A Monthly Update from the College of Professional Studies
Video Message from Dean Palus
Tips and Tricks for Working from Home
Many of you are adjusting to the new normal (at least for now), which could mean working from home. Our CPS advisors have 5 tips and tricks to help you work effectively while maintaining balance in your life.

  1. The Space Issue. Set aside a specific place for your work and possibly a separate place for your school work if you are able. Physically moving from one place to another will help segment your day and help keep up your daily routine. Also, try to personalize your workspace so you enjoy being in that environment and can be productive. It may be as simple as adding a candle, changing your chair, or finding your favorite music station.
  2. Create a daily schedule. It is important to maintain the sense of normalcy during this time. Doing everything at home, i.e. work, coursework, and family, can seep into your personal time if you do not have set times for your tasks. Making a schedule, and sticking to it, will help you to be productive and maintain mental sanity as well! It will also give you a sense of accomplishment when you check those tasks off your list! Don’t forget to schedule in short breaks! If you needed those walks around the office or daily check-ins with your co-workers, you can still do it from home! See tips 3 and 4 below.
  3. Over-Communicate. Social distancing can create a sense of isolation. Keep up with your family, friends, and classmates through FaceTime, Skype, or Zoom. We have also created an online platform and urge you to share your tips, quotes, or anything to help us get through this time. 
  4. Take time for self-care. Set time aside for spirituality, mindfulness, yoga, and exercise! All of this social distancing can take its toll on your mental health. Not sure where to get started? There are many free services to help you take time for yourself! Free apps and websites include: Pray as You Go, Daily Yoga, Headspace, and Nike Training Club. Check out the websites or download the apps to your smartphone. We have also created daily virtual lounges on Mondays and Wednesdays and Tuesdays and Thursdays. We would love to see you there! More on that below.
  5. Enjoy this time with your family! Knowing when to “log off” is just as important as your productivity. Set a clear stopping point so you can spend time with your family and embrace the time you have together! Take time to do things as a family like going for walks, playing games, or watching a movie. 

Please also visit the Villanova's Counseling Center website for resources for coping with anxiety during this time.

Academic Updates + Reminders
Updated Spring 2020 Academic Calendar Dates

  • Summer Registration is open
  • Monday, March 30: Fall Registration begins
  • Wednesday, April 8: Last day for authorized withdrawal without academic penalty (WX) from Fast Forward 4
  • Tuesday, April 14: Last day for authorized withdrawal without academic penalty (WX) from full semester courses
  • If you need to withdraw from a course, email your advisor with the following info: Name, Student ID, and Course: CRN, Subject, Number, Section, Name, and Professor
Example: Wil D. Cat
CPS 1001-DL1 College & Professional Success Strategies
Kirstin Houtz

Summer & Fall 2020 Advisement
March 13 - April 6
Schedule an appointment with your Advisor to discuss Summer and Fall courses between March 13 and April 6. Virtual appointments are easy with our online scheduling platform. To schedule, follow these easy steps:
  • Visit the online scheduling platform: https://calendly.com/cps-advising-team
  • Choose your designated advisor on the main page and the date/time that works best for you.
  • You will receive a link to meet via Zoom (web conferencing)

Please note: You must meet with your Advisor to obtain your PIN to register for Summer and Fall courses.

Spring 2020 Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) Grading Option Details

All undergraduate and graduate students may select S/U grading for one or more of their courses, including those that were designed from the beginning to be online.
  • The University and colleges have waived the normal rules restricting the use of S/U grading in Spring 2020 as follows:
  1. There is no limit on the number of courses for which a student may choose S/U grading.
  2. Courses in which a student earns an S grade will count toward the core curriculum, major, minor or certificate.
  3. All undergraduate students, including those in their first year, may choose S/U grading.
  4. The signature of the student’s adviser is not required for a student to select S/U grading. However, students are encouraged to consult with their advisers or staff in their colleges’ advising offices before electing this option.
  • The S/U grade will continue to not count toward a student’s GPA.
  • The S grade value remains a C grade or better; the U grade is for a C- or lower.
  • Students have until the day after final grades are due to decide to use S/U grading in one or more of their courses.
  1. Tuesday, May 12: Last day to request S/U grade for full semester course
  2. Friday, May 8: Last day to request S/U grade for Fast Forward 4 courses
  • The student’s decision to select S/U grading is final.
  • In order to select S/U grading, students must complete and submit an online form. The Office of the Registrar will notify students when the form is available.
Online Study Resources
Check out these useful resources for helping you study online:

If you have not been able to get your course materials, RedShelf is providing free access for up to seven eBooks until May 25.

Apply for the Alpha Sigma Lambda Scholarship!

Alpha Sigma Lambda will be awarding 14 scholarships of $3,600 to adult learners in the 2020-21 academic year! To be considered, you must meet the requirements below and submit your application to [email protected] by Friday, April 10.
  • Earned 24 semester hours of graded coursework at Villanova. (Not including transfer hours, assessment hours, CLEP credit and the like and not including any courses in which you are currently enrolled).
  • Achieved a grade point average of 3.2 on a 4.0 scale on all work taken at Villanova
  • Enrolled in an associate’s or a baccalaureate degree program at this institution (undecided students are not eligible)

Student Spotlight
TJ Coady ’20 CPS
TJ is a comeback story. After two successful years as an undergraduate student at Villanova, TJ had to discontinue his studies. Never losing sight of his goal of graduating from Villanova, he came back to CPS while continuing to encounter and overcome the roadblocks thrown at him. The road to graduation has been arduous for TJ, yet he has prevailed with a constant smile on his face and will complete his undergraduate degree this May. TJ embodies the “Pursue the Next You” mindset; the grit and immense fortitude that he displays is an inspiration to us all!
Upcoming Events
Virtual Student Lounge Gatherings
We miss seeing you in the CPS offices and lounge! Community is one of the pillars of Villanova and we are finding new and creative ways of connecting to our students. In this very isolating time, we want to be able to reach every student and maintain our sense of community. Our lounges will start on Monday, March 30 . Please pop in when you can to connect with your peers and let us know how you’re doing! Occasionally, we will feature different resources from the Villanova community.

Mondays and Wednesdays 12:00-1:00 pm EST
Zoom: https://villanova.zoom.us/j/749349195, Meeting ID: 749 349 195
Phone: +16465588656,,749349195#

Tuesdays and Thursdays 3:00-4:00 pm EST
Zoom: https://villanova.zoom.us/j/519244003 , Meeting ID: 749 349 195
Phone: +16465588656,,749349195 US (New York)

You can phone in or download Zoom Cloud Meetings IOS app or Google Play .
Career Series for Experienced Villanovans
A Zoom-at-Noon virtual deep dive into successful strategies for each stage of the job-seeking process. Each webinar includes 40 minutes of presentation from a master's-level career coach followed by 20 minutes of Q&A. 

All start times are noon ET.  Click the name of the desired topic below to register.*  

Friday, April 3:  Resume and Cover Letter  
Tuesday, April 7:  LinkedIn  
Tuesday, April 14:  Interviewing  
Thursday, April 16:  Offer Negotiation  
*Registration limited to 500 participants for each event.

Finishing the Semester Strong by Taking Care of Yourself
Thursday, April 16 at 6:00 pm
CPS and Graduate Liberal Arts and Sciences invite you to attend a presentation and discussion focused on self-carewith Dr. Stacy
Andes, Director of the Office for Health Promotion.

An email invite and link to register will follow.

Campus Ministry Centering Prayer Meditation
Campus Ministry is offering the Centering Prayer meditation twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 1:00 pm via Zoom and/or a conference call line. An inspirational prayer or text will be shared by the leader followed by 25-minute silent meditation. At the end of each meditation, the leader will open up the meeting for conversation. Please follow the links and/or use the phone number provided to join the meditation.

Tuesday Centering Prayer:
Zoom:  https://villanova.zoom.us/j/532950859 , Meeting ID: 532 950 859
Phone: 16465588656,,532950859#

Thursday Centering Prayer:
Zoom: https://villanova.zoom.us/j/435273057 , Meeting ID: 435 273 057
Phone: 16465588656,,435273057#

Villanova Career Center
Writing an Impactful Cover Letter
A note from Meredith Okenquist ‘96 CLAS, Career Transitions Coach
A cover letter can be an important part of the job seeking process as it is an opportunity to provide context around your experience. The cover letter is an introduction of yourself to a potential employer, and a way to promote your interpersonal skills and match your strengths and experience to the company’s job requirements. For many job seekers, writing a cover letter is the least favorite part of applying for a job. It’s important to know that the extra page of information can make an impact, and for some employers, it is a requirement for the application process. Below are some best practices and tips for writing an effective and impactful cover letter:
  • Write content with the same font style as your resume.
  • Limit cover letter to one page.
  • Research names and then address letter to hiring manager and cc: Human Resources Department.
  • Ensure the cover letter is error-free with correct spelling.
  • Create 3 to 4 paragraphs following the below structure:

First Paragraph:
Provide overview of who you are, express interest and how you learned of role
Second Paragraph (and if needed third paragraph):
Identify and give evidence of up to 3 skills.
Refer to a past or current job, class or activity and how it reflects skills.
State accomplishment of work.
Develop 1 or 2 sentences that directly links your experience to specific responsibilities listed in the job description.

Closing Paragraph :
Be specific about what you want to happen next. Indicate your availability for an interview at their convenience and that you look forward to hearing from them .