College Student Development

The most common theme I hear from my students is, “I’m not sure what I want to do”.  These college students are spending countless hours and money attending college and passing classes without really knowing who they are, who they want to be, or establishing professional goals. It’s almost as if they choose college majors based on everything but personal conviction and professional passion.  Why choose a major that you don’t love and can’t see yourself wanting to know more about the subject every day?  I know some students who have picked a degree based because it had the least number of required course credits for graduation. I wonder if that’s because some students are not sure what they want.  How important is it for a student to learn about them self, their ethics, their values, priorities, and specific goals and how would those insights impact college student success more than merely going through the motions until graduation?

Managing Oneself by Peter Drucker is a handy, quick read to stimulate self discovery and goal setting for all developing individuals; especially for college students.  The book is part of the Harvard Business Review Classic Series and was intended to shape best practices and leadership skills in managers. I believe that the concepts are significantly important for college students as well.  The concepts and lessons generate personal identification of values, ethics, and goals; everything that could help students better understand who they are now and who they want to become.

Each of the following sections are partnered with simple rational and multifaceted support guiding the reader to better understand their value system, their skills, develop a healthy professional motivation, and leads to setting professional goals:

What are my Strengths?

How do I perform?

Am I a reader or a listener?

How do I learn?

What are my values?

Where do I belong?

What should I contribute?

Responsibility for relationships

Cutting down the time students flip from one major to another will help them to graduate faster.  By narrowing their focus and aligning their passion with their studies will help them to enjoy their college experience and gain more from their research.  Managing Oneself introduces the important and critical qualities that young leaders should spend time on in order to be the most efficient in their own pursuits for success. If we’re asking our college graduates to make a choice and pick a career, let’s ensure that they’re equipped with the skills, self-identity, motivation, and personal conviction that contributes towards their graduation and professional success.

1 Comment

Filed under Higher Education, Leadership

One response to “College Student Development

  1. Often we make decisions based on small amount of valuable information. We are determined to graduate, however, we are unsure of the best fit. Prior to making such a decision we should focusing on creating better understanding of who we are, how we learn, and figure out our strengths… Great post Tara on a topic we rarely hear much about.

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