Trifecta for Student Success

Posted on 04 September 2013 by admin

STLCC, faculty and students share interdependent responsibilities for student success


Staff Writer


Students, welcome to Meramec – you have permission to think. This begins a series of three editorials discussing how students, the school STLCC and faculty share interdependent responsibilities for student success. Should any leg of this three legged stool fail, students fail.

While the Venn diagram of student success illustrates how students do not have sole responsibility for their success, students are the most important leg.

Hand in hand with permission to think comes the permission, indeed an expectation, to accept adult status and adult responsibilities. Success here will contribute to future success by developing useful knowledge and skills. A sad reality is failure here can have long-term negative consequence. Do not continue or develop poor habits.

Attending and succeeding in college is not only about formal education. Responsible adult behaviors and skills that contribute to college success also contribute to future professional success. While the school and faculty have their share of responsibilities, students only control their share of interdependent responsibilities. So, students must focus their attention and efforts on their responsibilities.

Some abilities necessary for student success, and which are indispensable in the working world, are proper planning, proper preparation, discipline and finding self-motivation.

Follow the Six-Ps maxim – Proper Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance. There is another version with seven Ps; work it out.

A crucial reality here is students are not alone. Faculty does more than teach. They are available to help during their office hours. Visit them. Get their help. Form study groups with other students. Use tutors or Supplemental Instructors (SI) when possible. There is no shame in having help to achieve academic success.

Additionally, the Access and Counseling offices provide support that is not strictly academic.

Take advantage of these invaluable resources. There is no shame in asking for help even if the help is for mental health. Their assistance can make a difference in effectively dealing with stressors and finding motivation.

Recall the Six-Ps maxim. A common thumb rule of effective time management is to expect up to three hours of “work” for every hour of class.

Writing-intensive classes will challenge that thumb rule. So, prioritize when planning. Then, if finishing something early provides a “gift of time” consider this suggestion from Blanchard’s “The One Minute Manager.” Several times each day just ask, “What is the best use of my time right now?”

Remember to balance school, work, family and friends by prioritizing activities to include fun and relaxation. Recharging mental and emotional batteries can prevent reaching limits of effectiveness. The law of diminishing returns applies to students just like other people. When people reach their limits of effectiveness more effort will not necessarily yield more productivity. Find a proper balance between school and life.

Become familiar with other Meramec services such as: Writing center, computer labs, clubs, activities the Campus Life and Student Activities Council sponsor.

Students also have the responsibility to maintain an effective educational environment. Treat faculty, staff,and other students with dignity and respect. Arrive on time, complete assignments and participate in class by asking and answering questions. There is no shame in admitting when we do not know or understand something.

Welcome to Meramec. You now have permission to think and act as an adult. How well you perform here can shape your destiny.


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