Time Management, Finding Community and Accessing Support
As the fall semester begins, there are three things all students can do to set themselves up for success: find community, access student support services, and develop strong time management skills. Take time this month to discuss these important topics using the mentoring articles and prompts below.
Discussion Topic #1- Time Management
Understanding the importance of and practicing strong time management skills are critical to finding success in college.
Start by reviewing this list of Ways to Take Control of Your Time. Using the prompts below, discuss this important topic to help mentees on their way to a successful post-secondary experience.
Mentors should kickoff the discussion by responding to the following prompts:
- How did you develop strong time management skills and practices? How do you manage your time now?
- What advice would you give your mentee to help them develop their time management skills?
Mentees: share any reflections on what your mentor has shared and then respond to the prompts below:
- Do you consider yourself to be good at managing your time? Why? Why not?
- Of the "8 Ways to Take Control of Your Time," which ones do you want to focus on?
- What type of support or resources will help you manage your time well this fall?
Read more about how to improve your time management skills, including a list of tips and tricks.
Discussion Topic #2 Finding Community
Numerous recent studies highlight the positive impact a sense of belonging has upon academic performance, college persistence and overall well-being for first-generation students. As the beginning of the fall semester approaches, this is a good opportunity for students to consider where and how they will find and build community on campus.
Mentors: using the prompts below, take the lead by sharing your own experiences during your first semester/year in college.
- Describe your experience during your first year on campus. Share mistakes you made, the lessons you learned, and what you might have done differently to achieve different outcomes.
- Thinking of academics, finances, extracurriculars, and social and family life, share a few insights that would be helpful for your mentee to know – starting by unpacking the challenges you faced.
Mentees: use the prompts below to share your reflections and thoughts on your finding community during your first semester on campus.
- What are you looking for in a community on campus this year? How do you want to engage with the campus community?
- What types of new experiences and extracurricular activities are you interested in this year?
- Are there clubs, student organizations or activities that you would like to participate in to help you feel connected to the campus community?
- Are there particular affinity groups that you hope to engage with on campus this year?
Mentors: close the discussion by reflecting together on what has been shared. Share any additional insights before discussing the topic of accessing support.
Discussion Topic #3- Accessing Support
Accessing support is critical to student success. Use the prompts below to discuss any support needs. Remember to utilize the program/company website to research and identify potential sources of support. Don't forget that your Program Manager can help as well!
Mentors: use the prompts below to guide this discussion.
- Has anything changed in your personal life that would affect your attendance / performance once on campus? (Housing, transportation, dependent care, etc.). What type of support would be helpful?
- Have you met with with your academic advisor?
- Have you reviewed your syllabi and attended office hours for all of your classes?
- Are you enrolling in any support or opportunity programs on campus?
- Have you visited student support services offices on campus (tutoring, writing center, etc.)?
- Have you secured resources to help pay for books, transportation, food, etc?
- Do you need to explore scholarships or other forms of financial assistance (including iMentor Emergency Fund)?
Close the discussion by working together to make a list of follow-up items for your next check-in. Remember to reach out directly to your Program Manager for support and to share any important updates.