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‘ASC’ a Graduate: Isabelle Keim

Former student employees for NC State’s Academic Success Center (ASC) share their experiences working within the program and how it helped prepare them for success after graduation.

Isabelle Kiem
Isabelle Keim

The Academic Success Center (ASC) regularly hires tutors and academic peer mentors as well as writing consultants for its undergraduate and graduate writing centers. Both positions are on-campus, paid opportunities for students who enjoy helping their peers be academically successful.

To give a better idea of what it’s like being a student worker in the ASC, we spoke with some alumni who worked there during their time at NC State. Isabelle Keim (Biological Sciences ’19) started working as a group tutor and academic coach for the program during her sophomore year. In that role, she held consistent sessions with a group of students where she helped students reflect on tests and figure out study strategies for improving their grades. During her junior and senior year, she was a group tutoring supervisor, where she helped other group tutors by providing feedback and support. 

Keim (right) makes a wolfie sign with a friend at NC State
Keim (right) makes a wolfie sign with a friend at NC State

Here is what she had to say:

What did you enjoy most and what did you gain from your experience with the ASC?

“I enjoyed seeing how groups transformed from the first and last sessions. It’s gratifying to see how independent your tutees become and how the skills they learn from your sessions can be applied to their other classes and study groups.

“One thing I gained from working at the ASC was perspective. Working with students in classes I had already taken was rewarding because I got to see their journey and remember that I was once learning this material for the first time. It gave me an appreciation for my education and the work I had been doing.”

What are you doing now, and what transferable skills from your job with the ASC have helped you in your current work?

“I am a first-year medical student at UNC and could not speak more highly of the skills I learned as a tutor and supervisor! The ASC taught me how to self-reflect professionally and give feedback to others. In my classes now, we are constantly being evaluated by our mentors and classmates through bi-semester evaluations. So, learning to reflect and set attainable goals came naturally because I had so much practice with the ASC. At orientation, we even talked about setting S.M.A.R.T. goals! 

“The ASC also taught me how to work professionally with others and manage group settings. Medicine, like every profession, is a team sport with people of all different levels. At the ASC, it was essential to clearly communicate with staff, peers and tutees and deal with conflict that arose within groups. Setting group rules and goals was a good way to increase productivity and remember that everyone is on the same team.”

What other perks or advantages did you enjoy from your work at the ASC?

“I really enjoyed getting to work somewhere that allowed for flexible hours. I was also a teaching assistant and clinical research associate, so the ASC gave me a job I enjoyed that worked with my schedule.”

If you are a current student interested in working as a tutor, peer mentor or writing consultant within the Academic Success Center, please apply here.