Monday, December 16, 2013

College Business Hours for the Next Few Weeks and Important Dates for Spring

We know that many people are getting ready for the spring semester, which starts on January 16. The college will be closed during the holidays, and so we wanted to let you know when we will be open. A reminder: you can always apply online at  Current students can register online on the My Vol State page. This can occur at any time during the holiday weeks when the Vol State campuses are closed.

Here is the holiday schedule for the college:

We are open for normal business hours every weekday through and including Friday, December 20.

The college will be closed to the public from December 21 through January 1. Offices will be back open for normal business starting January 2.

There is only one other closing date before the semester begins. The college will be closed on Thursday, January 9 for professional development.

If you need Admissions, Advising, Business Office, Records or Financial Aid help (just to name a few) please keep these hours in mind.

We want to help everyone get going for spring semester. If you need help, please don’t hesitate to ask. Visit any of our three campuses (Gallatin, Springfield or Livingston) or give us a call. The Gallatin campus can help for McGavock or other off-campus sites.

Spring fees are due on January 7, 2014.

A $25 Late Registration Fee is charged beginning January 16, 2014.

The Business Office will begin processing financial aid refunds to students on January 17, 2014.  Students must meet the attendance requirements before the excess aid is refunded.  Refunds will be issued to either the Discover debit card, by check or as direct deposit. Students that opted-out of the debit card and are not set-up for direct deposit will receive their refund check in the mail. 

The Business Office will begin processing regular student refunds for spring on February 3, 2014.

Students dropping classes beginning January 16 may be dropping in a refund period.  See chart link below.  In drop/adds Regents Online Degree Program (RODP) courses do not swap evenly with regular VSCC courses.   

Spring Refund Dates:  Refund information on the website:

Friday, December 6, 2013

Crunch Time for Finals - Tips From Students

The end of the semester is near and final exams are fast approaching. It's crunch time. Preparing for final exams can be a nightmare for students, especially when the rest of the world goes on as normal. In addition to final exams, there are other major stressors, such as  final projects and papers to add to your to-do list. We asked some students for their study tips and advice for managing time during finals week.
James Davis reviews over his notes for Philosophy.

When studying do you wait until two days before, cramming all subjects in such a small time frame? Or do you prepare weeks before, reading over notes and quizzes and joining study groups?

James Davis, a sophomore here at Vol State, relies on organization and note taking to prepare himself for exams.

"I would definitely recommend that you utilize all of your resources, get into study groups, communicate with your instructors, and take notes," said Davis. "Not every student is going to take the same notes in a lecture, so get into study groups and find out what the key points your peers heard."

Stephanie Seng relies on color coordinating her notes.
Vol State student Stephanie Seng reviews her notes that she has collected throughout the semester.

"I am a highlighter, even though I have been told not to. I color coordinate the color of my ink pen with my highlighter, and use that for each chapter, so referring to certain material is easier for me,"said Seng.

"While I am studying I chew gum and when I take the test I chew the same piece of gum. I know that it seems weird, but it helps me remember my material," said Stephanie while laughing.

So whether you use candy or gum for a memorization tactic or  use visual aids, just remember that if it works for you stick to it. Not all tips and study habits work for everyone the same.

I usually prepare a timetable of what I have to cover, taking breaks in between. With the schedule that I have outside of school, cramming seems like the only option, but I know that will only result in stress and disorganized learning. Throughout the semester I keep a binder of notes,handouts, etc. that my professor has provided me. When crunch time approaches, I take those notes out and review them.

I wish everyone luck on their exams and hope that everyone can have a great winter break.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Christmas Concert Hopes to Bring Back Favorite Memories Friday and Saturday

"Frosty the Snowman..." I can hear this song playing in the background of home videos while opening Christmas gifts as a child. Christmas songs seem to never get old. Those melodies can take you back to a special memory of the holiday season.

Vol State's Music Department is giving everyone the opportunity to walk down memory lane this weekend. Students will be performing shows on December 6 and 7, each beginning at 7:30 p.m. The concerts will be held in the Wemyss Auditorium at Caudill Hall. I met with students recently as they rehearsed for the show.

There will be a variety of music styles, including gospel, rock, country, pop, and jazz. Several Vol State performance ensembles will be showcased during the concert.

"We have a so much talent in the group this year. I am excited for everyone to see what we can do," said Phillip McCoy, who sings in the Vol State Show Stoppers. "From the stage, the lighting effects, and of course, the music, it will be awesome to see the end result."

James Story, who is the Department Chair for Visual and Performing Arts, said that he hopes the performances bring back fond memories of Christmas.

"I encourage everyone to come out on Friday or Saturday night to experience the different sounds that each ensemble has to offer. They've each taken twists and turns for each arrangement, making it their own," he said.

"It's all about performing and giving new life to songs that people have loved for years,"said Jacob Young. "I hope that this year we are able to paint a picture with each song that takes people back to their favorite Christmas memories."

There will be a CD for sale that features songs performed by Vol State students.Sale proceeds from the CD on Friday will go to help fund the development of the new Humanities building.

The show is $5 for the public and $10 with a CD. It's free with a Vol State ID. For more information please contact the Office of Humanities at 615-230-3202.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Major League Baseball All-Star Returns to Vol State

When six foot four Steve Delabar walks down a hallway it’s hard not to notice, even in the Pickel Field House, where athletes come and go all day long. The Major League Baseball All-Star pitcher is back at Vol State.

“It feels like I never left, walking the halls,” Delabar said. “A lot of the staff is the same. It feels like only yesterday since I was here.”

Yesterday was actually 11 years ago, the last time Delabar pitched for the Vol State baseball team. In that time, the Toronto Blue Jays player has been in and out of surgery and in and out of the majors. His latest stint, though, is going quite well. He pitched in the seventh inning of the 2013 All-Star Game in New York.

“It was kind of a blur going there,” Delabar said. “You try to soak it up all you can and enjoy it.”

When asked what it felt like when he walked out on the field to pitch, he said it was all business.

“It felt like my job. I didn’t know who I was facing. I got in there and threw my warm up pitches.”

Delabar secured a strike out. He then went on to pitch an immaculate inning, the first in Blue Jays history, a few weeks later. An immaculate inning is nine pitches for three strike outs.

He returned to Vol State recently to speak to the young Pioneer pitchers.

“I’m just going to talk to them,” he said. “I’m sure they have a lot of questions. When it comes down to it they have their own path they need to create.

Much of the talk focused on strength, repetition and velocity. Baseball trainers look for conditioning ideas from all sorts of sports. For pitchers, that means considering what tennis players do to build strength.

And when asked about playing community college baseball, compared to big university programs Delabar says the path depends on you.

“The Vol State program was really good when I was here and there were a lot of scouts watching us.  If you play well enough here you can get picked up by a major league team.”