The Gator Family Connection
December 2020
From the Gator Parent Family Association:

Home for the Holidays: What to Expect

Whether your student is coming home for the first time, or spending their fourth holiday season at home, there will likely be a transition for both you and your student. Your Gator's time away from home has been one of growth and new independence. To read more about what your student is experiencing and the transition of coming home for the holidays, click here.

As your Gator travels home this holiday season there are a number of transportation options to the Gainesville airport and nearby cities including Tampa, Orlando, and Jacksonville. Below is a list of several travel options to consider:

  • Buses (RedCoach, Greyhound, GMG)
  • Uber/Lyft
  • EZ Shuttle
  • RTS Bus
  • Ride boards on Facebook
  • Ask a Friend

The Gator Parent and Family Association would also like to wish you and your loved ones Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year in this season of celebration and joy.
Applying for financial aid begins with the FAFSA, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. 
You can file a 2021-22 FAFSA today! To receive the best financial aid offer, complete the FAFSA as early as possible. In order for UF Student Financial Affairs to consider you for a financial aid package, you must be a degree-seeking, admitted student.
Complete the FAFSA at or via the MyStudentAid app. For more information on how to apply for financial aid, visit the Student Financial Affair's website.
UF is committed to providing the most up-to-date information regarding COVID-19. Below are several helpful links:

With daily updates, please continue to monitor these pages, to ensure safety for all of the Gator community.
Fall Housing Closing 

Residence halls close at noon on Saturday, December 19. Instructions regarding closing are located here.  UF Housing offers housing during the break period for a fee. Residents can indicate interest by logging into HMS ( and clicking “yes” for interest in winter break housing. Staff will follow up by email with details of how to complete an agreement. 
Spring Housing Opening 

Halls open on January 7, and all residents are required to make a move-in appointment. New spring residents will select move-in appointments during room selection the week of December 1. Current on-campus residents will select their appointments the week of December 14. We will email spring opening instructions to your Gators UFL email in the next couple of weeks. Move-in information is located here.
Fall 21-Spring 22 Housing Agreements 

We invite our current Gators to live with UF Housing for the Fall 21-Spring 22 academic period. Housing agreements will be available Monday, January 11. Details about the contracting process and room selection will be available here on December 21
Become a Resident Assistant 

The Department of Housing & Residence Life invites your Gator to learn more about the resident assistant (RA) role and our upcoming search process for the 2021-2022 cohort of new RAs at the University of Florida! The RA job is one of the best student employment opportunities on campus. RAs live and work in the residence halls. Gators in this role serve as a mentor, academic role model, community builder, and help respond to crises and conflicts in the halls. Gators interested in learning more, please click here.
Virtual Commencement Weekend

We are excitedly putting the finishing touches on our fall 2020 Virtual Commencement Weekend, scheduled for December 18 and 19! The detailed schedule can be viewed on the commencement website.

Meanwhile, we’re cautiously optimistic about returning to in-person ceremonies next year. You’re your calendar for “Make-Up 2020 Graduation Weekend,” scheduled for May 6-9. President Fuchs will preside over these ceremonies, scheduled to take place in the Stephen C. O’Connell Center, which will not be ticketed. Full details, including a registration form for the graduates, will be made available in mid-December. Please know that this in-person weekend will occur only if the threat of COVID-19 is overcome through the widespread availability of a vaccine. If that does not happen, we will postpone them further. We urge our graduates and guests to plan accordingly, building as much flexibility as possible into travel arrangements and lodging reservations.
Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 Classes

Wanting to improve their success in a Fall Class? Students should check out our Academic Success Resources, which include tips for success in a mostly/fully online course load, ways to assess and improve your study skills, and free UF Resources for success.

Spring term registration is around the corner! Your students can check for their registration start-time and whether they have holds to prevent registration.

  • Advising - Student demand for advising has already increased substantially. Students shouldn't wait to make an appointment or sign-in to see an advisor - college advising contacts can be found on the UF Advising Website.

  • Holds - To register, students MUST clear any holds that start with the words "You may not register..." They can clear man of these holds themselves. Some may require some time on the students’ part. Other holds will direct them to contact a specific office. Holds can be viewed on

  • Degree Audit - The degree audit includes any posted incoming credits as well as current courses and shows how those credits are applying to degree requirements. Your student can use their degree audit to see what requirements they still need to complete.
Final exams are nearly here! The end of the semester can be a stressful time for your student as the prepare to showcase all that they have learned this semester. Help your student stay on top of their studying and exam schedule.

To find out more about final exams at the University of Florida and to learn how best to support your student, visit the following helpful websites:

  1. Policies (Office of the University Registrar)
  2. Schedules (Office of the University Registrar)
  3. End of Semester Stress Coping (Counseling and Wellness Center)