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A Success Story

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Hello, current and prospective students!

My name is David G. Champoux. I recently graduated in the Clarkson class of 2011 with a bachelor's of science in Civil Engineering. My four years at Clarkson have shown me that working hard is not an option, but a necessity in order to succeed in all areas of life. Life can be challenging, but it is up to us, to put forth effort, and reach out for opportunities that are out there.

That’s what I did at Clarkson: work hard and take full advantage of opportunities. One important way I did this was by working with the Student Success Center (SSC) throughout my four-year tenure.

The SSC is composed of staff members who truly care about every student they work with. From tutoring, to first year advising, to disability accommodations and support, the SSC staff is there to assist all students who are willing to put in the extra effort to making their academic and university experiences more successful. For me, these folks became my second family.

Beginning in my freshman year, I worked with Sheila McCarthy, Director of Accommodative Services. Sheila worked to provide me with the accommodations that I qualified for in order to guarantee my academic success at Clarkson. She consistently demonstrates her commitment to ensure that all accommodative students receive their necessary accommodations and are treated professionally.

Additionally, I used Clarkson's tutoring services through Student Support Services (a branch of the SSC), headed by Kate Mikel, Associate Director of Student Support Services/Tutoring Coordinator. Kate goes out of her way to match students with tutors that have similar learning styles for better success. I personally had tutors for most of my freshman courses, as well as some for my sophomore engineering courses.

During my senior year, I visited Cathy Avadikian - Director of First Year Advising/University Studies – for assistance with advising. As a student with a disability, navigating through my remaining course requirements proved to be challenging. Cathy worked with me as well as with my advisor to make sure that I met all my requirements and graduated on time.

My studies have taken me away from New York as I look to earn a master’s degree in Transportation Engineering, a sub discipline of Civil Engineering.  Yet even now, as an alumnus, I continue to stay in touch with these people who worked so hard to ensure my success.

Engineering major David Champoux '11 credits The Success Center's programs for helping him to achieve academic excellence

David G. Champoux ’11 (Civil Engineering)

Thank you Sheila McCarthy, Kate Mikel, Cathy Avadikian and the secretarial staff — Lorraine, Mary and Mary —for all of your hard work and dedication to helping generations of Clarkson students who come to you with more than simple academic queries.