NEWBERRY — In a Newberry College freshman’s first semester, there’s not only the usual courses such as math, history and English, but also a course about coming to college.
College Life 101, required for all Newberry College freshmen, is a two-hour credit class offered each semester. The course helps students become accustomed to what college will face them with, both inside and outside the classroom. Not only do students learn about good study habits, proper time management and other essential skills, but they also learn about financial management and about the importance of serving others.
Jessie Long, director of the Center for Student Success and First Year Experience Programs, helps oversee the College Life program and teaches a section of the course. According to Long, students take away a great deal and build relationships that can last a lifetime.
Long also said some changes have been made to the program, including adjusting the number of required papers, and the introduction of Alpha Leaders for each section. Alpha Leaders are Newberry College students who have already taken College Life, and help each instructor teach the course. The Alpha Leaders help provide a student’s perspective, and serve as peer mentors to the new freshmen.
The program is designed in accordance with the college’s Quality Enhancement Program (QEP), which helps guide the key concepts students will be exposed to. Among these concepts are how to build relationships, college success, technology and communication, health and wellness, financial awareness, and diversity education.
In addition, each student is required to complete a set number of hours of service on behalf of a local organization. Students serve at a variety of local organizations, such as local schools, the fire department, the Newberry YMCA, the animal shelter and elsewhere.