Student Profile with Introduction

1.1The College Experience

1.2Setting Goals for Achieving Your Purpose

1.3Academic Planning

1.4Making the Transition by Connecting with Others


Maria Lopez, 18

Early Childhood Education Major, Lone Star College, North Harris


Maria Lopez always knew she was going to college even though no one else in her family had ever attended any college or university. For Maria, going to Lone Star College was an easy choice, and she is very happy that she chose to attend this college. “The North Harris campus is close to home,” she explains, “so I can still help my family, keep my part-time job, and continue my education with some of my high school friends.”

“[I]n my first-year-experience course . . . I . . . quickly learned the importance of organizing, managing my time, and staying on top of my assignments.”

Now that her first year is under way, Maria has learned there are some key differences between high school and college, specifically the amount of time she spends studying. “In high school, I studied maybe five hours a week,” she explains. “Now I study many more hours, something I learned was important right away in my first-year-experience course. I also quickly learned the importance of organizing, managing my time, and staying on top of my assignments. Setting goals and finding a purpose for being in college have also led to my success.”

Maria enjoys attending her college. “Here everyone guides you,” she says. “You can ask for help from your instructors, other students, and a lot of other people like tutors or counselors. I think I would be lost at a university in my first year, not having anyone to teach me about the rules of the college and how it is different from high school.”

Do you hope to graduate from college and find a good job? If so, you have something in common with Maria and many other college students. Today, the workplace is changing so much that most people will need some education beyond high school to support themselves and their families properly. In the United States, more than 67 percent of high school graduates (approximately 21 million students) attend college. As the job market changes, people of all ages are constantly changing career directions and beginning or returning to college to get the training or education they need to further their aspirations and reach their goals.

This book will present you with a set of strategies to help you succeed at one of the most important things you’ll ever doget a college education. As you settle into your new college routine, we want to welcome you, or perhaps welcome you back, to the world of higher education.