April 2014

In the Know

April 8: Last Day to Drop a Class with Advisor & Instructor Approval
April 12: Day of Service
April 17-20: Spring Mini Break (No Classes, Offices Open)
April 25: University Day (No Classes, Offices Open)
May 1: Last Day to Withdraw from Spring 2014 (All Classes, No Refund)
May 1: Semester Ends
May 2: Residence Halls Close
May 3: Commencement



Summer in the City

Get caught up on some credits. Explore a new major. Retake a class. You’re just a click away from enrolling in live or online summer classes. You don’t need an alternate PIN to register if you’re taking classes during the spring semester, but it’s still a good idea to meet with an advisor. While you’re at it, register for fall semester classes, too. You have the power to make the most out of your time at MSUB.



Hunt for Butts

We’re not joking. You can go on a butt hunt on University Day on April 25. OK, so we aren’t talking about the butts you were imagining, but you can help clean up campus and keep it tobacco-free. Did we mention the first 100 people to help get a free T-shirt and a campus store coupon? You can also get pictures with your friends in a photo booth, work off the Freshman 15 at a softball game, and grab a bite to eat at a barbeque. Classes aren’t scheduled for the day, but it’s not just another chance to sleep and lazily lounge around your room. University Day is the time to show your school spirit… and study, of course. Call Triniti Halverson in Student Health Services at (406) 657-2157 for details.

YellowJacket Experience

Students and staff show off their butts at the 2013 Butt Hunt.
Photo courtesy of Student Health Services



Get Involved!

Ramp up your résumé to prepare for summer job applications. Take part in the Day of Service on April 12, which kicks off at ZooMontana and the Moss Mansion. Meet in the SUB Atrium at 9:30 a.m. Service takes place from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Then volunteer with Chicks in Science. Sign up for a two-hour shift between 12 and 6 p.m. on campus. Contact the Office for Community Involvement at (406) 896-5815 for details.

Plus, check out United Campus Ministries. They’re hosting an art show with one-of-a-kind art created by MSUB students of various majors. Visit the display in the SUB on April 4. They also host fun events like the International Coffeehouse. Contact Director Rob Kirby at (406) 657-2165 to get involved. You can also find out more on Facebook.



Not Ready to Leave?

We don’t blame you. Living on campus is a riot. Some classify it as the time of their lives.

The residence halls close at noon on May 2, but students with extenuating circumstances have options. If your airplane isn’t scheduled to leave until May 3, the housing office won’t kick you to the curb. If you’re involved in commencement, you can stay an extra day or two.

You can also stay on campus during the summer. Check out more here. By the way, don’t forget to reserve your room for the fall 2014 semester. MSUB is your home, and we want you to keep it that way. Contact the Housing & Residential Life Office at (406) 657-2333 for details.



There's an App for That!

If you haven’t heard, MSUB now has a mobile app. Download it to check your grades on D2L, stay up-to-date throughout the summer, or just to check in on campus happenings.



Jacket Fact

Commencement for the first three graduates of Eastern Montana State Normal School took place in March of 1928. This year’s commencement at MSU Billings is Saturday, May 3 at 10 a.m. in Rimrock Auto Arena at MetraPark (MSUB website).



That's All Folks!

Congratulations! You’re now considered an experienced Yellowjacket. This is the final issue of BuzzFeed for the academic year. We’ll no longer be sending you tips, but you know where to find us! Be sure to bookmark this page and keep checking in with your College Success Specialist.


Please send any BuzzFeed questions, comments, or ideas to gillette.vaira@msubillings.edu.


MSU Billings logo

Study Tips

Finals are looming, and you know you have a gob of studying to do. First-year student Wyatt Powell, a double-major in Sociology and Criminal Justice, has a study tip that might just help you ace that exam.

Need a Job?

If you’re looking to make a little cash over the summer or into the next school year, Career Services can help. Shandi Samson, the Program Coordinator at Career Services, said students sometimes don’t realize the opportunities their office provides until it’s late in their college careers. Find out what she recommends.

Jaclyn Tobin PhotoWingin' It

BuzzFeed columnist Jaclyn Tobin

This is the last stretch for your freshman year! I don’t know about you, but this was about the time my mind started shifting to summer plans. Luckily there is one last checklist that will be sure to keep your mind focused enough to actually reach the finish line:

  • Register for your classes ASAP! The sooner you register, the better. Of course, you should register for the classes that pertain to your degree. If you are undecided, which is completely normal, you should register for classes that pertain to your interests. In order to stay on track, schedule a meeting with your advisor so both of you can take a peek at the options for next year.

  • Take Note! Finals are just around the corner, so don’t quit on your note-taking skills just yet! No matter what your countdown to summer says, make sure that your mind isn’t packing up yet.

  • Pack it up, Pack it in! You have about a month left in your residence hall room, but now would be a good time to at least make a packing to-do list. There might be a bulky fridge that won’t fit on the seat of your car, or a few extra bags of clothes and other belongings you have accrued. Having a list before moving day will definitely alleviate some stress—and some extra “baggage”—from your load.

Congratulations on making it this far! I am wishing you luck on your finals, and some much-needed rest before the next term begins.

Each month, English major Jaclyn Tobin will be offering words of advice as an experienced second-year Yellowjacket. If you have questions, send them to her by e-mail.

Your Favorite Time of Year

We know how you love to sit down to a multi-paged exam complete with multiple choice, true/false, and essay questions. It’s a real treat after intensively studying and depriving yourself of sleep.* But please contain your excitement for finals week. In the meantime, check out these tips to help you do your best.

  • Organize notes, handouts, PowerPoint slides, and other materials a couple of weeks before your final exam.
  • Create a list of questions from your materials as you study.
  • Make an appointment with your instructor at least a week before the final exam to ask those questions. It doesn’t hurt to ask if your instructor will reveal the format of the test, such as if you should expect multiple choice or essays.
  • Make a daily appointment with yourself. Study each subject a little bit each day to avoid cramming information into your brain in the hours that precede the big day.
  • Visit with students who have previously taken the course for tips on how to be successful.

*Editor’s note: The College Success Specialist team does not condone sleep deprivation and cramming as test preparation tactics.

Life After Finals

Admissions and Records will post students' final grades by May 12. You can access them by logging into your MyInfo account on the MSU Billings website. Follow these directions for details.

Grades are not mailed to students' homes. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) restricts university communication about student records to anyone other than the student. Students may grant family members access to their academic and other records. Please contact the Office of Admissions and Records at (406) 657-2158 if you would like to pursue this or if you have questions about FERPA.

You can print an unofficial transcript of your grades in MyInfo. You can request an official transcript here or stop by the Admissions and Records Office in McMullen Hall. An official transcript costs $3 and unofficial transcripts are free.

Be Money Smart Tips

John Schreier

Elizabeth Almann

By: Elizabeth Almann, Financial Education Success Specialist

Pay for college in this order:

  • Savings
    Family, summer job
  • Scholarships
    Apply early and often
  • Job or Work-Study
    Income and experience
  • Federal Loans (Financial Aid Office)
    Low interest rates, flexible repayment options
  • Commercial Loans (Bank or Credit Union)
    Last resort – no flexible repayment options

John Schreier

Contact MSUB’s Financial Education Success Specialist, Elizabeth Almann, at (406) 657-1795 or visit www.msubillings.edu/BeMoneySmart for more information.



John Schreier

John Schreier, Veteran Support Coordinator

By: John Schreier, Veteran Support Coordinator

Being proactive is an important part of getting through a tough challenge. Foresight, active planning, and prompt execution can save you all kinds of heartache and make life more enjoyable. Applying proactivity is useful for students in their first year of college, and especially for non-traditional students like veterans and working parents.

Picture yourself at the end of a semester, and the syllabus says you have x number of assignments left to do. The proportion of stress goes up inversely to the amount of time left in the semester when you have not been proactive. But, you can usually head things off at the pass by following these simple steps:

  • Identify what is important.
  • Predict how each of your options will affect your goals.
  • Decide what to do about it.
  • Execute the plan with energy and precision, shedding the small stuff, and recalibrating to account for the big stuff.

I know, I know – I should practice what I preach! I’m sometimes the worst offender when it comes to procrastinating; but that is also why I have such profound insight!

Students who engage early, build a plan to accomplish what is on their syllabi, and then maintain a steady pace are the ones who are more likely to have smiles on their faces right around the end of the semester. So, “proactivity,” my new word for the day, is a great thing. It sure beats waiting for the inevitable!

Have a great semester. Finish well and learn from those who have trod the path before you.

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