Smart Start has ended!
Ryan took Earth Science and realized early on that college level work was much more demanding than HS work. We told him that but I guess he had to figure it out on his own. We left him with words of wisdom on studying. We also suggested that he study right after class so that the rest of the day would be freed up for other recreation. After the first test, let’s say he realized that he had to put more time in. Lesson learned quickly. B+ in the first college level class. Parents are happy.
One of the benefits of attending Smart Start was having first pick of jobs on campus. Southern has a wonderful website that posts jobs and allows the students to apply on line and see what is available. Our agreement with Ryan was for him to work to provide him with pocket money for all of his extras. We agreed that it was good for discipline and for experience. Our part was to pay the tuition.
We saw jobs posted that we suggested to him, however, each time we asked how it was going, we received different commentary on why he had yet to find one. It dawned on me that maybe he didn’t really want to work. He disagreed and informed me that his class load was going to be heavy carrying 16 hrs and that he didn’t have good blocks of time in his schedule which has prevented him from getting several positions. I suggested he speak to the Deans and possible places that offered “off hours” such as evening and weekends. He is currently still seeking employment. We just want him to be successful in his studies and pray that he can find something that works with his schedule.
The biggest challenge has been managing the meal card. He lamented that the food was expensive and he was afraid to eat due to the a la carte menu in the cafeteria. We explained several times that it is built in to his meal plan (at least after Smart Start) and to please eat! It winds up that he only spent $41.62 from July 19 to July 31. Poor child was being a little too cautious. I did notice that his personal bank account dwindled a bit from eating out. He also has a fridge and food in the room. I think he understands now how it works so we will see what August brings.
Overall, he is glad that he attended the program and so are we. He made lots of new friends and feels like he has a handle on the culture and the campus. He has been attending Orchard Park Church in Chattanooga that he is enjoying as a result of a speaker who came to Southern to preach.
Ryan informed us that he is glad he chose Southern and is sure that this is where he is supposed to be.