On April 26, 2017, I had the honor of attending a Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) introductory and tour event. My home high school, Washington-Lee High School, alongside Yorktown High School and Wakefield High School, also had the opportunity to participate in the tour of the Alexandria NOVA campus. Within the first two hours of the tour, we were in NOVA’s student auditorium where some of the faculty and a few of NOVA’s full-time students and honorary speakers at the event discussed the different opportunities that students will have while attending NOVA for two years and how some things are different transitioning from high school to college.
NOVA’s staff then went on to explain that there are certain things different from high school, including that instead of having contact with your parents, the school will have full contact with you. This means that grade reports, concerns, and meetings will all be addressed towards you, and you’ll be held accountable as an adult. The two students that volunteered at the orientation also explained the importance of speaking with an advisor while considering a major – if you hadn’t already have done so – to make the process easier on you. Advisors can help students choose classes that actually count towards their major so students do not have to stay in college longer than needed.
The staff and student guest speakers encouraged us to not only just attend NOVA, but to become a part of it, by joining clubs and participating in other extracurricular activities of your interest, that will help later when you decide to transfer to a four-year university after obtaining a Certificate or an Associate’s Degree. For the duration of the rest of the tour, we moved from the auditorium to different parts of the building, touring the cafeteria, library, testing areas, school spirit shops, and various floor levels where we could possibly be taking classes in the fall of 2017. Having attended this event will help me in the future to utilize the opportunities and advantages that NOVA offers, once I begin school at the college, and, after I receive my Associate’s Degree, move to a four-year university to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology.