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Congratulations! You’ve decided to go back to school at Rio Salado College. But what comes next? Sometimes making the decision to return to school is easy. The harder decisions follow - what should I study, how will I manage online classes, where can I get help finding a job?


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    A R I O S A L A D O CO L L E G E P U B L I C AT I O N

    Fall 2012

    Currentgo back to school...

    take the next step!

    3 Back to School...Now What?5 New Tools, New Way to Start7 Ways to Save for College9 Overcoming Online Distractions


  • Current is published 4 times a year by the Institutional Advancement Office at Rio Salado College.







    Back to School... Now What?

    Ways to Save in College

    New Tools, New Way to Start

    How to Overcome Online DistractionsTake the Next Step

    Transfer Basics

    Weve Got Connections

    Class Schedule

    RSC Locations

    Whats New at Rio

    Table of Contents

    Fall 2012

    Going back to school when you already have a life filled with family, home and work obligations can be a real challenge. Rio Salado College can help with information and encouragement, whether your goal is a GED credential, a certificate or degree, or simply learning something new.

    Rio Salado College President

    -Dr. Chris Bustamante

    Largest online public community college in the nation!


  • By Patricia Oliverio-Lauderdale

    Back to School...

    Congratulations! Youve decided to go back to school at Rio Salado College. But what comes next? Sometimes making the decision to return to school is easy. The harder decisions follow - what should I study, how will I manage online classes, where can I get help finding a job?

    Luckily, your mind can be put to rest. Rio Salado has career and counseling services and staff available to help you find that right path and reach your goals.

    My Rio Salado advisor, Jacque Beale, has always provided me with fantastic advice, said student Cindy Fife. She helped me recognize my individual goals and achievements, and made me believe that I could reach my goals, no matter how high I set the bar.

    Academic counselors are available to all students in-person, and by phone, email or chat. They are able to answer your questions about academic success,

    career exploration, personal counseling and job hunting skills.

    Or you can choose from four online college success classes:

    Career Exploration

    Creative Job Hunting

    Creating Job Success

    Strategies for College Success

    You will earn 1-3 credits depending on the class, and will learn creative job hunting skills, tips on being a successful online student, how to build a resume, time management tips, how to deal with stress and more!

    If this is your first online class, check out the counseling website,, where you will find a College Survival Guide to help you get started with taking classes at Rio Salado. The guide also

    provides study skills and test-taking skills so you can blow the top off of every exam!

    If you already have a career in mind, but need help planning a way to obtain it, visit the websites online career center to find step-by-step career planning techniques as well as supplemental videos and tips to help you prepare for job interviews.

    If you are uncertain about what job to pursue, there are even self-assessments that examine your personality, values, and knowledge and then match you to various careers.

    See page 5 to learn how to get started at Rio.

    Now What?

    MilitaryAtRio.comGet answers to your military student questions at:

    Rio Salado College President


  • By Mira Radovich & Patricia Oliverio-Lauderdale

    Well, a ladder helps you access things that are out of reach, and Rio Salado College helps you reach your educational goals. Whether you want to prepare for the GED exam, satisfy

    a pre-requisite, explore online learning, or earn a certificate

    or degree, were here to help you take the next step.

    Just like a ladder, Rio Salado College elevates you to the next level. Our affordable tuition and flexible online

    classes will bring a college education into

    reach. So you might be seeing more of that ladder in the

    future. And hey, we like the color blue. Emily Carlson

    Emily Carlson had a dream to become an attorney but her disability threatened to stand in the way. She was working as a paralegal and had a passion for the law. After researching various options with her boss, they decided Rio Salados paralegal program would be best in helping Carlson achieve her goal.

    One day I decided I need to take control of my life and not let my disability define who I am, Carlson said. Online courses helped me to become a self-starter. Now theres nothing stopping me from reaching my goal.

    Carlson is starting her second term at Rio as a member and vice president of the Phi Theta Kappa, and is in the honors program. Her goal is to complete a bachelors degree at ASU and become an attorney in personal injury defense.

    Gregory KoskoIn January 2009, Gregory Kosko lost his job due to corporate cutbacks, and soon after was diagnosed with Parkinsons disease. Despite these setbacks, Kosko reached his goal of college graduation thanks to the support of his wife, Rio Salados Disabilities Resources department, and his own perseverance. Having attained an associate degree at

    Rio Salado, I feel a sense of accomplishment, Kosko said. What I see in my future is happiness. This is born from the satisfaction achieved through learning.

    Kosko is currently working toward a bachelors degree from NAU, and ultimately hopes to earn an MBA, and get a job that allows him to assist others with disabilities.

    Jill McNairEven though Jill McNair had an MBA, she applied to many companies without success.

    After months of fruitless searching, I decided to go back to school and update my skill set, said McNair. I also decided that I wanted to pursue a new field that was interesting, rewarding and in high-demand.

    McNair looked into educational technology programs at a nearby state university, but found it too expensive even with financial aid. She then came across Rio Salado Colleges eLearning Design program.

    I decided to go for it, said McNair who completed the program in May and is now starting a freelance business.

    These Rio Salado students have taken the next step by pursuing education to better their lives.

    Whats up with the blue ladder?


  • Start at Rio is a new website that provides a checklist to help students gain an overview of the college while streamlining the process of enrolling. There are two checklists: one for students seeking to earn a degree or certificate at Rio Salado, and one for students who are taking online classes for personal or career interest, or to transfer.

    Checklist steps include: Explore our Programs, Create an Account, Funding Options, Register for Classes, Buy Textbooks and Access Student Email. One of the final checklist steps is to participate in the NSO101 class which is presented in RioLearn

    so students can familiarize themselves with how online classes are taken at the college.

    Start at Rio is like a roadmap for students to plan their educational journey, said David Hall, director of academic advisement at Rio Salado.Ultimately, our goal is to make the journey as easy to navigate as possible by providing the tools students need to be successful.

    New Tools, New Way to Start

    Rio Salado College has two new tools to help students prepare for success in an online learning environment.

    New Student Orientation (NSO101) is an online class that introduces students to Rio Salados services and procedures, and is conveniently offered in RioLearn, the colleges online learning management system. The orientation class is free, and takes approximately two hours to complete.

    In NSO101, students will learn about: Rio Salados student services (advising,

    tutoring, financial aid, library services, etc.)

    College policies and procedures

    How to navigate the RioLearn environment

    How to be a successful online student

    Monica Martinez, a student in the colleges Teacher-in-Residence program, said she likes the convenience that the new orientation provides.

    Its always great to have everything you need in one place, Martinez said. It makes everything easier and saves time.

    New Student Orientation

    By Ryan Bawek



  • Rio Salado College students, faculty and staff connect through social media on topics ranging from technology in education to raising chickens in the backyard.

    They us!The Rio community can be found on Facebook where we discuss everything from college news and events to current topics in education, military issues, sustainable cooking and even urban agriculture. The official Facebook page of Rio Salado College. The East Valley Veterans Education Center promotes advocacy and awareness of issues facing our nations heroes. The Communiversity at Surprise engages the community in discussion of innovative local and national education solutions. Caf at Rio event information, sustainable cooking and gardening tips, and LOTS of food pictures.

    Were being followedSearch our hashtags #RioNews #RioGrad #RioGarden and #RioCafe or follow @RioSaladoOnline on Twitter for real-time updates on college news, important dates and deadlines, local events, part-time job postings, and (of course) a little random silliness.

    And thats not all!Not only does the Rio community produce several topical blogs, we can also be found on YouTube, Flickr, Google+ and Reddit. Visit to learn more.

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