Fall 2012

How to Thrive in an American University

When you leave your home and comfort zone to come to a new country, you must navigate through a multitude of experiences. The shock that comes from the move is oftentimes overwhelming, making the integration into a new society and its networks, like a University, daunting and foreign.

Used with Permission from Flickr user Rob Stradling

Used with Permission from Flickr user Rob Stradling

When you first arrive in the US everything seems different. You have to settle into a new living space, find someplace to buy groceries, learn knew customs, and it seems like you’re always struggling to catch up with the conversations happening around you.

With all this change, once the school year begins you may soon ask yourself, “What have I gotten myself into?”

So, how do you not only survive in an American University, but thrive? Learn to be proactive and engage the resources around you.


Why a Librarian is Your Paper’s Best Friend


October is Theological Libraries Month?

Why is there a whole month dedicated to the library of all places? All you do there is read books, make some photocopies, and catch a few zzz’s. The library can’t offer you anything that you can’t find on the web or from your professor, right?


You’ve forgotten about your librarians and talking to a librarian can mean the difference between a good paper and a great paper.

Here are just a few ways they can help you succeed in your research or academic work.


19 Tips for Conquering the Blank Page

Notturno by gualtiero

Used with Permission from Flickr user gualtiero

Have you ever been faced with an assignment or test question you had absolutely no idea how to answer?

Did you ever receive a grade for a paper and feel that the professor was looking for something completely different from what you had written?

Does that 25 page term paper seem too intimidating even to begin?

These 19 tips will help you get organized, construct a plan of attack, draft your paper, polish your writing, and ultimately conquer that terrifying writing assignment.


Can Storytelling Help Pastors Avoid Burnout?

Used with Permission from Flickr User Craig ONeal

Used with Permission from Flickr User Craig ONeal

Johnny, a teenager at the local high school and a member of your congregation, is sitting in your office. He’s upset. He’s not doing very well in school and he’s afraid he’ll get kicked off the football team if his grades don’t improve.

Even worse, he thinks his girlfriend might be on the outs.

He says these things slowly and hesitantly, as if he’s never said them out loud before. Then, slouched in his chair, he looks to you for a response.

Yesterday, Mrs. Smith came to visit you and wanted to talk about her husband and to complain about her children never calling.

Tomorrow you know there will be more of the same and it’s starting to wear you out.

All of these people are coming to you because they don’t feel they have anywhere to turn. When you don’t come up with all the right answers they grow frustrated, angry, and sometimes even hostile.

It’s overwhelming you and you’re afraid that you’re starting to burn out.

So what do you do?


Personal Statement Pitfalls: Ramona Quimby vs. The Automaton

Used with Permission from Flickr User Paloetic

Used with Permission from Flickr User Paloetic

You’ve been told the Personal Statement is the place where most application mistakes occur. You also know it’s vitally important that you carefully craft this piece to best present yourself. That means writing well and at the same time showing show the admissions staff just who you are.

Sounds pretty simple, right?

Maybe, but not always easy. You could be making one of these two common Personal Statement mistakes.


How Interrogation Makes You a Better Pastoral Psychologist

Used with Permission from Flickr User Claudio.Ar

Used with Permission from Flickr User Claudio.Ar

Have you ever walked away from a conversation feeling like you missed something?

You listened attentively. You were respectful. You tried to be empathetic. You thought you understood the other person’s points and you tried to address them.

But still, despite all your effort, at the end of the conversation there still seemed to be some sort of disconnect.

It may have been because you were speaking different languages and didn’t even know it.


7 Tragic Applicant Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Making applications to multiple schools is a time-consuming and costly endeavor. Once you’ve narrowed down your choices of where to attend, your application is your ticket not only to admission but often to financial aid, as well.7 Admissions Mistakes

Having read application files for years now, I’ve noticed several all-too-frequent mistakes applicants make in the process of completing their applications. A seasoned Admissions Committee can spot these mistakes a mile away, and they really do have an impact on their decisions.

So, here’s a list of the top seven most frequent – and heinous – application offenses, as well as how to avoid them (at all costs!).