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DeAndrea Jones, a freshman Architectural Studies major, speaks to Dianna Andrews, the College of Arts and Science's life coach.

Winning at the game of life

As finals loom, life coaches are here for you

Panicking about finals or dealing with other life issues? Want to speak to an unbiased, knowledgeable resource?

UMKC's life coaches are here for you. Towards the end of each semester, as students get into "crunch mode," Dianna Andrews said more students visit her for free counsel and advice. Andrews, the College of Arts and Sciences' life coach, advises at least two or three students each weekday.

"Sometimes students don't know what degree they want, and I will refer them to a career counselor,” said Andrews, who is pursuing a Masters of Social Work degree at the College of Arts and Sciences' School of Social Work. "Other times a student might be failing a class, and didn't realize it was because of post-traumatic stress disorder from serving in the military. A lot of students don't understand they're eligible for disability or other resources."

 

A life-changing resource

When Deidre Parker found herself in between jobs and with no place to stay in the fall of 2010, she found help through Andrews.

"I explained to her what I had been going through and I wanted so badly to continue to go to school," said Parker, a junior Liberal Arts major. "She was someone I could easily talk to and she tried to find the people and resources to help. We kept in close contact over a long period of time, and I would always update her on what I was doing and progress I was making."

Andrews helped her find a work-study position, and helped her through the process of receiving financial aid.

"I was surprised to learn there a lot of students who have gone through what I have or worse," Parker said. "Periodically, in conversation with other UMKC students, I inform them of my experience with the life coach and encourage them to go and try to get help they need."

 

Make an appointment to speak with someone:

College of Arts and Sciences:

  • Who: Dianna Andrews, Masters of Social Work student at the College of Arts and Sciences’ School of Social Work
  • When: 10:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays; Noon-4:30 p.m. Tuesdays; 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and 2 p.m.-5 p.m. Wednesdays
  • Where: Scofield Hall, Room 23, 711 E. 51st St.
  • Contact: Email aslifecoach@umkc.edu or call (816) 235-1446.

School of Nursing:

School of Education:


Coach Andrews' Top 10 Tips for Success: 

1. Create a master calendar, which allows you to plug-in classes, study time and free time. If friends pressure you to trade your studies for social activities, you can tell them there is a limited amount of time available.

2. Attend class anyway – even if you didn’t complete your homework. Attendance points are important!
 

3. Introduce yourself to each of your professors. 


4. Reach out to people on campus until you find the resources you need. Also try to make a connection with someone in every class. If you’re shy, just comment on something you’re learning. If you missed class and need to catch up, you can call that person.


5. Build self-confidence. Reach out to a life coach and learn what’s expected from the professor. Then, you’ll have more confidence about the work you turn in.

 

6. Get enough sleep at night. Try to set a regular bed time.

 

7. Eat right and always keep snacks with you. Also try to exercise a few times a week.

 

8. Maintain healthy boundaries with your parents. Parents often closely monitor their adult children, which can be overwhelming. Use “I feel” statements and strive to make choices for yourself.

 

9. Know your learning and studying style. “Everyone learns and studies differently,” Andrews said. “I can’t study when it’s quiet. But other people study better on the library’s quiet floors."

 

10. To get along with roommates, agree on quiet times.

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"Periodically, in conversation with other UMKC students, I inform them of my experience with the life coach and encourage them to go and try to get the help they need."

Deidre Parker
junior Liberal Arts major

Deidre Parker, a junior Liberal Arts major, said the College of Arts and Sciences life coach has helped her navigate life's challenges.