Tips For New CPCC Students

The hallways are buzzing with new and returning students enrolled in the fall semester.  Classes are kicking into high gear. With so much activity going on around us, it can be challenging to stay focused on what is most important. As a Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC) student, I wanted to find out what resources I could take advantage of to better my education or to simply help me stay focused during a busy semester. Here are the top five tips I found:

1. If this is your first year, or if you are returning to school after a long break, take advantage of the First Year Experience (FYE). The FYE provides services such as campus tours, information sessions and a step-by-step application process into the program of your choice.

2. Relax! Brandi Lang, a sophomore at CPCC, said, “It is not as big of a deal as I thought it was going to be.” It is important to take a few minutes out of a busy day, to spend some time with yourself. Take a walk, make a list of your day’s triumphs, or try a few breathing techniques to relieve stress and restore a peaceful mind.” Andrew Weil, M.D. says, “Practicing regular, mindful breathing can be calming and energizing and can even help with stress-related health problems ranging from panic attacks to digestive disorders.” Attend Student Life events to relax; invite your friends! You can visit in between classes or you can go outside and breathe some fresh air. Did you know that there is a new greenway in front of Overcash on Central Campus? Levine Campus has a walking trail around the fountain in the back. Enjoy outdoor spaces at every CPCC campus!

3. Enroll in an ACA course! Collaborative Learning, English and Humanities Division Director, Laura Bazan says that the classes are designed to help students be more successful as college students and to help students to get a new start. The classes are designed to help students in different areas. ACA 111 is a short-session class called College Student Success that is about resources. ACA 118, or College Study Skills, is a semester-long course focused on becoming a master student. It reviews how to take notes, how to take tests, and how to improve your memory, reading skills and writing skills.  It also deals with goal-setting and career choices. There are three other short-term courses as well, ACA 120, 121 and 122. These courses are transferable electives and are covered by financial aid. They are available at all campuses and online as well. Bazan says that many students have said that these classes really helped launch their college careers. She says the classes can help center you and help you get familiar with the people and places that are going to be helpful to you. Data shows that students who complete the courses are more likely to stay in college and have greater GPAs.

4. If you are falling behind in classes or just have some questions about a subject you are unsure about, visit your campus’s Academic Learning Center (ALC). This team specializes in helping students like us succeed in our courses. They provide tutoring and support to help strengthen any academic deficiencies. The ALC website includes a list of the courses they can help with, along with each campus and its dedicated hours and a phone number to contact them. 

5. Last but not least, focus! “You just need to stay on the run,” says Kamau Ledbetter, a student in his second semester at CPCC. College is an exciting yet short-lived experience so soak it in! If this moment is hectic and stressful or enlightening and compelling, it will come and go. Make your experience memorable. Seek the help you need; it is accessible at your campus. Look at the road ahead and go for it. Success is waiting!


Written by Kimberly Cevallos
CPCC Social Media Content Author
Communications and Journalism Intern