College is too competitive and too costly to go into it without a lot of thought. You know that, of course, so the recipe for increasing the likelihood of achieving success in college is a matter of embracing effective habits and proven methods.
One necessary element, says a long-time college professor, is adopting the mindset of “SSs” – his term for “successful students.” These students start day one with the attitude that “their education is not the diploma they will receive, but the positive ways in which they can use their education to change themselves in ways that will help them succeed in the future.”
So, if you’re ready to not only have college success but also maximize it, here are four more ways to keep your educational momentum aligned with the life you have in mind.
Regardless of how well you did academically in high school, college will throw you a few curves. Sometimes it’s the amount of course material you have to cover during the week; sometimes, it’s how advanced the course level is vs. what you experienced previously.
For others, it’s realizing there’s very little wiggle room for a late or missed assignment. Typically, once a grade goes down, only the most courageous of efforts will elevate it,
Don’t shy away from tough courses in high school. Challenge yourself with Advanced Placement or Honors classes.
Are you curious about a specific career, such as the many options available in healthcare? See if anatomy, biology, or healthcare terminology classes might be available on-campus or online at q nearby community college.
To guard against falling behind, remember that support services are available. Different universities may have different titles for their “Student Success” department. Sometimes Academic Support is in the title.
Once you’ve selected your college, take a deep dive into their student success services. You’ll find opportunities for tutoring (usually free), learning style assessment, study skills improvement, and many more.
The message here is clear. For college success, you need to be in the driver’s seat. Remember, the general rule for the proper amount of studying is to spend 2-3 hours outside of class for every credit hour a student is in class.
A 12-credit-hour course load using a typical 16=week class has the expectation that students study 24-36 hours outside of class each week. For an 8-week course, double the amount of hours.
Sure, you participated in some high school clubs or teams, but getting involved in a college’s range of clubs and organizations is more important. Because you’re that much closer to being in the workforce, you can find clubs and special interest groups that focus on the type of work you think you want to do with your life.
A study from California State University-Sacramento found that students who were involved in student chapters of professional associations, orientation leaders, residence hall associates, or who held leadership positions for on-campus clubs had higher GPAs and graduation rates.
Follow the formula: clubs + involvement = greater potential for college success.
While you’re completing the enrollment process at your college, take the time to ask about the number and range of clubs and organizations the university sponsors. In addition to university-sponsored clubs, many schools encourage and support student membership opportunities in professional organizations.
You know you’ll have to study effectively for success in college. You should also realize it’s essential to do some research in advance. Not all college degrees are created equal! In other words, the real-life payback in terms of salary for some degrees is higher than others.
So, what does looking at return on investment (ROI) for a college degree involve? You do a bit of online research, comparing actual wages vs. the cost of obtaining a degree. (Most universities have an online tool called a “net cost calculator” to determine the exact cost of attending.)
What you’ll find is that some jobs requiring a two-year college investment – especially the Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree category – sometimes have salary ranges rivaling four-year degrees.
A great ROI resource is the Occupational Outlook Handbook of the United States at www.bls.gov/ooh/. You can select an occupational category then see the individual job descriptions and national salary averages. For example, an occupational therapy assistant (OTA) or a radiologic technologist typically earns from $47,000 to $49,000 per year with two years of college study.
Another factor in preparing for college success is determining whether or not certain occupational areas are expanding over the long term. Take the healthcare sector, for example. This sector is projected to grow 16% between 2020 and 2030.
It’s easy to get so micro-focused on college life in the short term that you neglect work-life preparation. That’s why you should make finding an internship a priority.
An internship is defined as a professional learning experience offering meaningful, practical work within a student’s field of study or career interest. Job shadowing is time spent following a full-time employee and observing him or her performing their job.
College success experts point out five reasons to be active in seeking out internships or job shadowing experiences.
Cleveland University-Kansas City (CUKC) is a nonprofit, private, chiropractic and health sciences university in Overland Park, Kansas, within the Kansas City metro. For 100 years, we’ve been helping create a healthier world.
Our degree programs range from an associate degree in biological sciences to associate degrees in healthcare support professions like radiologic technology and occupational therapy assistant. Bachelor’s degrees include those in human biology and exercise science. More than 10,000 of our alumni have earned the Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) degree through our College of Chiropractic.
What does a path to college success look like to you? One good way to find out is by talking to a knowledgeable academic advisor. Get connected here and add to your college preparation by getting this free eBook, Your Complete Guide to Navigating College Financial Aid.