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Director offers seminar

| Sunday, April 24, 2016

Diane Fox, director of the Office for Student Success at Saint Mary’s, is leading a five-day summer seminar called “Access to Success” that will cover what college students need to be academically successful. The seminar is offered June 13 through June 16 to local students who are beginning college, students who’ve had a difficult start to college and those returning to college after being away.

According to Fox, the overall goal of the seminar is to teach students that “rather than jeopardize your future, this seminar can empower you with the skills, strategies, and psychology of your success in college-and perhaps, life.”

Fox sees the program as a way to give back to the community that she has been a part of her whole life.

“I’ve been a South Bend resident all my life and this is one of my ways that I am giving back to the high school kids in the South Bend School Corporation and all of the schools in the surrounding areas,” Fox said. “I think most kids today have a hard time transitioning from high school to college for whatever reason it is.”

Fox said she hopes that by incorporating college students who may not have had a strong academic year, they will be able to give advice to recent high school graduates that enroll in the week-long program.

“My target audiences are beginning college students and anybody who had a difficult first year. When you graduate from high school you think you know everything, and naïvely so because if you get into a good college, why would you not think that you would be smart and successful by doing the same things you did in high school?” Fox said. “Nobody tells them this until you get that bad first grade and you cry and you think you’re stupid and want to flunk out of college.”

Fox believes that most of the common mistakes high school graduates will make their freshman year can be easily prevented.

“I think this is important because it makes student proactive rather than reactive and if anything, my goal is to keep them out of a hole that first year,” Fox said. “I don’t care what college you go to but if you get in a hole that first year, you’re digging out the next four years. I don’t think it’s arrogance that they think they know everything, it’s naïvety.”

The key to both enjoying college and being academically successful is balance, according to Fox.

“I don’t think you should do something at the expense of something else ever,” Fox said. “It’s all about balance because I think you’re priority has to be academics because that’s why you’re here, but you can’t study all the time or you’re going to burn out. But you can’t party all the time because you’re not going to have anything to go back to”.

The seminar lasts from June 13 through June 16 from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, contact Diane Fox at dfox@saintmarys.edu

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