Two years ago, PCC’s Rosemead campus was devoid of any clubs at all. The campus usually consists of a little more than 2,000 students, all of whom are only there for about one to two years to take general and introductory courses. Student Christopher Theung felt that something was missing from campus life, that the student experience was lacking. Social and school events were constantly being held at the main campus, but event outreach to Rosemead was minimal.
Theung decided to take action and start a club—the only club—at Rosemead. As the founder of the PCC Rosemead Club, his goal was to provide social and volunteer events. Furthermore, he wanted to have fundraising opportunities to provide better resources and experiences for students.
“The club was created out of a need to have student life,” said Theung. “The original source of it was through a student feedback committee that was for people who wanted to talk about what improvements could be done on campus.”
The club currently consists of three members: President Sandy Quezada, Treasurer Victoria Orellana, and ICC Representative Theung.
Overall Theung wanted his main mission to be advocating for Rosemead.
“It’s a satellite campus so it’s far from Pasadena distance-wise, but it felt that way organizational-wise too,” said Theung.
His initial drive to enact change has since garnered attention from the Associated Students of PCC (ASPCC), who helped the club organize its recent events, such as finals week where coffee and testing supplies are provided free of charge.
For the most part, Advisor and Director of the Rosemead Campus Dr. Raquel Torres-Retana lets the students take charge. She bases her methods off of student development theory, where students become their own learners and leaders.
“Part of that is being able to have a voice and have that voice heard,” said Torres-Retana. “As an administrator and as the advisor I support students. And I support them making decisions and planning and failing. Because through failure, they’re going to learn.”
One of the club’s achievements was creating awareness for the need of a shuttle to transport students from the main campus to Rosemead and vice versa. For students like Quezada, who struggles with traveling long distances, the shuttle provides easy, free access to current students and PCC Staff.
There are still some setbacks to the operations. During busy hours when the shuttle gets filled, students are kicked off and have to wait for the next one to arrive. Just recently, Rosemead held a trial until Oct. 3 to have a rotation every hour.
Though it has since been discontinued, there is a discussion to increase the number of vans during busy times of the day, such as 8:30 a.m. when many classes start on the main campus.
The club has also succeeded in enhancing student life on campus. A memorable moment for Quezada was when the club had a Cinco de Mayo event with a pinata and younger children came to participate in addition to PCC’s students.
“It brings a personality to the campus, it brings life,” said Quezada. “Even though it’s only the three of us, I see people having so much fun at the events we hold. It brings us together.”
The most recent event was especially touching for Torres-Retana. The club organized a visit with Holocaust survivor Dr. Monique Saigal, who shared her experience as a hidden Jewish child growing up during World War II.
“To hear some of the questions coming from the students and what they didn’t know about the Holocaust was eye-opening,” said Torres-Retana. “Based on the questions they were asking, they didn’t know about the full impact on the Jewish community. You could see the learning in their faces, in their expressions, in their body language that was taking place outside of the classroom. It was beautiful, not just because of her story, but because of how students were learning directly from someone.”
The PCC Rosemead Club still faces challenges ahead. Quezada, Orellana, and Theung have a strong drive to make as many improvements as they can, but their busy schedules limit what they can do.
Theung is also the Executive Vice President of ASPCC, which gives him the ability to represent Rosemead with the rest of the student body on the main campus, but diverts time away from the club.
In the Spring, the team plans to make efforts to increase student involvement by adding new members.