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College Success and You

Being successful in college does not happen by accident. You must have a plan and be prepared to see that plan to completion. The days of taking a fun road trip with your buddies, a six pack of cola, and a bag of potato chips is over. It is time to map out where you want to go in life. Any good plan should include setting goals (PDF) and being pro-active.

The first step in setting goals is to determine your long term goals. Why are you going to college? What are you going to do with your college degree? Where do you see yourself in five years? Ten years? After determining your long term goals, begin to create your plan. This is when you will determine the steps needed to reach your long term goals. These would be called short term goals. From these short term goals, you will be able to create to-do lists.

For example, you have determined your long term goal is to be a speech writer. You are planning on writing presidential speeches for a career. To reach this long term goal, you will need to the set a short term goal of going to college. The decision of attending college creates the need for even smaller short term goals (i.e., completing each semester successfully); which, in turn, creates a need for a daily to-do list. These to-do lists increase the odds that you will be pro-active in your college career and successful at meeting your long term goals.