The Sophomore Year: Month-by-Month
- Every year: Discuss academic plans with an academic advisor
- Every year (March-April): Register for fall classes
- Every year (October-November): Register for spring classes
- Every year (March-April): Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/
- Every year (Jan-Feb): Complete the application to live on campus. Visit the Office of Residence Life website for information at http://reslife.cofc.edu/housing-and-rates/index.php
- Make sure you have a meal plan in place http://www.campusdish.com/en-US/CSSE/Charleston/MealPlans/
- Start checking out clubs and organizations to join during your second year http://studentlife.cofc.edu/clubs-and-organizations/index.php
- Students with federal work-study can find on campus jobs by using Cistern Online http://cisternonline.experience.com/er/security/login.jsp
- Keep up with important deadlines http://registrar.cofc.edu/calendars/index.php
- Check out the Fitness Facilities http://campusrec.cofc.edu/open-recreation/facility/facilities.php
- East Shore Athletic Club provides additional fitness options to students http://campusrec.cofc.edu/open-recreation/facility/esac.php
- Attend fall semester workshops offered by the Center for Student Learning http://csl.cofc.edu/study-skills/seminars/index.php
- Consider attending this year’s Family Weekend http://familyweekend.cofc.edu/
- Join a club, organization, or participate in intramural sports http://campusrec.cofc.edu/intramural-sports/index.php
- Students who need help may want to request a tutor from the Center for Student Learning http://csl.cofc.edu/request/index.php
- Withdraw from any fall coursework by the withdrawal deadline http://registrar.cofc.edu/
- Attend Career Center workshops on topics such as choosing a major, resume writing, and interviewing http://careercenter.cofc.edu/
- Start thinking about applying for a summer internship and visit the Career Center before the end of the fall semester http://careercenter.cofc.edu/students/index.php
- The Career Center website provides links which may help students think about how their interests and skills translate into possible majors and careers
- Fall grades post - use the GPA calculators to set academic goals for spring http://undergrad.cofc.edu/academic-resources/gpa-calculators.php
- Discuss the first semester and set goals for the spring semester
- Students who are interested in applying for a Resident Assistant or Orientation Intern position should seek out information regarding application deadlines from the Career Center, Office of Residence Life, or the Office of New Student Programs
- Students should start looking for summer job or internship possibilities
- Consider sending a care package or gift certificate to local stores or restaurants to perk up your student’s week
- Participation by an undergraduate in a challenging, scholarly project can be the single most important experience that a student will have in college. Check for the deadline to apply for undergraduate research activities http://urca.cofc.edu/
- Students should be on the look-out for upcoming deadlines related to study abroad and summer internships http://careercenter.cofc.edu/students/getexperience.php
- Make plans for Spring Break http://publicsafety.cofc.edu/helpfulinfo/springbreak.php
- Be sure to withdraw from any spring class by the withdrawal deadline http://registrar.cofc.edu/
- Consider Maymester or summer school classes http://summer.cofc.edu/index.php
- Students should complete the Coursework Elsewhere Form found on the Office of the Registrar website if they plan to take classes at another institution to transfer back to the College of Charleston. Find this in the FORMS link at http://registrar.cofc.edu/
- Students planning to live off-campus next year, they should start deciding where they want to live and with whom. Sometimes students may need to sign their lease before leaving the area for the summer. Off campus housing information can be found at http://reslife.cofc.edu/off-campus/index.php
- Start studying for exams early http://csl.cofc.edu/?referrer=webcluster&
- Spring grades post – plan academic goals for the fall semester http://undergrad.cofc.edu/academic-resources/gpa-calculators.php
- Students planning to apply for summer jobs may want to visit Career Center for assistance with fine-tuning their resume and interviewing tips
- Prepare to move out of the residence hall http://reslife.cofc.edu/
- Part-time work, internships, or volunteering during the summer can be valuable experience to add to a resume
- Create a monthly budget for the upcoming academic year
- The sophomore year is one that typically involves the student deciding on a major. Information on declaring a major can be found at http://advising.cofc.edu/declaring-your-major/index.php
- Students may find that they need some academic assistance with new subjects during their second year. Encourage them to utilize the services of the Center for Student Learning (http://csl.cofc.edu) as well as their professor’s office hours.
- Sophomores should start to think about what kinds of experiences outside of the classroom are available and which one(s) they might find of interest/value; and what they might start to consider after graduation. Students can utilize the services of the Career Center. Students can also access Cistern Online to find part time employment and internships. View the Career Center website at http://careercenter.cofc.edu/ for more information.
Financial Aid & Scholarships:
- If your student has declared their major, they may be eligible for department scholarships. http://finaid.cofc.edu/types-of-financial-aid/scholarships/departmental-scholarships/index.php
- Encourage your student to be part of the LeadMORE program offered by the Higdon Student Leadership Center. It is a series of monthly workshops to help sophomore students’ move from the “freshmen” state of mind to give them knowledge and tools to make decisions and promote responsible leadership within the College and Charleston community. LeadMORE helps sophomores, who have a unique set of needs, as they deal with academic decisions, career development and internships, social and community involvement, and continued exploration and formation of personal values. Each workshop would be 60–90 minutes in length with guests from the College or Charleston community leading/presenting. Workshops will be held in the Higdon Student Leadership Center conference room at 69 Coming Street.
Living off campus:
- Students can find information about living off campus using the guide to Charleston which can be found at http://reslife.cofc.edu/off-campus/guide-to-charleston.php
- Check out tips on being a good neighbor http://studentaffairs.cofc.edu/community/goodneighbor.php
- Have a security survey done http://publicsafety.cofc.edu/helpfulinfo/crimeprevention.php
Parking & Bus Service:
- On Campus Parking Information: http://parkingservices.cofc.edu/parking/students.php
- CARTA express routes http://parkingservices.cofc.edu/information-for/carta-bus-service.php
Student Clubs & Organizations:
- Keep connected – all enrolled students receive two to three emails per week with a list of on campus activities. Students who live off campus should stay involved with campus activities. A club and organization fair is held each semester http://studentlife.cofc.edu/
Staying Safe and Healthy:
- All enrolled students can use student health services
- Sophomores are not required to have a meal plan but it is a very convenient way to dine. Check out http://www.campusdish.com/en-US/CSSE/Charleston/MealPlans/ for meal plan, block plan and dining dollar options
- If students are feeling overwhelmed their second year, they should utilize the services of the Counseling and Substance Abuse Center. They have counselors, support groups and peer counseling services available. You can find information about hours and services at http://counseling.cofc.edu/index.php
What Can I Do to Help My Sophomore Student?
The second year of college can be an exciting time for many college students: they’ve survived their first year in a new environment and learned a lot about college, themselves and other students in the process. However, for others, the second year can be one of the most challenging to endure. Students experiencing what’s known as the “Sophomore Slump” may begin to lack motivation; feel confused about the future; or become saddened by the end of the “honeymoon period” of the freshman year, when every day presented a new and interesting experience. However, it can also be a time where they worry about identity, purpose, and goals. http://www.sc.edu/fye/events/presentation/pdf/SOPH.ACPA.NASPA.pdf.
Tips on how you can help your student persevere through the sophomore year
•Remind your student of all she or he has accomplished by completing their first year.
•Encourage and support them as they seek to answer questions related to their academic, professional, social and spiritual identities and goals.
•Know that the “Sophomore Slump” is normal. Your student is not alone and there are many student leaders, faculty and staff members who are here to support them.
•Encourage your student to make use of all that CofC has to offer in terms of academic resources, support services, events, and student clubs and organizations.
•If you (or any of your older children) had similar experiences during your sophomore year, it may be helpful to share this with your student.