Joining the Pensacola Christian College student body is an exciting adjustment for freshmen. For many, living on campus is a major step toward their college goals and life as an independent adult. Thanks to PCC’s friendly culture and many academic resources, these students can look back on the last few months and see how much they’ve grown and learned.
Setting a Good Course
On the first day of college, the most important thing on a student’s mind is getting to their classes. Fortunately, PCC is well known for its friendly faculty, staff, and students who are ready to make sure new students can navigate campus when classes begin. “Classes were not too difficult to find, and the teachers were very kind if you accidentally went to the wrong class,” said Katie Persiani (Fr., NC). “After the first week, I got used to my schedule, and it has been smooth sailing ever since.”
“PCC’s Christian environment encourages me to have godly relationships with my friends.”
Through collegians, student events, prayer groups, and many other student activities, PCC gives new students multiple opportunities to make friends as they settle into their lives on campus. “PCC’s Christian environment encourages me to have godly relationships with my friends. That builds all of us up spiritually,” stated Summer Nolte (Fr., NC), a criminal justice student who has adjusted from public high school to Christian college. “Honestly, I have never made better friends than the ones I have right now. They look out for me, pray for me, and I feel the genuine love of Christ through their friendship.”
Although college is a different environment, freshmen from a range of educational backgrounds have successfully transitioned from high school to college life. “My college experience has greatly differed from high school because I was homeschooled growing up,” said Josiah Jainchill (Fr., MO). “Being put in a classroom with thirty other students has taken a while to get used to, but it is a great experience overall.”
Using College Resources
Many students have figured out that their greatest academic resource is their teachers. PCC teachers are passionate about helping students master their field of study and try to be as available as possible, inside and outside of the classroom. “Our goal as faculty is to help our students have success,” said history faculty member Dr. John Reese. “Students are encouraged to come [to my office] to check on grades, review recent tests, or receive tips for improving grades in their classes.”
To support academic success, many faculty will also meet students outside of their standard available hours. When English faculty member Dr. Autumn Pearson’s standard office hours do not work for her students, she will “work around [the student’s] schedule to meet.”
“These meetings can be over anything from answers on a quiz or test, looking over class notes, or discussing upcoming projects,” Dr. Pearson added. “I enjoy having the chance to clear up any questions that they might have over class content [and] talking about their projects.”
Fortunately, freshmen have more than just their teachers helping them manage their first semester. Upperclassmen have already overcome first-year obstacles and most are ready to lend a hand and help. “Upperclassmen have greatly influenced and welcomed me,” Josiah noted. “The best upperclassman I know is my roommate, Stephen [Seel (Sr., IN)]. He always takes time to ask me about my day and answers any questions I may have. He also challenges me to do my best academically.”
“Everything I need is provided on campus, and my teachers have always been willing to make time for my questions.”
Many upperclassmen also help provide tutoring support coordinated by the College and are often available when a freshman asks for help. “I have been able to seek help learning [English] concepts from other students at the school who were willing to take time out of their day and help me learn,” mentioned Summer.
Besides academic help, students have resources for everyday needs. Eagle Express Cleaners, Common Grounds Café, Campus Store, The Palms restaurant, sports facilities, and shuttle buses to the grocery store and mall give students all they need to live comfortably at college. Anna Hexamer (Fr., DE) enjoys the way on-campus conveniences make it easy for her to fulfill her educational and daily life responsibilities. “I am able to do mostly everything at ‘home,’ unlike high school,” she said. “Everything I need is provided on campus, and my teachers have always been willing to make time for my questions. College is more independent than high school, and it allows students to become more responsible.”
Enjoying the College Life
Using the resources available to them, freshmen can thoroughly settle into college life and absorb the courses that are setting them up for a successful future. Building off the Bible lessons she learned as a homeschooled student, Hannah Eniola (Fr., VA) has already gleaned a wealth of knowledge from her college Bible courses. “I have a really nice teacher, Mr. John Taylor, who moves slow enough that I can write down all the notes that I need,” she said. Coming from a family who loves history, Hannah enjoys the way her teacher helps her understand the history of the Old Testament and how it intertwines with God’s truth.
“I am currently a member of my collegian volleyball team, and I love playing with my teammates.”
Although college revolves around classes, PCC always makes sure there are opportunities for students to pursue extra-curricular interests and have fun. From helping in Christian Service to attending academic clubs, participating in Eagles games, or getting involved in music or performance opportunities—and so much more—there is something for everyone! Once Katie adjusted to her schedule and classwork, she was able to get more involved in PCC activities. “I am currently a member of my collegian volleyball team, and I love playing with my teammates,” she said.
Even though their college careers have just started, freshmen will soon be entering their next semester. Already, they can navigate campus and are equipped with resources that are leading them to success. Before they know it, they will be upperclassmen sharing their tips and valuable experience with the next group of incoming students.