The Sophomore Year Experience (SYE) Takes on the Sophomore Slump
Dec-14-09 10:01 am
Sophomores experience a whole new set of stressors as they return to campus. Unlike in their first year, they receive fewer instructions around the do’s and don’ts of college life and are expected to know how things work. Although the staff and faculty at Georgetown are here for students at all years, for sophomores, the excitement and thrill of a new college experience has worn away, and they face the reality that college is three more years of hard work, courses, and papers. These feelings also come at a time when sophomores may be struggling to determine career goals, dealing with personal development issues, and experiencing other personal hurdles that may make negotiating all these questions difficult.
Not all students face these challenges; many second year students are successful as they transition through the aspects of college life, but for those who have a more difficult time, being aware of their resources and options can help sophomores navigate this time successfully and maximize their growth and self-awareness.
In January 2009, a group of staff and students gathered to discuss ways to respond to the needs of current sophomores at Georgetown. From this group sprung the Sophomore Year Experience, a collection of professionals and students representing ten offices and departments across campus. The mission statement of the Sophomore Year Experience (SYE) is a cross campus working group who recognizes the sophomore year as a unique time for academic, social, and spiritual growth. SYE is dedicated to unifying and illuminating resources that enrich the sophomore year experience.
The SYE working group launched its pilot year at Georgetown recently by creating an electronic guide which outlines important deadlines and opportunities for sophomores both inside and outside the classroom in the coming year. The informative brochure was shared with all sophomores via email in late October. SYE also kicked off the year by hosting a SophS’mores event on Tuesday, October 20. About 200 sophomores gathered on the Southwest Quad lawn to make s’mores and celebrate their achievement so far in their sophomore year.
The SYE working group is working on creating the SYE portal, an online website for sophomores that will provide information and links to all resources sophomores do and/or may need as they journey through this pivotal year. The portal is set to launch at the end of the Fall 2009 semester. SYE is working with the Class of 2012 committee to coordinate more sophomore recognition events and coordinating events to invite sophomores to reflect more on their experiences and decisions in their second year.
While students may focus mostly on the end goal of graduation, SYE wants sophomores to be purposeful as they progress through their time on campus. We encourage them to take time to enjoy this stage of their education and personal growth, recognizing it as a rich and fulfilling part of each student's journey towards graduation.
Article by Bill Huff