‘Now What?’ workshops prove to be a success, help students transition to college life
By Shawn Gakhal
The inaugural “Now What?” workshops, offered and organized by the Academic Success Center in conjunction with the offices of the Counseling Center and Project Prime, have helped new and transfer students alike transition to college life this past semester.
Dr. Sue Stock, a licensed clinical psychologist who works in the Counseling Center, spoke about the workshop and how it came together.
“It came out of some discussion with my colleagues, Nancy Litke, who is the director of the Academic Success Center, and Andrea Egle, who works with Project Prime,” Stock said. “[The workshops are] about students new to Roosevelt, whether they be first year or transfer students. They’ve gone through a lot of good orientation, gotten good information, they’ve scheduled their classes, and so then the idea is: now what? What might they need, in terms of information, or tips or advice to succeed in the first semester.”
The three organizers designated a specific theme and tailored it to the workshops.
“We kind of have this navigation theme, so that’s the idea,” Stock said. “How do you navigate the university?”
Litke explained in further detail what each workshop was supposed to mean to the students.
“Each workshop’s content was geared to match what was going on at that particular time of the semester,” Litke said. “For example, prior to midterms, we focused on how to prepare for exams, where to get assistance, if needed, and in general reflection and assessment of the first part of the semester.”
As the semester has worn on, Stock reflected back on the early workshops and the particular subject matter and potential problems each one dealt with.
“One of our first sessions talked about navigating the politics of the classroom,” Stock said. “How do you interact with professors? What’s good classroom behavior? We spent some time on time management, goal setting, self-awareness, and communication and coping strategies. In November, the session was on financial literacy. [We] find that a lot of students come and may have signed those contracts, but may not really understand what their financial aid means or what their Residence Life contracts mean.”
With most of the workshops already wrapped up, the last one will take place Dec. 4 and 5.
“Since this is the last one of the semester, it’s really more of a self-assessment,” Stock said. “But really looking at what’s changed, what have I learned and how I can apply it for next semester.”
Egle reaffirmed the workshop’s navigation theme and echoed Stock’s sentiments about the last workshop.
“We really did want to have a theme of navigating the university and themselves as a college student,” Egle said. “Our last workshop will focus on preparing for finals, reflecting back on the semester … and for some students, it will be the first time transitioning home from the life of being a college student, so we’ll talk a little bit about that.”
With successful workshops concluding soon, Egle seemed confident that the workshops would continue into the future.
“We hope to do it in the spring.”