We all know the statistics. 1 in 3 incoming college freshmen never graduate. And as many as 70% of junior college students never complete their 2-yr degree or transfer to a 4-year university. It begs the question.
This is not a one-size-fits-all kind of answer. But in my experience working with students, those who have a little more clarity on their path forward tend to be more engaged and perform better throughout their college experience. The truth is, it’s very difficult to do the work required to be successful if you don’t know where you are going.
Asking a young person to take challenging classes like Chemistry, English Literature, Economics, or Statistics when they don’t have an interest and don’t understand why is one of the consistent problems I see in my work.
There is no buy-in. No reason. No reward.
Defining Point B is a critical part of any student’s experience. As soon as a young person feels like they have a destination, a purpose, or a WHY, it’s so much easier to do the work required to get there. It’s just human nature to need to connect the dots between what we are doing now and where we are going.
It is true that most 18-year-old college students have no idea what they want to do with their lives. So where the heck is Point B when a young adult is trying to figure that out? I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Point B is anything that moves someone forward in an inspired way and gets them closer to their career path. For some, it is landing on that major and knowing exactly what they want to do with their lives.
For most, it’s simply taking steps to move forward every day, getting closer to that answer. Engaging on campus, rewarding friendships, and seeking out experiences that are positive can do just as much to move a student from A to B. The answers will come as long as they keep moving.