De Anza College holds first in-person enrollment day event since pandemic


Oscar Rodas-Castillo

Students visit booths along the main quad to ask questions and speak to representatives of different programs, services and Villages.

Oscar Rodas-Castillo, Reporter

On April 30, the De Anza main quad was filled with exciting chatter amongst booths of current De Anza students, staff and eager high school students asking questions about college life, the different community Villages and how to apply for next Fall quarter. 

The event was known as “Enrollment Day” which is where prospective students get information on how to apply to the college, attend an orientation and speak with various Villages, and majors and other services such as Financial Aid or Disability Support services. 

From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.,  attendees gathered in building A to apply and register for the next school year and then attend an orientation where they completed an educational plan for the first one or two quarters.  Then in the remaining hours from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m, Village representatives handed out flyers, pencils, bags, notepads, T-shirts and played games — one of them being roulettes with different prices. 

Instructional Support Coordinator Pablo Hernandez  said they  were excited about Enrollment Day to the point that they were unable to sleep the night before,  and said they hope and wish that more events like this one would happen more often because it helps everyone in De Anza being staff, faculty or even students come back to the normal from before, where everything was less intimidating and more natural, with their social skills being hurt by Covid.  

“I hope we get more events in the future, specially in the fall quarter where we have more students coming in, that is our busiest quarter of the year,” Hernandez said. “Hopefully in the beginning of the fall quarter we have an event like this one. Maybe we can have an open house for instance. I feel like this is a test to see how it goes.” 

During the event, students and parents got to learn more about opportunities they might be able to apply for such as “The Promise Plan.” They also got the chance to learn more about different faculties and what they offer such as Higher Education for AB 540 Students (HEFAS). 

High school student Ondelia Ramirez, who is currently enrolled at De Anza as a Middle College student, said they were more nervous than excited. Ramirez said that it is hard to not be nervous and afraid of failure.

“I was looking for a college nearby and this is the best one that I found,” Ramirez said. “During [this] event I was able to find a lot of information about the college and opportunities such as financial aid, and it helped a lot.” 

As a parent of two kids, one of whom recently enrolled at De Anza for next fall, Marcela Gomez said that she urged their child to apply to De Anza because of positive reviews she read about the school’s financial aid and opportunities. Though she said that she has some worries about what the school will be like for their child that were slightly relieved from attending Enrollment Day.  Although Gomez has her fears on school security, and their child’s adaptation to the new environment she felt comfortable trusting the school on keeping her child safe.   

“It is one of the top schools that offers the most in both financial aid and opportunities,” Gomez said. “Although on paper it looks like a high value school, I fear that the school won’t be able to provide enough security for my child, but that’s just me having fears of what might happen in the future. With those what-ifs out of the way, I feel that this might be the school for my child.”

Parents also got the chance to explore the grounds of the campus to get a better understanding of what the school offers. 

MPS Counselor and Coordinator Khoa Nguyen said that students weren’t the only ones who were looking to get ready for a big event. He said that staff members were also looking to improve their social skills to the point where they got back to normal with this event and was excited to find out about the event and volunteered as soon as they got the news. He also said that although he had many conversations with different students, that he was still nervous on how he might react to seeing so many new faces on the campus.  

“I’m actually super excited, because it’s been a while since we had a big on campus event like this,” Nguyen said. “Prior to Covid, these events were very helpful for faculties to help students understand that they have the help if they needed. The environment was just super lively and it feels like it used to be, somewhat normal again after a few years.”