A First Year Engagement (FYE) is a course that must be completed by all baccalaureate degree students within their first year of enrollment at Penn State.

The main reasons to enroll in a First Year Engagement course are:

  • Small class size with no more than 25 students in a class
  • Active learning with critical thinking and problem solving
  • Get to know the instructor who is a full-time faculty member
  • Get to know other students and the college community
  • Learn skills to be successful in college
  • Adjust to the demands of college - it's different from high school
  • Learn technology and library skills
  • Improve communication skills for later courses and for life
  • Explore new areas, goals, and career objectives

First Year Engagement (FYE) is a component of Penn State's General Education Requirement and/or major course requirement. The Penn State Brandywine Campus offers a multi-cultural environment with an emphasis on creating a campus that welcomes diversity. Our campus offers a variety of First Year Engagement courses. Students should schedule an FYE course in their Fall semester. Only a limited number of FYE courses will be available in the Spring.

Download a list of Spring 2010 First Year Engagement courses (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader).

The three credits FYE courses are built around topics from various disciplines and are designed to provide you with an intellectually stimulating experience with an emphasis on developing the skills necessary for college success. This class will introduce new students to an open and purposeful learning community, and help them develop the habits and pleasures of good scholarship.

Working with a full-time faculty member in a small class environment, they will learn that expectations of personal integrity, level of effort, and civility at Penn State are much higher than in high school. Also, they will understand that there are many people, vehicles, and support systems to help them meet those expectations, research, and, in general, become active learners. In addition, they will find that a life-habit of learning is satisfying, useful, and necessary.

First Year Engagement Plan

The Penn State Brandywine First Year Engagement Plan addresses two goals and five objectives. The goals provide overall direction for engagement plans, and objectives specify desired outcomes.

The Goals are:

  • To engage students in learning and orient them to the scholarly community from the outset of their undergraduate studies in a way that will bridge to later experiences in their chosen majors, and
  • To facilitate students' adjustment to the high expectations, demanding workload, increased liberties, and other aspects of the transition to college life.

The Objectives are:

  1. To introduce students to university study
  2. To introduce students to Penn State as an academic community, including fields of study and areas of interest available to students
  3. To acquaint students with the learning tools and resources available at Penn State.
  4. To provide an opportunity for students to develop relationships with full-time faculty and other students in an academic area of interest to them
  5. To introduce students to their responsibilities as part of the University community

All freshmen are required to complete a First Year Engagement (FYE) course. An FYE course introduces students to University study including fields of study and areas of interests available to students in a small class environment. In addition, An FYE provides a student the opportunity to establish relationships with full-time faculty and with other students in an academic area of interest. 

Download Penn State Brandywine First Year Engagement Plan