Although there are some resources listed below, it is not a comprehensive list. Since our students are often obtaining more than one degree and involved in a multitude of opportunities on campus, resources may need to be adjusted on a case by case basis. If you are searching for resources or guidance, please ask during your Academic Success and Peer Counselor meetings

Rotunda Student Senate Fund

The Rotunda Student Senate Fund is a fund available to currently enrolled undergraduate Rotunda Scholars who need assistance affording Academic Enhancement opportunities, dealing with financial hardship and/or other personal hardship. Rotunda Scholars are eligible to receive funds twice during their entire time at SMU.

The application is now open for funding requests.  Application requests will be accepted on a rolling basis and will be reviewed by the Rotunda Director, Nikole Melgarejo, and other committee members on a monthly basis. If an application is approved, funds may be distributed in one of two ways either through your SMU Student Account or through Chase Quickpay. Depending on the distribution method, it may take 1 to 2 weeks to disperse. Scholars should keep this processing time in mind when they submit a request to account for individual needs and deadlines.

Please see the application form for further details. Students can digitally access the file anytime via Box. Questions may be emailed to Nikole Melgarejo at

Rotunda Scholars Glossary

  • Academic of Center Excellence (ACE): Recognizing that everyone comes to college with different educational experiences, the Academic Center for Excellence (ACE) sponsor programs focuses on those who identify as first-generation college students, may need assistance in adjusting to an urban city, or seek assistance in fully utilizing campus resources, be they academic, financial, or social. 
  • Academic Success Meetings: In addition to the required 2 Peer Counselor meetings per month, scholars will be required to meet with a Success Counselor once a month. In the one-on-one Academic Success meetings, topics such as academics, adjustment, resources, Rotunda participation, and other general check-ins will be discussed. 
  • HDEV 1210: A two credit hour class that is designed to help students learn and strengthen necessary study and life skills to be successful in college and beyond. The course also covers one of the Common Curriculum requirements that is required for graduation.
  • Peer Counselor (PC): An older student who supports each first-year throughout their personal and academic transition. The PC assigned is of the same or a similar major as the scholar, meaning they can provide first-hand knowledge on how to be successful in required courses. 
  • RISE Institute (Readiness, Interdependence, Success, and Excellence): A three-day pre-semester program where invited participants begin connecting to one another, valuable campus resources, and key faculty, staff, and alumni.
  • Study Hall: Scholars are required to complete a minimum of 2 hours per week of study hall. Scholars may complete this requirement at ACE, Scholars Den, and/or the A-LEC. In order to receive credit for study hall, scholars must log their hours by swiping their ID at the designated space near the entrances. 

Other Important Resources

  • College Terminology Glossary - We've created a massive college term glossary to help you navigate the college landscape. You'll find common higher education terms as well as those unique to SMU.
  • Student Support Resources - SMU offers multiple programs to support students in times of need. Services range from academic counseling and workshops to a multidisciplinary team dedicated to addressing student challenges. Reporting procedures can also be found here.
  • Counseling Services is dedicated to supporting the mental health needs of SMU students. 
  • The Office of the University Bursar is committed to helping students and their families achieve financial resolutions by providing superior quality service.
  • The Financial Aid Office at Southern Methodist University is committed to serving students by providing information to secure the necessary financial resources to meet their educational goals and financial obligations to the university. 
  • The mission of the University Advising Center (UAC) is to partner with pre-major students as they take ownership of their academic experiences at SMU and develop independent informed decision-making skills.
  • Disability Accommodations & Success Strategies is the primary contact for all SMU students with disabilities. 
  • Hegi Family Career Development Center is a resource for students to plan and navigate their professional journey. 
  • The First-Generation Initiative (FGI) was established in 2019 to ensure academic success for first-generation SMU students, or those who are the first in their family to attend a postsecondary institution.
  • The Women and LGBTQ Center gives voice for women and the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, with purpose to eliminate barriers, diminish prejudices, and create a supportive climate and space for all.
  • The Office of the Chaplain and Religious Life is committed to supporting students in issues of faith, purpose and meaning as they navigate life at SMU; Resources include pastoral care.