Director's Den

Director's Den

A word from Director of Admissions Chris Beiswanger

Chris Beiswanger is the Director of Admissions at UCCS.  He has been part of the Mountain Lion Family for more than 15 years.

Chris is an avid trail runner, enjoys the outdoors and kayaking with his family, is trying to learn how to play an instrument, and really appreciates the food and culture scene of the Pikes Peak region.

He is looking forward to bringing frequent updates, notes and thoughts throughout the year to this space.


Upcoming Parent Events

Director's Den: Success begins with Support (Holistic Health at UCCS)

What do climbing rock walls and scaling mental mountains have to do with success at UCCS? Join Chris Beiswanger, Director of Undergraduate Admissions in the Director's Den as he talks with Skyler Rorabaugh, the Director of the Campus Recreation Center, and Benek Altayli, the Director of Mental Health Services. We know physical activity and mental wellness make for balanced and healthy students who thrive in the college classroom. We can't wait to share how our approach can benefit your student.

Thursday, February 18 at 6:00pm MST

Director's Den | January 21, 2021

They Grow Up So Fast! Lessons from Young Alums

Hear from recent alumns about what they did during their time on campus, lessons learned as they "grew up," and how it all helped to prepare them for their carrers and life today." 

Director's Den | January 12, 2021

My first post of the new year is only 12 days late! I hope you are well and finding optimism looking forward in 2021.

The most important thing I can tell you is: DEADLINES ARE COMING!!!

February 1- merit scholarship deadline (includes Kane Scholarship, Chancellor's Leadership Class, and the Presidential Non-Resident Scholarship)

March 1- financial need based scholarship deadline and FAFSA PRIORITY DATE

When it comes to scholarships - you can't win if you don't play! Any many people this year are assuming they will not "get anything" for a variety of reasons. BUT YOU NEVER KNOW. Make sure to get your FAFSA and complete the UCCS General Scholarship Application in the MyUCCS portal ASAP.

Students must be admitted to apply for scholarships. To access the MyUCCS portal students must first claim their student account. Claiming an account and applying for scholarships does not commit a student to attending UCCS. A UCCS student id is required to claim an account. If your student cannot find this id number, please have your student e-mail requesting a student id number and include a first name, last name, and date of birth for our reference. 

UCCS FAFSA Code: 004509.

On Thursday, January 21, The next Director's Den will feature recent alumni talking about their UCCS experiences, their tips for a successful college career, and a glimpse on where thy are at in life. They will make fun of me, so be prepared for jokes at my expense.

Be well,


Director's Den | December 18, 2020

Earlier this week I talked with Brie from the UCCS Career Center about the TypeFocus7 career survey. This is an outstanding free assessment tool for ANYONE who wants to learn more about majors and potential careers. I mean, don't we all want to figure out what we want to be when we grow up?!

For students admitted for Fall 2021 we are offering the opportunity to schedule a 15-minute review appointment with the Career Center. Please note, by participating in this, you are not committed to attending UCCS. Students can start by using the link about for the TypeFocus7. To schedule an appointment first a student need to claim their UCCS account (also used for the scholarship application). A student id is needed to claim the student account (previously sent in admission communication). Students can e-mail with their first name, last name, and date of birth to have their student id sent. Follow the steps listed on the UCCS Career Center website under "schedule an appointment" to schedule the 15-minute review appointment in the student portal.

Director's Den | December 17, 2020

Get comfy, get cozy, because the weather is getting chilly!

December opens 2 VERY important processes of our Mountain Lion Family’s support services: Financial Aid and Residence Life. Re-watch this Director’s Den, I am joined by Jevita Rogers, our Executive Director of Financial Aid, Student Employment, and Scholarships, and Ralph Giese, UCCS’ Director of Residence Life and Housing. 

Director's Den | November 19, 2020

Learn about how students are supported inside and outside the classroom.

Dr. Chris Bell:  "I measure success for a student by when the switch in their head flips from 'I'm doing a thing in a class because it's going to get me a grade' to 'I'm doing a thing in a class because I'm learning something and that thing that I'm learning is important to me'.  And when that switch flips in a student's head, that's when the real education starts.  That's when the real learning starts."

"...I love this joint.  I love this place.  I choose to work here because I love the students here.  This is my community.  These are the kinds of people I want to surround myself with.  These students are the kinds of people I want to work with and want to send off into the world." 

Director's Den | Friday the 13th! November 13, 2020

"Protecting the Pride goes a lot farther than just the physical healthy aspects of campus, the cleanliness and all of that.  It goes into the mental health and well-being of our UCCS students...

...In the end, you'll definitely come out stronger because you're learning a new skill and learning a new way to live in a world that is constantly changing."


Director's Den | October 21, 2020

The other night while working on email, I had the TV on in the background. While American Ninja Warrior is not committed weekly viewing, I enjoy watching when I catch it. But this episode really threw me for a loop when I saw one of my former Gateway Program Seminar students, Ryan, on the sidelines cheering on a competitor! He apparently did his run earlier in the episode, so I’m bummed I missed that. When I met Ryan as a freshman, he was very clear – he wanted to compete in Ninja Warrior events. He was training and balancing that with school. His passion was evident, but he was a pretty quiet kid. However, when I asked him about his plan, training and goals –  he beamed. He knew what he wanted and he was, and is, going after it. I wish him all the best and might have to tune in more regularly…

As you move forward with all the various applications you have submitted, I strongly encourage you to get all of your plans and goals together. Colleges and universities do not follow the same schedule with deadlines, so I highly recommend putting the deadlines and priority dates in your phone calendar so you don’t forget.


  • Oct. 1 – FAFSA is open to submit to UCCS and other colleges
  • December 1 – UCCS Housing Application and Scholarship Application are open for admitted students to submit.
  • February 1 – Early Scholarship Deadline
  • March 1 – FAFSA Priority Date and Final Scholarship Deadline*

Enjoy the fall colors and hopefully you can make it campus soon!

(*Final scholarship deadline for most awards for freshmen applicants.  A few transfer student awards have later deadlines)

Director's Den | October 2, 2020

If you missed us last night at the first Director's Den we have loaded it here for you.

Director's Den | September 24, 2020

Fall is by far my favorite season - cooler running temps, leaves changing bring a new palate of colors to nature, the use of the word "autumnal", and... sweaters. I REALLY love sweaters. As I am not a coffee-guy, Pumpkin Spice Lattes are not for me, but I'll occasionally get one for the sleep student worker on the morning shift.

October also brings a lot of events, important dates, and opportunities to engage, so to start the month:

More engaging events and opportunities can always be found here: DISCOVER UCCS

Hopefully you can join our Dean and me on Thursday night as I am anticipating a lively conversation!

Autumnal greetings,

Director's Den | September 14, 2020

It feels good to have the semester underway. Tuesdays are the busiest days on campus thus far. NO ONE is upset about parking! And Café 65 is making my favorite breakfast burrito again, so it feels great to be back on campus. 

But it is weird too. It was always going to be weird not seeing as many students on campus as usual. However, hearing that many students have adjusted, like, and are thriving in this modified learning environment gives me, and many, a feeling of confidence.

I have always thought of college as a time of evolution. For both student and campus. We, as a university, must be responsive and provide the best environment possible for students to learn and grow. Students, in partnership, must take advantage and maximize all those opportunities provided.  I know it is easier said than done and will certainly be harder this year. But college is that laboratory to try hard things, have successes and failures to learn from, and then take those lesson into the professional world after college.  It will all still work – it is just going to be weird.  But maybe the “new normal” we all are adapting to will always be weird. And weird is not always bad because it forces us to think creatively. 

We pride ourselves on innovative thinking at UCCS and foster that in all our students. Times will always be challenging, but we can be problem-solvers and at least make them “precedented” going forward. That is where we will find out normalcy and comfort. 

My team in the Office of Admissions has been innovative in creating numerous engaging events and information sessions each week. While we will not be traveling, we will be “Zoom-ing” like never before. I encourage you to discover all the opportunities to engage with me, my team, and our campus community by clicking below and learning about all the ways we fuel success at UCCS.

Weird is normal,