Weekly Post #14 (04/20/14)

Since you started college, how many times have you been asked “What is your major?”

If you’re like most first-year students, you may have shrugged your shoulders and blurted out that one word that no one seems to understand: UNDECIDED.  As difficult as that is for others to comprehend, that really could be the truth…you just don’t know what your major is and being asked that question over and over again isn’t going to help you decide any sooner.

Let’s face it:  Selecting your major IS a major decision!

So, what exactly is a college major?  Your major is the area of study that you will specialize in.  Sacramento City College offers majors such as: Accounting, Cosmetology, Licensed Vocational Nursing, Dental Assisting, and Graphic Communication.  There is also the option of completing transfer requirements to complete your major at the university level.  A counselor can help you to understand your major courses (along with the appropriate general education pattern) towards an Associate degree or a transfer path.

Although it may be your first semester in college, you should be actively researching your major of interest – and related career opportunities – so that you can start planning the required coursework to fulfill that goal.  While it may be okay to take general education courses during your first year in college, at some point, you will need to shift your focus towards completion of your major preparatory courses.  This is especially true if you are majoring in the sciences, engineering, or computer fields.  Many courses related to those majors are sequential and you must complete the appropriate prerequisites first.

Deciding on a major doesn’t have to be a confusing process…in fact, it can be an exciting experience! To make things a little bit easier, click on the link below for tips and suggestions on how to select a college major:

(Additional major and career resources are also listed on the page!)

April 20th is the LAST DAY to drop a class with a “W.”

Dropping a class is a big decision…and a difficult one.  Your semester may be going smoothly and then suddenly – when you least expect it – life happens.

Students drop classes for many reasons…sometimes for reasons even beyond their control and sometimes when they don’t want to - but have to.  Though you may need to make some changes with your iSEP (education plan), your goal is still within your reach.

Before you drop a class, there are a few questions to ask yourself so that you make the best decision.  For example, how will dropping the class affect you or is there a possibility that you may be able to improve your grade before the end of the semester?  It may be helpful to meet with your professor or with a counselor to discuss your options, but, ultimately, the decision is one that you will make on your own.

And remember this: dropping a class is NOT the same as dropping out of college! 

Weekly Post #13 (04/13/14)

Here’s the scenario:  You have a 2-hour break before your English class begins and you decide to sit outside and enjoy the new music on your iPod.  Minutes later, you receive a text from a classmate and panic sets in: “WAYD?  That writing assignment was 2M2H and it took me 4EAE to finish it!  Did U get the HW done?  CYA in class!

(Translation: What are you doing?  That writing assignment was too much to handle and it took me forever and ever to finish it!  Did you get the homework done?  See you in class!”)

Now here’s the dilemma:  Suddenly it sinks in that you have a writing assignment due in a couple of hours and you still have to read two chapters to get started.  Do you turn off your iPod, grab your backpack, and head straight to the library to work on the assignment?  Or, do you decide to wait until the next song is over to figure out you are going to do?

Here’s a suggestion:  Just Do It Already!

Unfortunately, procrastination often has a negative affect on your grades.  If you turn in an assignment that is poorly written, has no thought or focus, and is only half completed, you will inevitably lose points…or get no points at all!  When you hold off on doing important assignments until the last minute, chances are you are not producing your best work.  Procrastination can be a big source of stress, especially when you are enrolled full-time and you are constantly trying to catch up with multiple assignments at the last minute.

In about a month, the Spring 2014 semester will soon be over.  Here are some important tips to consider for the remainder of the semester:

• Remember the syllabus that every instructor gave you at the start of the semester?  Hopefully you have been keeping up with your homework, projects, and exams.  (You shouldn’t be surprised if you have an exam next week…check your syllabus…the information is probably there!)  Procrastination happens when you think you have more time than what you really have!  The next four weeks will go by quickly, so get started early on your assignments.

• Depending on which classes you are enrolled in, some instructors will assign a big project, presentation, or portfolio due at the end of the semester which may be worth more points than the average exam or homework.  This big assignment can make a significant impact on your grade depending on how you do!  If you have questions or need help, then ask for it!  Not knowing how to get started on an assignment can result in procrastination.  If you need to, make an appointment to meet with your professor so that you can get some tips on how to get started.

• Don’t give up!  A student’s life – especially if there are additional factors such as work and family – can be overwhelming at times.  But, you have made it this far…and that is a lot to be proud of!  Unfortunately, procrastination can kick in when you are too busy doing everything else…and, before you know it, your homework gets pushed aside with the thought of “I’ll do it later.”  As you plan your schedule next semester, it is important to create a balance with school, work, and family responsibilities.

• Avoid distractions at all costs.  So, you made it to your desk with every intention to study until your cell phone alerts you that you have been tagged in a Facebook post.  You tell yourself that the post isn’t that important, but, 1.875 seconds later, you are now in a Facebook commenting conversation.  Aaargh!  Social media can be a huge distraction to your studying, especially if you’re on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat.  If you really need to post something, post this:  “Hey!  I’ll be studying for the next few hours because I want that “A” on my next exam!  TTYL!”

• Be confident and motivated.  Procrastination can be a problem when you start to doubt your abilities to succeed.  When you start to imagine the worst of things – like failing an exam or messing up on a project – your self-confidence can take a plunge.  Instead, focus on the positive things – like how studying hard for an exam will help you to receive a passing score or how putting extra effort into a project will get you a great grade – so that you are motivated to do your best work.

and lastly…

• This week is Spring Break and, yes, we completely understand that you have been looking forward to sleeping in, hanging out with friends, and enjoying the nice weather.  But, use this time to review for upcoming exams, to finish projects, to catch up (or get ahead!) with textbook readings, and to get prepared for the next registration period.  Even during Spring Break, many programs and departments will be open on campus, including the Library, Counseling Office, Financial Aid, and Admissions.

Additional links:     Procrastination and Procrastination and Motivation

Changes to PRIORITY 1 registration (04/02/14)

Are you still in the number 1 spot?  Priority 1 registration, that is!

Starting this Summer/Fall, Priority 1 registration will be changing.

In the past, continuing students were randomly assigned registration dates during a two-week period.  Your date could have been on the first day or the last day of this two-week period.

For the upcoming Summer/Fall 2014 semesters, there is a new process for determining the dates of Priority 1 registration.  You will be assigned your registration date based on the number of units completed.  So, for example, a continuing student who has completed 54 units will have an earlier registration date than a continuing student with 9 units completed.  The Priority 1 dates have been divided into four sections: Priority 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, and 1.4.

However, not all continuing students qualify for this new process.  Students who are on academic/progress Probation 2 or Dismissal and students who have completed over 90 degree-applicable units will no longer be eligible for Priority 1 registration.  Their registration date will be moved to “Open Registration.”  “Open Registration” is after all continuing, newly matriculated, returning, and new transfers have registered.

If you are currently on academic/progress Probation 2 or Dismissal, it will be important to successfully complete all courses and to earn a 2.00 GPA or higher.  You will be allowed to return to Priority 1 (if you haven’t exceeded the 90 units), but you must show significant improvement with your academic and progress status.

For students who have reached 90 units or more of degree-applicable units due to high-unit majors or programs, you are able to submit a petition to the Admissions Office to appeal your loss of priority registration.  This petition can be found in the Admissions website and you must attach an iSEP with it.

Click here to check the upcoming registration dates for Summer/Fall 2014.

Summer and Fall schedules are online! (03/27/14)

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We’re hip…we’re cool…we’re on FACEBOOK! :)

The Counseling Department is on Facebook!  Log onto Facebook and “like” us at www.facebook.com/SCCCounseling to receive important information and updates.

Also, there is a Facebook group just for new students!  This is a chance to meet other students who are new to college and to share your exciting experiences.  Click here to view the page and request to join the group!