I’ve been in college for four years now, and I’ve learned quite a few things along my journey. Actually, prior to starting my college journey, I learned the importance of asking questions and often resorting to nagging in order to get things done. Nobody likes a nagging person in a relationship, but the art of asking questions and nagging is a must in order to get things done in this crazy world of academia.
Luckily, my persistent attitude helped me graduate high school early at the age of 17. I had to do everything in my power to make sure all my credits from the four high schools I attended where accepted by my final school. But my advisor just didn’t seem to care and she would never take my demands seriously, that is until I learned the art of nagging your advisors.
By no means do I mean it’s important to literally harass your academic advisors; that would just be down-right creepy. However, I do think it is important to stay in regular communication with your advisors and make sure things are going smoothly with your degree plan. Your academic advisor is supposed to be there when you have questions about your degree plan or the classes you need to take in order to fulfill certain requirements, but at times your advisor doesn’t treat you like a priority.
I’ve attended quite a few colleges in the past year, which is why I’m known as the urban nomad. I’ve spent a majority of my life moving around, bouncing from Ohio to Colorado, Colorado to Maryland, Maryland to Ohio, Ohio to Virginia, then back to Maryland, followed by three years out in Denver, Colorado and now I’m back in Maryland. I move a lot! My family is very creative so we are always on the move, but in the midst of all my journeying, I’ve made sure to always stay a few steps ahead academically. I’ve done the dorm route, the community college route, and now I’m finally finishing my degree online with the University of Colorado.
It’s been a tough journey, but my determination and ability to ask thousands (more like hundreds,) has made the process easier.
Never be afraid to ask your advisor a lot of questions, even if it feels like you are nagging them. The job of an academic advisor isn’t easy, especially since they have thousands of students to deal with. But you as a student have the right to ask as many questions as possible; even if the questions sound like you are nagging them. I’ve learned that if you don’t ask questions, then you run the risk of being off schedule and not having your degree plan go according to plan.
I wish I would have nagged my advisor more.
A semester before I’m supposed to graduate, I found out that even though I will have 120 credits in Spring 2012, I will still need random upper division electives along with foreign language. I’m in dual enrollment right now and knocking out my requirements with my old community college while simultaneously attending CU. It’s a lot of work on me right now, and I’m pretty sure a lot of this could have been figured out early in the game if I would have just asked a few more hundred questions. I should have just asked more questions, but I felt like I didn’t want to bother him too much. Well I was wrong! It’s better to speak up and nag, then sit quiet and hope things work out.
I honestly can say I’ve learned my lesson this semester; it’s better to ask a lot of questions and nag your advisor, instead of asking a few questions and thinking you were on the right path. Your advisor is there for a reason, so ask them questions! Even though I asked my advisor every time I saw him while in Denver if I needed a foreign language and he kept saying no, I should have kept asking anyway. Sometimes you have to nag in order to get the job done!