Spring 2014 First Year Seminar

FSEM 100-10 (CRN 6715) The Tipping Point: How to be Successful in College and in Life

First-year seminars exist at Stetson to introduce you to new ideas; develop and strengthen your critical thinking abilities; and teach you how to develop and support college-level arguments, expressing them effectively both in writing and in conversation. In this seminar, we'll examine the tipping point of what creates success in college and in life. We'll do that through in-depth analysis and discussion of texts and real world examples.

FSEM 100-11 (CRN 6716) Values, Culture and Success

What district would you live in if the Hunger Games was real and how would that shade your definitions of values and success? Is Alexander Supertramp (Into the Wild) crazy in a sane world or sane in a crazy world? If you were Elie Wiesel (Night), how would growing up in a concentration camp have influenced your worldview? Lakshmi (Sold) is forced to comply with her culture and family. What does it take to see beyond all you know as ‘normal'? Ron Hall and Denver Moore come from vastly different parts of America. Can you see how you could ever be open to such a friendship? What do you deeply, truly believe? What do you value? How are your values and your worldview a construct of your culture, your age, your family background, and other factors? How do groups and systems define success? In this seminar we will use identity theory, biographies, novels and movies to examine culture ethos and how it interacts with individual identity development on your pathway to success.

Your Professor

Tara Jones has been the Director of the Office of Student Financial Aid at Stetson University since September 2012. Prior she served as Director of Financial Aid at Shorter University in Rome, Ga. She has previously taught freshman seminar courses entitled “First Impressions” and “Success Can Be Yours”. Additionally she started a Male Minority Leadership group and has a passion for working with special populations such as first generation college students.

Prior to that, she worked in all facets of financial aid since starting out as a student-employee in the Financial Aid Office of Kentucky Christian University. She also served as executive director of Polk County Women's Shelter in Cedartown, Ga., and also worked in the Institutional Advancement Office at Berry College in Mount Berry, Ga. Ms. Jones is actively involved in community service and volunteers her time with many organizations including the Optimist Club, where she founded and chaired an annual childhood cancer awareness event, and Court Appointed Special Advocate.

Jones received her undergraduate degree in Psychology and Bible from Kentucky Christian University, and her master's degree in Non- Profit Administration from the University of Notre Dame.