Student Life Mentors Guide Freshman Through Their Inaugural Year

By Autumn Williams


Downtown CampusHigh school students are reminded daily of the importance of grades and that college is right around the corner. The pressure is on as soon as you walk through the doors of high school. The pressure to find the right fit for college builds until students have an acceptance letter in their hands.

Walking onto a college campus for the first time can be scary for anyone, whether you are a high school student in Florida State College at Jacksonville’s Dual Enrollment program or a fifty-year-old degree seeking student. Students say the diversity at FSCJ calms their nerves and allows people from all walks of life to receive an education with less intimidation. FSCJ is home to professors and Student Life mentors who encourage students as they pursue their degree. 

Freshman often seek advice from their peers and FSCJ staff on how to be a successful in college.

“Study, read in advance, don’t be late for class, and try to attend every class because you pay a lot for those [classes],” said student Marco Tacandong,18.

Professor Matthew Lany says, “If you want to be here, then come to class and put forth your best effort… keep an open mind and understand that what you may want to do five years from now might not be what you want to do today.”

Professors like Lany are here to help, so don’t be afraid to ask them questions or for advice.The diversity at FSCJ gives most students a richer experience than they had only learning with peers withing four years their age in high school. It may be a shocking at first, but students agree age diversity enriches their college experience.

Student Life mentors are a friendly face to newcomers and encourage students to try new collegiate activities. Ben Yung, an advocate for student success, sees freshman struggles first hand and counsels students.

“Besides getting involved through our programs and our workshops…there’s the student ambassador program, student assistance…and there’s other ways to get familiar with the campus.” Yung suggests that incoming freshman explore and expand their interests.

College may seem like a terrifying and alien world to freshman just starting out, but FSCJ has so much to offer, so keep an open mind, try new things, and don’t be afraid to ask for help.

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