NobleHour Solutions

NobleHour provides businesses, nonprofits, schools, and higher education institutions an easy online platform to find, and manage volunteers, track hours and measure their community impact.

Business

Engage your employees, connect with community partners, and track the impact your organization is making in the community.

Nonprofit

Post opportunities, connect and engage with your volunteers, and track the impact your volunteers are making in the community.

K-12

Easily connect with community partners. Track and verify student volunteer hours, and create powerful, impact reports.

Higher Ed

Connect your students, faculty, and staff with community partners; log, track, and verify volunteer hours; and collect service-learning reflections.

Students Should Take Advantage of all College Has to Offer

College students sitting in lecture hall smiling and taking notes on laptops

There are many words I would prefer my children not use (even though they’ve heard a few of them at home!). However, there are three words I hope I never hear them say – “Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda!” (Okay, technically those aren’t words, but I’m sure you get my meaning.)

As my children begin their college years, I want them to take advantage of everything this time in their life has to offer. It’s not just about getting your money’s worth – although that’s an important lesson – whether you are paying tuition or your kids are taking out loans. This is the time to take risks. Try new things. Meet new people. Step out of your comfort zone.

There are many things I wish I had done during my college years (and maybe a few I wish I had not done!). I wish I had developed more of a relationship with teachers and sought their advice. I also wish I had taken more advantage of clubs, school organizations, and service work, but I let self-doubt and fear prevent me from taking those risks.

Don’t get me wrong, I had a wonderful college experience. Hindsight is 20/20, but I don’t want my kids to have regrets about not taking chances. Four years (or maybe five or six!) go by very quickly. It’s a great time of life to discover who you are, find friends with different opinions and passions, and transition from child to adult.

So, as my children begin this new phase, I’ve consulted the highest authorities – nostalgic parents, friends, and recent college graduates to offer their words of wisdom. Will my kids listen? I honestly don’t know. Maybe, though, these pearls of wisdom will remain in the back of their minds when an opportunity presents itself. And, instead of looking the other way because it might require effort and risk, they might just hear that little voice of mine and decide to go for it.

So, here’s a quick list for college students to consider as they begin their higher education. If those of us that have graduated could go back, these are the things we would do differently!

WISH LISTS FROM THE "WOULDA COULDA SHOULDA’S:"

  1. I wish I had gone to more events…ballgames, rallies, etc.
  2. I wish I had served on a student government board.
  3. I wish I had spent more time meeting individually with professors to pick their brains. I view it as a missed opportunity.
  4. I wish I had done more volunteering.
  5. I wish I had joined an Engineering club.
  6. Sometimes, I wish I had gone to school out of town.
  7. I wish I had taken my undergraduate studies more seriously.
  8. I wish I had understood that it wasn’t about the points to get a certain grade, but that it should have been about really learning. Graduate school was a rude awakening.
  9. I wish I had gone to college with a more open mind and not a specific major.
  10. I wish I had switched majors.
  11. I wish I had traveled abroad.
  12. I wish I had gone to the Bruce Springsteen concert rather than study for an anatomy test. (Okay, I’m not advocating choosing a concert over studying. However, every student needs to take a break once in a while. It’s good to recharge! And, no, this wasn’t me.)
College volunteers

10 SUGGESTIONS FROM CURRENT STUDENTS, TEACHERS, AND ALUMS:

  1. Go to Class!
  2. Get out there and enjoy it all. Take it seriously and always do your best.
  3. Sign up for a club.
  4. Utilize resources available on campus, including services like writing centers and tutoring.
  5. Volunteer on campus or at local organizations. Take time to help others.
  6. Develop a good relationship with your professors. They can be great mentors. Take advantage of their office hours. You want the people who determine your grades to know your name and that you’re working hard. They can also clarify course material, provide guidance on papers, and offer tips on how to prepare for tests.
  7. Study abroad for a full year. (If a year is too long for you, consider studying abroad for one semester, the summer, or holiday breaks.)
  8. Take computer classes even if they are not required for your major.
  9. Get to know the history and traditions of your school.
  10. Reach out and meet new people.

What are your suggestions and tips for incoming freshmen and current college students? Did we miss anything? Share your words of wisdom here!

Since 2007, NobleHour has proven to be the volunteer management solution for organizations across the nation. With its robust online platform, NobleHour enhances community engagement with a variety of innovative and transformative tools for finding, tracking, and measuring volunteer, service‐learning, and community service initiatives. With offices in Lakeland, FL, and Portland, OR, the NobleHour team is dedicated to empowering good in communities across the country.

 

By NobleHour Special Contributor:

Dolly Duplantier
Consultant, NobleHour
Contributing Writer / Blogger
Public Relations and Communications
Greater Chicago Area

Dolly Duplantier is a freelance writer, editor, and social media specialist. She is the mother of three children, one college graduate, one in college, and one in high school. Writing about people and organizations making a difference is one of the best aspects of her job!