Ready to go to office hours?
Learning how to navigate experiences unique to college like office hours is easier with coaching from advisors at the Academic Success Center.
There is no doubt that professors can be very intimidating, especially ones that have been around for quite some time or ones that have worked in industry at companies you aspire to work at one day. Sometimes, we idolize our professors so much that we forget they’re people at the end of the day, just like us. They’ve been in our shoes even if that may be difficult to see at times. Attending office hours is the perfect way to build relationships with your professors beyond the classroom, which can lead you down a lot of different paths and open new doors you might not have thought about before.
Take time to talk
Talking to your professor can be a valuable tool. Through conversations, you may open your mind to graduate school or realize what research, projects or even internships you want to get involved with. While you may have a perception of research and not see yourself doing it, just one conversation could change your mind. I know I greatly underestimated the connections that professors have with industry professionals.
Show up to show you care
Most of the time students don’t attend office hours, so just making the effort to be there says a lot. Professors invest time in making sure you specifically understand the material being taught in class. Showing them you care by taking the time to be in office hours can go a long way. Who knows, you might end up with an 88 by the end and need that extra bump to an A. When I’ve attended office hours in the past, I try to come with a few different questions pertaining to the class and then ultimately steer the conversation beyond the class material which has helped me gain insight into other opportunities available to me.
I know initiating a conversation with someone you greatly admire can be difficult, but try to see that they’ve been in your position. Asking for help on class material shows your motivation to succeed in the class you’re in; and, if you enjoy your professor, don’t be afraid to ask them questions about their experiences and research. Again, you may find yourself looking into graduate school later on or even just research experience as an undergrad.
It’s never too late in a semester to show up to office hours. Don’t underestimate the power of this time in your current semester and potentially in your future!