Academic Coaching

What is Academic Coaching?

Academic Coaching is all about supporting your academic success and persistence to graduation. By focusing on individualized support, the Academic Coach works with you to build skills and self-advocacy through co-creating a success plan that considers your life experiences, academic goals, and long-term professional aspirations.

The Academic Coach can also connect you to appropriate services on campus, such as:

Academic Coaching is offered in partnership with the First-Year Engineering Program, but students of all classifications are invited to meet with the Academic Coach.

Students who could benefit from Academic Coaching are encouraged to attend between 3-5 meetings throughout the semester, although each student is evaluated on a case-by-case basis.


What will we talk about?

Each session is different. The topic depends on you, although the Academic Coach will work with you to help identify challenge areas and solidify short- and long-term goals.

Common topics include, but are not limited to,

  • Learning Strategies
  • Effective Studying Techniques
  • Getting the most out of homework and class
  • Notetaking Tips
  • Test Preparation
  • Emotional Wellness
  • Organization Skills
  • Time Management
  • Test Anxiety

Do I need a referral?

No, anyone is welcome to meet with the Academic Coach. We use a referral system for faculty and staff to notify students about the Academic Coach, but there is no requirement beyond a desire to make positive academic change.

Can anyone meet with the Academic Coach?

Yes, absolutely! The academic coach is available to meet with any Engineering students whether you’re a first-semester freshmen or a final-semester graduate student. (Non-engineering students can access peer academic coaching through Class+.) This is a free service for all Engineering students.

How do I make an appointment?

In UA Success, navigate to the “My Success Network” search bar and type “Rachel Piontak.” Select “Schedule Appointment” and follow the prompts to find an appropriate meeting time. Make sure you go through all the screens and have clicked “Confirm” to complete the process. If you are having any difficult scheduling the appointment or prefer to meet through Microsoft Teams, please contact the Academic Coach at or by phone at 479-387-9214.

Why is the Academic Coach texting me?

Once you meet with the Academic Coach, you’ll be added to a texting list to receive study tips and reminders throughout the semester. If you haven’t met with the Academic Coach yet but are receiving text messages, that’s just a sign to consider scheduling a meeting!

The texts are monitored and responded to by the Academic Coach, not a bot, so feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns. If you don’t want to receive the texts, you can always opt-out by replying “Cancel.”

I’m an instructor and want the Academic Coach to speak to my class!

Happily. Please send an email to with the day, time, location, and topic selection. The Academic Coach is available to present on the following topics, ranging from 10- 75 minutes:

  • Introduction to Academic Coaching
  • Time Management
  • Study Skills Inventory
  • Test Preparation
  • Other topics as requested