Learning about ways to succeed in college is important

September 11, 2012

While most people have already moved into their dorms or off-campus housing to begin their college career, there are still many questions about college life on the minds of freshmen and maybe even some upperclassmen alike. Luckily, thanks to the internet and other sources, there are many tools that can help students navigate this life-changing event.

One person who has spent quite a bit of time on the issue is Georgia State University professor Perry Binder. Pipe Dream, the student newspaper at Binghamton University, recently interviewed Binder about his book "99 Motivators for College Success." The publication is based on prior research and his own experience as an undergraduate at BU. 

He said that when new students show up for their college classes, the new environment can take them by surprise. One of the biggest changes is often the difficulty of courses. He recalls getting into some trouble right when he started school, which he calls his "welcome to college" moment.

"For example, my 'welcome to college' moment occurred when I got a C-minus on my very first English paper," Binder said in an interview with the college newspaper. "It probably didn't help matters that the prior week, I got a mini-helicopter toy from a Dickinson [Community] dining hall Cap’n Crunch cereal box, and launched the copter in class."

In addition to forming lasting relationships with professors, he also mentioned that having a good time with people living in the same dorm was also quite important. He added that a well-loved ritual was getting together in the basement of the living quarters and watching The Twilight Zone with his dorm mates.

Other experts have given advice when it comes to reducing stress levels for college students. In a recent column for Power to Change, Stacy Brice said there were many ways to adapt to the new environment. Among her suggestions was to take breaks from a busy study schedule when need be, to give the mind a rest. In addition, she says that being in control of one's surrounding was important to having a successful time. She writes that getting into the wrong crowd could mean that a person is distracted from their primary goal of obtaining a solid education. This is especially important for those who must meet standards to receive college scholarships.


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