Although I thought I was studying and doing well, I received a C at midterms in one course during my first year and was completely shocked. I was always a straight A student in high school. I started to wonder if I could even be successful in college. I had so much self-doubt and felt so much pressure to do well. My sister had dropped out and I was the youngest so it was all up to me!
My professor stopped me after class and said I could chat with him during office hours if I was struggling and he had some studying tips he could give me that he thought would help. For whatever reason, I did not realize you could just talk with your professors. I think this completely changed everything for me in college! The office hours on your professor’s syllabus are there for a reason (but an email to them before stopping by is always appreciated).
When I first started college, I felt like I did not fit in, like I did not belong. I also had a huge fear of failure so I studied a lot and kept to myself. I felt very disconnected from the college and felt as though everyone but me had it all figured out. We had a speaker on campus and although I really did not want to go, I attended for extra credit. I cannot remember who the speaker was, but they talked about the importance of getting to know other students and getting involved on campus. I decided I needed to at least make the effort. I found two student organizations and joined. One was related to my major and one was just for fun. This made a world of difference! Not only did I make new friends, but many of students in these groups had already taken classes I was in and offered advice or provided answers on some topics (like what is an academic advisor? or what is a Bursar and where is that located?) Being connected is important and sometimes it takes work, but it is well worth it!
Tracy L. Stout, Head of Research and Instructional Services
Duane G. Meyer Library