CORE 40-DONE is the phrase many seniors are declaring after last week’s presentations. Thursday, May 5, students finally presented what they had been preparing for all semester. CORE 401 is a course Greenville College started in 2004, as one of the final classes seniors are required to take. This course requires students to form groups with others from different majors to work and research a topic. These groups then create a final project they present on the Common Day of Learning (CDL). Students tend to focus on ways their project can make a difference in the community; this semester’s theme was “Abundance and Need.”
Getting excited for CORE 401 isn’t something students usually do. The negative associations that generally follow this required class turn students away from wanting to take the course. But fear not freshmen, sophomores and juniors, this course isn’t as bad as many claim it to be! Yes, it is a semester long project and there will be difficulties at some point, but overall students seemed very satisfied.
Senior Brian Gertler states, “The semester was a lot of fun, but also a lot of work! The semester was a roller coaster from time management to group dynamics.” Gertler’s CORE group presented “Mom’s Camp,” a day Greenville College students visited Greenville Federal Correction Institution (FCI) and were able to bring together incarcerated mothers and their children. Gertler adds, “I’m happy we had an awesome project and an awesome group. Overall, I feel like we accomplished so much and I couldn’t have asked for better partners.”
Stephanie Rodriguez shared how the mock presentation is extremely important, “It feels anti-climactic because I wasn’t stressing over anything after our mock presentation. It helped that we spread out all of our assignments and tasks throughout the semester.” Rodriguez was a part of CORE Group 12, a group who worked with survivors from Eden’s Glory by implementing a fitness plan to cope with the negative thoughts and feelings the women might have.
CORE students are glad their semester-long projects have come to a conclusion. Junior Mikhaela Romoser shares, “It feels wonderful to be done and know that our project went well. I feel like we did our project justice, and that’s all I ever wanted to do. It feels weird that it’s just over now after a whole semester of working on it, but the amount of peace and joy I feel is incredible.” Romoser was a part of the “Mom’s Day” group, where she shared her passion for the moms at FCI.
Katie Schmierbach was relieved this course was over when she explained, “It is truly an awesome feeling to be done with this semester long project. I know that everyone in our group was relieved to be done and it was a great feeling.” Schmierbach was joined by six other members in Group 16, “Homeless by Choice?” This group shared their interaction with Katie Cares, a foundation to help the homeless. Group 16 aimed to provide others with small tools they could use when interacting with the homeless.
Sooner rather than later it will be time for you to sign up for CORE 401, but again, do not fear, Spring 2016 students have come up with an advice list for future CORE 401 students. Here are 10 instructions to help your CORE experience be great!
1. “Decide from the beginning that you will do your part. Remember that God honors your hard work and you can have peace as long as you continue to try your best.” – Mikhaela Romoser
2. “Communicate with your group members as much as possible.” – Max Gensler
3. “Find people who want to get work done and find a topic or problem everyone will be passionate about. This will help make the project unique and everyone will have the motivation they need to accomplish the goals.” – Stephanie Rodriguez
4. “You want a group who works well together, where everyone does their share of the work.” – Katie Schmierbach
5. “Figure out two specific times you will meet every week, and meet on those days even if you think you don’t have to.” – Mikhaela Romoser
6. “Make sure to leave weekly meetings having something to accomplish that week. Before you leave, each person should share what it is they interpreted their responsibility to be and make sure it aligns with what was intended.” – Claire Schmitt
7. “Confront issues or concerns early and honestly.” – Claire Schmitt
8. “Take it before your last semester at GC. I found that it was very difficult when graduation was approaching in addition to senior projects, normal course loads, jobs, and honors thesis.” – Katie Schmierbach
9. “Make sure you stay on top of the task at hand! The more you let it linger, the longer it will take and before you know it, the semester is over!” – Andrew Scott
10. “Have fun, pray often and remember to keep Christ at the forefront of your project, group and mindset.” – Claire Schmitt
If this list doesn’t fully help you, reach out to a previous student. I’m sure they would love to assist and help you make this experience stress free!
Congratulations spring semester CORE 401 Groups!