I've been able to get a fari response to many of the workshops I've offered
1. finding classes or programs willing to require that their students attend
some campus events (not necessarilly mine).
2. creating workshops that address specific needs and that can be marketed
to specific segments of the campus--e.g. solving word problems in the
3. having a series of workshops, publized well in advance at a time
convenient for students. (I offer my workshops right after I finish work at
5:00--if no-one were to show, I could just go home; around here the 7 and 8
time slots students are doing other things.
4. using all of the (relatively) free campus resources--newspaper, flyers
(posted and on a distribution list to RA's, fraternities, chairs, student
support services), and e-mail for each event ONLY to the targeted faculty or
faculty advisors.
5. I write thank you notes to everyone who attends and helps promote the
6. I try less to appeal to the students directly and more to appeal to
faculty and others to encourage the students.
7. I offer interactive workshops on things that faculty and campus groups
want, like workshops on the A.P.A. style, communicating with people with
disabilities, and evaluating websites.
8. I repeat each workshop I offer three or four times in a row, so students
who are interested can choose the day they want.
9. I ask students to make reservations--some have the attitude that if the
workshop is free, it's not worth much, so at least asking for reservations
gives the workshop some perceived value.
10. I ask how students who come how they heard about the workshop, why they
came, and what they liked about the workshop.
11. I keep the workshops short--usually 30 minutes.
12. I do joint presentations with faculty and other support representatives,
so they can help market the programs with their associates and explain the
workshop's value to others.
13. I keep plugging away.

I think it is a struggle to get students interested in coming to a
traditional student skills workshop. The stigma and potential for something
else to come up, will keep the crowds from breaking down our doors. What
works at your campus may be totally different than what I've found to work
at mine. Just keep doing the research, try out new things, offer programs
that students themselves feel they need, and try to involve others in
promoting your events.

Good luck.

mark may
Eastern Illinois University

-----Original Message-----
From: Open Forum for Learning Assistance Professionals
[mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of Bruce A. Myers
Sent: Thursday, August 24, 2000 2:20 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Academic Seminars

We have been attempting a seminar series that we call the Academic Success
The topics have typically been study skills related (test-taking skills,
problem-solving skills, essay writing, overcoming math anxiety, etc.).

While we have admittedly been a bit deficient in promoting the sessions to
students, attendance has been very poor.  We are a mid-size community
college where
time is definitely a limiting factor for students (oh yeah, add time
management to
the above list). We want these offerings to be of real academic value to our

I am interested in your responses to a couple of questions:

1.    What are your thoughts and opinions concerning such a program?
2.    Is there a better alternative?
3.    Can we actually accomplish anything substantial in 45-minute sessions?
4.    What should we be attempting to accomplish?
5.    Do you offer a similar service; has it been successful (as you would
6.    What are some of the topics presented?
7.    What types of creative things have you done to promote your program?

Thank you in advance for your help!  I know that everyone is busy as the
school year
gets underway.

Bruce Myers
Coordinator of Academic Support Services
Kankakee Community College
PO Box 888, River Road
Kankakee, IL 60901
(815) 933-0335

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