How to Succeed in College: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Academic Experience

full name / name of organization: 
Nancy Riecken/Ivy Tech Community College
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We all have classroom experiences that likely come to mind when talking with prospective students and their family members. We also remember our own college experiences when we were students. The upshot is that most students are unprepared for college.

Material submitted for this monograph (anticipated publication by December 2014) should be from the perspective of 1) your own personal successes and failures in academic life, or 2) your own classroom or mentoring experiences. Possible topics for your vignettes or your essay may include the following (but don't feel limited by this list – share your experiences and your recommendations):
• What did you do wrong?
• What did you do right?
• Looking back, what would you do differently?
• How were you encouraged to or dissuaded from pursuing a college degree?
• Did you have mentors?
• Did you make numerous attempts?
• Did you change your mind?
• Were you a late bloomer in the academic garden?

Whether a short vignette or a longer, more detailed article, please send your recommendations and advise of not only what to do to help students succeed, but warnings of what NOT to do as well! Share this as you feel appropriate with colleagues across the disciplines. The strongest essays will invite and encourage readers toward success.

Essays should be limited to no more than 4,000 words but may be as brief as 300. Please submit your .rtf file any time before July 1, 2014 to Nancy Riecken at

Nancy Riecken is Program Chair for English and Communications at Ivy Tech Community College's Gary, Indiana campus. She is managing editor of The Atrium (