Organization Leads to Success

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I was not the organizing type before I made my return to GCC last fall. I quickly learned that I had to get organized fast. In high school, I was never organized because every teacher wanted you to organize differently and this had me confused and unorganized. Everyone has their own way of getting organized so I picked the best ways to get organized according to my needs. By the end of week one of Fall 2013 I devised a plan and stuck to it. To my surprise, it worked! Here’s how I organized my academic life:

Time Management

A major factor of being able to stay organized is time management. I don’t like to be rushed so I have to schedule my life. Everything is so much easier when my bag is packed the night before, coffee’s ready in the morning and outfits are laid out and ready to wear. I’ve also found that if I plan out specific times to write that paper or study for the big test then I will actually do it. This is where Google Calendar and my weekly planner are extra helpful. The GCC Career Service Center will be hosting a Time Management Workshop from 12:45-1:45 on Tuesday, September 23. For more information and to register for the workshop please visit our website. I’ll be going because there isn’t a time management tip I’m not ready embrace. Join me!!

My Weekly Planner

I like multifunctional things so it’s only fitting that I found a three in one organizer. I have a zippered pocket for pens and highlighters, a notebook and a pocket for business cards and other loose items. Each week, I made a to do list and crossed items off as I finished them.

Online Organization

I am a Google fanatic. Gmail is a must and, in my opinion, a far more professional email platform. Google Drive is Google’s version of “the cloud” where you can store your Google Docs, Sheets, Drawings, pictures, and other Google and Microsoft Office Apps. You are allowed 15 gigabytes for free and, if you have a Gmail account, you have a Google Drive. I use Google Drive and Docs to type up all of my homework and papers. It’s a simple way to have everything you need in one place without a thumb drive. The last way I stay organized online is with Google Calendar. At the beginning of each month I sit down and make events for every homework, test, and appointment. This way I’m reminded via email (and push notification on my phone) that something is due or I have somewhere to be.

Class Notes and Handouts:

Many of my classes had their powerpoints posted on Blackboard. I made sure to have them printed out and ready to go. I chose the option that lets you print three slides on one half of the paper and three spaces for notes. I kept separate two pocket folders for each class so I could keep the powerpoints and handouts exactly where I needed them. Finally I used a three subject notebook for the classes that didn’t have powerpoints available on Blackboard. I made sure to take great lecture notes and even better book notes to ensure success in each and every class.


School Locker

One thing I truly dislike is carrying all my stuff around all day long. So I decided to rent a locker for the year from Student Activities. Its only $30 for the year or $15 for a semester and you get a portion of your money back at the end of the year. I loved being able to drop nearly everything off at my locker before classes. A locker at GCC is a must.

So there you have it. That is how I organized my academic life. Check out our Pinterest board about getting ready for classes for more organization tips. Do you have any tips or tricks of your own?

 

One Week Down!

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gccblogs:

Reset your Genesis password AND your computer login password at the same time with the “Reset My Password” button in Genesis! MJ explains it all!

Originally posted on MaryJane's Weblog:

It’s finally Friday of the first week of classes… it’s been a month this week!

TiredAlthough, it’s been a relatively decent week. Couple of little things have gone bump in the night, but usually there have been more students needing help with usernames and passwords or more faculty looking for Blackboard assistance.

The “Reset My Password” button in Genesis has been a big hit, once we get anyone to use it. Using the button allows everyone to reset both their Genesis *and* their computer logins at the same time.

Faculty have made more use of Blackboard this semester. We’ve set up a lot of courses for/with folk and look forward to helping everyone use new tools down the road.

The good news is that this will be a 3-day weekend! Yay for holidays. I’ll be online watching for problems, but I will also get to sleep in, visit with some…

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Best Week Ever!

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The Student Activities Office is gearing up for, possibly, the Best Week of Welcome (WOW Week) EVER! WOW Week begins with Maps and Snacks on August 25th and will end with a Dive-In Movie at the pool on August 29th. Here’s a list of all the awesome activities that Student Activities has planned and you can find more details about WOW Week here.

Monday, August 25th

  • Maps and Snacks in The Forum from 8:00am-11:30am
  • Ice Cream and Lawn Games at the Clock Tower from 11:30am-2:00pm
  • Kindergarten Night in the Village Hall at College Village at 7:00pm

Tuesday, August 26th

  • Maps and Snacks in The Forum from 8:00am-11:30am
  • SpaGo! in the Student Union from 110:30am-3:00pm
  • Pizza Party and Karaoke in the Student Union from 7:00pm-9:00pm

Wednesday, August 27th

  • Board Game Dual in the Student Union from 8:30am-11:00am
  • Bamboo and Photos in the Student Union from 11:30am-2:00pm
  • Showtime Tonight with Brian Herberger in the student Union at 8:00pm

Thursday, August 28th

  • Wii Open Play in the Student Union from 8:30am-11:30am
  • Fall Fest Luau in The Forum from 11:30am-2:00pm
  • Drag Bingo in the Student Union from 7:00pm-10:00pm

Friday, August 29th

  • Board Game Dual in the Student Union from 8:30am-11:00am
  • Big-Time Fun in The Forum from 11:30am-2:00pm
  • Dive-In Movie in the Campus Pool from 6:00pm-8:00pm

GCC RAKtivists’ 100 Happy Days Challenge

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100 happy days (1)The GCC Random Acts of Kindness Committee has evolved into the GCC RAKtivists. They began trying to make GCC a happier and kinder place with the first annual Random Acts of Kindness Week last February and now they’re at it again. The RAKtivists are challenging GCC to be happy for 100 days in a row. The challenge is simple. Take a photo and share it with the hashtag #GCC100HappyDays every day for 100 days. You can also create your own hashtag in order to personalize your own 100 Happy Days but if you would like to share a happy day at GCC then please be sure to use our hashtag too.  This challenge stems from the original 100 Happy Days Challenge where you can register your happy days with their website and learn more about the 100 Happy Days Foundation.

The RAKtivists are welcoming new members and new ideas on how to spread the kindness around GCC. They will be meeting on the Third Tuesday of each month during common hour beginning with September 16. The location of their first meeting will be announced at a later date. Check out their Facebook page to stay up to date on meeting dates and locations. The RAKtivists plan to share the best of #GCC100HappyDays on their Facebook page on a weekly basis as well as sharing their 100 happy days. GCC and the RAKtivists will begin their #GCC100HappyDays Challenge on Wednesday, August 20, 2014.

8 things all GCC students should know.

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Lists are all the rage on the internet these days so I figured I would compile a list of things that all of us at GCC should know. I’m by no means the final say in this so feel free to make additions in the comments!

1. Winters in Western New York are For Real!

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Snow day? Whats that? Nothing like walking make that running through a snow covered parking lot to get to classes. Not to mention those who commute 20 minute drive? Mother Nature says NO! How about it takes you 45 today. With a little planning and a lot of coffee, you can beat it.

2.) We have a diverse campus.

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Whether its age or gender, race or religion, or sexual orientation and culture we have it all here at GCC. More important we are proud of our diversity as a campus and embrace everyone’s differences. Feeling comfortable in your own skin is something that comes very natural on campus.

3.) We all get along.

Okay! Okay! Maybe we aren’t all like Rachel, Monica, Joey, Chandler, Phoebe, and Ross. But you have to admit that there is a helping hand wherever you look on campus. People are so willing to take time out to get to know you – its amazing.

4.) Bigger isn’t always better.

So we aren’t a huge University with 100,000 students. What we lack in size we make up for in character. The community that GCC is isn’t something you will always find on a larger campus. Embrace it.

5.) We have clubs and activities for days! (Join one)

Seriously over 50 clubs and organization on campus! What?! Join something you like or make your own! We are all about the activities! The list is here.

6.)The Library is the place to be!

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Okay. So MAYBE it’s not like that night club back home but our library on campus is pretty jumping. Rather than what you expect from high school or the public library, on campus there is a bustle about. Groups working on projects and people asking Librarians for advice. It’s basically the place to be.

7.) The staff is always willing to help.

If its a professor to someone on the cleaning crew they are always willing to point you in the right direction. Never be afraid to ask a question! They are all very knowledgeable and if they don’t know, chances are they have the ability to point you in the right direction.

8.) The experience is yours! Make it count.

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Go for it! Do what makes you happy and above all else chase your dreams!

 

 

 

Ten Reasons Why I’m Excited for Fall 2014 at GCC

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I have to admit. I’m going through GCC withdrawal. I go to the store to pick up some pool supplies and I find myself battling through the back-to-school supplies to find the clearance pool floaties. Part of me gets mad because we haven’t even gotten through July yet, but another part of me becomes nostalgic and I suddenly can’t wait to get back in the swing of things. So I thought I would share a list with the top ten things that I am excited about for the Fall 2014 semester.

10. The GCC Child Care Center

This one is for my daughter. She talks about her classroom, teachers, and friends daily. It is such a relief to know that my daughter is well taken care of at the GCC Child Care Center and she loves every minute of it. Last fall I was beyond nervous about putting her in school but I really had no other choice. It was one of the best decisions I’ve made for my little lady.

The center has structured schedules, wonderful teachers, and spotless classrooms. Their services are available to children ages six weeks to preschool aged children. Children of students, staff, faculty, and the community are able to use the facility. Visit their website to learn more and to find the contact information for Staci Williams, Director of the Child Care Center, to see if they have openings.

9. Seeing Old Friends and Making New Friends

When I came back to GCC I decided that I would not be a wallflower and that I would force myself to socialize. I encourage everyone to do this. I have made some great friends at GCC and I cannot wait to see everyone. I am also excited to meet a whole new round of friends.

I think everyone should have that genuine college experience. You won’t keep the same circle of friends from high school forever. This is the time to get used to the unknown and learn to put yourself out there. You may not make friends right away but before you know it, you will find a great group of friends.

8. The Student Union

The Student Union is a great place to relax and hang out with friends between classes. My personal favorite thing about the union is the smoothies in the cafe. The cafe also offers subs, pizza and other great food. While you’re hanging out in the union with friends there is usually a few games of pool and ping-pong being played. I’ve never played but I do enjoy watching the seemingly endless games!

The Student Union is also home to the Student Activities Office. Student Activities plans a wide variety of fun events throughout the year like movie nights, dances, and pizza parties. They also run a Leadership Certificate Program to help students develop their leadership skills. This is a great program that is open to any student. To learn more about the Student Activities Office and the Leadership Program please visit the Student Activities website.

7. Clubs!

Fall 2014 Club Fair

There is a wide variety of clubs and organizations at GCC. There is something for everyone and joining one of the clubs is an awesome way to make great friends and memories. Each semester during WOW (Week Of Welcome) Week Student Activities holds a club fair where you can learn more about the clubs from their representatives in the Forum. You can find a list of all the clubs here. Some of the clubs are for certain majors and others are open to the public. All of these wonderful clubs are welcoming new members so feel free to contact the club advisors or meet them in person at the WOW Week Club Fair.

6. Stress

I guess it’s a personal preference. I feel kind of lost without the challenges and stress that comes along with my coursework and extracurricular activities. This is my last semester before I graduate and I cannot wait for the challenges that are ahead of me. I’ve found that as long I keep my work life planned then life is good. One way I do this is by going through all of my schedules and combine them on my Google Calendar. I usually sit down and put about a month’s worth of appointments, exams, and homework into this online calendar. I even set email reminders so I don’t forget about an upcoming event.

5. The T-207 Computer Lab

The T-207 Computer Lab

Whenever I need to buckle down and get a ton of work done I go here. There are usually a lot of computers available and if you’re working on a project that needs a pop of color then you can use their color printer. Don’t go crazy with the color printing. There is most definitely a page limit. This computer lab is on the second floor of the T Building on main campus and their schedule can be found here. Staff at this lab can also help you find or reset your GCC username and/or password as well as help you with your Blackboard account.

 

4. Campus Centers and Online Learning

GCC Campus Center Locations

GCC offers a wide variety of courses online, at the main campus and at six additional campuses across the area. I’m taking full advantage of these conveniences this semester by taking a few online classes, classes at the main campus, and one class at the Medina Campus. If you’re considering taking all or some classes at one of our campus centers please take a look at the Campus Center website.

Did you know that you can earn some degrees with GCC completely online? Yup. It’s true! There are over a dozen degrees that can be completed online, plus another thirty can be completed almost entirely online. Check out this list to see which program fits your schedule.

3. The Alfred C. O’Connell Library

The library at GCC is basically awesome. There are four banks of computer stations, a technology classroom in the back of the library, quiet study rooms for groups, and an endless amount of resources. The librarians are friendly and are more than willing to help you find the proper resources you need to complete your coursework. The library will allow you to check out laptops and textbooks but you cannot take them out of the library. I like borrowing textbooks from the library because it helps me focus and get a lot of work done. One of the newest online resources available to students with a GCC username and password is Mango Languages. Thanks to the Alfred C. O’Connell Library students can now learn over 60 different languages. Check out a recent blog post about Mango Languages to learn more.

2. The City of Batavia 

Over the years I’ve become very impressed with Batavia’s growth. When I started attending GCC for the first time in 2005 there wasn’t much to do. Now the city is booming and there is a better variety of shops, restaurants, and fun times. The Batavia Business Improvement District has set up a great website and Facebook page with information on upcoming events and local businesses. Check out these websites to learn about the Batavia Farmers Market, Jackson Square Concerts, and more.

1.  Student Success Driven Professors, Faculty, and Staff

I truly believe that the biggest reason why I succeed here at GCC is because of the amazing professors and staff. They want to see their students succeed and are more than willing to give their students the tools for success. You can always find help on the Student OneStop website. This is a huge resource that is available to students that need help finding their advisors, learn how to get involved with clubs or sports, and even request your diploma.

photo-1Honorable Mention: The Spring 2015 Fashion Show Although I won’t be a student in the Spring of 2015 I am looking forward to attending the 34th annual fashion show. The talented students and designers work very hard to put together WNY’s longest running fashion show and they never disappoint. Check out our website to learn more about previous GCC Fashion Shows.

What GCC means to me.

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Genesee Community College is my second home. If you met me today you would never know I used to be extremely shy, or have a problem making friends. I believe GCC has had a huge impact on me and deserves a lot of credit for who I am today.

Prior to college, I had a hard time in school. I didn’t fit in well and didn’t have to many friends. I felt like I didn’t fit in anywhere. In the Fall of 2012, I enrolled at GCC and became a full time student. I was very nervous but also extremely excited. It was a brand new start for me.

My first semester I learned about the leadership certificate program, and thought it was an awesome way for me to enhance my leadership skills. I also felt like it was a good first step in meeting new people and getting myself out there. Then my second semester I learned about Alpha Epsilon Gamma, the service sorority on campus. I was really skeptical at first because I really wasn’t sure I would fit in, or that anyone would like me but I decided to give it a try.

Joining AEG and the leadership certificate program opened so many doors for me. I made a numerous amount of friends, and not just acquaintances, real friends that I can depend on. I had the opportunity to work in the Dean of Students office as a work study, join the GCCA board, become orientation leader and so much more. That is when I realized GCC stopped feeling like school and more like a second home.

I got to chose classes I was interested in and met so many of the awesome faculty on campus. I never had so many professors that cared how I did and would go the extra mile to see me succeed. If I was having a hard time, they would help me or send me somewhere I could get help. They encouraged me and it was a really great feeling.

Like I said GCC has become a second home. I made a place for myself here and because of that I have become more outgoing and confident. I believe that anyone who wants to can find their place as well. There are so many different clubs and organizations on campus that anyone can find something that interests them.

So, I would like to say thank you to all of the people at GCC that have pushed me, helped me, and molded me into the person I am today. For those who feel like they don’t fit in, look a little harder because I guarantee if you do you will find your place too.