The Engagements Experience

The Engagements Experience

Introducing the Engagements Experience (EE), a year long component of the general education curriculum designed to welcome students into the diverse and dynamic intellectual community that is the University of Virginia. 



  1. For each seven-week Engagements course, you will complete three Engagements Experience (EE) Tasks

    1. Attend the Spring '23 Engagements Experience Lecture (in person or virtually--more information below)
    2. Complete an Academic Advising Activity
    3. Complete an Engaging Grounds experience (more information below)
  2. Your College Fellow will ask you to attest that you completed each of the three components above. Check your course syllabus for instructions.

Engagements Experience Lecture Series

Each quarter, the College Fellows will select a featured speaker for the EE Lecture Series. Artists, scholars, thinkers, activists, leaders - at these events you will encounter individuals who, in their work and their lives, embody the principles of the Engagements. 

Students in the Engagements are expected to attend the EE Lectures each quarter. Students who have pre-existing academic conflicts (e.g., other scheduled courses, examinations, etc.) may watch a video recording of the lecture. Video recordings will be provided below several days after the event has concluded. Primers (articles, curated readings, etc.) will be made available to introduce students to the the keynote speakers or the concepts they will present. Students are also expected to have read the primer ahead of attending the Lecture. 

Spring '23 EE Lectures

Quarter 3 - Kateri Dubay and Friends

Tuesday, February 7, 7pm @ Old Cabell Hall

The Second Law of Thermodynamics, which states that the entropy of the universe is ever-increasing, has captivated (and confused!) scientists and artists alike since its first formal articulation. Nevertheless, bound as we are by its reality, all of us develop an intuitive understanding of this perplexing empirical Law as we grow.  In this talk, we will dig into that intuitive understanding and how it develops. We will also discuss how the tiniest humans learn other empirical rules in our physically bound universe and how they respond when confronted with observations that contradict those tried-and-true rules.

Please comlete this primer ahead of the February 7 Lecture.

Quarter 4 - Ézé Amos

Tuesday, April 11, 7pm @ The Paramount Theater, Charlottesville

Documentary photographer and photojournalist Ézé Amos will serve as our final Engagements Lecturer for the 2022-23 academic year. His many photo projects have included Cville People Everyday, Cville Porch Portraits, and Inside Out: This Is What Community Looks Like. Driven to tell the true stories of Charlottesville and neighboring communities, Ézé is also an affiliate photographer with The New York Times and Getty Images. His work has also been published by a wide range of other international news agencies. Ézé is always on the move, documenting resistance efforts on the ground and bringing out the beauty in people around him. Please explore his Instagram webpage prior to attending. 

The Engagements Experience will provide transportation for students to attend the Ézé Amos event at the Paramount Theater. Information on transportation will be communicated to students in early April.

Engagement Experience Lecture Series Archive

Academic Advising Activity

As you approach the culmination of your first year at UVA, you will have made significant progress towards the completion of the Engagements Pathway requirements. You will have taken a course in each Engagements pillar and made headway into completing your Literacy and Disciplines Requirements. The EE will help keep you on track by asking you to complete one academic advising activity during each quarter. These activities will help prepare you for coursework in the following semester.

Quarter 3 - Complete and print the Engagements Pathway Checklist

The Engagements Pathway checklist includes all your general education requirements. Take some time to complete the form during the third quarter of the semester. If you're unsure what courses have been used to complete your requirements, you can always refer to your Academic Requirements Report in SIS

Quarter 4 - Meet with your Academic Advisor

Ahead of enrollment for the Fall '23 semester, you should meet with your academic advisor to review your current achievements and your plans for enrollment next fall. While this is a requirement each semester while at UVA, the College Fellows want to underscore the importance of this meeting by including it in the EE. Come prepared to discuss not only the courses you want to take next semester but how you see the courses working together to lay the groundwork for further study while at UVA. 

These meetings should be held in person or virtually and should last 15 minutes.

Engaging Grounds

Each quarter you will participate in one Engaging Grounds experience. You may choose which experience to complete from the curated list of Engaging Grounds experiences below. Note that many options may be completed at your convenience, but Scholar Speaks (on-Grounds lectures or presentations) have a set date and time. See the calendar below for Scholar Speak Opportunities.

The list will be updated regularly througout the semester. While you have may options for completing this requirement, don't wait until the last second as these opportunities are finite!

Engaging Grounds

The College Fellows have curated the following list of Engaging Grounds experiences as a representation of the myriad of wonderful opportunities you have as students at UVA. While we hope that you will participate in each before graduation, you should select and complete one for each Engagements quarter.

  • Scholar Speak - Therea re so many more opportunties for learning at UVA than just your classes. Faculty (both at UVA and invited from other universities) offer seminars, colloquia, and other forms of disseminating thier original research on a regular basis. Select and attend a lecture or presentation from the calendar of events below.
  • Enslaved African Americans at UVA Self-Guided Tour - After downloading the "Walking Tours of Grounds" app, complete this tour prior to the deadline.
  • A visit to McCormick Observatory where you participate in one of their “Public Night” programs or attend an event there hosted by the Department of Astronomy.
  • A visit to the piece of the Berlin Wall by Alderman Library after reading this UVA Today article. Reflect on what it means to transport this piece to another national context and a public university, in particular.
  • A visit to the former site of the George Rogers Clark monument. Read this UVA Today about the statue’s history and this call for its removal. What is this space like now?
  • A visit to special collections where you will tour one of the exhibits and view one item from their collection in the reading room.
  • A visit to the UVA gardens after exploring these visualizations about UVA at the time of its founding.
  • A visit to the Rotunda and one of the Rotunda tours.
  • A visit to the Fralin Museum where you view at least one of their special, rotating exhibits, and at least one of the exhibits that are part of the permanent collection.

Scholar Speak Events Calendar