The Extras: Academically In Touch


With 400 plus student groups and tons of events daily, how does a Brown student navigate life outside of the lecture hall? I’m Lily Hartmann, and I am the freshmen behind “The Extras”; the blog that aims to give you a glimpse into the most exciting and noteworthy activities on campus. Throughout the year this blog will give you snapshots of what Brunonians do when they aren’t hitting the books on College Hill!

Have an idea of what you want to concentrate in? Maybe looking at a couple of concentrations? Have no idea what you want to study? No problem! As you probably already know, Brown gives you lots of freedom to explore all your interests, and does not force you into any strict path right away. Thankfully, there are tons of great resources to help you make decisions about academics along the way. So how does this all relate to The Extras? Well at Brown we have Departmental Undergraduate Groups that can help you navigate the world of concentrations, classes, and any other academic concerns related to what you plan on studying.

Department Undergraduate Groups (or DUGs) are groups of undergrads that concentrate or plan to concentrate in the same area. They meet and plan programming to create a sense of community within an academic department. DUGs are a great way to meet people studying the same thing as you, and they give a sense of community to every concentration. They also help undergrads strengthen connections with professors and concentrator alums. Plus as a first year student, DUGs are a great way to explore various concentrations.

Being part of a DUG won’t take up much of your time, but they do usually have events with faculty, meetings about how to navigate through the concentration, movie nights, guest speakers, Brown Degree Days and workshops with CareerLAB staff (but don’t worry you don’t have to think about the career part now). Plus the leaders of every DUG are always available to talk about academic life, if you just want some advice about concentrations from upperclassmen!

So most concentrations at Brown have a DUG, but you can find out about specific concentrations on the Focal Point website. Check it out if you haven’t seen it already! Department Undergraduate Groups are great extras to join on campus if you want to keep up with what’s going on in the department you want to concentrate in. The DUGs usually come to the Activities Fair, so if you find yourself at Brown next fall don’t be afraid to sign up and join the listserv!

Focal Point:

Have questions about a specific student group or event on campus? Want me to cover a specific topic in my next post? Feel free to shoot me an email at with any of your questions and comments


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s