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Haverford College

Sophomore Year Experience

Welcome to the Sophomore Year and the web page designed to meet the needs of those who have attained this lofty status!

Sophomore year is a pivotal one in which considerable thought needs to be given to important decisions about your personal and academic direction that will set you on a course for your final two years at Haverford and beyond. This culminates in April, with the declaration of the major.

In recognition of the fact that sophomore year is a unique one in terms of challenges and opportunities, the Deans Office has put into place a few programs directed at the members the sophomore class. These include this sophomore year website which has links to helpful resources and a calendar of events that sophomores might want to take a look at, as well as enhanced emphasis on providing assistance with and information about the process of choosing and declaring a major. Additionally, each January the Deans host an information session about declaring your major, which includes time to meet with departmental peer advisors from the major(s) in which you're interested.

Given its temporal location between the excitement and newness of the first-year of college and the more focused experience of the junior and senior years, many find sophomore year to be one marked by considerable and profound questioning of one's personal, academic and career-related goals and aspirations. For example, it is not uncommon for students to wonder if Haverford is the right place for them or even why one is in college at all. "What does it all mean?" may cross your mind more than once.

It is a year of transitions and, for some, dislocation. Many students state that they feel at sea or a bit off-center. This is especially prominent at Haverford because the support network established by the Customs Program has fallen away and students find themselves more or less on their own for the first time. This complex of feelings and experiences is often referred to as the sophomore slump. The slump, as it were, is an observable phenomenon and is one that, obviously, affects some deeply and others not at all.

To assist you as you navigate the sometimes choppy, yet always exciting, waters of the sophomore year, we have included a host of links that should help you get answers to the questions that will inevitably arise. You will note, too, that we have included links to a number of the helping resources on campus. This is to remind you that they exist, since many have been known to forget the information crammed into them during Customs and by including them, to suggest that everyone needs a little help now and then. If we did not think this were the case, these resources would not exist.

We wish you success and are confident that, with a great deal of thought, effort and the judicious use of those people and offices that are available, you will make it through the sophomore year with flying colors!

Martha Denney, Phil Bean, Donna Mancini, Steve Watter
Deans Office