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A new year, a new you

January 8th, 2018

The new year is a time to start over for many people, which makes January the perfect opportunity to make productive changes in your life.  Gym memberships are at an all time high right now and many people use the new year to adjust eating habits and kick their workouts into high gear.  Aside from that aspect of getting fit, I am here to offer you some resolutions that will whip this academic year into shape!

The article we link you to today is written for college students, but applies to high school and boarding school students as well.  Writer Kelci Lynn Lucier’s ideas are inspiring and achievable, which makes this piece especially useful to all.  Here is to making 2018 your best academic year yet!

Published December 17, 2017

Written by:  Kelci Lynn Lucier (for Thoughtco.com)

While New Year’s Eve often brings a party, the new year itself often brings great hopes for change and growth. If you’re a college student, the new year presents the perfect time to set some resolutions that can help make your academic year more positive, productive, and enjoyable.

Good New Year’s resolutions, of course, are not just those that address the things in your life you’d like to change or improve upon; they also are realistic enough that you’re more likely than not to stick with them.

Read more at ThoughtCo >>

‘Tis the season of giving

December 11th, 2017

There is no better time to spread kindness throughout your community than this season of giving.  There are many ways to lend a helping hand and we want to encourage our students to consider the best way of all to give:  community service.

Many Shrop Ed students are already involved in truly significant work in their communities, but some have room for growth.  A recent meeting with a staff member from United Way of the Bluegrass included discussion of great opportunities for Lexington-area students who want to make a difference.  Whether you’re in Kentucky or New England, the Midwest or farther afield, the needs are great.  If you can commit time to help a meaningful cause, you can truly leave your mark on this world.

Lexington area students, please read on.  Students beyond Lexington, please think about ways in which you can address needs in your area … and let me know if I can be a helpful sounding board.

United Way service opportunities:

Students can have a huge impact serving as volunteers.  In the words of Frederick Douglass, for whom Lexington’s newest high school is named, “It is easier to build strong children than repair broken men.”  Indeed, support given to children has enormous long-term benefits to the entire community.  It builds strong men AND women, benefiting volunteers as much as those on the receiving end of positive energy and attention.  You can make a difference!

Here are a few of the ways to become involved:

  • Mentors/tutors – help reduce the achievement gap and increase student achievement in reading, math, social studies, etc.
  • Career Day for 5th Graders – volunteers help provide schools with presentations regarding college/career readiness
  • Job Shadowing –  volunteers help arrange job shadowing opportunities for high demand occupations for middle school kids to help them connect the dots between school and careers
  • Houses of Faith – volunteers provide after school sessions to assist with homework & social/emotional concerns at Houses of Faith locations
  • STEM Programs – female volunteers introduce elementary, middle & high school females to the world of STEM to encourage interest

Interested in learning more?  Please contact Roy Woods at United Way of the Bluegrass, 859-977-7382.  Mr. Woods will be happy to hear from you and provide more information.

Wishing everyone a season filled with giving, peace and joy!

Advice from a mediocre student

November 27th, 2017

“Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.”  This famous quote from Mark Twain had me thinking about the population I work with.  High school and college students are at an age where small choices can have a major impact on their future.  Choosing the right school, participating in class discussions, and building relationships with teachers and professors ultimately lead you to what lies ahead.

In today’s article, Susan Shapiro shares some of her regrets as she relives life as a mediocre college student.  In her honest and very telling piece she discusses things she missed out on due to some of her poor choices.  Much of her advice could also be applied to high school students as they wind down their first semester to maximize their success. This article, we think, is relevant to all.

Article below referenced from New York Times

I taught my first class at Columbia University’s M.F.A. program this month, and even though I’ve been teaching college writing since 1993, I initially felt a little intimidated by the school’s regal campus. That, and regretful.

I enjoyed going to college at the University of Michigan, an hour from home, but my secret humiliation is: I was the type of mediocre student I now disdain. As a freshman, I cared about my friends, my boyfriend and my poetry. Or, I cared about what my boyfriend thought of my friends, what my friends thought of him, and what they thought of my poetry about him. Here’s what I wish I’d known and done differently:

Read more at New York Times >>

You can do anything: The “surprising power” of a liberal arts education

November 13th, 2017

Many of you have heard me say that a liberal arts education is ideal for learning how to learn – in fact, you might have had trouble getting me to stop talking about it!

As a graduate of a liberal arts college myself, I have always stood behind the view that a liberal arts education develops analytical and creative thinking skills, oral and written communication skills, and equips students for a life of learning and adapting to new environments.  Although a liberal arts education isn’t the right path for everyone, it has tremendous value.

In today’s blog, we share Inside Higher Ed’s interview with author George Anders about his book, You Can Do Anything.  Anders shares useful data to support his opinion that a liberal arts degree is deepening in value, given major changes happening in the job market today.  The underlying theory is that those who have not simply acquired a finite knowledge set, but who know how to learn and pivot, have tremendous opportunities in the long run.  

Article below referenced from Inside Higher Ed

Robots are taking over the world (and the job market). Majoring in anything but a science or engineering discipline is foolhardy. A humanities or social science degree will get you a great job — as a barista.

Right?

Read enough internet headlines and all of those might seem not only feasible but inevitable. But like many sweeping, future-looking statements, those and other proclamations about the decline and fall of the liberal arts should be taken with a truckload of salt.

Read more at Inside Higher Ed >>

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