Are you starting school or a workshop? Would you like to get some ideas on how a successful student works their mind? Here is a conversation with a student with Tips for College
Audio of following: 2013_9_5 Tips for College with Rick blog

Learn from Those Who Experience Success

Rick - ProfessionalCat: Hi Rick! I am glad that you could meet with me today and give me some tips for college students who are wanting to be successful.
Rick: Yes, Hello!
Cat: Hi, Hi. Do you want to say something about yourself and where you are right now, and your experience as a college student?
Rick: Where am I right now? Well, I am living with my parents, so that I can save money to go to school. I am going to the University of Oregon pretty soon, which is in the same town that I am living in right now. I am excited to go to Architecture school.
Cat: Oh! Exciting, Exciting! So, what level are you right now in school?
Rick: Would be a Masters Degree.
Cat: Oh, a Masters Degree. So, that means that you have already completed your first four years?
Rick: That’s right,as a Bachelor’s.
Cat: As a Bachelor’s. Did you do it all at the same college? Or University?
Rick: Well, the Bachelor’s I got all at the same college, but I did get an Associates Degree somewhere else in Portland, Oregon.
Cat: Oh, Okay! Oh, and was it helpful to go somewhere else to get an Associates?
Rick: Uhm .. I felt like the Associates program was much better than the Bachelor’s program. I felt like there were much better instructors and they were more a bit more serious.  As well as the other students as well were also more serious.
Cat: Wow! Was that a University or was it someplace .. or can you name the place for the Associates?
Rick: That was Portland Community College. 
Cat: Oh, so you went to Portland Community College? So, you really liked their instruction?
Rick: Yes, I did.
Cat: You say it was, “a little more intense, or educational, or informational, or fun?”
Rick: Just more serious. Everyone who is going to that college is going there for a reason as compared to the university, where most students are there because their parents “told them to go.”
Cat: Hmm, that is interesting. Well, it sounds like you are a serious student, like you wanted to learn something.
Rick: Yes.
Cat: Oh, okay. So when you chose your path, you probably had to do some things to help you stay on that path. When it comes to studying, what kind of tips could you give people?
Rick: The most valuable tip for myself was to: “Close off, and turn off all distraction.” So, heading to the library, finding a nice quite corner with a window was very nice. But even the window was somewhat distracting, because I had a chance to look outside at the people passing by. But, really, the most valuable tip for myself was to: “Turn off the music. Turn off the TV. Close the laptop …  if you have Facebook open. And …  just focus on what you are studying.”
Cat: Did it help you being on Facebook when you were at University?
Rick: No, actually, it turned out… I found out that I was looking at Facebook every few seconds on my iPhone. I would literally feel for my phone in my pocket, pull it out and check it every few seconds just to see if anything had happened. Even though, I already knew that my phone would indicate when I got a new notification; I would still do it.
Cat: Hmm.
Rick: And when I realized that,  I just thought, ‘This isn’t helping me, and if I want to stay in contact with the people that I care about, I will call them, or I’ll text them, or I will email them. Or send them “snail mail.”
Cat: (Laughter/Chuckles) Snail Mail.  The old ‘letter with the stamp and envelope.’ Uhm, did you get letters from people when you were at University with stamps and envelopes? (Note: Letter mailed via United States Postal Office)
Rick:  Sure. I got letters from family, my mom, and it was good.
Cat: Oh, really? Good. Well, students who are going into school right now, you have given them some really good tips! And how can a student, right from the very beginning, experience success in studying or learning the material, or getting good grades? I mean, what THREE THINGS  would you say to them? “Make sure you do these three things and this will help”?
Rick: Well, I remember reading a New York Times article back when I started my Bachelor’s Degree back in 2009, and the article said something like, “Dump your boyfriend, throw away your laptop.”
Now, I might not say necessarily, “Dump your boyfriend(girlfriend),” and I might not say necessarily, “Throw away your laptop,” but, definitely keep those things to mind, because when you are in school, you can meet people and you will be attracted to folks.
But, really, I think the important thing is to understand what your intent for going to college is. Is it to meet people? Or, is it to get a degree? And those two things can be two very separate things. For me, although I met people and I met women, I met new guys that I had a good time with them, my intent was “to get a degree.” And although it is nice to have friends, they ended up being quite a distraction sometimes. So, my advice is to just weigh those things that are important to you.
(NOTE: Article from New York Times, “Ditch Your Laptop, Dump Your Boyfriend” by Tim Novikoff, Willie X. Lin, Aman Singh Gill, Christine Smallwood, Evan LaLonde and Rebecca Elliott. Published: September 25, 2010.)
Cat: That’s great! Thanks very much! Oh, and just one other thing, you said that, when you were at the university, you were an “RA” and an “RA Supervisor.” What does that mean?
Rick: Oh, well, I was a Resident Assistant for about two and a half years, and for half, or part of that I was a manager for the Resident Assistants. That meant that I was someone who provided Stress Management to Undergrads who were having a rough time with school, and relationships, and were having a hard time relating to other people. My job was to make sure that they found Alternative Learning Opportunities and Alternative Social Opportunities outside of what they were typically used to. So, some of it could have all fallen into the category of volunteer work.
Cat: That’s great! Rick Wilson, thank you very much! And, good luck in your Masters Program!
Rick: Thanks!
Cat: When will you be graduating?
Rick: 2015.
Cat: 2015…Well, good luck! And to all those people who are listening, you’ve got some good tips here! Use them, be successful, and enjoy your learning experience. This is Cat Wilson from Apositiva, Thank you for listening!

Cat Wilson, Training and Development Expert

Cat Wilson, Training and Development Expert

Summary Tips for College

  • Close off, and turn off all distractions.
  • Turn off the music. Turn off the TV. Close the laptop … even if you have FaceBook up.
  • Just focus on what you are studying.
  • Understand what your intent for going to college is. Is it to meet people? Or, is it to get a degree?
  • Weigh those things that are important to you.

You’ve had a chance to hear how a successful college student does it. Now it’s your turn! If you need help in focus or test strategy, see us at Apositiva. Call us at 503-525-0595 or Text Cat at 503-816-5104.