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

Counselor provides road to success

By Kraishylea Rhodes/reporter

SE students learned techniques for student success in a Sept. 12 seminar.

Joyce Fisher, SE counselor, started Goal Setting and Time Management by soliciting a show of hands when she asked, “How many of you feel confident that you have a pretty clear goal in mind?”

Displaying an academic success pyramid, Fisher pointed out that self-responsibility had the largest portion compared to goal setting and time management.

“ You’re the captain of the boat, and the person behind the wheel,” she said.

After asking, “What’s a goal?” Fisher answered her question with the words promise, target, dream, which many people possess, and intensity, which she called a by-product of having a goal.

“ You have as much intensity as the Colorado River,” she said while showing a picture of a woman rafting in a strong water current.

When Fisher requested a show of hands, 75 percent of the students indicated they were undecided majors. So she asked them when they should start defining their goals. She paused for a few seconds while some students silently looked toward their neighbors.

“ Before you enroll in electives that don’t count and before you transfer,” she said.

Fisher pointed out some things students should consider. She told them to think about what they enjoy doing, what makes them happy and what their natural nature is.

A good goal, Fisher said, needs to be S.M.A.R.T., which stands for specific, measurable, action-oriented, realistic and time-bound.

“ Make sure your goal is your goal,” she said. “Get rid of friends and habits that interfere with your goals.”

To assist in goal setting, Fisher suggested The Pact, a book about three young men who promise each other to fulfill their own dreams.

“ Get help,” she said.

Fisher said TCC has many people available at the school to help students polish or develop their study skills. And she told students to pair up and find a study partner.

Part two of Fisher’s interactive speech covered organizing time.

“ Time management is not a skill you were born with,” she said. “The more you practice it, the better you get.”

Fisher offered three techniques for academic success: study during one’s most alert hours, allow two hours of studying per hour of class and study the most difficult subject first.

“ Why study the most difficult class first?” she asked. “Because that is how your brain will retain all of the information the best.”

Fisher advised students to take half an hour, study for 25 minutes, then break for the last five minutes. For those with longer attention spans, she encouraged them to take an hour to study, resting the last 10 minutes of that hour.

“ When you take your five- or 10-minute breaks, don’t watch TV or play with your cell phones or you’ll never start studying again,” she said.

Reading and studying each night as well as planning study periods following each class period can help students succeed, Fisher said.

Freshman Danzell Mack said Fisher’s presentation was beneficial.

“ She helped me as an undecided major quickly narrow down my career choices and enlarge my goals,” he said.

“ Now I can even make better use of my time than I was before.”

David Farmer, an adjunct psychology instructor, took his class to listen to the speech.

“ It was very effective; I think any skills we can give the students in time management will help with school productivity,” he said.

“ She also gave lots of practice strategies that will help the students with their time management.”

Fisher’s was the first of seven sessions for the Fall 2007 Student Success Seminars, sponsored by SE student development services and counseling. The seminars will continue into October, with the last speech slated for Wednesday, Oct. 3.

For more information about the series, contact Fisher in the SE counseling center or at 817-515-3577.

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