What's New in Student Support Services
Volume 1, Issue 4, February 2017


Time flies!  This is Issue #4 of the Student Support Services Newsletter this academic year.  Previous issues identified and explained services we offer, including academic advising, tutoring, clinical counseling, special accommodations, study tips, and more.  Previous newsletters are archived and available online (see below).  AMU continues to grow and expand.  New students have matriculated to AMU, and university officials officially broke ground for a new multi-purpose academic building.  We have a new Director of Athletics, and AMU students recently participated in the 44th Annual March for Life in Washington, D.C., a special kind of learning experience.  Now, five weeks into the spring semester, students are seriously engaged in achieving that education in the liberal arts and sciences that enables them to be people of faith and reason, intentional disciples of the risen Lord.



February 20  Provisional Grades Due
March 4-12  Spring Break - No Classes
March 22-April 7  Advising & Registration Period
March 25  Feast of the Annunciation
April 3  Last Day to Withdraw from Courses with a "W"

"Provisional Grades" means what?

Six weeks into a semester, AMU professors issue to students an estimated grade of the student’s achievement thus far in the course.  Provisional grade reports will be submitted this semester on February 20th. Criteria for determining grades are routinely contained in each course syllabus and explained by the professor in class.  Provisional grades are not recorded on a student’s transcript. However, if a student is earning a C- or lower, the student is expected to meet with the instructor for tips on how to improve the student’s performance in the course. Additionally, students are encouraged to frequently visit the tutoring center and schedule regular check-in meetings with a Student Support Advisor. During these meetings students can work with an advisor to develop, practice, and enhance important skills such as time management and study skills.

Adaptive Services Announcement: Apply for Accommodations! 

There is still time to apply for learning accommodations this semester.  If you have questions regarding this process, please contact Ms. Sharon O’Reilly via email  or come by her office (1073) on the 1st Floor of the Student Union, across from the elevator. 


Spotlight:  Molly Lamb

You can count on Molly Lamb, now a senior tutoring AMU students in math for a second year.  Molly majors in Mathematics and minors in Theology.  What motivates her to tutor?  She explains that she, herself, previously received tutoring in math at the Hub. There she came to realize that if tutoring worked for her, she could show other students how they too can learn math – and even enjoy it!

Molly’s personal experience debunks the myth that the ability to do math is an aptitude acquired at birth.  Molly says that the ability to do math is a skill that students can acquire: “Do enough problems and eventually you get it.” Persistence is important, she says: “Repeat problems, stick with it until you get it.”  Attitude does play a role. “If you believe that you can’t do it, you won’t.  If you believe that you can do it, you will,” says Molly.

How does tutoring in math benefit students?  Molly points out that math professors move at a certain pace in class to cover a syllabus.  “But every student progresses at his or her own pace,” observes Molly.  Students can feel reluctant in class to ask the professor to do a problem again or explain a step that the student missed.  In tutoring, a student can receive individual attention, voice his or her own difficulties, feel less pressure, and solve many problems.   Molly is encouraging: “The more often you come to tutoring, the less intimidating it is.”

“No matter what your major is, math is training for the mind,” says Molly.  “It’s learning to think logically,” she explains. “With math, I have all the information needed to solve a problem; then I work my intellect to solve it.”  Smiling, Molly admits: “I like solving problems.”



Prep for Tutoring
  • Confer with your math professor as your first resort.
  • Come to tutoring early; avoid waiting until a quiz or test.
  • Read thoroughly the chapter you are currently covering in class.
  • Review class notes for insights that are helpful.
  • Review previous material that may connect with the current assignment.
  • Attempt the problems yourself.
  • Identify the specific topics on which you need assistance.
  • Bring a positive attitude to tutoring: “I can learn this math!”
At Tutoring
  • Don’t be passive.  Engage the tutor in a dialogue about the problem.
  • Ask questions when you are unsure of the steps to a solution.
  • Work with others in your class when the tutor is with another student.
  • Decide to take to class any question(s) that tutoring did not resolve.
  • Do not expect the tutor to do your homework for you.
  • Do not bring test questions or quiz questions unless from a prior quiz or test.
  • Maintain a positive attitude at tutoring: Resist the temptation to give up.
  • Be patient.  Say to yourself: “I’ll get this sooner or later if I keep trying.”
Know that you can return another day if you are having a bad day.



There are two kinds of suffering in the ordinary course of living. 

One kind of suffering is experienced in facing a problem and doing what is necessary to overcome it.  The other kind of suffering is experienced in not facing a problem and, instead, living with the problem and the secondary problems that result.

With ordinary problems of daily living, we get to choose which of these two kinds of suffering we experience.

Example:  If I am unwilling to experience the pain (i.e., inconvenience, discomfort, sacrifice, work) of forcing myself to study and pass a course, I will experience the pain that results from not studying and not passing the course: failing grades, embarrassment, dissatisfaction, frustration, plus the pain, frustration and expense of retaking the course.

Problems in the ordinary course of daily living are inevitable.  Wisdom lies in deciding to accept the pain (i.e., discomfort, inconvenience, work, etc.) of facing problems and solving them.  There is a benefit to this approach: we become stronger.  Compelling one’s self to address a problem without delay is called discipline.  Not compelling oneself to face and resolve a problem is called procrastination.  With procrastination, you experience yourself as weak.  You continue to experience the problem you want to avoid, and you also experience additional problems and pain that result.

How do we overcome procrastination?  By a willingness, expressed in action, to accept the suffering involved in doing what we must do to address the problems we face in daily living.

What kinds of problems can students face and overcome with discipline?  Study avoidance.  Tutor avoidance.  Time management avoidance.  Class or professor avoidance.  Prayer avoidance.  Counseling avoidance.  Confession avoidance.  Exercise avoidance.  Truth avoidance.  Discipline requires courage.  Be strong!


Helpful information is found in each Student Support Newsletter.  Previous issues are archived for your convenience.  Know what is happening and what is available to support your academic success. Click here to view the full archive.


"Fill your mind with thoughts of God.  Spend your days thinking about things that are good and true and beautiful and noble, and you will become good and true and beautiful and noble."
Matthew Kelly, Resisting Happiness
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