The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Specific goals focus energy, help achieve dreams

By Zaman Fabela/reporter

Oftentimes, students lose sight of the goals they set, a South Campus counselor said recently.

Carl Scherrieb presented Setting Goals, the first of a two-part ABCs to Success series to help students attain their short-term and long-term goals.

“Goals have to be smart,” he said.

Smart is defined as specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely, Scherrieb said.

“Every day, I ask people to check their email, have your degree plan printed,” he said. “When a student says, ‘Tell me what to take,’ I tell them, ‘I don’t know your goals or who you are.’”

Students should first realize their ambitions to know specifically what direction they are heading, Scherrieb said.

“When you make your goals, you don’t have to make it long,” he said. “Be specific.”

Once that specification is figured out, measuring the steps toward the goals is key, Scherrieb said.

“It has to be measurable. ‘I’m going to lose 10 pounds’ and not ‘I’m going to lose weight,’” he said. “‘I’m going to make $1 million.’ Can you measure that? How about 500? That’s measurable. The question is where that money is going to go.”

Simply stating generic goals won’t work, Scherrieb said. Working or studying are general activities that should be specific to a person’s level.

“‘I’m going to work harder’ is not a goal,” he said. “‘I’m going to wake up 30 minutes early’ is.”

Students might see their time in college as too tedious to ever obtain the desired degree, Scherrieb said.

“As you take classes, you’re constantly thinking, ‘I’m going to this university. I’m going to get a job,’” he said.

This may emphasize the goals that are yet to come, Scherrieb said.

“‘I’m studying for my degree. I’m taking biology classes’ sounds empowering,” he said.

To get all these goals on schedule, he suggested using a calendar.

“Even with all these electronics, you should go get yourself a wall calendar and markers, a specific color for your parent’s birthday, for homework, studying,” he said. “Then you get to see visually your plan.”

The idea is for people to be constantly aware of their schedules, Scherrieb said. Otherwise, the burden will be difficult.

Nicky Risovi, a student who has seen other students failing to keep up, blamed failure on complacency.

“It’s easier for me to say, ‘I’m not going to do this,’ but it’s best to stick to your goals,” she said. “I started college at 17. I should have finished at 21.”

Risovi is now in the process of finishing her psychology and social work degrees at the age of 29.

“Many things derail me from staying in school,” she said. “I realize school shouldn’t be in my priorities. School should be my only priority.”

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