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Clausen, Staff Empower Students to Unlock Doors to Comprehension

Cindy Clausen and EddieFrom passing the next exam to accomplishing long-term academic goals, the right tutor, or success coach, can have a huge impact. A person who really understands this is Cindy Clausen, manager of the Academic Support Center at St. Louis Community College-Meramec.

Prior to joining the College, Clausen worked in the book business for nearly two decades. She also taught high school English for two years and was a small-town journalist. She earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism and English education from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale.

“Early in my career, I realized that many students struggle in school because they lack proper reading skills,” she said. “While I’ve always enjoyed literature and writing, I ultimately chose to pursue a master’s degree in reading (from Webster University) because I wanted to learn how to teach others how to read.”

At STLCC, Clausen said the best part of her job is when students see that they have the power to unlock doors to comprehension that have previously been locked tight.

“Many students have shame around their poor reading skills,” she said. “Our team works with students to address their fears head-on. In addition to building their comprehension, they gain the confidence they need to excel in college and beyond.”

Clausen encourages all students to take advantage of STLCC’s tutoring services.

“Students are mistaken if they think tutoring services are just for those who are struggling,” she said. “While students often think they are too busy to come to us, a few visits can make the difference in passing a class instead of withdrawing or raising a grade from a C to a B or A. It really makes sense to take time and use these resources.”

Academic support is available on all campuses at no cost. Depending on the area of focus, students can connect with professional tutors and peer tutors as well as participate in Peer-Assisted Learning groups.

Currently, STLCC’s tutoring services are available online. Students can connect with Academic Support by emailing tutoring@stlcc.edu. In the near future, students will also have the option to make an appointment online using Navigate.

Outside of work, Clausen’s No. 1 go-to activity is reading. She recently finished and highly recommends Ta-Nehisi Coates’ novel, “The Water Dancer.” She also enjoys watching movies, running and hanging out at Forest Park with her spouse and their dogs.

For updates on Meramec’s fall 2020 “Academic Happy Hour”, follow tutoringatmeramec on Instagram.

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