Streamline Student Services: Single Point of Entry

Streamline Student Services: Single Point of Entry

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Zachary Gomez started this petition to State Student Advisory Council Representative Amanda Craig and

Dear Front Range Community College Members (FRCC), and Colorado Community College Systems (CCCS),

THE PROBLEM

A Temple University study of 70 community colleges in 24 states places the average of community college students suffering from housing insecurity or homelessness at 13%. Of 33,000 students surveyed; an estimated 4,300 students are experiencing homelessness.  In fall of 2018, FRCC had 18,978 students enrolled in college. Even though homeless rates vary by campus, by applying the 13% statistic, it is possible that as many as 2,467 students in the FRCC system are suffering from homelessness. A 2019 survey of the FRCC Westminster student Veterans found that 82% of Veterans are in need of additional financial support; with the top-ranking concerns including food and housing.

THE STUDENT PROBLEM

FRCC draws students from all identities: non-traditional students, those who have aged out of foster care, emancipated youth, first generation students, veterans, those with disabilities, people managing mental health concerns and people from low income levels. These types of identities and insecurities complicate the student’s ability to focus on their studies and bring high levels of stress and anxiety.

Students that do not have basic needs met often suffer physical and mental health problems, poor grades, inconsistent attendance, lack of focus, higher non-completion rates and continue the cycle of poverty. Moreover, the stigma surrounding those in need often prevents students from finding support. Many students at FRCC do not understand the support systems and structures available to them or when they do find support it can be difficult to navigate. FRCC’s students deserve support, dignity and respect while navigating through compound insecurities when seeking a path to stability through education.

THE FRCC PROBLEM

FRCC Westminster is the largest community college in the Colorado Community College System, it is at the forefront of student advocacy. For example, FRCC has streamlined the enrollment process by creating the Welcome Center, placing student advising and pathways, financial aid, admissions testing, and cashier’s offices in one easy to access and navigate location. We need to streamline FRCC’s tools for students managing real world inequities, students that need “life support.”

 

FRCC has created an array of support through: The Pantry, TRIO, The Career Success Center, The Academic Support Center, and Veteran Affairs Services; however, they are scattered around campus and do not act synergistically.

  • Many students do not understand the support systems and structures available to them or find them difficult to navigate.
  • Resources links are not centralized, and links to housing lead to third-party vendors: the Denver Homeless Connection, Boulder Shelter for the Homeless, and The Larimer County Network of Care: Office on Aging.

FRCC’s Vision 2020 focuses on student success by way of removing barriers and expanding support for diverse students. This inclusive goal focused on supporting diversity can be addressed by streamlining the robust support systems that already exist. FRCC needs a streamlined, anonymous entry point into services or a SINGLE POINT OF CONTACT for “life support.”

THE FRCC SOLUTION

We must implement a Single Point of Contact system. We must streamline student services and define the organizational workflow for students that need to engage with any point of the support network provided by FRCC. Similar systems are functioning at Community College of Aurora (CCA), and Metropolitan State University (MSU). These systems are very well organized and lead students directly to where they need to go involving community support without any confusion on navigation and access.

https://www.ccaurora.edu/unaccompaniedhomeless-youth-under-24

https://msudenver.edu/care/universityresources/

Access to the Single Point of Contact should be through:

  • FRCC Home Webpage, New Student Orientation, D2L, Navigate, E-Wolf as well as campus and online events.

FRCC can develop these examples to include the full spectrum of student support services. Initial intake is managed by the designated Single Point of Contact, whom then provides students with information and directs their path to necessary campus and community resources. By implementing a Single Point of Contact, we can serve our diverse community and foster inclusivity by maintaining dignity and respect through an anonymous port of entry to campus resources.

Please sign our petition and help us implement this new efficient system so we can help students get the support they deserve!

Thank you,

David Olguin and Zachary Gomez

Sources

https://www.ccaurora.edu/unaccompaniedhomeless-youth-under-24

https://msudenver.edu/care/universityresources/

https://www.theotx.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/Wisconsin-HOPE-Lab-Still-Hungry-and-Homeless.pdf

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At 100 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!