Part 15: College Academic Success Centers


Molly Alvaro

Potomac State College of WVU’s Academic Success Center Coordinator


Even the most motivated scholar can use some assistance. Just as athletes analyze, practice and prepare for a game, the same techniques can be helpful for your academic performance. Athletes have learned that through early preparation, physical conditioning and mental readiness they will increase the odds of maximizing their performance on the field.  What athletes have already figured out can help you, too.

            “One must learn by doing the thing, for though you think you know it, you have no certainty until you try”. I agree with Aristotle on this quote. For many students, it is the fear of failure that can be limiting. However, this is certainly not true as many of us have learned; it is those very failures that have taught us our greatest lessons. Start off with a single goal in mind- your graduation. College is another step in the lifelong learning experience.

            The Academic Success Center at Potomac State College of West Virginia University, like many colleges across the nation, serves to assist and prepare students for the classroom experience. Learning how to effectively manage time, reduce test anxiety and take effective notes are just some of the academic skills taught through the Academic Success Center. Students should familiarize themselves with all the support services available on campus and plan to use them, wherever they decide to go to college.

            One of the most popular services through Potomac State College’s Academic Success Center is tutoring. Many students are well aware of the subjects that will be more challenging to them before the first day of classes. I tell students, “If you think you might need a tutor, you probably do”. The time to ask for help is early. In most classes, concepts are learned by building on other concepts; therefore, making it important to understand from the very beginning. It has been demonstrated that most students who receive tutoring services will increase their overall grade point average. Group or individual tutoring can be arranged through a college’s Academic Success Center. Potomac State College’s Academic Success Center is located in Science Hall, Room 116. All tutoring is free.

            Students who establish good habits from the very beginning, do well in college. Various studies indicate that well-developed study skills increase the likelihood of retention and graduation. In addition to studying, students should also take advantage of this time to meet new people, find a mentor, attend a workshop, participate in an activity, attend a sporting event, join a club, and take advantage of new experiences. It is normal to feel overwhelmed as a freshman. A successful student learns to keep their life in a healthy balance. For further information, visit our pages on the College Web site at


Additional Resources:


All "College Tips" columns are available at



Potomac State College of West Virginia University at or (304-788-6820 or toll free: 1-800-262-7332)


Mineral County Technical Center at (304-788-4240)

Eastern Community and
Technical College at (304-434-8000; or toll free: 1-877-982-2322)

Community and Technical College System of West Virginia at (304-558-2411)