September 2022 Newsletter

The Value of Connection


Well-known author and researcher, Brene Brown, has stated that as human beings, we are “hard-wired for connection.”  This human need for connection has become even more evident in our students’ lives post-COVID as we have seen more of them struggle to make friends and reach out for help from faculty and staff, and the number who are experiencing social anxiety continues to rise.

In addition, other researchers have suggested that authentic connection is needed more than ever in a society that is ruled by technology as it is now the main way students communicate, display emotion, and make decisions. For many of them this constant electronic connection seems great, but it actually comes at a cost as our students of today’s generation are losing the capacity for empathy.  The ability to empathize is a valuable skill when working with people and trying to solve problems.  If students do not have this skill and have no place to develop it, they may really struggle in college, in the workplace, and in life. 

To assist students with creating these needed connections the Student Connection Programs area within the Highlander Success Center is focusing on building programs and offering opportunities for connection for first year students, second year students, commuter students, and transfer students.   Our current initiatives include Quest, the University 100 course, the Commuter Resource Guide, and Radford’s living learning communities with many more in development.  Our programs use a holistic approach to help students connect all areas of their lives including academics, co-curricular experiences, social interactions, and career plans. By helping students have intentional, purposeful connections with faculty, a key contributor to student success; experiential learning opportunities where they can apply their learning through undergraduate research, service projects, and exposure to new people and experiences; and encouraging small group interactions with their peers, Student Connection Programs enable students to find a sense of belonging on campus and create a comprehensive plan for success.

Encourage your student to seek out the programs and opportunities the Student Connection Programs offers throughout the year.  We cannot wait to meet them!

What is Satisfactory Academic Progress and why does it matter?

All financial aid recipients are expected to meet certain requirements to maintain their aid eligibility for future academic years.  There are three basic standards that each student is expected to meet.

  1. Minimum GPA – it is required that students earn a minimum GPA each year.
  2. Course completion – it is required that students pass 67% of all courses they take.
  3. Time to degree – it is required that students earn their degree in a timely manner.

This policy applies to all federal, state, and institutional need based financial aid programs.  We encourage you to take a few minutes to review the full policy online and discuss the importance of this policy with your student.  The full policy is on our website –

By: Allison C. Pratt, Director of Financial Aid

"There's Nothing To Do"


A few weeks into the fall semester and the excitement of a new year begins to shift. Students start to settle into weekly academic patterns, homework becomes a regular occurrence, and everyone starts to find the spaces in their schedules that still need to be filled. You might even hear your Highlander say, “there’s nothing to do.” This is a great opportunity to offer them resources so that they can continue to explore campus and meet new people.  Typically, we will make sure students are aware of several different places to find more information.


  • RUInvolved – Just like it sounds! It’s where clubs and organizations post programming and meetings that are open to everyone.
  • University Calendar – The campus calendar pulls events from RUInvolved, arts and cultural programming, athletic events, academic department offerings and major campus events.
  • Next Three Days – If a student is looking to get more familiar with the area have them check out a fantastic, timely local resource that lists only those events that are coming up immediately.

And be sure to remind them that all Radford University Athletic events are free to students (just show the One Card). Family Weekend, the Highlander Festival, and Homecoming are all coming up and free to current students! If they are looking for adventure, try RU Outdoors for pre-arranged trips, equipment rental, and leadership development. Notice that the climbing wall in Peters Hall is open every night Monday to Thursday! There are several great spots to check out at least once!

  • Esports Center - Cook Hall 1st floor
  • Game Room - "The Bonnie" Hurlburt Student Center 1st floor
  • Planetarium - Center for the Sciences
  • Center for Opportunity & Social Mobility - "The Bonnie" Hurlburt Student Center 1st floor
  • The Center for Diversity and Inclusion (CDI) - Heth 157
  • McConnell Library has therapy dogs every Tuesday and Thursday from 3pm - 4pm
  • Student Recreation & Wellness Center and the Student Outdoor Recreation Complex
  • Young Hall is open for study 24/7 (card swipe after 10:00pm)

Finally, if they still can’t find something that gets them interested, have them email or stop by room 226 of “The Bonnie” Hurlburt Student Center. Our teams are happy to help create a path for their engagement! 

Family Weekend Updates


Radford University Family Weekend is just around the corner!  This event is free to you and your students. If you check in at "The Bonnie" Hurlburt Student Center you'll be able to pick up your two free t-shirts per family (first come, first serve).  The programming this year will host several annual favorites including:

  • Family Photo Shoot on Friday 9/23
  • Family Weekend Dog Show
  • Planetarium Shows
  • Fall Fashion Show
  • Mini Golf in the Stacks (at McConnell Library)
  • Farm-to-Table Dinner at Selu
  • Family Weekend Brunch at Dalton

And there are several new and exciting opportunities including:

  • A full Friday schedule in Roanoke both for RUC families and those Radford families passing through
  • Open hours in clinical labs
  • Multiple outdoor trips
  • Family Weekend Festival and Cookout - including live music from the T. C. Carter Band, student performances, local vendors, inflatables, giveaways, and games.
  • Saturday night comedy show in Bondurant Auditorium - performer to be announced this week on the webpage and at  @radfordstudentlife Instagram.

We hope you'll join us for the festivities and to reconnect with your Highlander! 

Student Highlight - Cannon Zylonis


My name is Cannon Zylonis. I am from Culpeper, Virginia, and I chose Radford because I saw the pride that both my father and brother shared from their experiences here. Coming to Radford and meeting so many and seeing what is truly here to offer has really shown me why they love it so. From meeting and knowing people all across campus and within clubs and fraternity and sorority life the pride here is very present and truly inspiring. It pushes me to be more open and try so many new things

I am a double major in both business management and marketing, I am planning on graduating this upcoming Spring of 2023 and am very excited for the opportunities that await!

During my time here at Radford I have tried to get involved wherever I can and the place that I feel has been the most impactful is my greek life experience here at Radford. Since becoming a member of Theta Chi fraternity and joining the Inter Fraternal Council as Secretary I have aimed to meet as many as I can and get them involved so they too can enjoy the amazing people and opportunities provided. 

This University has been truly impactful in so many aspects of my life, the biggest and my personal favorite is the opportunities to give back to the community and multiple charities such as donating to the USO, giving to Toys for Tots, and many more. It is opportunities like these that make me proud and push me to be a better version of myself each day.

My biggest advice to any incoming student is to truly push yourself and meet new people, whether in the classroom, the gym, fraternity and sorority life, a club on campus, or anywhere you find yourself on campus. Opportunity is around every corner and so are friends for life that you will find impact you so much more than you could ever expect. So, get excited and talk to them all, push yourself even when it seems uncomfortable or impossible. Radford makes it possible! One Love!

Upcoming Dates To Remember

September 23 – 25th 

Fall Family Weekend

Pre-registration (not required):

Division of Student Affairs

September 30 – October 2

Radford University Homecoming

Alumni Relations

Saturday, October 1st 

2023-2024 FAFSA Application Opens

Financial Aid Office

Friday, October 7thFall Break - Class NOT in Session, Housing is open 
Saturday, October 8thHighlander FestivalHighlander Festival
Friday, October 21stDeadline to submit FAFSA for Fall 2022 aidFinancial Aid Office
Friday, October 14thMid-term grades due from faculty 
Friday, October 28thLast day to withdraw from one or more (but not all) classes with a grade of "W" 
Wednesday, November 2ndFoundation Scholarship Applicatin opens for Fall 2023-2024Radford University Foundation
November 19 - 27Thanksgiving Break - (most) Residence halls are closed