The Common Issue: Procrastination

As I sit here writing my last blog post, I’m looking back at my first blog post and have realized how far I have come. Even though it’s my tenth blog post I’m still somewhat stumped what to write about and have been procrastinating for about an hour now. I’ve always been a procrastinator, I even procrastinated on my blog posts.  Continue reading “The Common Issue: Procrastination”


I was the girl in high school who could not wait another day to graduate and go to college. The day I got my acceptance letter I started a Pinterest board called “College”. I saved pins on how to study, stay organized and stay healthy. I even pinned room decor on this board. This Pinterest board kept me occupied on most of my sleepless nights but, it also made the end of the school year and summer feel like they were dragging on. I expected everything to work out perfectly when I got to college because I thought I had planned it so perfectly.  This can also be the case in an academic environment. For example, have you ever expected to get a good grade on an exam and it ends up being your worst grade yet? Expectations can cause damage to students socially, mentally and academically. Continue reading “Expectations”

My Freshman Experience

Coming to Geneseo, I was a nervous wreck. I was unsure of whether or not I would succeed, make friends, and find where I belong. I typically become homesick easily. This was alarming knowing I had to come to a brand new school. I never struggled with grades in high school but, all my teachers and older friends told me college is different. Throughout these two semesters, I’ve definitely come to learn more about college. Continue reading “My Freshman Experience”

A Look Back

It’s difficult to find time to go back and look at other students’ blog posts and get an idea of what they’ve been writing about. This semester, I’ve been mainly focused on my own posts. The other day in class, Beth encouraged the class to look 3 pages back on the Critical Writers Blog to see what we have missed. In doing this, I got to see what my peers were writing about and how they connected it to the risks and rewards of an academic partnership. Continue reading “A Look Back”

Word Count

Typically, professors require a minimum number of words on papers or assignments for students to reach. Specific word counts are given because these teachers and professors believe the amount required is manageable. Many students dread reaching the number of words that are necessary to submit the paper. Although, minimum word requirements are essential to creating a better writer.

Even though word requirements can be a pain, they encourage students to answer the prompt more broadly and introduce more textual evidence. Minimum word counts promote students to fully unpack their thoughts into the assignment. Word requirements can act as a reminder that there needs to be more explanation or evidence in their argument.

On one hand, many argue that word requirements can cause students to become wordy and create run-on sentences, and on the other hand some argue that the number of words stops students from not fully explaining their argument. Word maximums are also a useful device to stop students from the same problem of unnecessary words and run-on sentences. Minimum word counts can also prevent students from procrastinating until the last night.

In our INTD class, Beth put a 1400 minimum word count on our essay about Octavia Butler’s short story Bloodchild. At first, I found this frustrating because as always, I procrastinated on the first draft. Trying to reach the word count when the paper is due in a couple hours seems impossible. I feel that word counts can be a wake-up call from professors to students, to show them that their argument needs to be supported and explained in detail. Minimum word requirements can allow professors to stop students from procrastinating as well.

Another Birthday

This past Saturday, SUNY Geneseo hosted its 13th annual Relay for Life in the Merritt Athletic Center. This was the first year I participated and fundraised with my sorority, Sigma Delta Tau. At first, I didn’t see what good sitting in a gym and walking around a track for 6 hours would do to help cure cancer. But sure enough, after experiencing Relay for Life at Geneseo, I now understand why this is such a helpful and uplifting event.

A couple weeks ago, our sororities Vice President of Philanthropy sent out an email and asked us to share a relay donation link on our Facebooks and ask around for donations. I was uncertain whether or not I would get any donations from any of my Facebook friends, so I also sent out a text to a couple of relatives. I was surprised when I ended up raising over two hundred dollars for Relay. Fundraising is a very important part of Relay for me because, I, like many people know a loved one that has been and/or being affected by cancer. Although two hundred dollars isn’t a ton of money, combined with the rest of Geneseo’s campus, we raised about 160,000 dollars to go towards finding a cure and having more birthdays to celebrate.

This experience has taught me that even the little things like walking around a track, buying a water bottle, or just listening to people’s stories at relay can really make a difference and have an impact. The feeling of having pretty much the entire Geneseo student body and staff at relay hits home and creates a sense of unity and leaves everyone better off in the long run. I believe relay brings the entire campus community together and that if we all work together things can become accomplished better and more efficiently.

Similarly, in our INTD class, there are a number of class periods when we work together in groups to try and accomplish a greater outcome than we would individually. Whether it’s combining multiple essays into one or just sharing our ideas with each other, I feel like I come out more knowledgeable and it makes the class seem more doable.

The Geneseo GLOBE statement recognizes that one of its learning outcomes is “Leadership and Collaboration”. Geneseo encourages its students to come together to create a more effective outcome. Supporting each other is such an important part of succeeding not only in Geneseo but after graduation.

The Dreadful Letter

Receiving a letter of academic probation can have varying effects on students. The majority of letters of academic probation tend to make students feel ashamed and discouraged because of the choice of words. There is a need to change and reword academic probation letters to reduce the emotional impact on students. Our INTD class has worked on recreating Geneseo’s letter of academic probation. Throughout this process, we have read “The Power of Realistic Expectations”, an interview with Ian Chipman and Rob Urstein and we also worked in groups to create a better letter for Geneseo’s campus community as a whole.  In addition to this, The Dean of Academic Planning and Advising, Dr. Cecilia A. Easton came into our class and agreed to take our criticism of Geneseo’s academic probation letter into consideration. Through this process, Dr. Easton places a strong value on the academic partnership between faculty and students. 

Having a group of students, that attend Geneseo, rewrite the letter of academic probation can have a multitude of benefits. These students can put the letter into perspective and give feedback on the impact it has. When reading and rewriting Geneseo’s letter, our group considered how we would react to receiving this letter and thus came together to construct a more productive letter. Through this thinking, I’ve realized how important it is to be considerate of all students that come from different backgrounds. Also,  many students have to overcome diverse challenges that could affect their academic performance. In my opinion, the letter doesn’t consider that many students have other variables that affect their grades and that is the number one thing that must change. In addition to this, the letter doesn’t encourage students to get back on track but rather threaten students that they will be dismissed if they don’t fix their grades. Geneseo’s letter of academic probation needs to have a stronger value on the importance of students and staff working together to better each other. 

In addition to our group work, reading “The Power of Realistic Expectations” by Ian Chipman has mentioned major issues within academic probation letters. Chipman interviews Rob Urstein in this article; Throughout this piece, Urstein elaborates on the idea that the bulk of students that are put on academic probation are ashamed and feel alone. Academic probation should not be something to be ashamed of but rather a motive to achieve and do better in the future semesters. Universities should be encouraging Chipman’s idea that “intelligence, rather than being a fixed trait, is something that grows over time and can be developed with effort.” Chipman and Urstein emphasize important issues with the majority of letters of academic probation. 

Since these letters have negative effects on the motivation and emotional state of a bunch of students, it is urgent for schools and universities to implement these changes and advocate for a stronger academic partnership between students and faculty to better the entire campus community.