-art Career Center is offering virtual career counseling and drop-in appointments via Zoom. 

October and November are filled with virtual career fairs and workshops. Some career fairs are specific to majors, such as fields in STEM or business. Students are encouraged to view the complete list of events here.  

Chicano Student Programs

Chicano Student Programs continues its annual programming, including:

  • Chicano Link Peer Mentor Program: mentee application open. The program supports a positive transition to UCR and promotes academic, cultural, and social success. Click here to apply. Deadline: Oct. 16. 
  • Chicano Latino Orientation Week: Oct. 12 - 16. Sign up here.
  • Chicano/Latino Heritage Month celebration. The week will conclude with the annual “Bienvenida” featuring the resident DJs of Cumbiatón and a chance to meet the Raza student organizations. RSVP here

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) 


CAPS, UCR’s clinical mental health center continues to provide virtual therapy appointments for students. 

  • UCR Just in Case app: Free app with essential contact information and links that connects students to the right resource for both emergency and nonemergency situations. 
  • Call to schedule an appointment or virtual walk-in consultation: 951-827-5531 weekdays 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Graduate Division

Students looking into graduate school can participate in the Virtual Graduate Open House Week, scheduled for October 13-16. For details click here.

LGBT Resource Center

The LGBT Resource Center has its annual Q-Camp on schedule. This year’s virtual connection will provide an orientation for LGBTQ+ students.

•    Q-Camp is scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 4, 1-3 p.m. For details click here.


Need a book? Need help finding research articles? The staff at the Tomás Rivera and Orbach Science libraries are available to help. Here are four crucial services: 

  • Ask a Student: This feature allows students to submit and receive responses Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Ask a Librarian: Students can access information by texting, calling, chatting, emailing, or by scheduling a consultation with a librarian.  
  • Expanded/Free Access to Books and Journals: UCR faculty, researchers, and students can get many of the books they need online through the HathiTrust Emergency Temporary Access Service (ETAS), which grants lawful access to digital copies to over 50% of the physical books held by the UCR Library. HathiTrust recently added access to digitized volumes from all libraries in the 10-campus University of California network, raising the total number of e-books available to UCR Library patrons to more than 10 million.
  • Curbside Delivery: This is not a virtual option, but students, staff, and faculty members can still request a book and drive by to pick it up.  
  • Click here for more details and a video.

Students who want to participate in the Library’s online meetups, workshops and events:

Native American Student Programs

Students can explore student organizations under Native American Student Programs: Native American Student Association, SACNAS at UCR, and American Indian Science and Engineering Society. Click here for details. 

Student Disability Resource Center 

The Student Disability Resource Center's October calendar is filled with information sessions to assist students with services such as audio recording services. The center is hosting its virtual Open House on Wednesday, Oct. 7.

Click here to register for events.  

Students may also:

Undergraduate Education

“Ask UCR” is a student resource referral hub. If you are uncertain where to go, just Ask UCR. The site contains referrals to most campus student services and has an advising directory, peer mentoring directory, 24/7 ScottyBot chat bot, and the Ask A Student peer chat. 

  • Visit Undergraduate Education to find more resources, workshops, and programs.
  • Freshman Collective: A peer mentoring network that connects all incoming first-year students with continuing UCR students. The program uses text messaging mentorship to help students connect away from their computer screens, without the need for an app. All that’s required is a phone. Students are matched based on an algorithm that takes into account their academic and personal interests. The point is to help incoming freshmen find a place on campus, to get help navigating UCR, and to build a community of support. 
  • The campus will also be getting a campus-wide Slack license coming at the end of October, which should also be another avenue for students to connect to one another and create their own channels for interaction. 
Veterans Resource Center

Students seeking answers to questions regarding financial aid, student life, admissions, or other veteran services, can visit the Veterans Resource Center. Click here for details. 

Women’s Resource Center

Participants can join several events, including a digital vision board-making session, a graduate mentoring program workshop, and a conversation about feminism. Events are scheduled to take place throughout October. Click here for more details and to learn more about the Women's Resource Center. 

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