September 2019
In This Issue
  • Don't miss Family Weekend
  • Talking Points
  • Residence hall break closings
  • My Carolina Alumni Association
  • On Your Time Initiatives
  • Bursar's Office
  • Carolina Food Co.
  • Student Health Services
  • Answering your questions
  • University news
  • Important dates
President Bob Caslen leads the Class of 2023 in their first official Gamecocks chant alongside Cocky.
Carolina families,
I hope you enjoyed a relaxing Labor Day Weekend, reflecting on the hard work of the many American men and women for whom this holiday was named. Our students have certainly been hard at work in these first few weeks of the fall semester, and it’s been energizing to have them on campus. As we enter a new month in what is still a new semester, I’m thrilled to connect with you today.
It is an exciting time to be a Gamecock. The university is poised to have another banner year both in the classroom and on the field and court. As our new television spot illustrates for the nation, South Carolina is known for its bright conviction and unrelenting inquiry. I hope you feel pride when you see it – you are part of this legacy.
Our students, hailing from all 50 states and more than 100 countries, bring with them great talent, enthusiasm, and most importantly – character. Founded as an institution of higher-learning over two centuries ago, UofSC’s motto reads “Learning humanizes character and does not permit it to be cruel.” In my first few months on campus, I have witnessed how our university community continues to embrace these powerful words. We are all here to learn and grow, while supporting one another through this journey called life. During times of great happiness and sadness alike, let us be reminded we are not alone. The Carolina community is always here with open arms and resources to help. 
Shelly and I look forward to meeting many of you at the annual Family Weekend later this month. To our UofSC families in the wake or path of Hurricane Dorian, we send our thoughts to you and are here to support and embrace you as you and your communities recover.
Go Gamecocks!
For Carolina,
Bob Caslen
University President
The University of South Carolina's 29th president, Bob Caslen, welcomed students back to campus and celebrated the class of 2023's first official Gamecocks chant alongside Cocky at First Night Carolina, Aug. 21.
Don't miss Family Weekend 2019!
Are you missing your student or did they forget something at home?  Join them later this month at Family Weekend and create lasting memories together. Online registration for packages at current prices closes Monday, Sept. 9 at 4 p.m. (EDT). Additional packages will be available for purchase Sept. 10-25 online and on-site during Check-In Sept. 27 with a $20 late fee attached to each package.

Be sure to check out the weekend's schedule to learn about the great events taking place across campus, including the Welcome Reception with the president and first lady, Rock the Roost with a live band and the Tailgate Party before the football game against the Kentucky Wildcats.

For families who register prior to Sept. 9 at 4 p.m., an email sharing final details for the weekend will be sent with information about Check-In, parking options and reminders. Do you have questions or concerns about Family Weekend? Call the Parents Assistance Line (1-800-868-6752) or email the Office of Parent & Family Programs ( so we can assist!
Monthly Talking Points
  • Using rideshare services like Uber and Lyft is a convenient way for students and visiting families to get around Columbia, but it's important to travel safely. UofSC's Division of Law Enforcement and Safety reminds everyone to follow these tips and report suspicious activity by contacting UofSC Police at 803-777-4215, 911 or students can make reports through the RAVE Guardian app. 

  • Trust your instincts. If you are in a situation that feels unsafe, call 911 immediately.
  • Request your ride from inside a safe place and stay there until the app shows that your driver has arrived.
  • Confirm that the vehicle and license plate match the information on the app.
  • Ask the driver, "What's my name?" or "Who are you here to pick up?"
  • Ride in the back seat with your seatbelt on.
  • Students are encouraged to use the safety timer on their RAVE Guardian app

Want additional conversational topics to discuss with your student? Be sure to review the "Conversation Kick-Starters" tab on the Parent & Family Programs mobile app for additional discussion ideas.
Residence Hall Break Closing Updates
University residence halls will remain open for fall and Thanksgiving breaks to allow students to stay on campus. (Please note this is an update from the information shared in the 2019-20 Family Calendar & Handbook). Fall break takes place Oct. 10-13 and Thanksgiving Recess begins Nov. 27 and ends Dec. 1.

If your student has questions about staying on campus during a university break, encourage them to speak with their resident mentor or the professional staff in their residence hall. Questions can also be directed to University Housing at 803-777-4283.

You can download a printable copy of the Family Calendar & Handbook on the Parents & Families Gateway or ema il the Office of Parent & Family Programs to be mailed a hard copy.
My Carolina Alumni Association
South Carolina Ring Week
Students with 60 or more credit hours are eligible to order their official Carolina ring during Ring Week this fall. Representatives from Balfour will be available in the Russell House Sept 9-13 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. to talk with students about their ring options. Students and families can learn more about the official Carolina ring and the ring saver program on the My Carolina Alumni Association website.

My Carolina's Student Network
A 40+ year tradition, My Carolina's Student Network strives to connect students with alumni through networking opportunities and building a stronger Carolina community. Student members can take advantage of the material benefits of membership, like spirit T-shirts, water bottles, decals, and a discount on the official Carolina ring. Students can learn more about getting involved with My Carolina's Student Network by visiting  their website.

Additionally, students looking to take a greater leadership role with My Carolina Alumni Association are encouraged to apply to join Garnet Circle, the governing board of the Student Network that works to uphold the rich traditions of South Carolina.
On Your Time Initiatives
Did you know that On Your Time Initiatives offers winter session courses to help students graduate early? All winter session courses are 3-4 credit hours, take place over three weeks and are 100% online. Winter courses are available in a variety of subjects allowing students to be at home with family or traveling while they complete a course needed for graduation.

A winter session course allows students to lighten the spring course load to make time for full-semester internships, practicums or clinical experiences. These courses are included in spring semester bills, so any additional aid or scholarship funds allotted for spring can be used for a winter session course. Encourage your student to learn more about these options and to discuss them with their academic adviser during their registration meeting this fall.
Bursar's Office Reminders
Payment Plans
The first installment of the fall 2019 payment plan is due Sept. 10 with future payments due Oct. 10 and Nov. 11. Monthly payments can be made in person, mailed to the Bursar's Office or processed electronically via your student's Self Service Carolina (SSC) account from a checking account or credit card.

University of South Carolina
Bursar's Office
1244 Blossom Street - Suite 128
Columbia, SC 29208-0001

Authorized Users
Students can assign authorized users to their SSC account to allow parents and guardians to view student bills, payment history, request 1098-T information, set up a payment plan and speak with the Bursar's Office about their student's account.

Direct Deposits
If your student expects to receive a refund from excess financial aid or loan monies, encourage them to set up their direct deposit account through Self Service Carolina. This will expedite the process for receiving those refunds.
Carolina Food Co.
Students at the Russell House
Changing Meal Plans
Meal plans are a great way for students to enjoy the full UofSC dining experience. It is not too late for students to sign up or increase their meal plan for the fall 2019 semester. A meal plan is optional for upperclassmen, but meal plans to dine on campus provide flexibility, convenience and savings!

Meal plan options are available to fit any student's lifestyle -- whether they are on campus all day or sporadically. Students looking to sign up or increase their mail plan can do so via their CarolinaCard account . Meal plans can be used at all 35 Carolina Food Co. locations on campus.

Dining Enhancements
Fall 2019 brings a number of dining enhancements that students and families will love while focusing on quality, health, personalization and convenience. As always, the Carolina Food Co. believes in:

  • Developing menus that are responsibly sourced and thoughtfully prepared
  • Serving innovative recipes to foster personalized experiences
  • Enriching the campus community through fresh culinary creations
  • Creating hand-crafted meals with South Carolina character

Students and families can stay up-to-date on the latest dining information, events, promotions, and menu innovations by following @UofSCDining on Facebook , Instagram , and Twitter .
Student Health Services News
Student Health Services offers comprehensive health care services for students by board-certified doctors, counselors and clinical staff. They can diagnose and treat many common illnesses, chronic conditions, as well as activity-related injuries like concussions and fractures. Students can make appointments online through MyHealthSpace using their network username and password.

Fall 2019 Hours
  • Monday - Thursday, 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
  • Friday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Sunday, 2 - 8 p.m.

After-Hours Care
Students with urgent mental health needs during after hours can call 803-777-5223 to be connected with a mental health professional. Parents and family members can also contact this number at any point if they have a concern about their UofSC student.

The nearest hospital to campus is Prisma Health Baptist Hospital, located at
1301 Taylor Street (.9 miles from Russell House). Their phone number is: 803-296-5010.

On-Campus Pharmacy
All students can have their prescriptions filled conveniently on campus at the Center for Health and Well-Being. Students needing to transfer their prescriptions from their hometown pharmacy to the on-campus pharmacy can learn more about that process on Student Health Services' website.

 Measles Prevention
Student Health Services is encouraging all students, faculty and staff to know their immunization status for the measles as soon as possible. The lab can perform a blood test to determine immunity or the immunization department can provide the MMR vaccine. The blood test is $29 and the MMR vaccine is $75. Students can contact the lab to schedule a blood test at 803-777-3958 or the immunization department to receive the vaccine at 803-777-9511.
The Office of Parent & Family Programs is your resource for supporting your student during their time at South Carolina. To better assist you, we are sharing one question every month from a fellow Gamecock family in the Family E-News.

How do I sign up to receive alerts from the university in case of emergency? Students can update their emergency alert information at Once there, students have space to add three email addresses and cell phone numbers to receive notification about active emergency alerts. Additionally, members of the Parents Association will receive email updates when campus closes due to emergency weather. Students and families can also follow @CarolinaAlert on Twitter and Facebook for updates through social media. Remind your student to download the Rave Guardian mobile app so they can update their information, set safety timers and connect directly with UofSC Police during an emergency.

Have a question? Contact the Office of Parent & Family Programs at 1-800-868-6752 or, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. for assistance.

"Trip leader encourages Gamecocks to get outdoors"

Adventure Trips Manager Ashley Hamada sees benefits in spending time outdoors doing recreational activities.
"McCutchen: A Gamecock family name built on hospitality"

Lilla McCutchen grew up playing on the Horseshoe and at her grandparents' home, now known as McCutchen House.
Sept. 2: Labor Day - no classes, university offices closed
Sept. 9: Last day to register for Family Weekend
Sept. 16: Fall 2019 graduation application due
Sept. 24-25: Career Fairs
Oct. 9: Greek Village closes at 6 p.m. for fall break
Oct. 10-11: Fall break - no classes
Oct. 13: Greek Village opens at noon after fall break
Oct. 14: Midpoint in the semester
Oct. 22: AlcoholEDU and SAPU part 2 due
Oct. 28-Nov. 2: Homecoming Week
Please continue to visit the Parents & Families Gateway for information and resources at .

Office of Parent & Family Programs
University of South Carolina
Parents Assistance Line: 1-800-868-6752