Real World program is being revamped

Ashley Emanuel, Copy Editor

Good grades just aren’t enough anymore; experience is what really matters to future employers, according to Student Life Director Sherri Rae.

The Real World Action program gives students actual experience, Rae said.

This year, Real World Action Program directors are making a lot of changes. Student Jacob Wolff helped with creating the program.

Wolff said that he and some other students helped work on the program over the summer. The students had weekly meetings to discuss changes and brainstorm new ideas.

Wolff helped develop what is now the revamped program.

Before the changes, students would receive credit for every event they went to and the points would build up. Now, there are four categories, and students have to meet certain requirements in each category in order to complete the program, according to Rae.

Some awards are being considered but have not been set in place. Students will be eligible to receive these if they complete the program before graduation.

According to Rae, completion of the program is not required to graduate. Last year, the top five students from each year were invited to write an essay about their experience and then were recognized at an awards ceremony.

Wolff said students don’t realize campus events they attend on a daily basis can count toward the program and that he hopes all his fellow students from freshmen to seniors take advantage of it.

“I believe that it is necessary for colleges in the 21st century … to prepare students,” Wolff said.

There are two ways that students can log their progress: to swipe their student ID’s outside the events or log their own progress through Career Services.

“With the program, you get experience,” Rae said.

She also said that it’s better for a business major to show that they managed a budget, rather then just say that they received an A in a budget class.

That goes for all majors. According to both Rae and Wolff, students need to be doing more than just getting good grades.

“(It) looks good for future employment,” Rae said.

The action groups are not the same. They are somewhat of a subcategory and students enrolled in the groups get a head start on events.

A student does not need to be part of an action group to successfully complete the program. Every group has an upperclassmen liaison who is in charge of the running of the groups.

Pitt-Johnstown sophomore Cassie Cook — liaison for the Language, Literature and Culture group — said she hopes freshmen become more involved.

“(They should) really take advantage of all the wonderful opportunities that UPJ has to offer,” she said.

All freshmen this year are being assigned coaches to help them with the program and guide students to completion.

The program is also working on pulling upperclassmen’s old information and transferring it over to the new system, according to Rae.