Friday, October 28, 2011

You are Never Too Old for College

No one ever considered me a model student in high school.  In fact, during my sophomore year (almost thirty years ago), one counselor told my parents to forget about me graduating with my class.  By the skin of my teeth, I barely acquired a diploma.  Since then, I have been intimidated by the very thought of returning to school.  As life would have it, the economy crashed, and I found myself jobless and in desperate need of that missing education.  After discussing it with my wife and kids, I decided to  give college a try. 
At the start, I only committed to one semester.  I won’t lie, it was difficult, and there were challenges around every corner.  However, once I jumped in, Vol State was willing to help me along the way.  As a community college, they were not uncomfortable with a post-forty adult student.  Realizing there was no room for pride, I shamelessly took advantage of every free aid available.  The patience of the tutors and counselors was awesome. 
My next significant milestone is in May, when I graduate with an associate degree.  To many this may not seem lofty, but for me it is monumental, since neither my parents nor grandparents received a college degree.  Soon, I will need to make more life changing decisions.  I am confident that the skills I have learned at Vol State will empower me to make the wisest choices. 
 If you are considering college as an adult, here are a few tips:
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
  • Get to know the students in your class, this will pay off when studying.
  • COMMUNICATE - Be honest about your fears and concerns.
  • Try the TRIO program (If you qualify, it’s a great resource for non-traditional students).
  • Become familiar with labs on campus.  (FREE 1x1 help) Language, Math, and Computer.
  • Research and shop around for your textbooks BEFORE the semester starts.
Volunteer State Community College

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