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The Backpack
The Backpack: A news source for parents and families of NAU students
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Vol. 7 No. 13 | December 7, 2010
Commencement 2010

Commencement 2010

Join us as we celebrate Commencement 2010 on Friday, December 17 at 10 AM and 3 PM in the J. Lawrence Walkup Skydome. Guest attendance and seating at these ceremonies are unrestricted. Guest seating is on the east side of the dome. No tickets are required for the December commencement exercises. The Commencement webpage provides detailed information about lodging, disability accommodations, and parking.

We look forward to sharing this moment with your student and family!


Winter Travel Safety Tips

FREE Winter Driving Seminar

The NAU Police Department is offering a free driving seminar that is open to students, faculty, and staff on Wednesday, December 8 at 11 AM, 3 PM, and 5 PM at the University Union, Havasupai C conference room.

The Arizona Department of Transportation offers information about potential interstate and road closures in addition to Know Snow travel safety tips:

  • Check the weather and road conditions
  • Slow down, be patient, and drive safely
  • Inform someone of your destination
  • Carry extra food and water with you
  • Carry snow chains
  • Stay in your vehicle if you become stranded or your car breaks down
  • Keep the fuel tank topped off
  • Leave room for emergency vehicles to pass
  • Don't follow snow plows or other vehicles too closely

The university Healthy Campus initiative also has a great list of winter emergency gear and tips to help your student during the winter driving season.


Shuttle Tracking

Live Shuttle Tracking

Parking and Shuttle Services is announcing a new bus tracking service that will be available Friday, December 10 for download onto mobile devices and accessible via the web. Tracking services, along with mobile apps, are available at nau.edu/shuttle


Q&A - Parking and Getting Around Campus

Q. Do you need a car to get around campus?

No. In fact, it is better if students do not drive point-to-point on campus as roads often get congested during class changes. Also, parking permits restrict parking to specific lots, so it is unlikely students will find parking near classrooms. The campus shuttle service provides convenient transportation around campus and the Pedway offers north/south walking and biking paths right through campus.

Q. What are the transportation options on and off campus?

The campus shuttle service provides transportation around campus throughout the academic year and for some special events. The City of Flagstaff operates the Mountain Line bus service to points around town. Arizona Shuttle provides transportation from Flagstaff to Tucson, Phoenix, Sedona, Grand Canyon, and more.

Q. I live off campus and regularly walk or bike to school, but sometimes I need to drive -- do I have to get a semester-long permit?

No. For the few times you may drive on campus, you can purchase a $5 daily permit, available at campus entrance information on kiosks Knoles Drive, McConnell Drive, San Francisco Street, and Riordan Road. Day permits may also be purchased at the Parking and Shuttle Services office located in building #91.

See more answers on the Parking website.


Tuition Payment Plan

by Jaime Smith, Student and Departmental Account Services

Payment of the winter session and spring semester tuition is due on Wednesday, December 15.

Need to budget expenses? Have your student sign up for the Tuition Payment Plan! The payment plan offers the opportunity to budget tuition expenses with an interest-free, predictable monthly payment option. If your student has enrolled in spring classes, encourage him or her sign up for the tuition payment plan before December 15 to ensure the lower service fee of $70.

If payment is not received by the due date or the request form to be enrolled in the tuition payment plan is not submitted by the due date, the university will place your student in the payment plan automatically and the service fee will be $100. Students who are automatically placed on the payment plan are not eligible for the $30 savings.

Students who enroll for the spring semester after December 15 must pay for classes or submit the tuition payment plan enrollment form the same day they enroll in classes to avoid the $100 automatic payment plan service fee. For further details about your student's due dates, he/she should review the Student Center in LOUIE, and look under Finances > My Account > Account Inquiry > Charges Due.

Visit the Student and Departmental Account Services website for information and to sign up for the payment plan.


Study Abroad

Study Abroad

by Eric Deschamps, Director of Education Abroad

Studying abroad is a wonderful opportunity for students to broaden their horizons, enrich their academic careers, and develop the skills necessary to succeed in a globalized and dynamic 21st century. Study abroad opportunities are open to all majors and minors, and often cost no more than regular tuition. The upcoming holiday season is an excellent time to talk to your student about studying abroad. More information can be found on the Education Abroad webpage.

Read Micky Zurcher's experience of studying in Himachal, India.


James Hanley

Survey Winner Announced!

As part of a study requested by President John Haeger, the Center for Business Outreach in The W. A. Franke College of Business conducted a survey of students to gather data on the economic impact of the university on the state of Arizona. All responders’ names were entered into a drawing to win an Apple iPad, and the winner is James Hanley, a junior in the College of Arts and Letters. Congratulations James!


Health Tip - Dressing For Winter

Temperatures in the mountains change greatly from midday to night. Clothing should be layered for flexibility and comfort. Three basic winter layers include:

  • Wicking layer - the clothing next to the skin. A long sleeved base layer made of synthetic fiber wicks (moves) moisture away from skin and through the fabric to keep your student dry and warm (polyester and silk are good wicking fabrics).
  • Insulating layer - the middle layer that keeps cold out and heat in. Sweatshirts, sweaters, and jackets made from wool or fleece insulate by trapping air between fibers.
  • Protecting layer - the outer layer. It shields against the rain, snow and wind while allowing perspiration to escape. Outer shells made from tightly woven fabrics that are coated to keep moisture out are recommended.

Don't forget essential accessories such as proper headwear, gloves, warm socks, and insulated boots!


Flagstaff event highlights can be seen at ShowUp Flagstaff and Flagstaff Happenings.

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