NTSO: Nurtures Teamwork, Success and Opportunity
NTSO Students: (Left to Right) Charles and Dawn Carter, Deborah Beckham
Jeremiah, age 10, son of NTS Sarah Van Hook (below)
Photo Credits- Shael P. McDonald
NON-TRADITIONAL STUDENT ORGANIZATION: NURTURES TEAMWORK, SUCCESS AND OPPORTUNITY
By Shael P. McDonald
“Who has a tattoo?” someone hollers from the crowd. A few people raise their hands and join to exchange papers. It’s human bingo. The object is to have all your squares signed first and you must ask everyone in the room to review your squares. If one fits, it can be signed. Normally, the questions aren’t hollered out…that’s usually a sign that someone is close to completing the game and they’ve become desperate to win. The game provokes conversation with people you may never have met and friendships begin to take shape. This was one of the games played while enjoying pizza and sodas on Friday, August 24th, at the Non-Traditional Student Organization (NTSO) kick off of the Fall 2012 semester. The night began with a general members meeting to discuss amendments to the organization’s constitution and by-laws. After an introduction of the officers and brief reading, the fun ensued.
Sarah Van Hook, member of NTSO since 2009, explained that she originally joined to meet peers and found it was a great support system, “I moved here from St. Joseph, Missouri, and I didn’t know anyone. I fit into the NTSO because I had a GED and a child.” Sarah, former NTSO secretary for one year and president for two, went on to say, “It’s important to know that studies have shown that students who are involved in organizations within the school have higher success rates (graduate) and have a higher GPA. The studies prove what NTSO provides – support and connection.”
NTSO is one of many organizations on campus. Every organization is different, but they have one thing in common – support. When you are involved in a group, you automatically have support of peers who have similar goals. Your GPA could be at risk of dropping if you aren’t actively involved. According to the Student Activities Office, “Students involved in Student Activities gain valuable experience in building teamwork, planning events, working with diverse personalities, and much more.” Most organizations have some criteria for joining. In the case of NTSO, “a non-traditional student is defined as a student who fits at least one of the following criteria:
- Attending UAFS after an interruption in higher education
- Attending UAFS for the first time after having completed high school four or more years ago
- 25 or older
- A parent, whether single or married
- Working 30 or more hours per week
- A Veteran of the United States Armed Forces
- Challenged by balancing school with family, work, or other life obligations
Additionally, there is no minimum GPA requirement to be involved with this group. If you fit any of the above criteria, you should consider joining NTSO. The application is one page and takes only a few minutes to complete. You can find an application at the Office of the Non-Traditional Student Support located in the Campus Center, room 111A. Contact the NTSO by phone or email at (479) 788-7306 or email@example.com.
To check out the many other organizations on campus, come to the Campus Picnic and Block Party, September 12th or contact the Student Activities Office at (479) 788-7663.