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First-Year Experience and Cornerstone Courses

The transition to college life presents a particular challenge to first-year students. We offer programs designed to help you succeed both academically and socially.


Cornerstone is a two-credit, letter-grade course exclusively for - and open only to - first-year students. The course assists students in making a successful transition - academically and socially - from high school to college. Students gain knowledge and practical skills to improve their academic performance and to facilitate their integration into campus life.  Upperclassmen mentors called Peer Leaders are connected to each Cornerstone course. Peer Leaders are can assist you with any questions or concerns you might have during your first semester.

Topics typically covered in the course include:

  • Academic computing resources
  • Library research methods
  • Study and academic skills
  • Career goals and planning
  • Time management
  • Communication and presentation skills
  • Campus resources

Our goal is to help you create a lasting connection to your fellow classmates and to Pitt-Greensburg.  Most students will be registered for a Cornerstone class in their schedules. As a requirement of your Cornerstone course, you are to attend the informational sessions during Welcome Week!

Natural Science Learning Community

The Natural Science Learning Community is designed for students in the fields of:

  • biological science
  • rehabilitation science
  • pharmacy
  • pre-med/pre-dental

This community integrates Science Cornerstone activities with regular academic work. Commuter students and resident students will be enrolled in a common Science Cornerstone course as well as in common sections of the courses that make up the typical first-year schedule for science majors. Science students interested in this opportunity should indicate their interest on the First-Year Survey.

Nursing and Engineering Learning Communities

All nursing and pre-engineering students at Pitt-Greensburg automatically become members of a learning community within their major.  Instead of a Cornerstone course their first semester, nursing students will be enrolled in a Nursing Seminar, and engineering students will be enrolled in Engineering Seminar 1.  These seminars will be facilitated by a faculty or staff advisor from the program. The seminar helps students in these majors find success in their other classes.