Friday, May 1, 2009

Academic Probation

No, it's not me. It's my youngest son. This was his first year away at college. His first semester, he got a 2.5 GPA. This second semester, he did not do so well and fell below a 2.0 (to a 1.9). Needless to say, he is freaking out. I told him his Dad and I will help out in any way we can, but he has to work hard to pull himself out of this. That includes calling UTC (University of Tennessee - Chattanooga) and finding out what he has to do and then doing it.

Both my husband and I were at this same place many years ago - on academic probation. I spent only one year at the University of Arizona before I had to return to Phoenix and attend a community college. I got my 2-year degree in 3 years while working 40-plus hours a week and attending school at night. So going to school full time and working full time is not unfamiliar to me. When I was back in Phoenix for my Dad's funeral, I told my Mom the best thing she and Dad ever did for me was to make me figure it out on my own after I had to return to Phoenix from being placed on academic probation at the U of A. That was an incredibly difficult life lesson to learn, but it was a good one that has stayed with me.

I hope my son will learn from this experience and will not squander it. I hope he will remain pliable in this experience and will not resist what God is trying to teach him through it. I also hope that my husband and I will remain teachable and use this experience to show my son how much we love him and are concerned for his future. Being the middle child, he often feels overlooked. I don't want to be a "helicopter parent" and hover over my son and not allow him to learn from life's hard experiences, but I also don't want to leave him out there, floundering on his own. I pray for wisdom and balance.

I hope we will all learn from this experience of academic probation - again. Stay tuned . . .

1 comment:

flit said...

I hope he takes it seriously ... it certainly sounds as though he is.

Many of my college students can't seem to bother caring - they honestly can't imagine that they'd be shown the door ... until it happens