Advising Blog

Stamps Assistant Dean for Undergraduate Programs Joann McDaniel posts here with tips for student success. If you have questions, email or schedule an advising appointment.

Acting and Art Directing

November 28, 2016

Two opportunties for Stampers winter term: take an acting class or become an art director.  Check your email for details. The acting class (ThtreMus) counts as academic/experiential credit and the art direction classes (SAC) count as studio credit.

If you are a first or second year Stamper and you want to serve on the student advisory board known as ADC (Art/Design Collective), send your name  to  by the end of the week (Dec 2). Be sure to include some information on why you'd be a good fit to work on any or all of the 35 responsibilities of ADC:  award student grant monies, manage the lecture series dinner invitations, represent the student body to the administration, hold the Back to School Bash in September and serve on the Work Commons Comittee.

Sharp Pointy Stix

November 18, 2016

This is not a message about thanksgiving (noun). Or Thanksgiving (holiday).  It's about having a restful break and coming back with enough energy for the last couple of weeks of classes.  

And now for some  deadlines:

In case you've forgotten,  proposals for a self-directed international experience are due Thursday, Dec 1.  This is the only date.  It comes around one time a year.  Miss it and you have to wait for a whole year. 

If you took an incomplete last winter, spring, or summer, you are almost out of time.  The replacement grade needs to be posted to your transcript  by Friday Dec. 9.  If you have already turned in your work and you're waiting for your instructor to grade it, you need to nudge nudge nudge. No, you may not borrrow my sharp pointy stick. Get your own. Seriously, if you need help nudging, let me know.

Remember that I stick around late on most Mondays, waiting for you to drop in with whatever random questions you have.  I won't be here the Monday before Thanksgiving, but I will be the 28th and the 5th. 

And last of all, here are soem things you need to know about registration

Read the course description on our website. That's where you'll find the prerequisites for our classes.
We're serious about the course prereqs. If you register and haven't met them,  I'll have to ask you to drop the course. Unfortunately, I often don't get around to checking until after registration is over, so you could wind up with nothing. Yikes!
One exception : ArtDes 309,  Figure Painting.  
Only ArtDes 205,  Organizing Visual Space, is required to take Figure Painting. If you have taken 205 and want to paint,  grab this course and hang onto it!!!
Financial Hold?
If you have a financial hold on your record and you cannot pay it off before you are supposed to register, email me, Joann, immediately and directly.  I can help you reserve your classes if I know early enough that there's a problem.
Class Caps
Classes in Stamps are usually capped at 19 students but there are some exceptions. 1. ArtDes 220, Sophomore Studio is capped at 15.
2. ArtDes 225, Entanglement, is capped at 16.
3. Courses numbered 200-299 are capped at 3 and then filled from students on the waitlist.  We do this so sophomores and juniors will have a better chance to get the prerequisites they will need later on.

If the class is closed and you want to enroll,  get on the waitlist. Please. You will be so happy you did, and I will be, too.

Also known as "permissions to register." Read more about them in the student handbook.
During early registration (23 Nov - 9 Dec) I issue overrides twice a day: before noon and after noon.  Override issued before noon expire that day.  Overrides issued after noon expire the next day.  Check your UM email daily to see if you are the lucky winner of the override of your dreams. It's so sad to lose an override.

Taking a Class Twice
Yeah, we don't do that anymore. Unless you failed it the first time around. Then it's ok.

Oh, Whatever

October 30, 2016

 I'm writing this while I watch Goldfinger, 52 years after it came out and oh dear!  It really hasn't worn well, although the scenery is good and there's a very sweet 64 mustang convertible in it, white with a red interior.

So here's what's coming up for advising.

1. The deadlne to drop a course with a "W" on your transcript is coming up. You have until Friday, Nov. 11 at 11:59 pm. 

2. You have almost two weeks to enter your work in the Undergrad Juried Exhibition (18 November). Spruce up your best project from this term and show it off. You'll be better for it--healthier, more intelligent, and you have that aura of confidence and mystery that  others find so intriguing.  

3. Senior audits are history.  Done.  If you missed yours, there's always next year. 

4. Sophomores and juniors: if you need to see your advisor about registering for classes for winter term, make your appointment NOW. It'll  be harder to get one after Thanksgivng break.

5. First Years: schedule your end of term advising meeting after Dec 1.

Fortunes Told While Pumpkins Die

October 24, 2016


Joann's Open Office from 4:30-5:30 every Monday. Starts today. Drop in and ask, tell, complain, whine, weep, laugh or groan. No issue too small. Fortune telling today and Hallowe'en only.


  • Design and Cut a horrifying Hallowe’en vinyl stencil

  • Use it to carve the Jack-o’-lantern of your nightmares

  • Free pumpkins, free vinyl, free, free, free

  • 2-4 pm Sunday, October 30th. Meet in digital fabrication (1074)

  • Carve in the Courtyard en plein air



  • Senior Audits – if you requested an audit, you’ll get it by Tuesday, 1 November

  • Opt in for Grade and Credit Notifications  -- message dated 12 October from the RO has full information


A Message from the UM Libraries asking for your ideas:

You are invited to participate in a 10-15 minute Library survey about our services and spaces, with the purpose of better serving your needs and enhancing your academic experience, in the Hatcher and Shapiro libraries, in particular.

If you choose to provide us with your name and contact information you will be entered into a raffle with a chance to win a $50 Michigan Theater membership or $20 Zingerman’s gift card! Your response will be completely anonymous and will provide valuable feedback.

Please click here to begin:​​   The survey will expire on Monday, October 24 at 11:00 pm.

If you would like to help us dig even deeper into how our Shapiro and Hatcher services and spaces can better support you and the campus, please stop by our Library Experience Insight Exchange sessions on November 9th.  Session details:

UM Faculty and Staff: 3:00pm - 4:30pm at Hatcher Gallery Lab and Exhibit Space
Students: 5:00pm - 6:30pm at Shapiro Design Lab

Questions?  Contact:

Vinyl Pumpkin Patches and Zach’s Spicy Potato Salad

October 17, 2016

Dear Stampers,

I fell asleep during fall study break and when I woke up, Zach Kolodziej and Mike Vitale had hijacked this space for their own nefarious purposes. Mark your calendars for these two free and relaxing events. You'll need the distraction as we move into the last half of the term.

1. Create vinyl stencils so you can carve a perfectly horrifying jack-o'-lantern next Friday or Saturday (the 29th or the 30th). All materials furnished, including LIVE PUMPKINS for the first 10 or 20 Stampers. More details next week.

2. And from Zach, this open letter (sadly, without the excellent posters in his original message) inviting all Stamper to an as yet unnamed art critique group:

Dear Comrades,

Have you ever gazed into the eyes of your sandwich wondering why you are so attracted -- appetized -- by the look and feel of thinly sliced meats and vegetables between perfectly rectangular bread? Have you ever watched Lionel Messi dribble a soccer ball wondering why the sphere seems magnetically drawn to his foot, orbiting him like a planet? Welcome to an unnamed art critique group.  

If you have any better ideas, please come to the "MMass MMeeting" sponsors by M&M's -- yes that’s right, the famous Rapper! -- LIVE in the Design Lab UNO -- yes that’s right, the UNO AMERICAN GRILL ON NORTH CAMPUS -- in the Duderstadt Center!  We'll be meeting on Wednesday October 26th @ 8PM to discuss art, performance, media, and more. The basic format I have devised (SUBJECT TO CHANGE) is as follows:

1. people find something that interests them 

2. they bring in related materials 

3. they lead a discussion on that topic 

4. we move on to the next person feeling ecstatic primal love awakening in our souls

Our first meeting we'll just have a loose discussion, meet+greet with M&M, and potentially pizza. Feel free to bring in materials (photos, books, video links) though! I may show weird video clips to inspire contemplation!  Also feel free to bring your own artistic, scholarly work, or facebook rants in for discussion and critique for any/all meetings!

Drop-In/No Schedules Allowed

October 7, 2016

Drop in & get Joann to solve your problem

No appointments, no calls, no hassle -- just drop in

Starting October 24th, every Monday, 4:30 - 5:30 pm

Wander in through the side doors, I'll be there


Drop in and talk to Karen (counseling psychologist)

The past two weeks have been hard for a lot of us

No clients, no paperwork, no appointments -- just talk

Wednesday and Thursday, 12 & 13 October

11:30 -1:30,  Room 2030

New Late Drop/Add Process and Senior Audits

September 30, 2016

New Late Drop/Add Process Just in Time to Drop/Add

Goodbye to all the tired green drop/add forms. Forget tracking down your professor to get a signature. Now you can late drop or add a course anytime and anywhere, using the miracle of ENHANCED FUNCTIONALITY.  Relax in the comfort of your luxurious residence hall and drop classes left and right while sipping a refreshing beverage.

Between right now and Friday, November 11, you can drop a class by exercising the drop option on Wolverine Access. The request will go to your professor, then to an advisor, then to an administrator, and finally to the Registrar’s Office, where the magic really happens. This is faster than you’d think, often happening in less time that it takes to travel from Central to Stamps to get a signature.  The best part: the 5 pm deadline is now 11:59 pm.

That’s it.  You will, of course, receive a “W,” and you still have to pay attention to the drop deadline (your request must be entered by 11:59 pm on Nov 11), but otherwise, a few taps on a keyboard and you will be freed from stress, anxiety and threat of failure.  And you'll get a "W."

Senior Audits

Everyone who signed up should hear by 1 November.  If you did not sign up, maybe you should.  Just a thought.  Senior Audit Request Form.

What Did the Stamps Class of 2019 Do Last Summer?

Sophomores need to schedule a meeting before fall break with their advisors to talk about what went right or not their first eyar and to sketch out plans for their second year. Specific topix: the international experience, course sequences, and BFA or BA.

Three Ways to Improve Yourself When You’re Already Good

September 23, 2016

Hello Stampers,

The third week of school is at an end. And it’s officially autumn. Soon we’ll have falling leaves, and mid-term progress reports. But not quite yet.  There’s still sunshine and warm weather and enough time to learn to cut, slice and dice and to plot your winter escape on an international experience of a lifetime. And if perfectionism and self-doubt are making you less perfect and more doubtful, deal with it. By joining a group that will stop the madness and recrimination.


Cutting and 3D Printing Demo Schedule

Digital Fabrication Studio (Room 1074), 12-1 pm

            Laser Cutter Demo, Tuesday, Sept. 27

            Vinyl Cutter Demo, Wednesday, Sept. 28

            Vinyl Cutter Demo, Tuesday, Oct. 4

            Form2 3D Printing Demo, Fri, Oct 7


As Promised: International Peer Advisors at Your Service!

Beth Reeck and Sydney Bagnall will share the tools you need to identify and apply for a program.  Bring your laptop

            Weekly Schedule:

            Mon - 11:30-2:00

            Tues - 11:30-1:30

            Wed - 11:30-1:30

            Thurs - 11:30-1:30 and 3:00-4:30


For Creative Types with Perfectionism and Self Doubt

I'm Enough! The creative's guide to combatting perfectionism and self-doubt

A CAPS group designed specifically for students in the creative fields.

Learn ways to live and produce work in an authentic manner and decrease the tendency to compare ourselves to others. The group is based on the work of Brene Brown and will help you to cultivate self-compassion. 

Mondays from 4:30 to 6pm in Pierpont Commons.

If you are interested in this group, email for further information.

Senior Audits and Applying for Graduation

September 19, 2016

This post is intended for any Stamper who thinks that graduation is a possibility for 2017.

You need your senior audit and you need to apply for graduation. A senior audit lets you know what courses you will need to take to graduate so you won't get a nasty surprise later on. Applying for graduation lets the University (and Stamps) graduate you. No application=no graduation.

In an effort to complete senior audits most efficiently, we have changed the process. All you need to do is complete the senior audit request form. Depending on how swamped we are, you should receive an email in about 2-3 weeks with a progress toward degree (PTD) sheet and a final audit letter.  The PTD will tell you how your credits have counted (e.g., which course is counted as natural science).  The letter will tell you what courses/requirements you will have left to take after Fall term 2016.


1. Complete the Senior Audit Request

2. Apply for Graduation (go to Student Center on Wolverine Access.  Look in the lower right hand corner). Click.

Deadline: Drop/Add Pass/Fail

September 19, 2016

The deadline for drop/add and pass/fail is Monday, Sept 26 at midnight. After that, you get a "W" if you drop, and there's no tuition refund if you drop below 12 credits. Pass/fail is available to juniors and seniors only (sorry all you first years and sophomores), and foundation courses are pretty much forever. Peer advisors can help you decide what to do. You can find their schedule on the white board on the double doors across from rooms 2043 and 2044.-

Eat with the Speaker

September 15, 2016

Sam Bertin and Sophia Goldberg are the Stampers who organize student dinners with the Penny Stamps Speakers.  If you want to take advantage of this incredible networking opportunity click on this link by


Just like our giant laser cutter, this is the BIGGEST link in the WHOLE UNIVERSITY.  And it's in my blog.

Dear Diary: Blogword

September 15, 2016

Does a blog exist if no one reads it? I think I should start each entry with "Dear Diary", then maybe someone's mother or little brother would read it.  Instead maybe I'll imbed something in it-- a blogword if you will. Then, the first person who emails me the blogword will get a prize.  What kind of prize? Maybe something that would stun you and increase your practical skillset.  Something like.....

Front rows seats for 

Mike Vitale's Spectacular Cutting Showcase

Laser Cutting and Vinyl Cutting 

Wednesday, 9/21/16: Laser Cutters

Friday, 9/23/16: Vinyl Cutter


This will be amazing!  I knew you could cut vinyl but I had no idea you could cut a laser?!?!?1? !

Help with International Study

September 11, 2016

The first deadline for international study will be here in just over two weeks -- October 1.  Help is on the way: Beth Reeck and Sydney Bagnall are our new international study peer advisors.  I'll publish their advsing hours as soon as I get them.  And pictures. As soon as I fgure out how to load them. This may take awhile.

Help with International Study

September 11, 2016

The first deadline for international study will be here in just over two weeks -- October 1.  Help is on the way: Beth Reeck and Sydney Bagnall are our new international study peer advisors.  I'll publish their advsing hours as soon as I get them.  And pictures. As soon as I fgure out how to load them. This may take awhile.

You Know You Could Use a Kind Word

September 10, 2016

It's been a rough week for some of you, so spend the second week of school making order out of chaos and serenity out of stress. The peer advisors are back and ready to talk about the stuff that is overwhelming you right now. Get some facts and get a new perspective by checking in with a peer advisor.  

Scheduling, adjustments, progress toward degree,  joint degree, stress, graduation, internships, a crazy course workload, the realization that work is already due, and whatever else. International students mayespecailly want to meet with Jiin, who knows that territory well.Come in and you'll leave with a plan.


PEER ADVISING SCHEDULE (enter through the double doors across from rooms 2044 and 2043)

Monday        11:30-1:30 with Jiin, Amy and Perry

                      4:30-5:30  with Amy and Perry 

Tuesday         11:30-1:30  with Jiin

                       4:30-5:30 with Amy and Perry

Wednesday   11:30-1:30 with Jiin, Amy and Perry

                       4:30-5:30  with Amy and Perry

Thursday        11:30-1:30  with Jiin