SJSU Freshmen, take Sci 2!

The other day, one of my best friends’ little sister sent me a text asking about Science 2: Success in Science (Sci 2) so, being the undisputed authority on all things Sci 2, (HA! O=] ) I promised her I would write a post describing why she should take the class.

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time to remember how confused you were when you first went to university and tell the freshmen you know getting ready to attend San Jose State University (SJSU) to take Science 2, or at least read this post.

Here are only a few of the many reasons all incoming freshmen at SJSU should sign up for Sci 2:

I. It is chock full of resources! In this class, you will learn tons of things that will help you be successful at  SJSU (hence the name):

  1. Which offices and departments are in charge of what, including where to go for help depending on the sort of trouble you stumble into
  2. Where to find important documents and info on the SJSU website (not as easy as it sounds, trust me)
  3. Important rules and regulations most students don’t learn about until it’s too late
  4. A list of resources found on campus such as free tutoring and help with paper-writing
  5. The CSU formula used to calculate student GPA (useful in determining how much effort to put into which classes)
  6. Self-analysis regarding work and study type and relevant tips (for maximum efficiency so you have more time to spend enjoying university life)

II. Science 2 is a great class to meet other freshmen and make friends in. With both a lecture and an activity section, you have 100+ potential new friends in this class alone. Coincidentally, this is where I met some of my best friends =]

My 2 best friends from my time working as a PA

III. Each activity section has a Peer Advisor (PA). This is an older student who has already taken and done well in Sci 2. Each PA is assigned to a class s/he co-teaches, grades assignments for, and meets with each student one-on-one every week to evaluate individual student progress and help with any problems before they spiral out of control. I like to think that we’re very helpful and great role models, but that’s up to you to judge for yourselves.

IV. It’s a great work opportunity: if you do well in the class you can apply to be come a PA. PAs do a lot of work attending their class section, grading assignments and meeting with students every week, but it’s generally under 20 hours a week, pays better than most jobs on campus, and is very rewarding. I really loved getting to know the students in my section, helping them become more familiar with SJSU, and seeing how much more confident I’ve helped them become at the end of the semester. Other PAs and I have become friends with many of our students and still keep in touch with them. It’s really a great job for anyone who is organized, sociable, and enjoys mentoring.

So there you have it folks! This is one of the best classes I have taken in university. It should really be called success at SJSU rather than success in science since it’s so helpful for freshman of all majors, and enrollment is not limited to science majors. It’s a little more work than most freshman classes, but it saved me from spending endless hours looking for information, gave me the tools and knowledge to stay out of trouble, and helped me graduate on time (I’m sure my parents appreciate the savings!)

So do your friends and relatives coming to SJSU a favor, tell them to sign up for Sci 2 (or Sci 90T for transfer students.)

*** Wanna get ahead of the curve? Check out my Job Search Toolbox for tips to set yourself up with a job by the time you graduate! ***


Choosing a Career: Money or Fun?

Last weekend I was stuck at work during a particularly boring shift and started wondering how I ended up there. Usually my job is really fun–I get to talk to people who stop by our display at fairs and tell them about bath remodeling while enjoying the festive atmosphere and exploring the attractions during breaks. As a matter of fact, two weeks ago I worked a car show and got to check out beautiful old cars while I worked! However, both last Saturday and Sunday I was unfortunately stuck working at a mall where few people walk by our store and even fewer bother to come in. As I stood there waiting for customers, bored stiff, I began wondering why I had taken this job and realized that it could make for a brilliant blog entry (I found something productive to do with my time: coming up with topic ideas!)

In case you’re wondering, I decided to take this job because I was bored–great way to remedy that, right? I hadn’t worked in a few months and felt like I was not being productive (or filling my bank account–let’s face it, moving to a new country can be expensive!) and I thought this sounded like fun. At first I looked for PR internships, but quickly realized that no one would want to bother training an intern they could only have for a few months. And so my fate was sealed.

Even though I would have enjoyed all the things that typically come with an internship: learning new things, developing my skills, making industry contacts… I don’t regret taking this job. I usually have a lot of fun and it’s a great way of making some extra cash before moving ($13/hr isn’t too bad for a part-time job!) I do think I’ll be careful when I look for work in Paris though–I’ll make sure the long-term positions I apply for have interesting work and allow for personal development.

Let’s hear from you guys though. What’s more important: making money or doing something you enjoy?