Empower your future by daring to believe in what you can become!
From the Desk of Cary J. Green, PhD, Founder
Updated: June 3, 2021
My Name is Cary J. Green, PhD, and I am a Christian author, speaker, and coach in the academic coaching space. Many parents of high schoolers call me "the guy who went from a D to PhD". Over the last 25 years I have been helping parents of high schoolers coach their teen to succeed in high school and prepare for college using a savvy approach to academic success that few in the academic coaching world have access to.
So...why do I do what I do?
Let me share a brief story with you. It may help you understand why I'm a good person for you to listen to.
I was a bewildered freshman trying to adjust to life on campus and become a successful college student. I really wanted to succeed in college, just like I had succeeded in high school. I wanted to do well in my classes so I could earn a college degree and get a great job.
However, I was failing my chemistry tests. That meant I wasn’t able to do well in my classes, let alone earn a college degree and get a great job.
To make things worse, I felt terrible because I was working hard and was doing everything I knew how to do to succeed in chemistry, but I still was failing.
I could not for the life of me figure out why my approach wasn't working. It worked in high school; why wasn't it working now?
I felt even worse about the situation because I thought I wouldn't be able to reach my educational and career goals. I felt like I was not smart enough to get a college degree.
I felt like a failure. I felt that I had let my parents and girlfriend down.
The problem was that, even though I had graduated in the top 10% of my high school class, I got a D in freshman chemistry.
I told myself I couldn't handle my college classes and that I was not smart enough to succeed.
I doubted myself and my abilities. I wanted to give up on my goals.
My life totally changed for the better when an 'ah-ha' moment happened to me.
The Holy Spirit revealed to me that my chemistry grade was the symptom, not the problem. The problem was that I was limited by a lack of success skills.
I knew I could get the grades I was capable of getting by developing my God-given success skills.
Ya see, learning chemistry is kinda like learning to ride a bike. We often crash a few times as we learn to ride. We may even think we will never learn to ride. But the truth is not that we can't learn to ride; the truth is that we haven't yet developed our riding skills. So, even though we have the ability to ride, we can't ride until we develop the skills that enable us to ride.
And that was the problem with chemistry; God had given me the ability to succeed in chemistry, but I had not developed the skills I needed to succeed.
I had tried to succeed in college using the same skills I used in to succeed in high school, but the skills I used in high school were not enough.
In fact, the simple truth is, we need to improve our skills each time we advance in our education and career.
So I started honing my time management and organizational skills.
I then developed my problem-solving and critical thinking skills.
After that, I learned how take great notes and ramped up my test-prep and test-taking skills.
I took the freshman chemistry class again and earned an A. I took the next chemistry class and earned an A in that class as well. I even earned an A in physical chemistry in grad school. I don’t think my IQ increased, but I developed my success skills, and these skills made me “smarter."
My upgraded skills also empowered me to go from a D in freshman chem to a PhD, and despite nearly flunking out of college, I landed a great job as a professor.
But there was still a problem.
As I began my career as a professor, I quickly became frustrated when I saw so many college students struggling and falling short in the classes I taught, just like I had fallen short in freshman chemistry.
Having once been in their shoes, I knew many of the students were capable of improving their grades just like I had done.
To make matters worse, the employers I spoke with constantly told me that many college graduates simply didn't have the soft skills they needed to succeed on the job. And I heard the same thing about the lack of skills in college grads at all the national meetings I attended. Lack of soft skills in college grads was a big deal across country.
To help my students develop their skills, I decided to make a change in my teaching strategy. In addition to teaching my course content, I started to integrate academic success skills, leadership skills, and soft skills into my teaching and advising activities. I had been teaching these skills in my freshman orientation courses, but now I saw a real need to include them in my agricultural and environmental science courses.
For example, I corrected grammatical mistakes on tests and assignments. I took the time to help my students develop their teamwork skills when I assigned collaborative projects.
I made sure my students understood the importance of soft skills and strongly encouraged them to develop and document these skills. I also helped them integrate evidence and examples of their employability skills and experiences into their resumes and cover letters.
Integrating success skills development into my teaching and advising enabled me to empower countless students to improve their grades and strengthen their resumes. My impact on student success was recognized with a few teaching and mentoring awards.
When I became Associate Dean for Academic Programs, I was asked to speak to students in a leadership development class. I started jotting down a few ideas to share with the aspiring leaders and soon had several pages of notes. Those notes, combined with my experience teaching success skills in my classes, evolved into a draft for a book that integrated academic success skills, leadership skills, and soft skills to help teens succeed in the classroom and on the job.
And after several rounds of refining and honing my content based on input from students, teachers, and employers, I wrote Success Skills for High School, College, and Career.
But I didn’t stop there. As a Christian, I wanted to create an edition of the book specifically for Christian teens. So, I incorporated scriptural references, Biblical examples, and a Christian theme to create Success Skills for High School, College, and Career (Christian Edition).
So, thanks to my experiences as a student and professor, I can now help Christian parents empower their teens to get the grades they are capable of getting in high school and prepare them for college and career by providing them with the books, courses, and expert coaching they need to ramp up their success skills.
Not everyone will go from a D to a PhD, but everyone can develop the skills they need to perform at the level of their ability
I understand that having a high school success and college prep plan that lets you equip your teen perform at the level of her ability is a priority for you as a Christian parent. I understand this challenge very well, and I pledge to help you help your teen succeed in high school and prepare for college, do it with the skill of a pro, and do it without relying on resources that aren't Biblical.
And today, I want to help you get started for free.
I'd like you to pick up my new book excerpt, "Success Skills for High School, College, and Career (Christian Edition) Revised", right now.
This excerpt will help your Christian teens learn to define their priorities, manage their time better, and discover what the Bible says about achieving success God's way.
You can pick it up by clicking the link below:
Cary J. Green, PhD, Founder
Skills 4 Students, LLC