| Three Student's Stories
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> General Resources > Three Student's Stories
General Resources

Use these general resource documents and activities to help increase your success in this course.

Three Student's Stories

On Course features short essays written by real students labeled "One Student's Story" in each chapter. These essays describe strategies students used to improve the quality of their college experience. Watch three of these students as they tell you their story.

Want a chance to tell your story? Click here to submit your story that may be published in the next edition of On Course!

Jessie Maggard, Urbana University, OH


Dominic Grasseth, Lane Community College, OR


Lindsey Beck, Three Rivers Community College, CT


Directions for Essay Submission

Who can enter? All students are eligible who are taking (or have taken) a class in which On Course: Strategies for Success in College and in Life is a required text. To read examples of past winning essays, see the 16 "One Student's Story" features in your On Course book (5th edition).

What are the prizes? Winning essays will be published in the next edition of On Course: Strategies for Success in College and in Life. Each winning student-author will also receive a $100 cash prize...great for funding the celebration of your success!

What should I write about? Write about the BIGGEST obstacle that challenged your success in college and the specific On Course strategy or strategies that you used to help you overcome this challenge. Your story should address three things:

  • THE CHALLENGE. Tell about the BIGGEST obstacle that challenged your success in college. Explain the challenge with enough specific details that readers will know exactly what obstacle you faced. Don't just say, I had a problem with math anxiety. Instead, describe problem as you'd tell a good friend who wants to hear all of the specific details.

  • THE STRATEGY. Explain in detail how you applied one or more specific On Course strategies to overcome the challenge. Don't just make generalizations such as, The book really helped me and now I have no more problems. Instead, name the particular success strategy (or strategies) from On Course and describe how you used it (them), again using specific details.

  • THE OUTCOME. Finally, end by describing what happened after using the On Course strategy. Again, give specific details.

The best examples of what a winning essay looks like are the 16 student essays in your On Course book (5th edition). Each of the "One Student's Story" essays was a winner in the last contest.

Who's is the audience for my essay? Write your essay for fellow college students who'll be taking a course like yours in the future. Remember, winning essays will be published in the next edition of On Course. In this way, your story can inspire many thousands of college and university students who'll read how you improved your life by being a Creator and taking positive actions. Winning essays will inspire other students to be Creators, to overcome life's inevitable obstacles, and to achieve success in college...and in life. They'll realize that if you can do it, so can they!

How long should my essay be? 600 to 800 words.

Can I get help with my writing? Absolutely! This is an ESSAY contest (not a writing contest), so we're interested in your story (not your grammar).In the spirit of interdependence, ask for all the help you can get with your essay. Ask your instructor, ask a writing tutor, ask your brother who has a Ph.D. in English. In short, ask anyone who can help you tell your story effectively!

What's the format? At the top of the page, type the following information as the heading. Then type your essay (single-spaced) below the heading.

  • Student Author's Name
  • Student's Permanent Phone Number
  • Student's Permanent Email Address
  • Student's Permanent Mailing Address
  • Instructor's Name & Course
  • College or University
  • Number of Words in the Essay

How can I submit my essay? Cut and paste your essay into the box below to have your essay submitted. If you have any questions about submission, email the Editors at Houghton Mifflin at csweb.collegesurvival@cengage.com

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