I recently had the pleasure of visiting Shasta College in beautiful Redding, CA.
If you are not familiar with Shasta College, this two year campus offers a wide range of programs and services, including counseling, tutoring, financial aid, performing arts and athletic events, student activities, veterans’ services, cultural events, lecture series, workshops, and art exhibits. They have extensive offerings on the Internet and through Interactive Television (ITV). Shasta College also offers instruction and student services at the Downtown Campus, Intermountain Campus, Tehama Campus, and Trinity Campus, with each location utilizing ITV and computer-assisted learning to supplement on site courses.
During my visit, I connected with their Veteran’s Services team in their new offices. As James Konopitski, one of the Veteran Services team members, explained to me, the office space is fairly new. Most of the services offered revolve around benefits and services, work study, vocational training and rehabilitation services, as well as a space for their Student Veterans Club. But most important, its a space where student veterans can “just hang out”.
I explained the success student veteran programs were having by adding in not only our college and career student veterans success guides, but also the excitement that was building around our new Camouflage to Campus program. This conversation then lead to a discussion about Shasta College’s aggressive college success programming. That’s when James and I headed over to TLC (The Learning Center), building 700, to talk with Teresa Doyle, Shasta College’s Student Success Coordinator.
As soon as you walk into the TLC, you feel “college success” occurring. The space was filled with students, advisers, and peer leaders. Various college success courses were being offered. Team members were working on projects and ideas to ensure the success of their students. And there was a lot of listening…and a lot of learning.
“80% of success is showing up” is the message in the TLC and around campus. In fact, if you visit the campus website, that message is right in the middle of the page with a link to all the classes available. Want to see what types of classes are offered (for FREE) at Shasta College? Check out a sample here.
In just the first few minutes of talking with Teresa, it was easy to understand why Shasta College’s student success programming was so successful. Like many professionals serving roles in college success, she has a passion for the helping students succeed. But it was more than just passion that makes a building like TLC possible, that makes offering free college success courses possible, that made everything Teresa and her team were doing possible. It was having the right purpose, mission, goals…and the team to make it happen.
As James, Teresa and I talked about our Veteran Services, the new Life During Community College success guide and online course, the Camouflage to Campus program, and other resources, Teresa quickly mentioned the names of current and incoming staff members to connect with that would be leading these specific programs. That then brought up discussions about training and education, which then lead to funding. She had obviously been doing this a while (and very successfully) because she had all the answers. And if she didn’t she knew the people who did.
As a small business owner, I understand how important having a purpose, a mission, goals, and the right team is to being successful. The College Success team at Shasta College understands that as well and they (and their students) are seeing the benefits. Congratulations Shasta College on your success! And thank you for being such wonderful hosts.