Top 10 Things We Wish We Knew

Posted on Mar 30, 2017

We know it can be an overwhelming experience learning about a new environment. Rock Valley College is a great place to start or continue your education, but the transition into college life can be daunting. And while RVC has many departments and programs designed to help you succeed, it can be difficult to find the answers to all of your questions. That’s where we, the Getting Started Center Peer Mentors, come in. With more than 20 semesters experience under our collective belt, our diverse team has learned some things along the way that we wish we knew on our first day of college. So here are the top 10 things we wish we knew: 


  1. RVC is a comfortable, affordable, and reputable place to continue your education. Whether you’re taking your first college courses or picking up where you left off, you’re at the right place.


  1. Familiarize yourself with RVC campus and location of classes BEFORE the semester starts. We know from experience that it can be tough to find your classes amidst the madness of the first day, so be prepared.


  1. Check book prices on other websites like and Amazon instead of buying books at the RVC Bookstore. Attend the first class before purchasing any course materials. Not all “required texts” actually are, so check with your professor first. This can save you money!


  1. Know and check your professor’s syllabus and EAGLE course page so you know their policies on homework, assignments, and exams.  Make sure to check BEFORE your class meets for the first time. Some professors assign work before the first class.


  1. There are computer labs on campus where you can study and print for FREE! Everybody loves free! Free coffee, t shirts, money… the list goes on! There is free printing in the WTC which can be a life saver for printing things quickly and easily.

Computer lab located in the Rock Valley College Library located in the Educational Resource Center (ERC)


  1. There is also FREE tutoring on campus that can help you with your classes. Do you need help with a certain subject? The Math Lab help can you study for a math test, and the Writing Center can proof-read your essay; all you have to do is ask!


  1. If circumstances arise that impede your academic success, being open and honest with your professors will help you determine the best course of action. If you absolutely must miss class, professors will be willing to work with you and keep you from falling behind. Consult your syllabus.


  1. The Student Handbook is the best place to find answers to questions about policy, procedure and the student code of conduct. It can also help you take advantage of all the services RVC has to offer.


  1. Get involved! Join a club, get to know your peers and enjoy your time at RVC. There is a positive relationship between involvement and academic success, so check out OrgSync and find something right for you!


  1. The Getting Started Center is a great resource to help you transition into college life. The Peer Mentoring program features 1-on-1 mentoring with us, and we would love to help make this transition as smooth as possible.

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