Setting goals can alleviate pitfalls

Many students deal with the problem of how to accomplish their goals in college. There are many obstacles on the way to graduation.

” There is a lot students should look out for,” said Kirk E. Gavin, assistant dean of the School of General Studies.

There are always things that distract students from their reason for being here.

“Being too laid back with assignments, doing papers at the last minute, partying too much, avoiding real commitments, pledging and putting things above what you’re really here for [are major distractions],” said Angelana Robinson, a 21-year-old, junior social work student from Tampa.

Time management is important when trying to make the grade. The first reason that comes to mind for some is not being able to handle the pressures of managing time.

“Time cannot be managed. Time is a continuous ongoing process, what we manage is ourselves,” Gavin said.

Students should make sure they are organized and able to balance all of their classes. A potential pitfall students can look out for is procrastinating with assignments and major papers.

Another problem that students deal with throughout their college years is what to do to succeed. Students are and should be constantly looking for answers.

Gavin gives a quick guide to success that suggests that one should, “set priorities, don’t procrastinate, create realistic plans, follow the plan, engage in self-reflection, ask for help and don’t give up.”

A key part of succeeding in college is studying the information given. Students who are not doing well can evaluate how much time they spend studying.

“Study at least an hour to 2 hours a day,” Robinson said.

Students sometimes don’t know who to consult or where to look for help.

“We have dynamic academic advisers across this campus trained to provide academic guidance and assistance,” Gavin said.

Students might feel uncomfortable approaching professors, but they are here to help. If they can’t help you, then they will send you to the right person.

“First go to the professor because they don’t know anything unless you tell them,” Robinson said.

“Look for help from yourself, your professor and fellow students,” said Andrew Jones, a junior mathematics student from Tallahassee.

Lots of pressure comes from trying to make the grade. Students may feel overwhelmed with the expectations of their teachers and family.

“Talk to the academic adviser, visit the study skills center and don’t wait until you get into academic difficulty. Know that your stress here is really small,” Gavin said.

Students can look at their future and realize there will be a much bigger task ahead. Many students do not like to sacrifice for school obligations.

“Be willing to sacrifice personal time for study time, and stay focused.” said Mickey Clayton, director of academic advisement. “If that fails come and get help.”

Many times students bring more pressure on themselves. There is already enough pressure from trying to succeed. Students can make it easier for themselves.

“Start early on assignments and don’t wait until deadline,” Robinson said.

Setting goals can be a good way for students to start a foundation.

Students can start preparing for the future immediately.

“Visit the Career Center. Look at different variations and opportunities the job has and look at the needs of the job,” Gavin said.

Some basic goals for students to start out with are short term and long term.

“One should start with long-term goals because they help to keep you focused, then the short-term goals can be steps to reach that long-term goal,” Jones said.

Students can set goals that they are comfortable with. Students who have complicated goals can add more pressure to themselves.

“Set reasonable goals, if it is one of your worst subjects don’t expect too much,” Robinson said. “You need to know how to plan. Without plans, it’s just another idea.”

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