Everybody has questions and we tried to provide the most commonly asked questions (and answers!) here.   No worries, though!  If you still have a question, please send it to us at parents@pitt.edu and we will get back to you as soon as we can.


Q:  When is Family Weekend?

A:  Family Weekend 2018 will be October 26-27, 2018.  Please monitor www.familyweekend.pitt.edu for updates.


Q:  What kinds of internship opportunities are available at Pitt?

A:  Pitt offers many internship and cooperative education programs with a variety of companies both inside and outside the greater Pittsburgh area. The Office of Career Development and Placement Assistance provides one on-one assistance to help students from all undergraduate majors find a suitable match with their interests. To get started, encourage your student to visit www.internships.pitt.edu to review the Internship Prep Program and the current workshop schedule.


Q:  How can I see my student’s grades? 

A:  Pitt is obligated to abide by the student Federal Right to Privacy Act (FERPA) so we cannot share students’ records unless they complete a waiver and submit to the Registrar’s office.  This waiver permits the selected third party to access student records if they present photo identification at the Registrar’s Office.  Sorry – records cannot be shared via email or over the phone due to security issues.


Q:  What is the University Honors College like?

A:  The University of Pittsburgh’s Honors College is unlike typical university honors programs. Here at Pitt there is no such thing as membership in the Honors College, and all undergraduate students are eligible to take advantage of its many opportunities. Some highlights include supplemental advising, research and community engagement fellowships, special events, honors housing, honors courses, and the Bachelor of Philosophy degree. Honors courses are more challenging and more demanding than regular courses, but they also are more stimulating and allow more learning than do regular courses. And class sizes tend to be smaller, which allows students to interact more with instructors and with each other. Students who are interested in taking advantage of opportunities in the University Honors College should contact any of the Honors College advisors.


Q:  Does Pitt have opportunities for undergraduate research?

A:  As an internationally recognized institution for cutting-edge research, the University of Pittsburgh offers students many exciting opportunities to work alongside distinguished faculty who are leaders in their fields. Students interested in undergraduate research will have no problem finding a project any time of the year that fits their interests. Undergraduates can enrich their academic experience by participating in research as early as their freshman year through programs like First Experiences in Research. Students can explore research opportunities in the arts and humanities, the social sciences, the natural sciences, and the University’s School of Medicine. Many research experiences are initiated by the Office of Undergraduate Research as well as the University Honors College. Students are also encouraged to speak with their professors about research opportunities through academic departments.


Q:  What are Living Learning Communities?

A:   Living Learning Communities (LLCs) are specialized living environments that help to connect students in and out of the classroom learning. Each LLC is unique, but all are centered on a distinctive academic or thematic interest. Students who choose to live in an LLC have a direct connection to their classroom experience, intentional events and/or programs and dedicated staff members working to make the community a success. LLCs include housing opportunities for first-year and upperclass students in the following communities:


First-Year Communities:

Appreciation of the Arts

Cultural Latino Americana

Emerging Leaders


Global Village

Health Sciences

Healthy U


Innovation and Entrepreneurship


One Pitt, One Planet (Sustainability)

Pitt Business


Service to Others

Women Lead


Outdoor Recreation


Upperclass Communities:


Health Sciences




Pitt Business


Service to Others


In order to be considered for an LLC, students must apply within their Housing and Dining application. For details on our LLCs, please go to studentaffairs.pitt.edu/reslife/llc or e-mail reslife@pitt.edu.


Q:  What do I do if my student has an IEP or a Section 504 plan?

A:  Once your student has been admitted to the University of Pittsburgh, he or she should follow these steps to register with Disability Resources and Services (DRS):

  • Submit documentation of his or her disability. He or she may deliver it in person to 140 William Pitt Union, fax it 412-624-3346, or mail it to the DRS office at:

University of Pittsburgh

Disability Resources and Services

140 William Pitt Union

3959 Fifth Avenue

Pittsburgh, PA 15260

Note: If your student submitted disability documentation as part of their application for admission to the University of Pittsburgh, please check to make sure that DRS has received a copy for his or her file.

  • Set up an appointment with the appropriate disability specialist for an initial review of your student’s documentation. At this meeting, the specialist will be able to discuss his or her documents, needs, and educational goals.
  • Meet with the disability specialist every term to review the effectiveness of services received, to update information, or to discuss changes in service.


Q:  How easy is it to get home during the term and over breaks?

A:  There are many ways to travel home. First, the Pitt campus is very close to downtown Pittsburgh, so the Amtrak train station, Megabus and the Greyhound bus terminals are easily accessible. Pittsburgh International Airport is a 45-minute free bus ride away with a Pitt ID. Locally, students can ride the Port Authority of Allegheny County public transportation system free of charge with their Pitt IDs. For the Thanksgiving, winter, and spring recesses, the University of Pittsburgh offers the buses home for the holidays option to select destinations in Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland and Washington, D.C. areas. Greatly reduced one-way and round-trip fares are available. See the “Buses Home for the Holidays” Web site for more information.


Q:  What do I say to my son or daughter if he or she has experienced a traumatic event (e.g., unexpected death of a loved one, physical assault, etc.)?

A:  Listen to your student and normalize the feelings expressed — shock, fear, anxiety, confusion, anger, etc. Encourage your student to call the University Counseling Center 412-648-7930, and talk with a counselor. Counseling will help your student to deal with the feelings that are interfering with daily functioning.


Q:  I want to make a counseling appointment for my student but was told that I could not. Why not?

A:  Students are considered adults and are, therefore, required to schedule their own appointments. In addition, students who make their own appointments are already beginning the first steps toward a positive therapeutic relationship by demonstrating their readiness to engage in therapy.


Q:  I’ve been trying to encourage my student to make a counseling appointment, but he/she doesn’t want to go. How can I encourage him/ her to get the needed help?

A:  After listening to your adult student’s thoughts and feelings in a sensitive, nonjudgmental way, you can instill hope by helping him or her to realize that there are options for help and the experience will not always appear so difficult. Point out that help is available and that you believe that using resources like counseling is a sign of strength and maturity rather than of weakness or failure. Give information about the counseling service and prepare him or her for what to expect. If a student is simply not ready to use professional counseling services, you can suggest other resources like residence life staff, chaplains, friends, or other trusted adults as a first step in addressing concerns. You can always consult with a University Counseling Center professional about your specific concerns in wanting your student to see a counselor.