The MAPS Program exists to improve the retention and academic performance of students who are committed to earning degrees from UNC Charlotte’s Lee College of Engineering. The program serves as a resource to connect engineering, engineering technology, and construction management students to college and campus-wide resources, extra-curricular opportunities, and organizations with the goal of developing independent learners and problem solvers.
Participation in the MAPS program is an exercise in Change Management (*A controlled identification, development, and execution of a systematic approach to successfully manage and facilitate change). Dealing with change can be difficult, but as an engineer it is unavoidable. To transition into UNC Charlotte as a successful engineering student you must overcome change, e.g.:
- Change in Environment
- Change in Support Structure
- Change in Workload
- Change in Personal Methodologies
- Change in Habits
- Change in Thinking
It is self-evident that technology is a major influence and driving force affecting change in our culture and society. Engineers by definition, are the inventors and innovators of technology. As such, it is can be said that engineers are ambassadors of change; we embrace it! As a new or current engineering student at UNC Charlotte, MAPS transition coaching provides the skills, understanding, and resources to begin your education heading in the right direction.
MAPS Transition Coaching will help you to:
- Improve your time management and study and learning skills
- Learn how to use your text books and better prepare for exams
- Better understand the workload and pace of university study and life
- Begin the transition from dependence to independence in your life and educational career
- Own your personal, educational, and professional growth
- Develop strategies to succeed at UNC Charlotte and beyond
Students who regularly attend transition coaching are more likely to achieve a GPA of 3.0 or higher compared to students who do not attend. Weekly group coaching sessions last approximately one hour. Freshman students are led and mentored by two College of Engineering upperclassman. The setting is interactive, fun, and relaxed. MAPS coaching occurs every week for 13 weeks, but not every week is spent in the classroom. Most classroom sessions are conveniently located in the Smith Building and in Hawthorn Hall, which is home to the College of Engineering’s Freshman Learning Community (FLC). Out-of-classroom sessions involve time spent learning more about engineering, the university, and/or allow for the development of new friendships.
Similar to transition coaching, Supplemental Instruction (SI) is a free academic support and enhancement program. SI is a peer-led group study, provided in a comfortable supportive atmosphere, where students learn to apply and work through course concepts and material. Each peer SI leader has previously taken, and received an A grade in, the course for which they are leading group study sessions. During the semester in which the SI leader is holding group study sessions, they are required to sit through the class again, and re-work every homework assignment to assure that they are fully aware of the content that current students are experiencing on a daily basis. SI helps students to improve their knowledge and application of course subject matter.
The lessons learned through participation in the MAPS program will remain with students throughout their college and professional careers. During MAPS meetings, students acquire some of the most fundamental skills and principles necessary to succeed in UNC Charlotte’s rigorous engineering, engineering technology, and construction management curricula. Ultimately, a student’s personal success in the College of Engineering is a function of their decision making, communication, and work ethic. More specifically, engineering students decide to commit, be present, and focus their attention by:
- Communicating and interacting with fellow students, professors, and available resources
- Defining and managing their time and work load to achieve their educational goals
These are the pillars of the MAPS program, and the foundation upon which its mentoring curriculum is built.
“Do today what others won’t, so that tomorrow you can do what others can’t” – Jerry Rice