Student Success Center hanging tough after cuts2 min read

Nadia Banchik, Staff Writer

Position cuts at the Student Success Center are causing delays for tutoring services at De Anza College, but funding is still strong and students are still generally satisfied, said Melissa Aguilar, co-director of the center.

Students have to wait in long lines in the general counseling office instead of receiving academic advising at the Student Success Center because of the positions cuts, said Aguilar.

But thanks to the DASB senate, Proposition 30 and grants, only two tutoring positions will be eliminated, she said.

The success center eliminated two technical support positions that “were very helpful with paperwork and students employees recruitment process,” Aguilar said.

Most of the tutoring cuts affected general subjects such as history, foreign languages and political, she said.

To be cut the most are funds for the Student Success Center from the ongoing college budget, and 95 percent of that funding goes for student tutoring positions, paid on hourly basis from $10 to $14 per hour, she said.

Still, 40 percent of the funding comes from the DASB, and the student body works hard to satisfy the need, she said.

“It is a blessing to see how much students care for their academic success. The student body does a great job helping us to facilitate the tutoring,”
Aguilar said.

“We are trying to be more effective, optimize our time to keep our quality even while facing reductions in money and staff,” she said.

Almost all tutors are student employees, except for some community volunteers, who are mostly retired engineers and faculty, Aguilar said.

Of six students randomly asked at the entrance of the tutoring center all said they were generally satisfied with the scope of services they receive and for their tutoring. But two said it would be better if tutoring hours can
be a bit longer.

There is no more modern physics tutoring like last spring, said Vincent Yu, 22, computer engineering major who attends individual tutoring on
discrete mathematics.

“Perhaps it was eliminated because just a few students need it for transfer to a university,” Vu said. “However, for everything else I was able to get what I need.”

“I come to a drop-in tutor when I have a certain question, one to two times a week,” said Olga Zherebchevska, 27, majoring in nursing. “If a subject is complicated, it is not enough time at a tutoring session to go through the problem, so I have to do additional research on my own.”

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