STANDARD THREE: STUDENT SERVICES AND THE CO-CURRICULAR LEARNING ENVIRONMENT
The institution establishes and maintains an environment that fosters the intellectual and personal development of students. Student services reflect [sic] an institutional concern for students physical and mental health, facilitates educational progress, and helps students to relate to others in the institutional community.
Standard 3A General Provisions
Established policies and practices make clear the institutions obligations to students and the obligations of students to the institution.
3A.1, 3D.1, and 3D.2
The institution systematically studies the characteristics and identifies the learning and counseling needs of the student population.
A systematic program of counseling and academic advisement assists students in making appropriate decisions.
The institution provides an organized and functioning counseling program which includes, academic counseling, career counseling, identification of potential barriers to progress and strategies to overcome them, counseling of students on probation, referral to appropriate support services and agencies, and counseling of student populations with special needs.
A structured system of academic advisement is available to all students.
DESCRIPTION: Mission College regularly and systematically studies the characteristics and identifies the learning and counseling needs of the students in assessment and orientation. Continual testing for learning needs begins with assessment and orientation, through matriculation, and continues as a primary commitment of the Learning Assistance Center.
Additional services are provided in the form of individual and group academic counseling. Also offered is a measure of career and vocational counseling. Students at Mission College have access to a variety of counseling services. Academic counseling starts by assisting students in selecting educational goals, majors, and individual courses. During orientation, students begin to develop their individual Student Educational Plans (SEP). In addition, they learn about other services available to them on the campus such as EOP&S, DSP&S, PACE, veterans affairs, athletics, and financial aid. Other sources of counseling and information offered include job fairs, transfer fairs, personal development classes, and aptitude and other special testing.
Counselors assist special populations such as foreign students, PACE, veterans, athletes, high school students, and the disabled. In the fall of 1992, the counseling office served 6,300 students, and in spring 1993, they served 5,400 students. Drop-in appointments added additional contacts of 2,845 students in fall, 1992, and 2,550 students in spring, 1993.
A specialist in career counseling assists students with diagnostic assessment to evaluate personal abilities and interests, to explore occupational areas, and to choose career directions. Once a student has selected a potential career direction, the Eureka system provides additional computer-assisted career information. The Career Center holds sessions on writing resumes, doing job searches, and developing interviewing skills. The Career Center provides up-to-date information on the job market.
A letter sent to all students on academic or progress probation urges them to make an appointment with a counselor. During this appointment, the counselor reviews with the student the type of probation and the steps to correct the situation. This procedure includes referrals to other departments and help to develop a sound educational plan. The student and the counselor complete a probation form before the student registers for classes. A copy of this form is kept in the student's file.
The Los Angeles Mission College Transfer Center plays an important role in developing new alternatives for individuals from traditionally underrepresented groups. The center currently maintains files on 416 individuals who have been counseled concerning the options for transfer to baccalaureate granting institutions.
The Student Educational Plan lists all college programs and services through which students may seek assistance. During the matriculation process, the students may be referred to the following departments for additional assistance:
Athletes, who must maintain a 2.0 GPA to continue in the competitive athletics program, receive individual counseling as part of the athletic qualification process.
During the 1992-93 school year, counselors participated in college-night activities at Alemany, Kennedy, North Hollywood, Poly, Reseda, San Fernando, and Sylmar high schools. In the 1992-93 school year, counselors provided orientations for 150 incoming high school students from four feeder high schools. These sessions included matriculation, admissions, and financial aid assistance.
During a two-week period, approximately 100 students from our local feeder high schools participated in a federally funded Minority Science Improvement Program (MSIP) which involved exposure to engineering CAD, chemistry laboratory, and mathematics. The intent was to show the technical preparation required for such courses.
A report on 24 May 1993, presented as part of the district Annual Report (3.1), indicates that visits by students to the Foreign Students and Veterans Affairs offices averaged 100 visits per month and approximately 1580 written requests for admissions information to these offices during 1992-93.
A counselor assigned to the PACE program acts as a liaison to the program. Special counseling and orientations are set up for PACE students at their Saturday sessions.
Matriculation is the structured system of academic advisement at Mission College. All new students are encouraged during orientation to speak to a counselor to develop a Student Education Plan (SEP). In addition, personal development instructors, who are also counselors, develop SEPs with the students enrolled in their classes. SEPs are provided to all students in general counseling, as well as those in DSP&S and EOP&S programs. This form is used to refer students to a variety of on- and off-campus services as well as to help students plan the courses they will need for their major or to reach their educational goals. All students without an educational goal receive an invitation to a Choose-A-Major Fair where they meet faculty and community members in a variety of fields. Both counselors and admissions staff are available at that time to assist students with the process.
EVALUATION: The composition of students who have registered with the counseling center reflects the diversity of the college's enrollment as a whole. Females comprise fifty-seven and males forty percent of the total enrollment. Students of Hispanic origin make up fifty-four percent of those registered.
Since the Transfer Center's inception in 1991, students from traditionally underrepresented groups have transferred to California State University and University of California campuses in increasing numbers. Studies received from CPSC, show an increase of 120 percent for students transferring to the UC system, while transfering students to the CSU system accounted for a 29 percent augmentation.
There has been an increase in the scope and an improvement in the quality of services provided to special populations. The number of students being served has kept pace with the college's enrollment. Students in the EOP&S program have increased from 347 to 682 for fall enrollments from 1990 to 1993, while retention at 70 percent has remained consistently higher than the general population's enrollment of 47 percent.
All new and prospective students receive the Mission to Success flier which describes the right to appeal a prerequisite, the procedure for grieving unlawful discrimination, and the appeals process beginning with submitting a Matriculation Grievance Petition to the Matriculation Coordinator. This flier explains that all students, including exempted students, may participate in any component of Matriculation including counseling. A better tracking system to follow our transfer students is needed in order to better serve the students.
While students are encouraged to seek advisement and to formulate SEPs, many students often do not avail themselves of those services. Different approaches are used to encourage students to give more thought to their selection of programs and majors, and yet, we have many students not completing their programs within a reasonable period of time. These factors lead us to believe that more creative methods to induce students to use the academic advisement program are necessary. Additional tooling for the Counseling Department is needed, such as easier-to-use SEP screens and computer access to a prerequisite checking system.
PLAN: In order to improve counseling services, the college will implement the ASSIST program for computerized articulation. It is anticipated that this system will be in place by the end of the 1994-95 academic year and will be accessible by counselors and program advisors.
As part of program review, the effectiveness of all Career Counseling services will be evaluated. Expectations are that program reviews will be accomplished annually.
The college will continue to develop a tracking system to improve access to information on all students.
3A.2 The institution has an organized system for admissions, assessment, orientation, counseling and advisement, and student follow-up.
DESCRIPTION: The processes for admissions, assessment, orientation, counseling and advisement, and student follow up is organized according to the Matriculation regulations in Title 5. All students participate in these processes. The college uses instruments approved by the state chancellors office to assess reading, writing, English as a Second Language, and mathematics. Students then attend an orientation session in which they learn about the policies and procedures of the college programs and services available to them. Students are provided with the Student Handbook, Catalog, and Schedule of Classes.
Counseling is provided to all students upon request. Student Educational Plans are provided when appropriate.
The follow-up process consists of a computerized Early Alert system and referral forms. Letters advising students to seek extra assistance from the counseling staff are sent to those who are on probation, have undeclared goals, or are enrolled in basic skills courses.
EVALUATION: As a result of recommendations made by the Matriculation Review team, the college has improved the admissions process by providing translations in Spanish, by validating the assessment process, and by providing more detailed orientation sessions. The matriculation process serves all nonexempt students, but is currently unable to count those completing assessment, orientation, and counseling in general. Fortunately, there are plans to correct this problem.
PLAN: A new, computerized identification and tracking system will enable the college to determine the efficacy of the matriculation process. A pilot system will be implemented by June 1995.
3A.3 The institution involves students in the planning, development, and delivery of student services.
DESCRIPTION: The college encourages and supports student participation in its governance, especially those involved in the planning, development, and delivery of student services. The Associated Students Organization Executive Council meets weekly, and they have designated that student participation throughout the governance process in student services be top importance. They take immediate action to replace student representatives who are not participating in a significant way in the committee to which they were assigned.
EVALUATION: Although we have strong student participation at some levels, it is recognized that additional student participation is needed in the following areas: EOP&S, DSP&S, Admissions, Counseling, Bookstore, and other areas where it is lacking.
PLAN: It is our plan to institutionalize program evaluations. Each Student Services program will be required to conduct a program evaluation annually. The formal evaluation documents are being finalized. With this new evaluation instrument we plan for each program to be evaluated by the end of 1995. Student surveys will continue to be encouraged and supported; however, we anticipate that focus groups will be more beneficial for obtaining information with regard to the validity and usefulness of the program.
Three focus groups are envisioned for the coming year; each will center on a slightly different population. The three presently envisioned will include one primarily centered on the leadership, one centered on community leadership, and one centered on faculty and staff leadership. Students will participate in each element. These forums will be formatted as townhall meetings, and they will attempt to measure the attitudes and moods with regard to the campus in general and Student Services in particular.
3A..4 Policies on student rights and responsibilities, including the rights of due process and redress of grievances and rules defining inappropriate student conduct, are clearly stated, well publicized, and readily available, and they are implemented in a fair and consistent manner.
DESCRIPTION: All policies on student rights and responsibilities are listed and fully described in our two principal publications, the Catalog (p. D8-9), which is published annually, and the Schedule of Classes (p. 13-14), published once each semester. Due process and redress of grievances are clearly delineated within these publications. An additional section defines the Student Code of Conduct, which appears also in a special brochure designated for quick, easy reading in an attempt to make the information more readily available to the students. The brochures are available at strategic locations throughout the campus (3.2). The grievance process has a formal and informal component.
EVALUATION: Students with complaints are directed to the dean or associate dean of students who gives them a copy of the brochure. They are further briefed, and referred to the ombudsperson for answers to questions. No grievances have reached the formal stage since 1982; therefore, we conclude that it is understood and works well.
PLAN: The college will continue to explore ways to inform students of their responsibilities and rights. Likewise, the faculty will also be kept informed through meetings with faculty groups, such as the Senate and cluster meetings, and staff development seminars on the rights and responsibilities of their students and the procedures which are to be followed in administering disciplinary measures. The student discipline guidelines will be more widely circulated to faculty groups in an attempt to further sensitize them to and inform them about their responsibility and the due process available to the students.
The brochures and other documents which describe due process and student rights, the guidelines for student complaints and grievances, and the Student Discipline Guidelines for the faculty will periodically be reviewed and evaluated.
The ombudsperson will routinely instruct the students with whom he meets on their rights and of the process to be followed.
3A.5 Publications such as the student handbook describing relevant policies and procedures, student services and programs, student government and activities are readily available.
DESCRIPTION: Information describing relevant policies and procedures, student services and programs, and student government and activities are regularly published and made available to students for the asking. The Student Handbook, the most comprehensive of publications, is continually updated to reflect current policies and practices. The handbook is distributed to students at orientation sessions.
Several other flyers, pamphlets, and booklets are published which describe areas of individual interest to the student. These publications include but are not limited to information regarding counseling services, financial aid, health services, student grievance procedures, EOP&S, and tutoring services (3.3). As new policies and procedures are being developed, the publications are updated and revised.
All publications provided for students are made readily available wherever the students congregate. Areas most frequented by students such as counseling and admissions, bookstore, library, and open atriums, contain receptacles or desks for these publications. The ASO staff periodically checks and replenishes supplies when needed.
Other vehicles for publication of student-related news and information are the Student Bulletin published monthly, and formerly the Free Spirit written and published by the journalism department, but now not in print for want of funds for journalism.
EVALUATION: More students than ever are better informed of student services and programs due in large measure to our centralized campus. The posting of large signs throughout campus and a well-organized publications operation has helped to broadcast information of special interest to students.
The distribution of such published materials during the registration process has enhanced the students' awareness of Mission's programs and its official student policies and procedures. The ASO maintains an open door policy through which students may obtain any written materials describing any of the above.
The Student Bulletin has been the students' most frequent source of campus news. Published by the ASO, it contains a brief overview of current events relating to students, staff, and the local community.
The Free Spirit has not been published since the spring of 1993. Low enrollment figures in the journalism department and a cutback in funding for this activity have resulted in termination of the college newspaper. Additional funding is needed to reinstate the Free Spirit, which was formerly well-received.
In keeping with the current trends in the workplace, the topic of sexual harassment is a very important one. Brochures have been developed and published to inform students of their rights and procedures for pursuing their complaints. Additionally, this information is available in the Catalog, and Schedule of Classes.
PLAN: Mission will continue to provide students with the most comprehensive set of published materials in order to fully inform them of the many services, organizations, programs, policies, and procedures available. Information will continue to be provided in both written and oral communication, in group and in individual settings, and in Spanish as well as English.
We will seek additional funding to provide for more receptacles throughout the campus so that written materials will be even more accessible.
3A.6 The institution supports opportunities for student participation and leadership in campus organizations and student involvement in institutional governance.
DESCRIPTION: Mission college supports and encourages students to take part in campus organizations, clubs, sports, and institutional governance. Student membership on campuswide committees includes representation and voting in the Budget Committee, Curriculum Committee, Matriculation Committee, M-PAC, Campus Development Committee, Master Plan Committee, Affirmative Action, Student Equity Committee, Council of Instruction, Staff Development Committee, Grievance Committee, and the Accreditation Committee. General college orientation for all new students includes information on organizations and clubs on campus, and an appeal is made to students to become actively involved in their campus activities. Information is presented in both discussion and in printed materials that students may take with them. The Student Handbook is distributed to all new enrollees and describes the various opportunities to participate in college activities.
Information on campus organizations and club memberships continues to be provided throughout the semester via flyers, posters, banners, table booths, and publications of such information in the Student Bulletin, thus providing an on-going recruitment of students for these organizations.
Moreover, faculty are encouraged to organize and sponsor a club. A comprehensive fifteen-page club packet has been prepared for any faculty member or student considering a new club (3.4). This packet includes a charter application, organization registration, club requirements, guidelines for developing a club constitution, policies and procedures for sponsored activities, and a faculty sponsor registration. It is readily available and greatly facilitates the set-up process. Guidance is provided by ASO staff in establishing new organizations.
Student representation on campuswide committees illustrates Mission's support of institutional governance at all levels. Students are actively involved in the issues which concern Mission College and its administration and direction.
Another avenue of support for the development of student participation and leadership is the course, Political Science 41: Principles of Student Leadership. This course, open to all college students, provides training in group dynamics and the democratic process from which potential student government officers will emerge.
The intercollegiate athletic program offers an opportunity for all interested students to participate in a variety of athletic activities. As an integral part of the instructional program in physical education, it strives to meet the particular needs of each participating student.
EVALUATION: Student participation in organizations and student government has grown steadily since the move to the new campus. No doubt the new central campus environment has positively impacted the number and effectiveness of participants in student organizations.
ASO membership was substantially increased in the fall of 1993 to over 500 members because of a strong campaign to recruit members at the registration process. Mission's ASO is the only ASO in the district to have a student vote on every open, campuswide committee. Such active participation clearly depicts not only the commitment and involvement of students in the college's decision-making mechanism, but exemplifies the institution's pledge to shared governance at all levels.
The Athletic Department continues to include four men's sports and one women's sport: for men, soccer and cross-country in the fall, and golf and baseball in the spring; for women, cross-country is offered in the fall. Unfortunately, financial support for intercollegiate sports has not been sufficient to expand its offerings.
PLAN: A stronger membership in ASO is planned. Each student coming through the registration line will be advised and will receive materials in both English and Spanish about the benefits of joining ASO. The better informed student will then be better prepared to join ASO. Greater funding will promote better services and activities for the membership.
Larger, more prominent signs will be posted to notify the student body of the current events and opportunities for involvement in campus activities. Although some restrictions have been placed upon the posting of signs in regard to location and method of posting, ASO will continue to explore alternative methods for utilizing this high-profile mode of publicity.
As the student population grows, it is expected that women's sports will be more successful in fielding more sports, particularly in women's softball and soccer. In support of its athletic programs, Mission College has presented to the state a proposal for developing playing fields and a gymnasium and planning for the purchase of two mini-buses to help with the transportation of teams to away-games.
3A.7 Counseling and other appropriate academic support services are offered to day and evening students on and off campus.
DESCRIPTION: General counseling is available to students at the main campus location during day and evening hours. A counselor who works closely with the Project for Adult College Education (PACE) counsels the students in that program on some Saturdays. Students who attend classes off campus, at times at Granada Hills High School, Lutheran High School, Kalisher, Cultural Arts Center, and Panorama Hospital must come to the main campus to receive services in counseling, tutoring, financial aid, foreign students assistance, veteran's assistance, EOP&S, DSP&S, and GAIN. Each of these offices is open at least one night a week to accommodate the evening students.
Amnesty Program services are available off campus at the Kalisher location. Because of a lack of on-campus facilities, the state-required, student health services are provided at the Northeast Valley Health Corporation.
EVALUATION: A lack of facilities at the main campus has necessitated locating some services such as the Amnesty Program and health services off campus only; while a lack of personnel has necessitated locating other services such as counseling, tutoring, financial aid, foreign students assistance, veteran's assistance, EOP&S, DSP&S, and GAIN on campus only. The lack of funds to hire more personnel also has limited the evening coverage of many services on and off campus.
PLAN: With the completion of the new library in 1996, many services including DSP&S, EOP&S, Financial aid, and Matriculation will be relocated among the new and existing structures. The college will evaluate the need to expand and relocate services on and off campus.
3A.8 Staffing, resources, and physical facilities are commensurate with the size of the institution and with its stated purposes.
DESCRIPTION: Staffing, resources, and physical facilities are not adequate for the institution and its stated purposes. Staffing is short in all areas except administration. During registration especially, the registration process is dependent upon personnel from various offices with varying degrees of skill to handle the peak demands. Student workers are used in counseling, veterans affairs, and registration. Full-time faculty have not grown in proportion to the student body. And a current district, early retirement proposal will, if accepted, reduce the ratio of full- to part-time faculty even more. The English department, for example, has fewer full-time faculty members now than it did thirteen years ago when students numbered half of what they do today.
Declining fiscal resources have been detailed in Standard Seven, so suffice it to say that balancing a deficit budget is not a measure of commensuration.
We have grown in student population but not commensurably in physical facilities. The campus that we now occupy was designed for 5,000 students and was too small the day we first moved here. The second semester of occupancy saw 7,500 enrolled. Obviously, the college relied heavily on off-campus facilities then. Now we use conference rooms on campus for classrooms for want of funds to expand or to rent facilities. Those familiar with state funding formulas will not find it odd that spatial and technological facilities will be expanded with the completion of the new, $8 million library and learning resource center now under construction.
EVALUATION: Despite this description, the college has maintained most of its programs and course offerings in line with stated purposes. We simply have not been able to serve the growing demand for more of those same services. Fall of 1994, for example, saw over 2,000 students on standby lists. Every component of college administration, from the president of the board of trustees through the entire staff of the college itself knows that a new era of fiscal responsibility has begun not only at Mission College but across the nation as well, as a recent publication, Preparing for the 21st Century, of the American Association of University Administrators indicates (3.5).
PLAN: The college, working with the district, will begin realizing savings and increasing revenues in three major activities: first, through regionalization of staff and services where it is clearly efficient to do so; second, through district and college identification and coordination of issues and personal contacts in the state congress to effect better funding; third, by the incorporation of alternative methods of funding as part of the regular funding process.
Standard 3B General Provisions
An admission, registration, and records service facilitates student access to the institution and keeps and protects the records of their participation.
3B.1 Standards for admission, including provisions for exceptional cases, are based upon norms of expectation generally recognized in postsecondary education, and are consistent with the institution's educational purposes. Test instruments used in the admission process are designed to minimize cultural bias and are evaluated to assure [sic] their validity.
DESCRIPTION: Admission to the college is not determined by a score on a test, nor by any other formal standards; however, an assessment and placement process is provided for advisement to enroll in English, Math, Reading, and English as a Second Language (ESL) courses. All assessment instruments have been approved by the state chancellor's office. Approval is based upon cultural bias studies and validity, as well as reliability, and validated cut scores. Assessment instruments currently in use are: ESL essay, English essay, APS Objective English Reading Comprehension, and MDTP for math.
EVALUATION: Because our assessment and validation studies are in their infancy, we cannot say with certainty what value they will have for our students. But we believe that our assessment instruments are good and will give us the information needed for more accurate placement of students on the appropriate level. We believe further that these assessment instruments are good because they have been validated using populations reflective of ours. Assessment placement of students, in our estimation, is the foundation for quality programs.
PLAN: Despite our confidence in the value of the assessment instruments, we also expect that some adjustments will have to be made to these instruments and processes. Adjustments will come as suggested by evaluation outcomes. We will very likely use the assessment instruments currently in place for approximately one year, after which an evaluation will be done. The evaluation will then provide a direction for any adjustments and corrections needed.
3B.2 The institute actively seeks diversity in the student body.
DESCRIPTION: The college actively recruits potential students from throughout the service area including public and private high schools: San Fernando, Sylmar, Polytechnic, Kennedy, Granada Hills, St. Genevieve, Alemany, and Cal Lutheran. The ethnic makeup of the student body at our principal feeder high schools reflects the makeup of our community whose general composition is: Hispanic 48.3%, Caucasian 39.2%, African-American 4.6%, Asian and others 7.8%.
EVALUATION: While our student body population does not mirror exactly the population of the community we serve according to data collected for the Student Equity Plan (CD.5), it does reflect the college effort to have a diverse student body. The spring 1993 enrollment showed an unduplicated enrollment of Hispanics 65.4 percent, Caucasians 19.5 percent, African-Americans 6.1 percent, Asians and others 9.0 percent.
PLAN: To increase access to the college and successful completion of goals of the diverse members of our community is the heart of our mission statement. This goal is also the primary concern of the new chancellor, which gives us reason to believe that support in some measure will come from the district office to help us research and develop specific plans to achieve this goal. Continued use of the newspaper medium to generate informative news articles to the hundreds of thousands of households within our service area will be increased as funding permits. We will continue to strive to be a college which serves its community; likewise we will continue to work to strengthen our relationship with our feeder high schools, their counselors, and staff.
3B.3 The institution makes provision for the security of student records of admission and progress. Student records, including transcripts, are private, accurate, complete, and permanent. They are protected by fireproof and otherwise safe storage and backed by duplicate files. Data and records maintained in computing systems have adequate security and provision of recovery from disasters.
DESCRIPTION: All student records including academic records are maintained in secure fireproof vaults with a fire rating of in excess of A3, and they are maintained in an environment of complete security. An electronic data system away from the campus maintains a duplicate copy. Student records may be accessed only by the student or with the students written consent, or by authorized personnel on official school business. Access to records and transcripts is described in the Los Angeles Mission College Catalog, 1993-94, pages D6 and D10.
EVALUATION: The student records are held to be accurate and historically reliable, tracing the students stay from start to finish and identifying the activities and courses attempted and completed. There is, however, a process through which a student can challenge any record thought to be incorrect. A student can petition the dean of student services to investigate the inaccuracy. As for accessibility of records, unless the student authorizes in writing accessibility to her records she can rest assured that they will remain private. These two processes have assisted the college in complying with the legal requirements and have ensured for all users the accuracy and security of the records.
PLAN: The college will continue to maintain accurate records and to provide for their security. It is the college's plan to expand the automation of maintaining accurate records. A possible direction which will be investigated is an electronic system for scanning records onto a disk for easy storage and retrieval. Presently the legal aspect of the system is unknown and initial capital outlay is not available. Plans are being readied to allow students to hear their grades through use of the telephone registration system.
3B.4 Transfer credit is accepted from accredited institutions or from other institutions under procedures which provide adequate safeguards to ensure academic quality and relevance to the student's program. Implementation of transfer credit is consistent with the Commission Policy on Transfer and Award of Academic Credit.
DESCRIPTION: The transfer credit policy and procedures are outlined in the Los Angeles Mission College Catalog (1993-94, F1-F6); the policy includes the Intrasegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) agreement which will permit the direct transfer of community college students to the California state university or university of California systems. Additionally, a student may petition to have up to fifteen credit units accepted from nonaccredited institutions (Catalog, 1993-94, D3.).
EVALUATION: The administrator assigned to supervise articulation agreements of other institutions of higher education maintains an ongoing relationship with the articulation officers at the various institutions, especially those which our graduates and transferees will attend. Through this ongoing relationship, the process is continuously updated and maintained. Through the articulation process, all updates are made available to host and to sponsoring institutions.
PLAN: We will continue to emphasize the transfer programs to students with this particular interest and to maintain its articulation agreements. It will also maintain the viability of its transfer programs by its ongoing program review process.
3B.5 The institution (business office) has a policy regarding fee refunds that is well publicized, uniformly administered, and consistent with customary standards.
DESCRIPTION: The college's policy on refunds is clearly stated in the college Catalog (iii, iv, and B-3) and in the Schedule of Classes (3, 9, and 10.) Refund deadlines are posted in various areas throughout the campus and messages that have been prerecorded on our college telephone line indicate the refund deadlines. Refund policies are also reviewed and discussed during orientation.
EVALUATION: Judging from the few refund applications after the deadline, we assume that students are fully aware of the policy for refunding fees. The policy is working adequately and fairly so as to give students an opportunity to be reimbursed as appropriate.
PLAN: The college will continue to publicize the fee refund policy through its periodic publications; i.e., Schedule of Classes, Catalog, and college brochures, as well as to inform new students of the fee refund policy during the orientation sessions.
Standard 3C Comprehensiveness of Services
Depending on the nature and needs of the student body and the purposes of the institution, a range of student services may be provided. Decisions on comprehensiveness of services depend on the purposes of the institution, the diversity of its student body, and whether students commute or live in campus residential facilities. The functions, goals, and objectives of each service are consistent with those of the institution. Each is planned and evaluated by the same established processes as are other parts of the institutions major programs and services.
GENERAL DESCRIPTION: Based upon a needs assessment, the area of student services reflects the mission and purpose of the college. Support services are provided that contribute to each students instructional effectiveness and success as well as affirm the importance of multicultural and multiethnic collegiate experiences. Because Mission College is a commuter campus, the majority of the services and activities are conducted on the campus. With a strong focus on student equity and staff diversity, the college extends to each student the right to equal opportunity and participation in all segments of the college community.
Support Services for Special Populations (EOP&S, Special Services for disadvantaged students, DSP&S, financial aid)
DESCRIPTION: Los Angeles Mission College provides various support services for special populations such as financial aid and Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOP&S). Financial aid is provided for students through grants, loans, part-time employment and scholarships. This financial support enables persons who might not have been financially eligible to continue their schooling. In 1987-88 academic year there were 202 applications for financial aid. In 1992-93 there were over 500 applications and 2500 Board of Governors Grants. In addition to financial aid, there is the EOP&S support system for qualified, low-income, educationally disadvantaged students who are enrolled full-time. This program assists students in obtaining their educational goals of either a degree, certificate, or transfer to a four-year college or university. Services were provided for nearly 800 students during the 93-94 academic year. Like EOP&S, DSP&S provides an equal educational opportunity for all disabled individuals. Services include priority and registration assistance, notetakers, proctoring of exams, special equipment, and use of the High Technology Center for the Disabled. Over 200 students were enabled to attend classes in 93-94 through the assistance of this program.
Child Development Center (Child Care Services)
DESCRIPTION: According to the description of the center in the Catalog, it provides both care for the children of Mission College students and a learning experience for preschool children. Supervision of the Center is by a credentialed director and several classroom instructors who provide an educational program related to child development. Fees are charged on a sliding scale based on income.
Student Affairs (Student activities, Student Health Services, psychological services, student housing, food services)
DESCRIPTION: Currently, the Office of Student Affairs provides students with bulletin boards that offer information on employment via Jobtrak, on housing, and other relevant information. This office also provides coordination for ASO students to have free, short-term legal and personal counseling services.
A varied program of student activities is currently offered at Mission College. Included in this area are student government, student clubs and organizations, cultural diversity and sensitivity activities, and facilitation of students in the shared governance process. The ASO Student Council assists with the coordination of food services by contracting with catering truck services. Food services are also provided for sale through the instructional program of the Culinary Arts Institute.
Student health services are available through the Northeast Valley Health Corporation and are located off campus. This service provides first aid, preventative health care, and educational and medical screenings and referrals.
DESCRIPTION: The Intercollegiate Athletic Program offers an opportunity for all interested students who fulfill the eligibility requirements of the California Commission on Athletics to participate in a variety of athletic activities. As an integral part of the instructional program in physical education, it strives to meet the particular needs of each participating student. A completed baseball field adjacent to the campus is now available. The athletic program presently includes cross country and golf for men and for women and men's baseball and soccer.
EVALUATION: The functions, goals, and objectives of each service are not only consistent with those of the institution, but are actually as important in the master plan as are any other goals and objectives, allowing for priorities that are based on philosophic criteria, not on the service area. As stated in the mission statement of the college, one of the goals is to provide educational opportunities and services to all members of the community who can benefit from higher education. Additionally, the college intends to increase access and success for the entire college community. The athletic program exemplifies our commitment to these goals by expanding its program to include womens golf. Another objective stated in the plan was the computerization of the Admissions and Records Office. The college has accomplished an initial goal of placing a computer on each desk in this service, but student records are not yet fully computerized. With the assistance of the program review in student services, there is a plan for improvement and expansion of services to students, including a student identification system. Scanners for the student identification system still need to be installed so as to provide a reliable tracking system for the areas within student services.
PLAN: The area of student services through the student equity plan will have a systematized approach to recruiting and retaining underrepresented students at the college. The college is planning an assessment of how to address the diversity of the student body so that the comprehensiveness of services continues. Results of this assessment will frame the direction of student equity plans and of student services in general. Additionally, as we complete our first program review, the results may determine new directions not anticipated at this time. The Information and Technology Advisory Committee will be the vehicle for the computerization of the areas of student services such as admissions and records, financial aid, and EOP&S. Through the continual process of program review, the direction and focus of the student body will be met.
Standard 3E Coordination and Administration
The institution has an administrative structure responsible for the overall coordination and administration of student services.
3E.1 Student services professionals and support staff are qualified to provide effective service.
DESCRIPTION: The colleges administrative structure with overall responsibility for the coordination and administration of Student Services is made up of professional staff in the classified and certificated fields. Staffing for Student Services is done in strict adherence to the Los Angeles Community College District Personnel Guidelines. At present, the process calls for the selection committee to review folders of candidates who meet the qualifications of the position. Candidates meeting the colleges specific criteria are invited to interview with a college selection committee whose general makeup is representative of several sections of the college. Once the interviews are completed recommendations are made to the president who makes the final determination. If all requirements have been met, and nothing precludes the assignment, a job offer is m
EVALUATION:ade, thus completing the selection process. This ensures that every effort is made to select the best qualified applicant.
All employees, be they certificated or classified, are evaluated every year prior to achieving tenure, and thereafter, every other year. Evaluations are made on the basis of job assignment and accomplishments of stated goals and objectives. Participation in professional organizations and activities as well as staff development projects is supported and encouraged as a means for maintaining higher standards of professionalism.While the management organizational structure seems to work, at least within the campus student services, revisions and adjustments could make current services more responsive to the user, the student. The recent change which asked for the dean of students to report directly to the president, making that position a part of the senior staff, went a long way in making Student Services a co-partner with Academic Affairs and the other divisions of the college.
PLAN: The dean of student services will continue to investigate the feasibility of reorganizing the Counseling Department within the student services organizational structure. This reorganization foresees the inclusion of areas such as the Foreign Students, Veterans, and Matriculation as they presently exist.
Standard 3E.2 Arrangements are in place which assure [sic] that student services faculty, teaching faculty, and students are involved in the processes of program and policy development for student services, and in systematic evaluation and planning for program and services of the institution.
DESCRIPTION: Los Angeles Mission College Planning Advisory Council (MPAC) was established in response to AB 1725. All faculty, teaching and nonteaching, staff, and students are represented to advise the president on college programs and services. Furthermore, the Academic Senate is the faculty voice in program planning and evaluation.
Components of student services meet weekly with the dean of student services to review matters of concern and changes in regulations or requirements that may affect services to students. They in turn present the material to their respective offices for input and action. Additionally, the dean of student services also meets weekly with the rest of the college administration to represent and discuss student services as they affect the daily college operations. EOP&S has an advisory committee composed of students, teaching and nonteaching faculty, and community members whose function is to guide and to assist in maintaining a viable community oriented program. The Matriculation Advisory Committee is composed of administrators, faculty, staff, and students to discuss matriculation program effectiveness. The Counseling Department chair meets with the vice-president of academic affairs and also conducts biweekly meetings with the Counseling Department staff, including classified and student workers.
Furthermore, student services are periodically evaluated by a variety of sources. Reviews conducted by objective observers, independent of the college, systematically analyze programs and services provided to students.
EVALUATION: MPAC is composed of representative membership and thus is reflective of the ever-changing opinions of the college at large.
Staff members are strongly encouraged to participate in collegewide committees and functions to ensure adequate representation and integration with other functions of the college. Staff development programs such as Connection, which strives to improve employee morale and student relations, are encouraged.
Faculty development programs are in place to advance the exchange of ideas on program development and evaluation among student services, faculty, and teaching faculty. Instructional improvement activities have proven especially popular in this area.
Student involvement in the development and evaluation of student services is good, as detailed in Standard 3A.3. Program reviews and audit recommendations are carried out as quickly as possible. Programs such as EOP&S receive follow-up program reviews periodically to ensure campus compliance with recommendations.
PLAN: Presently, Student Services is divided between two organizational structures, Student Services and Academic Affairs. A Student Services council organized under the direction of the dean of student services is planned to enhance communication between the two areas. This organization will have a system which includes teaching and nonteaching faculty, classified staff, and student input. It will also encourage classified support staff to participate in staff development workshops focusing on establishing positive relationships between students and staff. It will include a mechanism for overall systematic evaluation of student services as well as for standardizing evaluation systems to be used within the individual services.
3.1 Annual Report
3.2 Various Brochures on Student Conduct
3.3 Student Information Flyers
3.4 Student Club Packet
3.5 Preparing for the 21st Century