Several clubs and organizations opened for business by positioning tents throughout the quad on Aug. 26 for Welcome Week, an event that helps students easily transition into the new school year.
Participants included the Office of Student Life (OSL), Cross Cultural Center (CCC), Associated Students of PCC (ASPCC), Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOP&S), Student Health Services, and the Formerly Incarcerated Radical Scholars Team (FIRST).
The OSL aims to help support students, spread cultural awareness, and provide leadership opportunities. Its services offer emergency student loans, a campus connection lab for technology use, discounted amusement park and entertainment tickets, and U-PASS transit passes.
ASPCC is a committee within the OSL that acts on behalf of the population as PCC’s student government. There are nine committees within AS that target specific aspects of student life. The Academic, Cultural Activities, Sustainability, and Student Lobby committees are some of the different sectors that students can join.
“Our goal for the new year is to be more present in the everyday lives of students,” said Dionne Shelton, ASPCC president. “We are the student leaders and representatives that [students] can voice concerns to because we truly care.”
Shelton explained that the board members are working on plans to become more transparent and accessible. Future committee meetings will be held in different offices across campus, and the public is highly encouraged to attend, she said. Anyone is welcome to listen along to committee proceedings and provide input on how to better serve the PCC community.
Applications to become committee members for ASPCC are available in the OSL, which is located in CC-105. They are due on Sept. 13.
Student Health Services is a center that provides a variety of resources in any matter of health concerns. The health fee is already included upon tuition payment, making the center’s provisions either no- or low-cost.
Nurses, doctors, practitioners, and registered dietitians provide consultations, examinations, and counseling.
This also includes first aid to emergency care, treatment of short-term illnesses, birth control, prescribing medication, and educational pamphlets. Students are also provided with up to eight free counseling sessions per semester.
Nairy Tatlian and Vir-laesta Vergel de Dios are currently the only health educators working on informational presentations about topics such as de-stressing methods and sexual consent.
“These kinds of presentations that we have were actually requested over the years,” said Dios. “We’re open to other presentations if a population was interested in us coming to talk about that.”
The Student Health Services office is located in D-105.
Learning Support Centers
More than 20 Learning Support Centers around campus are housed within different departments. Tutoring is offered in more than 35 subjects. Disabled Students Programs and Services (DSPS), EOP&S, the Veterans Resource Center (VRC), and other centers may be reserved for special populations.
All support centers have walk-in services, though specific locations also provide appointment-based tutoring. The Learning Support Centers house peer tutors and faculty to aid students with their academic success.
Associate Dean of Learning Resources John Gillette sees a difference between tutoring and going to a professor’s office hours.
“Tutoring is not teaching,” said Gillette. “That is the sole job of the instructors. What we do is we teach learning. We expect our tutors to help the student come to a different way to approach their studies.”
Students may also come to the centers use them as study spaces or to work on homework with their peers.
An advantage of receiving help from a tutor is that all tutors are peer workers who are sympathetic to students’ struggles and circumstances.
“I hope that there’s a connection between the students and the tutors, where they know that at least one person understands their situation,” said Gillette. “And if it could be another student, that’s all the better.”
Student-run clubs and organizations are other ways to get involved on campus. An entire list of clubs can be found on PCC’s website. FIRST and the Honors Club (HC) both focus on supporting students to transfer to higher education.
FIRST is a club that aims to provide assistance and guidance to formerly incarcerated, system impacted, or allied students with an interest in social justice. Its members help create a supportive network through shared experiences and community education.
It also works with the program CORE, or Community Overcoming Recidivism Through Education, to “[empower] students to succeed in higher education and beyond,” as its mission statement.
Despite its name, the Honors Club is open to anyone outside of the Honors Program. The club hosts workshops about academic and scholarly experiences, such as the transfer process or how to prepare for job interviews. It also has speaker panels throughout the year with PCC alumni or professionals in their field that come to interact with students, and support them in making informed decisions.
“The Honors Club is here as a helping hand for transfer applicants,” said Victoria Nea, HC president. “But I’m confident that students can gain something from our events and supportive community to also facilitate their other academic and professional endeavors.”