Advocacy resources available to Palo Alto College students
January 17, 2022
As we prepared for the new year, we intended to come back to campus at 100%, but with the recent spike in COVID cases we are once again pivoting to adapt to a remote teaching and learning model. We are still planning to start the Spring 2022 semester on Jan. 18 with most scheduled classes meeting online through Jan. 29. The good news is that we can quickly adapt to this change in an effort to help slow the spread of the new variant.
Palo Alto College remains committed to making sure that each student who comes through our academic programs is provided the tools and opportunities needed to succeed. We know that the pursuit of education does not come without obstacles, but the skills and resilience learned in the process of obtaining a degree or certificate have a lasting impact.
Today, during these unprecedented times, advocacy resources are more important than they have ever been. According to a national survey of college students conducted by the Hope Center, nearly six out of 10 college students were experiencing some form of basic needs insecurity. This includes not being able to pay their bills, eat regular, balanced meals, or being at risk of losing their homes.
In 2016, we opened the “S.H.A.R.E. (Student Health, Advocacy, Resource, and Engagement) Center,” a resource hub that provides food, emergency aid, housing assistance, mental health counseling, medical care referrals, and more.
Palo Alto College and the Alamo Colleges District continue to host Pop-Up Markets in collaboration with the San Antonio Food Bank to provide healthy food to students, employees, and the surrounding community through no-contact, drive-through events. The next Pop-Up Market at Palo Alto College will be on Thursday, Jan. 27 from 3 to 5 p.m. To pre-register, call the San Antonio Food Bank at 210-431-8326.
Though there are some difficult realities facing college students today, Palo Alto College is committed to coming alongside its students to help ensure they can continue their education in order to pursue careers that will bring them stability and long-term success. We truly care about our students and firmly believe that our services and programs will leave a lasting impact in their lives. Together, we will continue to make a difference.
This column by Dr. Robert Garza, president of Palo Alto College, was originally published in the San Antonio Express-News' Southside Reporter and mysanantonio.com.