Friday, September 2, 2011

College Experience Journal Entry #1

My first semester of college, I had a required class called "The College Experience".  We were required to write journal entries over the course, and that's what a lot of the entries on my other blog are about.

College Experience Journal Entry #1 Aug 31, 10
1.-Score for Accepting Personal Responsibility:  51
-Score for Discovering Self-Motivation:  61
-Score for Mastering Self-Management:  30
-Score for Employing Interdependence:  38
-Score for Gaining Self-Awareness:  37
-Score for Adopting Lifelong Learning:  41
-Score for Developing Emotional Intelligence:  34
-Score for Believing In Myself:  46

2.  My highest score was in "Discovering Self-Motivation".  If I had to pinpoint one or two reasons why that score was higher than everything else, I would have to say that five years of not going after my goals, interspersed with failed attempts at getting out on my own and independent, as well as almost a year at Job Corps followed by a very short job, coupled with my frustration at my situation, had a lot to do with it. 
Some of it was also due to being in my younger brother's shadow ever since he started school a year after I did.  Being compared to him due to his better grades in all areas, while I did well in only a few areas, really hurt.  Even now, I feel like I'm in his shadow because he's been on the Dean's List at his college, and he's done internships in his field of study and done well at those internships.  Always being second best at something like that has driven me to be the best at what I do well, and finding things that I'm good at that he isn't good at, and working on being even better at those things, be it knitting or drawing, or even cooking.
I tend to be stubborn about getting what I want, and I've been learning to put that to good use.  For example, I started Job Corps in April of 2008, and aside from filling out some paperwork and securing a job, I was done by the time December 15th rolled around. 
I had decided that I would not dink around while I was at Job Corps, though I did make time to be social and not hole up on dorm.  I started out on Phase Three, which is the third highest Phase one can be at the Denison Job Corps Center, and maintained that Phase, with steadily improving scores, for most of my time at the center.  I made a decision early on in my time there that I would graduate Job Corps as a Phase Four or Honor Four student, and through hard work, discipline, and a lot of determination, I succeeded.  I graduated as an Office Assistant student, on Honor Four.  I had been a member of the Clown Club, the LRC Monitors, and other recreational activities, as well as being Crew Leader in two areas on my dorm.  Because I was so determined to succeed at Job Corps, and because I put forth the effort, I did succeed there. 
Knowing that I can succeed if I set my mind to it has made me a very self-motivated individual.  I hope to apply what I've learned about myself over the past five years to use in college, and in the Air Force.

3.  My lowest score was in "Mastering Self-Management".  This is something I have struggled with for as long as I have been in school.  A very small part of it is because I have Attention Deficit Disorder, but a lot of it is learned bad habits.  I also tend to choose to do the "Fun" things first, instead of the things that need to be done that aren't "Fun".  I know I need to work on breaking that habit for good if I want to succeed in college.  I have started working on that by not taking the full "recommended" first semester for my major, so I don't have as much on my plate this time around. 
I am working on not being so forgetful of assignments by doing them in a timely manner, and writing them down when the instructor assigns them.  I will also make use of all the sticky notes I have access to, will write down the things I need to remember to be prepared for class and other things throughout my day, and will put them where I will see them as I'm getting ready before I bring them with me.  With consistency, the sticky notes will become habit, and will go a long ways in helping me better manage things in my life.

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