Roxie Catts, director of the Advising Resource
Center at the University of Arizona, aids students in
academics and adjusting to life on campus.
Photo by Nicholas Trujillo
By Celene Arvizu

Transitioning from high school to college can bring new experiences and challenges to students, but the University of Arizona offers several resources to help students navigate through the changes. 

The day before freshman orientation at the UA, Stephanie Greller, 18, and her mother Linda walked around campus and talked about the transition to college. 

Although confident and excited about the new experience, Stephanie Greller said she is still unsure about what she wants to study.

“As of right now, I think I’m going to do undeclared and figure it out, see what I want to do,” Stephanie Greller said. 

Linda Greller is confident her daughter will overcome the uncertainty.

“She’s done a good job of carrying herself, working hard in school, and making good choices at the end of her senior year,” Greller said. 

However, they both agreed that the changes can be overwhelming. 

“It’s a big rush,” Greller said. “Nerve-racking and scary because it’s the unknown but very exciting.”

Academic advisers can help ease some of the anxieties new college students face.

“That’s one of the things that we advisers can help students with, putting the students on a path to do those explorations and utilize some of the other resources that we have here at the University,” said Judy Roman, an academic adviser. 

Deciding on a major and picking a career are only a few of the concerns students have.  

“I’m kind of nervous about moving away, but then I try and remember that everyone else will be away from home,” said Charlie Franco, a Tucson High Magnet School graduate who will be attending Menlo College in Atherton, Calif.

Advisers are available at several places on the UA  campus to answer any questions students may have.

“There’s not one building you point to and say that’s where the academic advisers are, hit five for business,” said Roxie Catts, director of the Advising Resource Center.

Franco, who wants to major in psychology, knows first hand the importance of seeking help from others. 

He received support and encouragement from his high school teachers who helped him prepare for the transition to college, he said. 

Paige Thornhill, a 34-year-old UA graduate and assistant director of nursing at the Cherrydale Health and Rehabilitation Center in Arlington, Va. knows what it’s like to have worries about starting college.

  “I had an overwhelming pressure since I was the first person to attend college in my family,” Thornhill said.

She thinks most newcomers to university life feel some anxiety, but that can be overcome.

  “I kept to myself until junior year. That’s when I became socially involved and a whole different me,” Thornhill said. “I pushed through. You can achieve success and get there if you do.”


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