I wish I could write fiction. I do, I do, I do. I learned a lot about how to do it at the Rock Hill Writing Intensive on Saturday and am excited about getting started. Nervous too. Still, the “nothing ventured, nothing gained” is as true as ever, and tonight I’m going to start a story about a gal named Lillie.
In the meantime, I’m sharing a little something about one of my favorite works, Crossing the Bridge: Succeeding in a Community College and Beyond. Although I published the book nearly two years ago, its message is as true as ever. Here are a few paragraphs lifted from the preface and introduction.
“I wrote this book for one reason, the desire to help students succeed during and after college. Of all the positive things about teaching, the students top the list. Working with people on the threshold of change is exciting, especially when they’re eager to learn.
“All of the teachers that I know feel the same way. Collectively, we could say to our students, ‘“You crack us up, make us laugh, and worry the heck out of us. You wake us up in the middle of the night as we ponder your statuses and wonder how we can best help you. We take pride in your successes and feel saddened by your shortcomings, disappointments, and failures.”’
“As a psychology instructor, I believe that learning and applying psychological concepts such as self-efficacy and positive reinforcement can improve a person’s life, and I KNOW that the application of the principles in this book will help the reader to be a more successful student and effective person.
“If you were a community college student standing before me, what would I say that might make a difference in your success? How can I convince you of the value of an education in helping you attain your goals? After assuring you that you have what it takes to make your dreams a reality, I’d elaborate on the following five points. I’d also emphasize the importance of being intentional, of asking yourself exactly what you want your life to be like and then being purposeful in making it happen.
- Think seriously about your unique gifts and interests. Then assess your aptitudes, interests, personality, and values before deciding on a college major.
- Realize the importance of education in achieving career and personal goals and then choose the right college and the right major to help you prepare for you career. 3. Talk to college personnel including an admissions counselor, academic advisor, and financial aid specialist about your plans.
- Learn and practice college survival strategies including class attendance, time management, and study skills.
- Apply some latent functions of education such as following life laws and managing stress.“
Between the introduction and the “final exam,” there’s an abundance of information on study skills, time management, financial aid, academic advisors, online classes, career choices, and personality assessment. Student quotes and testimonials are sprinkled throughout the book, thus making the content more meaningful to the reader.
If you’re a community college student, or if you know or aspire to be one, this little book will answer all your questions—probably even some you didn’t’ know you had. Available in print and electronic versions, check it out on Amazon.com.