Washtenaw Community College is first and foremost a place for learning, but in its mission statement the college stresses making “a positive difference in people’s lives through accessible and excellent educational programs and services.” Here, we overview five of these important services that can help students struggling both financially and academically get through their first semester, and the rest of their college career.
By Rebecca Gordon
Time and again, the loudest complaint from students about school is the cost of textbooks. It’s a fair complaint, considering the National Association of College Stores places the average cost of textbooks at around $62.
But did you know that Washtenaw Community College’s Financial Aid office has a program to assist students who struggle to afford their textbooks?
It’s a Book Certificate, and it’s designed to assist students with up to 75% of the cost of their textbooks. Students who receive financial aid in the form of loans, scholarships, grants, and even students who pay their tuition out of pocket qualify. As long as a student is not expected to receive a refund check from their financial aid, and has a remaining balance on their account, they may apply for a Book Certificate.
Applications are available at the Financial Aid office, and are accepted through Sept. 11 for the Fall semester.
Campus Food Bank
By Brittany Dekorte
While many students know about their school’s resources for academic success, but Washtenaw Community College offers more personal forms of help as well. For the past six years, the Emergency Food Bank has existed on campus for registered students to utilize if they are having issues buying their basics. According to Carol Tinkle, the resource officer in charge of the pantry, students can come for food and toiletries twice a semester to receive two bags of items each time.
The food bank is always looking for more donations. The First Presbyterian Church of Ann Arbor donates at least a truckload of food every year, and other drives around the school help keep the shelves stocked.
To utilize the food bank, a student needs only to come to the student resource office on the second floor of the student center. There, they will be given their food, and will have an appointment made with a caseworker to assess other ways the college can help.
By Carol Abbey-Mensah
It is no news that college comes with a lot of stress and difficulties. This is why WCC provides a wide range of counseling and Career Planning services to assist students on their journey toward academic success.
The Counseling and Career Planning services help students with academic advising, career planning and personal counseling. Students can walk-in and wait to see an advisor, or make an appointments online through the WCC Gateway.
Apart from the counseling and Career planning services which provide all students with counseling, there’s an International Student Center which focuses mainly on international students. It is advisable that students seek help from the Counseling Center earlier in the semester to make sure they are on the right academic path.
The counseling office can be found on the second floor of the student center, and appointments are availible Monday-Friday.
Learning Support Services
By Ala Kaymaram
Learning Support Services, or LSS, is one of the main resources on campus. They offer disability services for students who may need accommodations in class. Students can get extra time for tests. If they have a condition that affects their note taking ability, Disability Services will make accommodations to make sure that those students have access to class notes.
The Learning Support Services also offers free tutoring for WCC students. General Studies Tutoring is offered at the Computer Commons on the second floor of the Gunder Myran Building. Math and Science Tutoring is offered on the second floor of the Gunder Myran Building, GM 201/203.
Students need to have their ID cards to receive tutoring. Tutoring is offered for 15-30 minute individual sessions. Group tutoring sessions are also offered. The Learning Support Services has a list of helpful mobile learning apps for different learning tasks.
WCC Student Emergency Fund
By Suni Jo Roberts
As if the cost of tuition and books isn’t enough, there are still bills to pay for housing, food and other basic necessities. Students at Washtenaw Community College work hard in the classroom in hopes of securing a better future only to sometimes have an unexpected emergency leave them unable to make ends meet, which can impede their success in school.
The WCC Student Emergency Fund (SEF) is financial assistance given out to these type of students in the form of scholarships, which does not need to be paid back, to help pay for basic necessities. The SEF can cover payments related to utility shutoffs, car repairs, medical expenses or food, according to their website.
To apply, students can fill out an application on WCC’s website by searching for the Student Emergency Fund. Students are able to receive up to $500 in a calendar year, according to the website. The WCC Foundation, which raises money for the SEF, has student success as its top priority and is currently looking to expand the SEF in order to better assist students at WCC, as the Foundation has identified this as a growing need.