Helping students one step at a time

Staff members stacked boxes of pizzas in a round table as students went in the Great Hall, ready to have their transfer questions answered by departments and clubs.

The counseling center organized an event where students had the chance to meet counselors and other departments such as Student Services, Associated Student Organization (ASO) and Peer to Peer Mentor.

Career Guidance Counselor Assistant Rosa Medrano has been at Pierce for four years helping students with transfer applications.

“As a transfer mentor, I help with the CSU and UC application process,” Medrano said. “This includes the private application process and Transfer Application Guarantee (TAG) process, which guarantees you into one of the UC schools out of the nine that we have.”

Their goal is to inform students about the type of resources that the school offers, as well as to have questions answered and to remove their doubts.

According to Medrano, if students are planning on transferring, it is important to make an appointment with a counselor to get an understanding of the transfer process.

“You want to have the necessary steps and resources to transfer. You want to be aware of the programs that are available to you that guarantee admissions into the schools,” Medrano said.

The Student Services Department provides support to students with disabilities to help them with school and other issues that they may have.

According to John James, a counselor under Special Services, students do not have to pay for any of the services provided to them.

“Students need to bring verification of disability.  Based on the disability, we try to look at ways to accommodate them,” James said.

Michael Charin, an ASO senator, thinks that joining the ASO helps students learn leadership skills and be successful.

“I highly encourage anyone to join because it’s not only just helping the students, but it’s a learning process,” Charin said.

The ASO is looking to get senators for next semester. If interested, pick up an application in the ASO office, located under the library, and turn in the application within the first two weeks of spring, according to Charin.

Kevin Mi, a biochemistry major, is a member of the Peer to Peer Mentor organization. The club focuses on students who need help with anything related to school. They help with applications, the transfer process, essays, and study tips.

“We believe that building a better individual, helping them become confident in their study techniques, and making them realize that the opportunities in college allow them to transition through the transfer process of a UC and CSU easier so that they are not surprised,” Mi said. “Basically, it’s like emergency preparedness for an earthquake. Except that earthquake is UCLA or CSUN, and we are preparing you for that situation. That way you don’t panic and you know what to do, and everything is smooth and easy.”

Freshman student Aaron Morales said it is great that the school organizes these events.

“Everyone is just in one room and they focus on helping you transfer and succeed academically,” Morales said. “I’ve already set up an appointment with a counselor and met people to join the honors program. I definitely recommend students to attend these events because they are very helpful.”