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Newsletter - Spring 2011-12

Reminder: Add Day is Approaching

Just a friendly reminder that the last day for adding courses and removing incompletes is this Friday, April 20th. Please remember to bring your add cards to the Registrar's Office by 5:00pm on Friday.

2011-12 (Current Year) Financial Aid Hard Deadline for Undergraduate Students

Reminder – the Financial Aid Office has a hard deadline and will not process any applications forfinancial aid completed after April 27, 2012. Therefore if you are still planning on applying for aid for the2011-12 academic year you must submit all the required documents before the published deadline. Otherwise, you will need to find alternative ways to finance your education at Caltech. If you have any questions and/or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us via the phone at (626) 395-6280, email at or stop by our office at 383 S. Hill, 2nd Floor.

TQFR Prize Winners

Many thanks to all of the students who evaluated their courses through the TQFR. Your feedback and comments are very helpful to the faulty and TAs. Here are the lucky prize winners of $20 gift cards to from fall and winter terms:

Fall Term   Winter Term
Jessica Su
Lori Dajose
Wen Yan
Hannah Klion
John Napp
Jackson Cahn
Mahati Mokkarala
  Joanna Kolodziejska
Scarlett Dong
Jionghui Li
Yiran Ma
Adam Khan
Geoffrey Beck
Peter Buhler

For winter term, Blacker House has won a weekend dinner hosted by Tom Mannion for having the highest participation in the TQFR Survey. Congratulations!

Excellent TAs for Fall and Winter Term

We want to congratulate the outstanding TAs who really make an impact at Caltech:

Jeffrey Amelang, TA for Ae/Ge/ME 160A – Jeff is G3 in Mechanical Engineering, who had many students singing his praises as one of the best TAs they ever had – going above and beyond the class of T.A. duty. His preparation for and assistance at office hours were touted by many in helping them succeed in the course as he also had a number of example problems to draw from. Jeff is a TA who consistently went out of his way to help his students.

Kun Woo Kim, TA for Ph 002A – Kun Woo is a G4 in Applied Physics and many students felt fortunate to have his help in getting through Ph 2a. Students appreciated that he always attended lectures and prepared his recitation sections to supplement the lectures, filling in holes when needed and encouraging further understanding of the topics. He clearly made an impact on his students, as one student stated, “He is very caring, tries to know all his students, and clearly is happy to do his job.”

Aaron Zimmerman, TA for Ph 001B – Aaron is a G4 in Physics and clearly knew of his students appreciation for his help as his section grew and grew in attendance. “The Z’Man rocks!” was expressed, as students appreciated his clear explanations and enthusiasm. A student stated, “He is not only engaging, but the material he presents in class is easy enough to understand and challenging enough to reinforce our understanding of the topic.”

Christine Morrison, TA for Ch 001B – Christine is a G1 in Chemistry and showed that enthusiasm for the subject really makes a difference in students’ reactions to the material. She was described as “very passionate about both the material and ensuring the students understood it” … causing one student to express “I wish more of my TAs were like Christine Morrison.”

Luis Navarro, TA for Ch 001B – Luis is a junior in Chemistry who had many students, including those not formally in his section, using the word “awesome” to describe him and his teaching style. Students felt Luis knew what they were capable of and that he covered material extremely well. One student put it this way – “His teaching is incredibly clear; when he says something, I feel that I have an immediate grasp of whatever he's talking about. It's not really ‘aha’ moments that I experience when he presents material, it's more like a continuous stream of thoughts like, ‘of course it works that way--how obvious.’”

Thanks to Jeff, Kun Woo, Aaron Christine, and Luis for making a difference in the academic lives of the undergraduates. We appreciate all of the time and effort that you put into your work with students. Again, thanks so much for doing such a great job in the classroom!

And we wanted to continue to thank two TA’s that have been doing stellar work for the past couple of years: Alden Walker, in Ma 002, and Gemma Mason, ACM 095/100. Both have been recognized before, but continue to receive lauds every term they teach. Thank you!

Student2Students Mentor Program

The Counseling Center is delighted to announce the launch of the Student2Student mentor program. It's for Caltech students and by Caltech students. Mentors are there to help with a wide range of issues such as choosing a grad school, managing stress, relationship issues, etc. This is a mentor program for and by undergraduate and graduate students with assistance from the Counseling Center. Interested in getting a mentor or being a mentor? Go to

Registrar’s Office Hours

Just a reminder that the Registrar’s Office is open during the lunch hour on the busiest days – first day of the term; Add Day; and Drop Day. Feel free to drop by during the lunch hour on these days and we’d be happy to assist you. We are closed for lunch, noon – 1pm, on all other business days.

Forms Available Online Including Voter Registration

Considering a double option or a minor? Would like to change your adviser? Need to petition UASH? You can find all the forms needed on the Registrar's website on our Forms page. We also have a link there for Voter Registration Cards by which you can register or re-register to vote in California. We urge you to becomecivically engaged!

Grad Fair - April 18th

Stop by the Grad Fair, Wednesday, April 18th from 10am to 3pm in front of the Bookstore. See samples of rings, frames and announcements. Take care of all your Graduation needs!

Incompletes from Previous Terms for Graduating Seniors

Seniors who may have incompletes (E or I grades) from previous terms must have their work turned in and graded by May 14th.

Commencement 2012

This year's commencement ceremony will be held Friday, June 15th on Beckman Mall. All undergraduates participating in the ceremony should be at the steps of Parsons-Gates by 8:45am that day for a group photo. Graduate students should arrive by 9:15a.m. For further information, please see the Commencement website.

Important Dates

April 20 Last day for adding courses and removing incompletes
May 2-8 Midterm examination period
May 14 Midterm Deficiency Notices due to the Registrar’s Office & Last day for seniors to remove conditions and incompletes
May 18 Last day for scheduling examinations for the degrees of Doctor of Philosophy and Engineer
May 23 Last day to drop classes or to exercise your P/F option
May 24 First day of registration for summer and fall term
May 28 Memorial Day (Institute Holiday)
June 1 Last day of classes - seniors and graduate students Last day for presenting theses for the degrees for Doctor of Philosophy and Engineer
June 6-8 Final examinations for seniors and graduate students
June 8 Last day of classes for undergraduates; Last day to register for summer and fall terms
June 11 Final grades for seniors and graduate students due - 9 a.m.
June 13-15 Final examinations for undergraduates
June 15 Commencement
June 20 Final grades for undergraduates due - 9 a.m.
June 27 UASH Meeting
October 1 Classes begin for fall term