Student Experience at College of San Mateo
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Student Experience
Arianna Avendano
Arianna Avendano College of San Mateo, A.A.
CSU East Bay, Psychology

For Arianna Avendano, the key to her success at CSM was all about making the most of the college’s resources. “It was a combination of the staff, faculty and the services at CSM that contributed to my success. I was able to find the resources I needed in order to prepare for a university, and the support I received along the way was exceptional!”  

While there were numerous resources that were important in Arianna’s success at CSM, one in particular was Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS). She explains, “EOPS is a program that not only assisted me financially, but also provided one-on-one counseling. I am very thankful to have had the guidance of counselors Silvia Aguirre, and Lorena Gonzalez. The guidance I received from EOPS is the reason I was able to earn my AA degree in exactly two years.  My EOPS counselors wanted the best for me, and it was with their help that I was able to reach my goal on time. They provided a plan and I followed through with it.”

Arianna also found her professors to be important resources.  “As a student at CSM, I was motivated, and focused. With the support of my professors, I was able to earn good grades. I studied hard at the tutoring centers and I wasn’t afraid to ask questions when needed. My professors cared about my success and I am truly grateful for their support. My professors George Kramm taught me the basics of public speaking, Lena Feinman introduced me to statistics, and Francois Chan made English fun. My experience in the classrooms is one that will stay with me forever, since it is where my educational journey began,” says Arianna.

 Another resource that she found at CSM was through the Community Relations and Marketing Department: an on-campus employment opportunity. The department, also responsible for outreach, was hiring student ambassadors to work part time in local high schools, assist with college events and serve as campus tour guides. Arianna captured one of the coveted positions. She recalls, “Having worked as a student ambassador also made my CSM experience memorable.  I became well informed about the programs and services the school offers, but sharing the information with potential students made it more rewarding.

“At CSM, I learned what I needed to transfer to a university and prepare for a career, all at an affordable cost. I would definitely recommend CSM to others, since it has so many options and resources for people who come from different backgrounds and age groups. I really enjoyed attending a campus filled with a diverse group of students and faculty. Having had the experience of interacting with students from different backgrounds was an additional benefit that I can apply in future work settings.”

Arianna is currently a senior at Cal State University-East Bay (CSUEB) and set to graduate with the class of 2013. Her career aspirations include working in research and conducting studies that can be applied to real world settings. Beyond that, she plans to attend graduate school to earn a master’s degree in clinical psychology with the goal of becoming a licensed psychologist working with adolescents and adults.

“My experience at CSM is one that will stay with me forever. By using the resources at the college, I decided on my major, psychology, and I completed my general education requirements, which allowed me to transfer to CSUEB.”