Exploratory Preference Major

Welcome! The NSSC is the home of the Exploratory Preference major, and we serve all exploring undergraduate students at MSU.


The NSSC Academic Advisor provides one-on-one academic advising for all exploring students at MSU, as well as hosting interactive workshops and group advising opportunities. In addition to serving as the exploration experts on campus, NSSC advisors can help students with questions related to academic performance, socio-emotional engagement, and institutional navigation. 

We are available for appointments and drop-in advising Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. (EST). We also have Late Night Advising hours on Wednesday and Thursday evenings from 5:30 - 8:30 p.m. (EST).   

Are you exploring majors? The Exploratory Preference is a major MSU students can select while exploring, up until they reach Junior standing (56 credits). Choosing Exploratory Preference is a wise choice because most other students change their majors one or more times. It allows you to more intentionally explore options. Majors have electives built in, so there’s room to take classes from different majors, and many majors can be completed in just two years, since the number of credits for a major is only a fraction of those required for a degree. Also, it’s important to know that for many careers your major is not the most important qualification (passion for the field, well-rounded experience, and good grades often matter more). Many careers require a college degree, but not a specific major, so explore your passions.



The Academic Programs Catalog is a good place to begin exploring over a hundred majors. A Neighborhood advisor can discuss your interests and options with you, and help you make a schedule for exploring. Undergraduate education is designed to be broad (i.e., much more than just a major) to develop transferrable skills that prepare you for the multiple careers you will likely have over your lifetime in the modern economy. And it’s designed to foster personal growth (which also makes you a stronger job candidate). So choosing a major to pursue a passion isn’t necessarily in conflict with a future career, even if unrelated to your major, since specific majors are often not relevant to employers. Therefore, take advantage of this amazing opportunity to find a major that’s a good fit. Enjoy your journey of exploration, growth and discovery!


Exploratory Preference

In-Person Advising Appointments - Will Resume the Week of January 31, 2022

Students wanting in-person advising appointments will need to schedule an appointment through student.msu.edu (see Schedule an Appointment tab). 

Academic Advising Locations 

  • Brody Engagement Center: 160 Brody Hall, 517-884-6670
  • North Engagement Center: 200 Union Building, 517-884-4050
  • River Trail Engagement Center: C101 McDonel Hall, 517-884-4080
  • South Engagement Center: Holden Hall, 517-884-6680

Drop-In Advising

Drop-in advising is available Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. (EST) via Zoom or phone. You can join the drop-in advising queue by filling out our DROP-IN ADVISING form.

The NSSC Exploratory Advisors offer Late Night Advising on Tuesday and Wednesday from 5:30 - 8:30 p.m. (EST) via Zoom or phone beginning on the week of January 10, 2022.  

Note: You must be logged in to Google with your MSU email address before filling out the form. You will receive an email or phone call (based on what you listed) when an advisor is available.

Live Chat With Us - Will Resume the Week of January 10, 2022

Weekly “Live Chats” with NSSC’s advisors take place on Wednesdays from 8:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. (EST) via Zoom. 

We can help you address specific questions such as, Should I drop a course? or, How do I change my schedule? In addition, we can answer any general questions, challenges, and concerns regarding enrollment, resources, remote learning, and student engagement.

You can join our livechat on Wednesdays at: https://msu.zoom.us/j/95020006938 (passcode: 045138)

Schedule an advising appointment - Scheduled Appointments will resume beginning January 17, 2022

  • Log into student.msu.edu
    • NOTE: You will need to register for multi-factor authentication to access the system. Please read these instructions and register
  • Once you are in the system, you will click on the “Academic Progress Tile”
  • Select ADVISING/TUTORING APPOINTMENTS on the left hand column. Then click CREATE NEW APPOINTMENT (blue box)
  • Use the drop-down menu in “Category” and select ADVISING
  • Use the drop-down menu in “Advising or Tutoring Unit”
    • Select the College you want to meet with
      • NOTE: To meet with an Exploratory Preference advisor, please select NEIGHBORHOOD STUDENT SUCCESS COLLABORATIVE
  • Use the drop-down menu in “Appointment Reason”
    • Select the Major or Program you want to meet with
      • NOTE: To meet with an Exploratory Prefence Advisor, please select either Exploratory Preference and Exploring or the individual Neighborhood.
  • You must indicate your reason for the advising appointment in “Additional Information Required”
    • Provide a statement for why you want to meet with the advisor - please include any questions or thoughts.
  • Use the drop-down menu in “Appointment Type” to select in-person, email, phone of Zoom.
  • Click Select Advisor.
    • Once you complete the above process, you will see the available advisors, times, URL, and the email and/or phone number of the advisor. You can now select a time and date.


The Exploratory Preference Advising Team

Freddie DeRamus | Academic Advisor | deramusf@msu.edu
Marenda Escobar | Academic Advisor | escobar9@msu.edu
Erika Espinoza | Academic Advisor | espin109@msu.edu
Camille Floyd | Academic Advisor | floydcam@msu.edu
Jeff Lent | Academic Advisor | lentjohn@msu.edu
Kang Li | Academic Advisor | likang1@msu.edu

Charlie Liu | Advising Director | charlie7@msu.edu
Justin St. Charles | Advising Director | stchar10@msu.edu
Debra Thornton-Fitzpatrick | Advising Director | thornt28@msu.edu

Dr. Qiana Green | Deputy Director of Academic Advising | greenqia@msu.edu