Untapped resources

Photo courtesy of Orange Coast College

With the help of Orange Coast College’s resources, my extended stay is coming to an end and preparing me for transfer.

It has been four years since I started pursuing an education, and I often felt disoriented and unmotivated. My greatest anxiety regarding school was not finishing fast enough.

I wanted to give up on my associate degree and get on with my life.

I gained motivation with some advice from Jennika Celo who teaches a counseling course on campus. The class is great for anyone who is trying to navigate through the community college system.

With her help and her knowledge of the different resources on campus, the steps to transfer became clear and I applied to Cal State Long Beach two days before the deadline.

OCC offers tons of tools to help you succeed and I was unaware of them up until last semester when I took Celo’s class, Counseling 104. A few of them include the career center, the transfer center and the student success center.

The Career Center, located on the third floor of Watson Hall, became my escape.

I figured out all the different careers my major could lead to and the type of lifestyles that accompany it. Being aware that I wasn’t confined to one career after choosing my major reassured me that I was making the right decision by pursuing what I love.

When I went in recently I was shocked to see no one was there taking advantage of all the information they offer. Had I known about this center back in the fall of 2015, I wouldn’t have changed my major 3 times and taken unnecessary classes. This semester I am focused and have a clear path toward my goals.

They offer workshops throughout the year, the next one being on Feb. 27 from noon to 1 p.m., which focus on major and career exploration. Other workshops focus on resumes, interviews, Linkedin, as well as jobs and internship guidance. They even have partnerships with local businesses that reserve jobs and internships for students.

They are open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., with staff that are equipped to help you. Online career and major assessments on websites like RoadTrip Nation and Eureka are posted on the OCC website as well.

The Transfer Center hosts workshops, representative visits, table visits and the spring college fair. There they will provide information on deadlines and requirements for a variety of colleges.

The Student Success Center provides free tutoring and is located in Classrooms and Labs 103. They are open Monday through Thursday from 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. They even have ours on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

They have math and English tutors available at all times while other subjects have a drop in schedule. They also grant 9 hours of free online tutoring through BrainFuse that you can access on Canvas.

Their workshops provide information on time management, note taking, test taking as well as motivation and are provided weekly Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays. There is a workshop today at 2pm that provides tips and strategies when taking online courses. Next week their focus will be on taking better notes.

Moving forward, I will be sure not to miss another opportunity to cultivate my skills.