CalWorks and OISS open their doors to show students what they have to offer


Leslie Castaneda

Clockwise: Janise Pizer, Blanca Gamez, Regina Ybanez, and Marina Rodriguez welcome students and staff to their Open House event on Tuesday Dec. 6. The event was organized by the student services department.

Leslie Castaneda

The department of Student Services held an open house on Tuesday, Dec. 6 in order to inform others about what their programs are all about.

Director of Student Program Services Norma Rodriguez mentioned two programs, CalWorks and international students.

Rodriguez said “We have two different programs but one focuses on students receiving social services and the other focuses on students who come from another country.

“CalWorks helps students who are living in poverty and are on welfare.”

Rodriguez continued, “We do not like to turn anybody away and it’s usually the county who send these kids our way and when I say kids, it can usually mean someone who is over 30.”

She also mentioned that the center likes to have both CalWorks and International students work together.

Tutoring and a homework areas are available and both programs recommend students to help each other out with anything.

“We don’t want students to think that just because they are in different programs that it means they have to work in different areas,” Rodriguez said.

“I prefer and many of us prefer working together, it’s a lot better because students can learn so much from one another,” she continued.

The tutors that are being offered at the moment are very limited and only cover Math.

CalWorks and international students are offered rooms that are combined for them to study.

The department in the future will also be including a pantry for students to come in and use.

Rodriguez said, “The pantry is going to be such a great idea and I can’t wait for us to have it,”

“We want to be able to have non perishable food and even a tiny closet and it will all be a part of a donation for those students who are in need,” Rodriguez added.

International Admissions Specialist David Tilahun, works with students who come from different countries.

“Students have to apply and have a follow up to see if their application was accepted,” Tilahun said.

He continued, “The application requires for international students to also have a visa and most importantly a passport.”

“A list of things are required for students to be able to be in the program,” Tilahun said.

The program requirements are:

  • Must have sufficient funding
  • Must take be taking 12 units ($305 per unit)
  • Must be covered by insurance
  • Must abide to immigration regulations
  • And must also past the placement test.

Tilahun said that he enjoyed being in this program because so many different cultures come together and he finds it interesting because he sees how everyone learns from each other.

“Students bring their culture and they learn about other cultures and I like it because it’s like a cultural exchange,” Tilahun said.

The program also has an International Week that is done yearly and take place in the month of November.

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