Last week I was scrolling through Twitter and came across an interesting post thread. A woman, a wife and mother, decided to go back to school and get her college degree and was asking for advice for an incoming college freshman. After spending nearly ten minutes reading through the replies, some great, (actually attend your classes) and some a little less great, (don’t date the first attractive person you meet), I realized the faculty and staff at PUC have dedicated their careers to helping students reach their full potential and would likely love to impart some wisdom on this year’s incoming class!
So here it is! Have some free advice from college professionals!
“1) Talk to a teacher or staff member. Even if it is just a few words before or after class. Make contact more than once. We think you are interesting and want to get to know you! That is why we choose to work at PUC. 2) Get involved in something outside your department. Join a club, participate in a music ensemble, show up at SA events, make time to cheer for the Pioneers at home games, volunteer to help out with dorm worship, homeless ministries, vespers, The Twelve, Sabbath school, etc.” – Rachelle Davis, professor of music
“If you are interested in someday being a leader, find opportunities to serve today. Come see me and I can help!” – Kent Rufo, chaplain
“My advice is to ask students! Other students are more than happy to help you out, so just ask! Who knows, you might even make some new friends.” – Jenn Tyner, vice president for student life
“I wish I had taken the time to learn about how the brain stores complex information. If Google had existed, I’d have researched “sleep and learning” and then proceeded to get way more guilt-free sleep than I did. You may also be surprised to find that time spent zoning out in PUC’s Back 40 (without a phone!) also helps your brain to solidify information that you have been studying.” – Maria Rankin-Brown, associate academic dean
“Don’t let finances be a roadblock! Mark the finance deadlines on your calendar: Sep 15, 2019, for Fall, Dec 15, 2019, for Winter and Mar 15, 2020, for Spring. Plan ahead and don’t wait until the last minute to make sure you are financially cleared.” – Brandon Parker, vice president of financial administration (Of course the school’s CFO would give advice about finances!)
“Technology is an important resource but it’s not always easy to know how to use it most effectively for your studies. Talk to your professor about what they recommend. Practice unplugging from your phone and social media while you study until you can sustain 30 or 40 minutes of undistracted work followed by a 5 or a 10-minute break.” – Chantel Blackburn, professor of mathematics
“It’s a fresh start. Reach outside your comfort zone to say hi to someone and meet new friends.” – J.R. Rogers, associate vice president of student life
“Get Organized! In college, your success is up to you (not your parents or teachers any longer). This means you need to develop a study plan, be aware of homework/paper/finals deadlines, and communicate effectively/timely with your professor. Knowing, Who, What, When, Where, and How is invaluable!!!” – Stacy Nelson, associate vice president of human resources
“It’s helpful to get into a mindset of being excited or at least curiously inquisitive about learning new material from every course you take.” – Elaine Neudeck, assistant professor of physical science
“Your college years are when you are the freest you will ever be. Take advantage of this! Try new hobbies. Travel. Visit museums and attend events while you can still get student discounts. Ask lots of questions. Study abroad. Explore different ways of doing things. Take elective courses just to learn something new and fun. Be a student missionary. Say yes when new friends invite you out, or when your professor has a student dinner at their home. Whatever it looks like for you, don’t miss the plethora of opportunities to explore new aspects of life during college; it sets the tone for the rest of your life.” – Becky St. Clair, department of music office manager, PR writer
Keep these tips in mind as you begin your first quarter of college and remember, great advice is just a question away, so ask!