Struggling? Talk to your prof


Sam Gauntt

Second-year transfer studies student Lexi Grieder says developing relationships with your professors is important, especially when you have a learning disability.

Lexi Grieder, Events Manager

If you have ADHD like I do, I know how hard school is for you. You avoid your teachers and lie about having assignments done because you don’t want to be lectured on stuff you already know you should be doing.
I have great news for you. You can stop avoiding your teachers. That’s what I did and it’s working out great for me.
I know that having a professor call you aside for a talk can be stressful and intimidating, but the chances are good that nothing you say can surprise your teachers because they’ve heard it all before.
I found this out when I finally mustered up the courage to approach a teacher who seemed to be harsh with students. I told her about my learning disability and how it was affecting my performance in the class, and she softened. We had a great working relationship for the rest of the semester.
The great thing about community college is that the professors take the time to get to know you and they are willing to work with you so you can be confident and successful. People who attend larger schools often don’t have that luxury and can’t even get in touch with their professors. Establishing a relationship with our professors is something that we shouldn’t take for granted.
Many students end each class by walking out with their friends, but simply stopping by to check in with your professor can benefit you both. This communicates to professors that you are trying, which is what matters most.
If you’re struggling in a class and don’t reveal that, the teacher will assume you don’t care and you’re just not putting in the work, which couldn’t be further from the truth. Anyone who has a disability has to work twice as hard as the average person and that effort should never go unnoticed. It is OK to give yourself the credit you deserve.
In some classes, I find myself drowning in work. But when I am able to open up to my teachers about my struggles, I can almost always improve my skills. Learning how and when to ask for help is something I am still continuing to work on but I can confidently say I have come a long way.
The first step is being your own advocate.