After Orientation you’ll likely still have a lot of questions! FYE 101: HUSKY PACC is designed to help you answer those questions, explore the campus and adjust to life as a member of the University of Southern Maine Community.

FYE 101:HUSKY PACC (Participate & Connect Course) is designed for students in their first semester at the University of Southern Maine to help them connect with peers, faculty, staff, and the broader community. This course offers students a chance to engage with common topics relevant to their first semester and to participate in a variety of engagement opportunities both on and off campus. Throughout the semester, students will participate in classroom sessions led by their instructor to explore campus resources and develop skills for college success. Additionally, they will have the opportunity to participate in self-selected experiential exploration weeks, during which they will connect with and learn about opportunities in the campus and local communities.

Required for first-year residential students and a great option for first-year commuters.

Most students will take a general section of FYE101: HUSKY PACC as described above but some programs such as Honors and Russell Scholars Program have specialized sections. Information about those sections can be found below.

Some specific programs and populations at the opportunity to participate in specific FYE101 sections based on their program or population selection. You can read about those opportunities below

The First-Generation Student Experience LLC partners with two amazing programs at USM, our Promise Scholarship Program, and our TRIO College Program. As a member of this community, you will have both dedicated staff and peer support to help you make the most of your experience here at USM. This LLC focuses on empowering you with skills and resources to break down barriers that often exist for first-generation college students. In this close-knit community, you will learn the ins and outs of college and develop strong relationships with peers and mentors who will continue to support you past just your first semester at USM. In addition to the First Generation Student Experience COR 101 class, this LLC also houses students from our Success in STEM COR 101 classes, as those classes are run in collaboration with our TRIO staff.

The Honors Living Learning Community is for intellectually curious students, with diverse backgrounds and interests, who have been invited to join the USM Honors Program. Living in Honors housing provides you with convenient access to Honors-specific events and organizations.

Students with a 3.5 or higher GPA at the high school or transfer level are invited to join the Honors Program. Students who accept the invitation to join the Honors Program will be housed together in the Honors LLC. Living in Honors housing is encouraged but not required.

For more information about the Honors Program, visit their webpage.

The Rainbow LLC, which was the first of its kind at a Maine college or university, is for students who wish to live together on a community floor seeking to celebrate and support the lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans*, queer, questioning, intersex and asexual (LGBTQIA+) community at USM. As part of the Rainbow LLC, you will engage in educational and social programming opportunities geared towards increasing knowledge and understanding of sexual orientation and gender identity and expression. You may participate in training opportunities around creating safe spaces, addressing and reducing hate and bias language and incidents, and will have the opportunity to engage in community leadership opportunities. Previous class outings and activities include participating in USM Safe Zone training to learn how to create safe spaces on campus for LGBTQIA+ community members, attending the Maine Youth Summit & Queer Trans Conference, visiting the Equality Community Center in Portland, volunteering with local non-profits who provide resources and support for LGBTQAI+ individuals, engaging with theater or art exhibits or shows related to topics around gender or sexuality, and connecting with other students and community members over dinner at local restaurants. If you would like to live on the Rainbow Floor as a first-year student but wish to take a different LLC class, or would like to live on a different floor but take the Rainbow-themed class, please contact Erica Leighton at

The Russell Scholars Program (RSP) is an inclusive living-learning community composed of students and faculty who work together to help students achieve their academic goals. RSP accepts both residential and nonresidential students. Our classrooms, a study lounge, and faculty offices–located on the first floor of the RSP residence hall–are accessible to all. Every student is assigned an RSP faculty mentor who supports them throughout their USM experience. Students from all academic majors are welcome in RSP; the program offers a selection of USM’s Core and elective courses that are required of all USM students. (Courses in the student’s major are taken outside of RSP.) Community service opportunities for academic credit are also offered. Beyond the first year, students can continue to complete Core courses through RSP as their schedules permit and take leadership roles in welcoming new students. Russell Scholars value connection, collaboration, and community–attributes that contribute to college and career success.

For first-year students interested in education careers, including teaching, counseling, coaching, or school leadership, we are offering a combined EDU 101 / FYE 101 HUSKY PACC Section. USM has a rich history of training some of Maine’s first teachers. We are excited to have students within our community carry on this tradition in their commitment to serving children and families. By enrolling in EDU 101/FYE 101, you will build a professional network within a caring community that connects you to peers and faculty who share your professional passion. You’ll get support, discover campus resources, and participate in workshops, collaborative projects, clubs, and excursions on and off campus.