GRIT

Roger Duke, Faculty HCOB

My only high school academic and career planning was looking at drawings of airplanes in my best friend’s father’s office. He was an aerospace engineer. I made a life decision based on that one moment. I wanted to become an engineer. Off to college I went. First time from home alone. The only student from my high school I knew at college was on the cross-country team. I literally only saw him in passing, running by me on the streets. That is how I began my college experience. During my first semester, I had a freshman chemistry class with couple of hundred students. I was just another number to my professor. He used a unique “contract-for-a-grade” process for deciding our course grade. Bottom-line, I did not do a good job of negotiating my grade and got a D; my first D ever. This was a very difficult moment for me. I was a failure and with no friends. I decided that I was not smart enough to be an engineer. In my freshman year, I officially changed my major 4 times, to Aviation Management, then Math, then Broadcasting, then back to Mechanical Engineering. It took my entire freshman year to regain my confidence and create my social circles. Four years later, I graduated in Mechanical Engineering, with honors. It appears I made the right decision, even though I never drew airplanes.

Roger Duke, Faculty HCOB

The office of First and Second Year Experiences (FYE/SYE) serves to provide experiences that challenge and support the transition of students from the point of enrollment through their second year of Augusta University. Read the new features from FYE/SYE about GRIT (Growing Resilience Into Tomorrow) and hear from campus leaders, students, alumni, and faculty on their academic resiliency!

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