Connecting with your professor!
Being in college requires a balance of homework, possibly a job, family, social life and personal wellness just to name a few. Many students struggle with this balancing act, unaware that some of their best advocates and champions are their professors!
Your professor’s job isn’t to just teach you the material for class; they are there to help you reach your goals, connect you to campus resources and listen when you need help.
To help you make the most of your relationship with your professors, we asked a few to share a little about why they become professors and share advice on what they have learned from students.
What do you enjoy the most about teaching?
I’ve been teaching all of my life, I tutored other students in college then after graduating I taught at the Pacific Science Center and then became a TA while in graduate school. I love teaching!
Engaging with students during and after class.
Helping students problem solve, particularly when they don’t think they know the material and then they get it. I love these moments.
Are professors scary?
Not at all.
Nope. We’re here because we want to help students be successful.
What do you wish your students knew about you?
Guess what, we are humans just like you, we all have good and bad days.
I want them to succeed, I want to know their goals so that I can help them achieve those goals, but not just the goal in my class but the goals for their lives.
What sets students aside from others in your class?
The ones that read the material ahead engage more in class even if they are confused by the material.
Students that are willing to work with other students, either by teaming up teaming up on projects or connecting on homework assignments.
Why do you think that students are afraid to ask for help?
They think that the class is an unsafe place to ask for help, it’s not, it’s the perfect place.
Are intimated with not having the right words.
Don’t think that the professor cares about what they have to say.
What have students shared with you that has worked with them in your class?
Going to office hours!
Working with others in the class and identifying the right people in class to work with.
Using the math and writing centers on our campus.
What advice would you give students?
Being afraid to ask for help is completely normal, we are afraid to ask for help, so don’t let that be the reason you don’t ask for help.
Don’t worry about asking the perfect question.
As professors, we know a lot more than just the material we are teaching, we are able to connect students to resources, internships, and other campuses activities. We just need students to ask!