Community Column: Higher education is for all ages

July 10, 2019

Dr. Robert Garza

Since our founding in 1985, Palo Alto College has remained dedicated to ensuring educational access for students of all ages. Our students range from high school graduates entering college for the first time or individuals who have been in the workforce for many years and are looking for a credential to help get to the next level in their career.

Some students may be the first in their family to attend college, and some may have never considered college as an option because of family obligations, work commitments, time constraints, or financial challenges — all of which might create obstacles difficult to overcome.

No matter our students' circumstances, our faculty and staff provide our students with excellent instruction, a myriad of resources, and high-impact practices that lead to academic and student success.

That's why Palo Alto College has continually offered academic programs over the last 30 years that provide students with foundational skills applicable to a variety of fields and industries. Today, the College offers transfer degrees and more than 50 specialized associate degrees and certificates in technical programs including Business Management, Computing Technology, Healthcare Administration, and Logistics and Supply Chain Management. Many of our programs are built to accommodate working students, with flexible schedules and online courses.

In southern parts of San Antonio, more than 25 percent of residents don't have a high school diploma or GED, which is often the first level credential for completing their education and creating a pathway toward a successful career. As champions of access, Palo Alto College offers the Adult Learning Academy, a program that provides resources for individuals to prepare for their GED, reach personal goals, secure gainful employment, and improve their quality of life.
It's truly a great time to be a part of the Palo Alto College family, and we encourage any individuals looking to continue their education to take the first step by joining us at our annual Countdown to College event.

On Monday, July 22 from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., certified advisors will be available throughout the day to help complete applications, take placement tests, discuss degree plans, register for classes, get financial aid information, and make payment arrangements for the Fall 2019 semester. To learn more, call our Welcome Center at 210-486-3100.

As job growth continues in San Antonio and employers look to us to produce a prepared workforce, Palo Alto College will continue to provide exceptional instruction, gainful employment opportunities, and foundational skills to ensure the life-long success of our students and the community we serve.

This column by Dr. Robert Garza, president of Palo Alto College, was originally published in the San Antonio Express-News' Southside Reporter and