Call for Student Advisors!

NOVA Online Student Life & Library are launching a Student Advisory Board in Spring 2020.

We are looking for a large group of student advisors to represent NOVA Online’s diverse population!

Visit the Student Advisory Board  page in the Virtual Student Union for more details & to sign up.

Charlotte and Helen

Charlotte Lombardo, Student Life Coordinator for NOVA Online |

Helen McManus, NOVA Online Librarian |

Episode Two of #YoNOVA: More Than Tuition: How to Meet Unseen Costs on the Path to a College Degree

#YoNOVA – You Oughta NOVA

#YoNOVA - You Oughta NOVA Podcast Artwork Image

Check Out Episode Two of #YoNOVA!
More Than Tuition: How to Meet Unseen Costs on the Path to a College Degree

Access the Podcast on the Virtual Student Union (VSU)

Once In the VSU Follow the Steps Below: 


For more Info visit the podcast’s website:

Applications are Open for NOVA’s SEAL Award

Nominations are open for NOVA’s SEAL Award. The SEAL Award recognizes our students that best exemplify

Service, Engagement, Academics, and Leadership.

It is one of the most prestigious college-wide student awards.  Students have the option of self-nominating as long as you provide a letter of recommendation! The nomination criteria and the form link is located below.


Students, faculty, or staff may nominate students that best display the following attributes. Students can also self-nominate, but they must provide a letter of recommendation (minimum of one) to the Student Life Office by December 13th to support their nomination.

SERVICE: Community service, volunteer efforts on or off campus.

ENGAGEMENT: Participation in a community organization, active in a campus club or organization, campus enhancement, student life.

ACADEMICS: Cumulative GPA of 2.75 or better and have earned minimum of 20 credits by the conclusion of the Fall term.

LEADERSHIP: Leadership in a student club, student government, campus committee, or community leadership position.


When filing out the form make sure to select NOVA Online as the primary campus if you are an online student.

Application Deadline: Thursday, December 12, 2019 at 5:00 pm

Thank you in advance. Please feel free to reach me with any questions!

#YoNOVA – You Oughta NOVA – NOVA’s First Podcast!

#YoNOVA – You Oughta NOVA

#YoNOVA - You Oughta NOVA Podcast Artwork Image

Produced by and for the Northern Virginia Community College community, this ‘cast o’ thousands covers happenings at one of the nation’s top-five largest colleges. With six campuses and a vast online community that spans a service area of nearly 5 million residents, what happens at NOVA is a big deal – and you oughta know it. Episodes are bi-weekly, with some wiggle room for holidays or special events. Recording and production courtesy of NOVA Sound and Music Recording Technology program ( in studio at the Loudoun Campus in Sterling, VA. Show music copyright Sanjay Mishra and Akar Music. Wanna study recording production? Give us a holler and we’ll set up a tour and an intro to the right people.
Listen below to Episode #1!

Hosts Mike McMillon and Tatyana Schum are in studio to answer the question “What is NOVA?”; welcome guest Zohra Naqibullah, a student pursuing studies in the Dental Hygiene program at the Medical Education Campus; and share hopes and dreams about what You Oughta NOVA (#YoNOVA) will be.

For more Info visit the podcast’s website at


Transfer Tips: College Visit Checklist


Article written by the National Association for College Admissions Counseling (NACA)

checklistEvery college visit should have at least two dimensions: formal and informal. Use this checklist to begin your planning. And don’t forget to call the college ahead of time to schedule your visit—the admission office can help you hit all the highlights.


  • Take a campus tour.
  • Have an interview with an admission officer.
  • Participate in a group information session at the admission office.
  • Sit in on a class (or two).
  • Talk to a professor in your chosen major.
  • Talk to a coach in your chosen sport.
  • Talk to a student or counselor in the career center.
  • Spend the night in the dorm with a current student.


  • Read the student newspaper, even the ads.
  • Try to find other student publications—department newsletters, alternative newspapers, literary reviews.
  • Eat in the cafeteria.
  • Ask a student why he/she chose this college, and what their favorite part about it is.
  • Wander around the campus by yourself.
  • Search for your favorite book in the library.
  • Read the bulletin boards in the student union and in the academic department you’re interested in.
  • Ask a student what he/she dislikes about the college.
  • Browse in the college bookstore.
  • Eavesdrop on students to hear what they’re talking (or complaining) about.
  • Walk or drive around the community surrounding the campus.
  • Find out how most students get around: Is there public transportation? Can you have a vehicle on campus?
  • Ask a student what he/she does on weekends.
  • Visit career services and ask about upcoming job opportunities.
  • Look into clubs and organizations on campus that interest you.
  • Listen to the college’s radio station.
  • Try to see a dorm that you didn’t see on the tour.
  • See if you can imagine yourself as a student at the college.


For more information on NACAC visit their website. 


Let Your Voice be Heard! Register for #RealNOVA – A Student Needs Symposium

Northern Virginia Community College is hosting real conversations and action-oriented approaches to tackling basic student needs. Join us! Students, be part of the conversation and share your story to initiate change!

The Symposium will work to start a collective conversation on the needs of our students (food, housing, transportation, mental, etc.) and address the barriers we can disable for our students. Students can attend the full day or second half of the event. FREE lunch and transportation provided if needed.

Wednesday, November 20th
Woodbridge Campus – Workforce Building

Register online:

Student Life Annual Fall Leadership Retreat

Check out the photos from Student Life’s annual Fall Leadership Retreat. Students were able to network with like-minded leaders, dive deeper into their particular leadership style, participate in problem solving sessions, take part in a privilege walk, and push the limits on a ropes course adventure! What a weekend.

To get more involved in Student Life leadership opportunities, join the Virtual Student Union today!


Think Piece: Drop the I-Word

It’s Ally Week for Student Life Online!

What does that mean? This week we are focusing our energy on the importance of being an ally towards those who experience discrimination. OPSEU describes,

“An ally is someone who whose personal commitment to fighting oppression and
prejudice is reflected in willingness to:
1. Educate oneself about different identities and experiences,
2. Challenge one’s own discomfort and prejudices,
3. Learn and practice the skills of being an ally,
4. Take action to create interpersonal, societal and institutional change.”

Drop the I-Word

In this post we share a think piece about the effects of using the word, “illegal” to describe undocumented immigrants.

Article Written by Race Forward 

Drop The I-Word

Race Forward’s Drop the I-Word campaign is part of a larger body of work dedicated to ending the mass criminalization of communities of color. To learn more visit

Immigrant and refugee rights are increasingly under attack by U.S. institutions, while racially derogatory and dehumanizing language used in the media and political discourse has paved the way for a rise in hate crimes against immigrants. We need to strongly reject efforts to criminalize immigrants hold our media accountable for dropping the i-word.

Looking Back: Race Forward’s Drop the I-Word Campaign

Why It Matters Now

  • Anti-immigrant harassment accounted for 32% of of the 867 hate incidents collected by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Which Outlets Have Dropped the I-Word?

Race Forward looked at how often the i-word has been used in immigrant-focused coverage by The New York TimesThe Washington PostUSA Today, and The Associated Press since 2013. We learned:

  • Since officially dropping the i-word in 2013, The Associated Press has consistently been the best performer of these four major national outlets.
  • While The Washington Post has steadily improved its coverage each year, it has also consistently been the worst offender of the four outlets studied.
  • Although The New York Times never officially pledged to drop the i-word, it has the second best record of the four outlets studies. However, some of the publication’s leading immigration reporters continue to use the term.

(see our full findings here)

And the i-word continues to be used with great frequency on the leading cable TV news networks. According to a Media Matters for America studyin the first half of 2017 the anti-immigrant slur was used on MSNBC, CNN, and Fox News prime-time shows a total of 1,296 times.

  • MSNBC hosts and contributors used the i-word 87 times.
  • CNN hosts and contributors used it 102 times.
  • Fox News hosts and contributors used it 1,107 times, making the network the worst offender of all three networks by far.
  • and when the slur was used, it was rarely challenged by hosts and contributors.

Drop the I-Word Resources:

Support our efforts to Drop the I-Word on Twitter by sharing and retweeting here! 

More Resources

En español: Guía de Acciones

Get In a Transfer State-of-Mind

Get In a Transfer State-of-Mind

Did you know that four-year colleges visit the NOVA campuses throughout the fall and spring semesters? You can view scheduled visits at; search “Transfer”. The fall semester is also a popular time for transfer fairs in which one can “explore” over 60 colleges in one day. Several are occurring later this month on various NOVA campuses. View upcoming dates at

Whether or not you can attend a transfer event at NOVA, you should plan a visit to the college(s) you are interested in. Most colleges offer campus tours, appointments with transfer admission representatives, information sessions, and open houses throughout the year. Though, you can obtain a lot of information at a NOVA transfer event, as well as from a college’s website; it is not the same as actually visiting the campus to determine if the college is going to be a good fit for you.

If you are planning to transfer to an online college, taking a web tour is a good idea. Check out the academic department webpage for your major, view the curriculum, read the faculty bios, etc. Many online colleges offer virtual information sessions, program-specific virtual events and information, and online admission support.

For more on transfer planning, visit NOVA’s transfer webpage and/or attend a transfer planning webinar this month:

  • October 9, 2019 3:00-4:00pm EDT
  • October 16, 2019 12:00-1:00pm EDT

Go to to join the webinar or to request a recording.


Written by Kim Burkle; NOVA Online Counselor/Assistant Professor