Fr. John’s Article for Those Starting College

What I Wish I Knew Before Transitioning to College
Dear St. Basil Family,
A new school year has arrived, and our young people are busy with studies, sports and activities! I recently came across the following  article in our local Sun News, written by Terry Webb, assistant professor at Cuyahoga Community College. Prof. Webb offers some helpful, practical advice for our high school graduates who are just starting out in college.
Pray for our young scholars!
“The transition to college brings a significant level of uncertainty, particularly for a first generation college student. This uncertainty exists primarily because of the unknown.  High school graduates transitioning to college often lack preparation before entering the halls of post-secondary academia. Too many wait until the last minute and do not fully capitalize on available services such as College Now or TRIO programs such as Upward Bound.
So what should teens know before taking this giant step? The following is a list of things I wish someone had told me prior to transitioning to college:
 Learn to prioritize and manage time. Do not let it manage you.
 Reading is not studying. Learn the difference.
 Network and interact with a wide variety of people.
 Make time, even on weekends, to study and reflect on lessons.
 Schedule fun time and get involved in campus — but do it around academics.
 Control your attitude and emotions to present yourself in a positive light.
 Understand that people often view you by the company you keep.
 A real friend never discourages you from pursuing your studies.
 Seek out a mentor to assist with the transition to college. Limit advice from those who never set foot on a campus for the college experience.
 Talk to professors. They have a world of experience and knowledge to share.
 Use college counselors to stay on track.
 Understand your learning style and personal strengths.
 Acknowledge personal weaknesses and seek help to manage them.
 Write out SMART goals and find someone to hold you accountable for achieving them.
 Find and keep a group of academically focused individuals to study with.
 Take initiative and never assume something is someone else's job.
 Always be eager to learn. Never be afraid to ask questions.
 Be open to guidance — and criticism — from the appropriate people.
 Most importantly, always remember why you are in college and what you plan to do afterwards.
Much of the transition to college involves one's ability to reach out, reach up, speak up and stretch one's mind to develop his or her innate talents. It is imperative that a student understand who he or she is as a person and be ready to explore the campus and experience new cultures.
College is like a team sport and everyone has a place on that team. There may be failures, and that’s OK. Remember, failure is not final and not a reason to quit. It’s just a part of life’s process.” Success is part of life, too, after all. Be confident and go find it. (Reprinted with
permission from Sun News/ Article first appeared on July 20, 2017.)