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Last chance words of wisdom for your kid on the day you drop them off at college...
Old 08-18-2017, 04:09 AM   #1
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Last chance words of wisdom for your kid on the day you drop them off at college...

Took my son ocean fishing on a party (a.k.a head) boat as kind of a final send off yesterday. I knew it was an opportunity to get in the final 'words of wisdom'. Perhaps saying wisdom is a bit presumptuous I gave him the straight skinny according to Ray

1. If your having a problem with the work, seek help. His week spot is English - writing in particular. He's me about 40 years ago - I couldn't put a sentence together. What's more I found it 'painful' (his words exactly) to write any kind of paper. I remember how I felt after my first paper was ripped up by Dr. Butterfield. What saved me is I wasn't alone. I learned what I should have learned in HS. Each sentence was like laying a brick in a wall. You lay them one at a time and make certain they are square. You also take a good look to see if the mortar lines match... In other words slow down and take your time.
2. Open up and make new friends
3. If studying is impossible in your room find a spot. For me it was library. Modern dorms have huddle rooms and lounges.
4. Open the books early and often... he's rarely, if ever really applied himself. Can he change? I talked about how his college all in cost being roughly $26,000 is relatively cheap. Some of his classmates will be blue ribbon school candidates that simply can't afford a $70k a year college. It is a great deal for a big name school.
5. Just graduating isn't enough you need good grades to land a job.

There's no doubt he can do the work... now it's out of my hands.

Did you provide or receive 'words of wisdom' that you'll share?
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Old 08-18-2017, 05:12 AM   #2
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I finally learned to write in my very first college class, so no worries there.

My DS has a learning disability which makes his language skills weak. He had lots of remedial help, in and out of school. We used Sylvan learning center to bring his reading from 4 grades behind to grade level. He learned it's ok to ask for and get help and that there was no shame in it. That is useful advice from a parent too, if needed.

He sought help on his own at his college's counseling center, and found out he has some features of autistic spectrum disorder. He has learned there are some advantages to the disorder, such as being able to focus on something until mastery is attained. He has been forced by life to understand himself better than many of us.

I would also advise him that he will be tempted to party, to drink, etc. I hope you have advised him how to handle that. And to treat women with respect.

My parents never gave me much advice; they were too busy drinking and arguing. Fortunately, I was born an overachiever. Thank goodness.

It might feel like it now, but this will not be your last opportunity to provide guidance.
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Old 08-18-2017, 06:13 AM   #3
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I was the first in my family to go to college, so no words of wisdom for me. However, my grandmother told me that I shouldn't go to college, that it would lead me straight to hell. It remains to be seen if she was right about that.
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Old 08-18-2017, 06:31 AM   #4
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All good advice so far. Let me add:
Never use another person, especially for sex.
Learn the difference between acquaintances, buddies and friends. Treat them appropriately.
When faced with an assignment, always spend some time scoping it out before starting. In the case of a test, read the whole thing first and then answer the easy questions first. This will build your confidence and a buffer for the harder parts.
Always be prepared to go the extra mile for your friends.
Think ahead to what you want to do next.
Never underestimate what people think of you.
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Maturity is a harsh mistress
Old 08-18-2017, 06:39 AM   #5
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Maturity is a harsh mistress

About half of every college freshman class washes out and does not return. This has been replicated yearly since I went to college back in the Jurassic era.

The complexity of the coursework increases compared to high school, but that's not the biggest difficulty. What trips up most of the ones who don't make it is they don't know how to handle the independence.

In high school, a student is surrounded by people who will push, pull, cajole, encourage, intimidate, or drag him through graduation. Teachers, guidance counselors, coaches, and of course parents, all have his back. Once he enters the building, everything is regimented: go here, sit there, eat this, read that, no talking during class changes, etc.

But colleges expect students to take responsibility for their own learning. No one is taking attendance. There are no hall monitors or tardy slips. Term papers are due when they are due, without excuses.

DS needs to understand that the first year will be the hardest because of this adjustment. Remind him that party invitations don't all have to be accepted. There will be beautiful sunny days on the mall/quad/horseshoe/parade ground with people throwing frisbees and playing guitars; he will feel a strong temptation to join them and tell himself that studying for Thursday's calculus exam can wait. Danger, Will Robinson!

Professors and administrators have seen the pattern of 50% casualties emerge and each September they know it will recur. On day 1, your son should look to his left and his right; chances are one of those guys won't be around next year. DS needs to decide in whose company he wants to be a year from now.

Good luck!
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Old 08-18-2017, 06:41 AM   #6
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Saw this just this week from the VP of Chick-fil-A:

Achieving Success
==================
1. Find a purpose, not just a job. A job will provide a paycheck, but a purpose will fulfill your life. Do something that matters to you.
2. Solve problems. The world needs more problem solvers. When you discover a problem, name it, own it and solve it. You add value to your organization when you solve the problem you identify.
3. Take care of you. You cannot perform at your best if you do not take care of yourself physically, mentally and emotionally. While you are working hard to achieve professional goals, don’t forget to schedule time to take care of you.
4. Go Above and Beyond. Distinguish yourself by doing more than asked and doing jobs no one else wants to do.
5. See opportunities, not obstacles. There is an abundance of both. A positive and optimistic attitude will take you farther and endear you to those with whom you work.
6. Foster the dreams of others. Show interest in helping other people achieve their dreams. It is likely that someone helped you along the way. Pay it forward by helping others on their path.
7. Treat everyone the same and with respect. Strong relationships are core to any success and begin with respect. Remember that everyone you meet is special to someone – treat everyone the way you want the special people in your life to be treated.
8. Protect your reputation. Integrity is currency. Always do what you say you will do when you will say you will do it. Never lie about anything. Avoid anything that even has the appearance of impropriety.
9. Give generously. Share your time, talent and treasure with others. You will give a lot, but you will receive more because of the people you meet and the places generosity will take you.
10. Demonstrate excellence in all that you do. Close enough is never good enough. Do your best at all times.
11. Commit fully to wherever you are. If you are at work, commit to being fully present. If you are with your family or friends, commit to being fully present with them.
12. Set goals and measure your progress. If you don’t clearly define where you want to go and monitor your progress toward the destination, you are not likely to get where you wish to go.
13. Seek and value feedback. Be willing to hear the voice of critics and act on feedback that you receive. Find truth tellers in your life and listen to their wisdom.
14. Share the credit. Rarely does one individual accomplish anything alone. Recognize those who help you along the way and reward them as you are able.
15. Be grateful and gracious. Say thank you often and be willing to give grace to others. In a world full of egos, grateful and gracious people separate themselves. Their lessons and influence are memorable.
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Old 08-18-2017, 06:58 AM   #7
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These are good points but if you haven't talked the talk and walked the walk along with your child, it will all fall on deaf ears.
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Old 08-18-2017, 07:25 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by FIREmenow View Post
Saw this just this week from the VP of Chick-fil-A:

Achieving Success
==================
1. Find a purpose, not just a job. A job will provide a paycheck, but a purpose will fulfill your life. Do something that matters to you.
[...]
15. Be grateful and gracious. Say thank you often and be willing to give grace to others. In a world full of egos, grateful and gracious people separate themselves. Their lessons and influence are memorable.
I really like this list. I would, however, add some guidance regarding resilience. Something like:

We are all human beings. Sometimes you will not live up to these standards. When this happens, analyze what went wrong and how you can repair (or at least improve) the remaining situation. Be prepared to apologize, ask for forgiveness, and follow through on repairs. Fixing a damaged relationship may be the hardest part. You can bounce back!
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Old 08-18-2017, 07:26 AM   #9
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The single most important piece of advice to give young people, which I have often given:

Never, ever, EVER let anyone or any organization abuse you. They will try.
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Old 08-18-2017, 08:31 AM   #10
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My son headed off to his senior year of college earlier this week. I told him, "You had better a get a job this semester instead of sitting around on your butt playing video games."

He was driving to college with a friend who had a car. I told his buddy, "Hey, make sure he starts applying for jobs tomorrow." His friend replied, "I need to look for a job, too."
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Old 08-18-2017, 08:33 AM   #11
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One more thing, they won't listen to you anyways, so just as I didn't read past the first item in anybody's lists above, they will have tuned you out on your third or fourth word anyways.

And did you listen to any unsolicited advice from your folks when you went to college? I didn't think so.
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Old 08-18-2017, 08:44 AM   #12
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The fourth, and last, child starts college in two weeks. I am often left with a quote from Anna Kendrick in the movie 'Pitch Perfect', "Make good choices!" Pretty much everyone innately knows what this means.
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Old 08-18-2017, 11:10 AM   #13
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Ray,
No words of encouragement, but if he has a problem with writing I'd suggest taking a course in Report and Technical Writing ASAP. I took it in Jr. year and it enabled me to go from a B student to an A student. It helped out great at w*rk too.
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Old 08-18-2017, 11:17 AM   #14
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You are in charge of your ability to graduate. Pay attention.

(If I had taken the advice of my assigned academic "advisor" (professor) on which classes to register for when, I would have had to go to school five years instead of four.
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Old 08-18-2017, 11:21 AM   #15
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Stay out of trouble and don't get arrested.
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Old 08-18-2017, 01:16 PM   #16
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Stay out of trouble and don't get arrested.


All I can say is Sweet Moses...
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Old 08-18-2017, 01:22 PM   #17
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About half of every college freshman class washes out and does not return. This has been replicated yearly since I went to college back in the Jurassic era.
That is the model for many non-selective mostly state schools. It is totally inapplicable to Ivy League and similarly choosy schools.

Ha
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Old 08-18-2017, 01:38 PM   #18
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That is the model for many non-selective mostly state schools. It is totally inapplicable to Ivy League and similarly choosy schools.

Ha

Actually kids who start school at a 4 year state university before they are 20 and attend full time have a pretty high graduation.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/moneybox/..._4_charts.html

Ha is right get into Harvard or Yale and there's a 95% or better chance you'll stay to see the caps and gowns.
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Old 08-18-2017, 01:39 PM   #19
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That is the model for many non-selective mostly state schools. It is totally inapplicable to Ivy League and similarly choosy schools.

Ha
True enough. I didn't see a particular school named in OP's post.

Harvard has a high retention rate, but some guy named Gates dropped out anyway. I heard he did okay.
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Old 08-18-2017, 01:59 PM   #20
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True enough. I didn't see a particular school named in OP's post.

Harvard has a high retention rate, but some guy named Gates dropped out anyway. I heard he did okay.
I think I was only stating a fact, not a judgment.

Many publicly funded schools (not all) are required to take every high school graduate in their state. These may be excellent schools, it's just that the true game starts after a quarter or or so.

Ha
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