Algebra

Conversation between soccer players last weekend . . .
“What do you know about Jason Engles?”
Who’s Jason Engles?
“You know, Jason Engles, in Algebra.”
I don’t know Jason Engles.
“Jason Engles. Jason Engles!”
Aaahhh, adjacent angles.
“That’s what I said.”
The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.  ~Peter Drucker

#SAreads: Practicing Perceiving

If you are familiar with psychological type and the MBTI®, you may recognize that type theory explains the random behavior of people’s lives as actually quite orderly and patterned. This is due to basic methods used by individuals to take in information and make decisions.
The last letter of the 4-letter MBTI code highlights the process one uses in dealing with the outer world. Do you prefer to plan ahead and get things decided (Judging) or do you prefer to remain flexible and open to new options (Perceiving)? Not to be confused with organization, as either preference can be organized, the J or P Preference indicates how we interact in our outer life, whether structured and decided (J) or curious and open-ended (P).
Which option would you choose?
Do you prefer to:
  1. Arrange lunch plans, events, parties, etc., well in advance, or
  2. Be free to spend your day doing whatever looks like fun?
In Building Momentum: The Unconventional Strengths of Perceiving College Students, Meri Beckham explores the successful practices of Perceiving college students including unconstrained time and working at the last minute. These methods are cited as the opposite of ideal strategies promoted in college success and study skills texts.
If you work in academic success, retention, first-year programming, or are interested in helping students make effective transitions to college, grab the article and join us Friday at 1PM EST for this week’s discussion on #SAreads.

Senior Night

Senior night in high school sports is a time to recognize graduating students and their accomplishments. At the pre-game celebration for our local girls soccer team, players were honored with a bouquet of flowers while escorted to center field by their parents. Honors and activities are announced for each player, culminating with where they will be attending college in the fall. It was no surprise that each player from our academically ranked high school was heading to a four-year institution including several research universities and prestigious private colleges.
Fast-forward a week to an opportunity to attend another senior night, in a small town 40 miles from our small university city. Only this time as each player is introduced, the future plans are predominantly for community college. Only two of the twenty players were planning to attend a 4-year college or university. And 17 of the twenty players were Latina.
Why the difference? Demographics and privilege are most certainly a factor. Our small city is 85% White with 3% of persons identifying as Hispanic or Latino/a compared to a town where 35% of the population is Hispanic or Latino/a. The Latino population has grown dramatically in the town over the last decade with the addition of a new meat packing plant. These backbreaking low-wage jobs are attractive steady work for the mostly of Mexican-origin immigrants moving into Iowa.
College enrollment of U.S. Hispanic students surpassed that of White students for the first time in 2012. In contrast, the number of Hispanics completing four-year degrees only accounted for 9% of young adults. Hispanic students continue to be less likely to enroll in a four-year college or attend college full-time.
Our university student success committee has spent significant discussion time on Who Gets to Graduate? While formulating models for student persistence, we review many variables involved in graduating the students on our campus where Hispanic and Latino/a students make up the largest non-majority population. Our students of all ethnicities are academically motivated, but are frequently working class and first-generation, which sometimes translates to not being prepared for the rigor of higher education at a research university.
So the question becomes not only who gets to graduate, but also who gets to enroll?

Want to appear intelligent? Just smile.

There’s something in my pocket
it belongs across my face.
I keep it very close at hand
in a most convenient place.
~Brownie Smile
PsyBlog featured a new research study on facial evaluation and the power of a smile. The study found that when judging men just on their facial appearance, there was a relationship with actual intelligence. But when it came to judging women, there was no relationship between how intelligent they were perceived and their actual intelligence. The study suggested that this is because women are primarily judged on their attractiveness overruling perceptions about intelligence.
Interestingly, the study also found ‘high intelligence’ faces appear to be smiling more than the ‘low intelligence’ faces. A similar pattern was described for the perception of trustworthiness.” In the other words: frown to look more stupid and smile to look more intelligent.   ~Jeremy Dean, PsyBlog
Read the original study here.

National Student Exchange: Your place to BE

240419_10150176805338101_8019007_oThis will be an excellent opportunity to really get to know myself, network and make new friends — and prove to myself that I can succeed in any environment.                                                                                                  ~ William Rabe, ISU sophomore
Next fall, an Iowa State University student will experience a National Student Exchange (NSE) to the University of Alabama — just like his father did 31 years ago as a college student in North Dakota.
It was a fateful trip for William Rabe’s father, William Rabe III, who is a pediatrician.
“He met my mother there in an organic chemistry lab,” said Rabe, a sophomore in chemical engineering and biochemistry from Ramsey, Minn. Read more.
NSE provides students with a domestic alternative to study abroad. Nearly 200 universities participate, placing 3,000 students each year. NSE offers low-cost options for students to study out of state, at culturally diverse campuses, and with program compatibility to their home campus. Credits are applied toward a student’s degree.
As the Iowa State NSE Coordinator since 1997, I love sharing the NSE story. Is your campus a member of National Student Exchange? They should BE!