Freshman students explain their college experiences

Julio Rodriguez
Junior Creative Editor

img_1306Issaac Kautz|The Hudsonian

College academics may be a culture shock for many, however many of the newly-made Vikings have started to adjust to the academic setting.

“In high school, you had a lot of people helping you and making sure you were doing what you were supposed to do. Now, you’re just on your own. You have to make sure you’re on top of everything,” said Maria Padilla, a first-year psychology student.

College has been in full swing for six weeks, and it is the first year for many on campus. Midterms are right around the corner, and many first-year students have started to recognize that they are now full-blown college kids.

“It’s a really nice campus, and I love how interactive the teachers are,” said freshman political science student Imara Smith. Imara has had a pleasant experience with her professors at Hudson Valley.

The professors at Hudson Valley try their best to accommodate their students’ levels of intellect. “My english composition professor is hands-on and interactive. I’ve never been good at writing, but she told us to use what we already know and put it into an essay,” said Smith.

Smith has had a positive experience at Hudson Valley, but she is planning on transferring soon. “There are many different reasons that people are here; there is a social aspect to community college that I’m not completely with,” said Smith.

Smith believes that a four year school would suit her needs. Many students, including Smith, use Hudson Valley as a stepping stone to another college or university. Smith said, “I’m trying to transfer right now to SUNY Potsdam.”

“I think that Hudson Valley is fun, but it’s a lot to get used to. I’m always overwhelmed because I’m not used to everything at college. I don’t believe that high school prepared me for college,” said Padilla.

Padilla is experiencing difficulties transitioning from high school to college-level academics. The transition might be overwhelming for a lot of students. There are resources on campus available to students who might need help transitioning.

The Center for Academic Engagement, located in the Campus Center, focuses on reaching out to students and encouraging them to access academic support services. There are academic coaches available to students, and the coaches can help students achieve their goals.

If first-year students are struggling to do well in a class, they should try to visit their professors during their office hours. Professors are required to have office hours in order to answer the questions that their students might have, so utilizing that time to meet with them might be beneficial.

The Learning Assistance Center, located on the lower level of the Marvin Library Learning Commons, is another example of an academic assistance service available to students. The center provides individualized and small group instruction in math and other subjects.

Psychology student Tabitha King said, “It’s definitely better than high school; there is so much freedom. You have the chance to meet new friends everyday, and that’s really cool.”

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