CNAS Undergraduate Academic Advising Center

Transition Advising


CNAS Transition Advising

The mission of the CNAS Transition Advising Program is to provide specialized high-touch academic advising and programming to UCR students who are transitioning out of CNAS due to lack of progress towards a CNAS degree, or realizing a potential for better major fit outside of their current college.  The Transition Advisor, along with Transition Peer Mentors and academic advisor liaisons from other UCR colleges, will guide, motivate, and provide academic resources to all CNAS transition students in an effort to encourage them to “Choose To Succeed.”


 TPM 2015-2




What is Transition Advising?

As a CNAS student, you may find yourself in a situation where a CNAS major no longer fits your academic plan, either by choice or due to academic challenges. Transition Advising is way to help you navigate the process of switching majors into CHASS. 

If you have decided that a science major is not for you, or if you are Undeclared and will not meet any CNAS Change of Major criteria by the time you reach 75 units, you may benefit from meeting with the Transition Advisor, who will assist you in creating a transition plan to move forward outside of CNAS.


What to Expect During Transition Meetings
  1. Your initial transition meeting will be most effective as a scheduled appointment, rather than a drop-in session.  Drop-in sessions are only 15 minutes long, whereas appointments may last up to 45 minutes.  During your initial transition meeting, there is a lot to cover, so drop-in sessions are only recommended for follow-up meetings.  To schedule an appointment with the Transition Advisor, Denise Correll, visit http://myadvising.ucr.edu.  When selecting the reason for the appointment, please choose “Transition Advising.”
  2. During the initial meeting, the Transition Advisor will discuss with you the details of your current situation and help you develop a Transition Plan, which will include your options for continued academic success, an outline of appropriate next steps, major and career exploration, petition instructions (if applicable), etc.
  3. If needed, the Transition Advisor may schedule a follow-up appointment for you. 
  4. At the end of the meeting or shortly after, you might be given a Transition Plan to keep for your reference,depending on the complexity of your transition.
  5. Once you make a successful transition into a new academic career, you will be prompted to complete a brief post-transition advising survey.


CNAS to CHASS Transition Workshops

The CNAS Transition Advisor and the CNAS Transition Liaison from the CHASS Student Affairs Office hold quarterly workshops that allow CNASstudents who are interested in CHASS to see what majors CHASS has to offer.  Please see the flyer below for upcoming workshops.

Workshop 5.9.16

Transition Peer Mentors

Transition Peer Mentors who have experienced a CNAS to CHASS transition first-hand and who are successful and happy in their new respective majors in CHASS work with the Transition Advisor to provide you with trustworthy guidance.  Not only will the Peer Mentors share their success stories with you to encourage a positive outlook during what could be a stressful time for you, but they will also provide you with effective and believable one-on-one mentoring into the world of CHASS. They will recommend campus resources based on your needs and will assist you beyond your initial meeting with the Transition Advisor.

If you are a current CNAS transition student and would like the guidance of a Transition Peer Mentor, please email the Transition Advisor, Denise Correll (denise.correll@ucr.edu).   If you have not yet had an initial transition meeting with Denise, you are required to schedule one before you are assigned to a Transition Peer Mentor. 

Below are the Transition Peer Mentors for 2015-2016:

Adriana 2015 Adriana Castellanos: Transition: Biology → Linguistics Major & Minor in Education
“Hello! I am currently a 4th year Linguistics major with a minor in Education. Before I became a Linguistics major, I was a Biology major. During my first two years at UCR, I was struggling to stay on top of my science classes. I did not want to give up my status as a CNAS student, but I was receiving grades that I did not feel good about. I felt like the effort I was putting into my classes did not reflect itself in my grades. My GPA  was very low at this point, but I still did not want to give up. It was not until the end of my second year when I got my grades and saw that I had failed my classes that I realized it was time for a change. This was devastating for me because I was not able to continue as a Biology major and had to look for another major. During the summer, I met with the CNAS Transition Advisor and explained to her how I felt and that I had decided to change into CHASS. I came into her office thinking I would not find a single major that was right for me. It was a hard process to go through, but in the end, I came out of her office really excited to learn more about Linguistics. By Fall of my 3rd year, I was able to declare as a Linguistics Major. I hope to expand my knowledge by attending Grad School after I graduate and become a Teacher.”
Asim 2015Asim Akhter: Transition: Biology → Public Health Policy and Minor in Business Administration

“I am currently a third year student interested in the fields of both health and business. Before my transition, I was unsure of exactly what I wanted to do in life, and transitioning allowed me to uncover and explore a variety of options that has helped me understand what I want to do in the future. Without the transition advising process, I would’ve forced myself to be a part of a career that I would’ve regretted to be a part of later on in life. Most importantly, CNAS transition advising has helped me understand that overcoming change is a growing process no matter how closely tied you were to the profession you thought you wanted to be a part of.”  





Alejandra 2015Alejandra “Aly” Herrera: Transition: Biochemistry → Biology → Public Policy Major

“Hi everyone! I am a fourth year Public Policy student. I originally started out as a Biochemistry major, but decided to switch over to Biology because everyone always said that it was the best major to go into if one wanted to pursue a health career. I came to UCR with the goal of becoming a pediatrician; it was a career choice that my parents had always approved of.  They would say, “You're going to be the first doctor in the family,” and it would fill me up with so much pride. So, when I started realizing that I was doing horribly in my sciences courses, I was a bit discouraged, but I didn’t want to give up just yet. It wasn’t until I completely failed physics that I realized that science truly wasn’t for me. I had never failed a class before, so it hurt to receive such a low letter grade. I was completely disappointed in myself, and when I met with the Transition Advisor, I kept trying to convince her (and myself) that CNAS was the major for me. However, transition advising made me realize that by staying in CNAS, I would only continue to lower my GPA, so we decided to look for another major. I was uncertain about what major would fit me, but then I remembered how much I liked a World Politics class I took my first year, and how amazingly well I did in the class. Therefore, the Transition Advisor advised me to look at majors pertaining to Political Science and actually suggested I look into Public Policy. It was great that she introduced the major to me because I didn’t even know it existed. As I did research on the major, it began to interest me, and I really was looking forward to seeing what the major had to offer. Now that I have been in the major for about a year now, I’ve encountered so many opportunities, and I couldn’t be any happier with my switch. I have gone to several seminars relating to local politics, I’ve had the opportunity to intern with a special district, and through the whole process I’ve met amazing people (political scientists, professors, directors, chancellor’s, policy analysts, editors, etc.).  Not to mention my grades and GPA improved significantly. As a current peer mentor, I want to be able to help students’ transition processes go as smoothly as possible. I don’t want any transition student to ever feel lost or to be held back because of a transition, but mainly I want to make sure that students go into a major in which they’ll actually succeed and be happy in.”

Michelle 2015Michelle Ngo: Transition: Biology → Anthropology → Psychology Major

 “Hello all! I am currently a 4th year student majoring in Psychology. It took a lot of switching and jumping around to finally get to where I am now, but I couldn’t be happier. I started off as a Biology major for a good three years before I made the switch to CHASS. The reason it took so long was because science was the only path I knew and due to personal struggles, I was having a hard time with my science classes. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and what career I wanted to pursue, so I decided to join clubs on campus. I’ve always been curious about Pharmacy so I joined P.I.L.L.S., which opened my eyes to the world of Pharmacy. In the end, I became really interested and decided I would go in that direction. In the summer, I kicked it in full gear and did a number of things to be as involved as I could in Pharmacy. I interned at a pharmacy clinic, volunteered at St. Joseph’s Hospital’s pharmacy department, took the PCAT, and studied for my pharmacy technician license. As many people may know, you don’t have to be a science major to pursue a medical career. I love Psychology, but I also love the science aspect about it. My dream is to work with drugs related to Psychology in particular. My whole transition was rough, but I was glad to have been able to talk to a Transition Peer Mentor. Without a Peer Mentor, I probably would have still been searching for a major.”

Yesenia 2015Yesenia Talavera: Transition: Math → (Neuroscience) → Spanish → Double Major in Spanish and Psychology

“I am a fourth year student graduating this upcoming Spring. I started off my first year at UC Riverside as a Math major, and after struggling with my math classes my very first quarter in college, I started considering other majors. I then looked into Neuroscience, since I was doing okay in my introductory biology and chemistry classes.  I thought maybe math was not my thing, but I could still stick with the sciences. After taking organic chemistry my second year and having the most stressful time of my college career, I decided that CNAS was just not for me.  I was not willing to take summer school and at least four classes every quarter in order to graduate in time, which is what I learned I would have to do after meeting with the Neuroscience advisor in CNAS. After meeting with her, I met with a career counselor at the Career Center because I was unsure of what I could do to bump up my GPA, get a job that would bring money, and actually enjoy my time as an undergraduate at UCR. The career counselor said to me, “your major does not define your career.” I met with our CNAS Transition Advisor afterwards and we talked about my options.  I decided to declare Spanish as my major while working to get into Psychology. Thanks to transition advising, I was able to smoothly transition over to CHASS and be happily more involved on campus while enjoying and keeping up with my classes. Now, I am months away from graduating with a double major and I look forward to attending graduate school for a psychology program in the future.” 

 Contact Us
Denise Correll, CNAS UAAC  Assistant Director, Transition Advising
CNAS Undergraduate Academic Advising Center
1223 Pierce Hall
(951) 827-1763
CNAS to BCOE Transition Program for Fall 2015 Freshmen

Fall 2015 CNAS Freshmen who are interested in a major transition to the Bourns College of Engineering (BCOE) may opt into a CNAS to BCOE Transition Program, in which the Transition Advisor will work with you to develop a course plan towards meeting BCOE major change requirements for your major of choice.  Mathematics Advisory Exam (MAE) results must be MATH 8A, MATH 5, or higher to be eligible for the program.  Students placed in ARC 35 cannot participate in the CNAS to BCOE Transition Program.  Qualified Fall 2015 CNAS Freshmen should schedule an appointment with the Transition Advisor to opt into the program or to learn more about the terms of the program.


Schedule a Transition Advising Meeting
  1. To schedule an appointment or to view drop-in availability, visit http://myadvising.ucr.edu.

  2. Click on “Search 

  3. Choose “Academic Advising” in the drop-down list

  4. Choose “Denise Correll” as the Consultant

  5. Select the date range of your desired appointment and click “Search”

  6. Green time slots are available appointment times that you may click on as your transition advising meeting time

  7. When selecting a “Reason” for your appointment, please choose “Transition Advising”

  8. Include the phone number that you would like Denise to reach you at in case of rescheduling.

  9. In the Notes section, please explain what you would like to focus on in your appointment.

  10. Click Save.  You will receive an email confirmation as a reminder of your appointment.

  11. Please be on time.  After 15 minutes into the appointment, you will be considered a No-Show and will need to reschedule.  If you know you will be late or absent, please email Denise or call the front desk (951) 827-7294.



CHASS Transition Liaison – a CHASS Undeclared Advisor who works in partnership with the CNAS Transition Advisor for all programs and issues regarding transition

Karen Mitchell
3400 HMNSS 
(951) 827-1551

Other important resources to help you narrow your list options for your new major:

CHASS Majors and Major Change Criteria
BCOE Majors and Major Change Criteria
Health Professions Advising Center
Academic Resource Center
UCR Counseling Center
UCR Career Center
Careers In Your Major
UCR Student Affairs Case Manager


Transition Calendar


More Information

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

Career OpportunitiesUCR Libraries
Campus StatusDirections to UCR

Advising Center Information

CNAS Undergraduate Academic Advising
1223 Pierce Hall

Regular office hours:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday: 9:00am - 12:00pm & 1:00pm - 4:00pm
Wednesday: 10:00am- 12:00pm & 1:00pm - 4:00pm

Tel: (951) 827-7294 or (951) 827-3102
Fax: (951) 827-2243 or (951) 827-2798
E-mail: cnasstudent@ucr.edu