Services taken for granted

Los Medanos College students need to start taking advantage of the numerous programs and events provided to them.
Lack of attendance and participation from the student body is resulting in students not being informed of the many financial and educational aids available to them, and is hindering the college’s sense of community.
A recent speaker event typified the lack of student involvement at Los Medanos College.
The two-day series on April 12 and 13 was scheduled to spotlight students with disabilities. What could have been both an enlightening and unifying event was instead a bit of an embarrassment: Zero students attended.
Speakers were brought in to discuss the difficulties they encountered while attending an educational system not designed for them, but faced with an empty room, instead conversed with LMC staff.
Unfortunately, this is not an unusual happening — events and programs designed to help students here at Los Medanos are often underattended or underutilized.
The Transfer Center’s “How To” workshop series, created to help students prepare for everything from scholarship applications to job interviews, is often sparsely attended. Many of our school’s clubs and groups have had to resort to the time-honored method of offering free food to entice students to even interact with them.
This isn’t just an LMC problem — according to the Center for Community College Student Engagement, about 87 percent of colleges reported offering supplemental instruction and services, but an astounding 82 percent of students said they’d never used those same services.
In our reporting, staff members frequently cite an inability to connect with students who could benefit from programs.
This is something faculty, staff and students have to meet halfway on.
Better publicizing of events and programs could go a long way to boost attendance and participation. It’s evident the current methods of promotion -— bulletin boards, newspaper previews, press releases — could be improved upon. A more direct method of contact with students, such as a newsletter sent right to their personal email, would be helpful
Likewise, it seems many students roam the LMC campus with blinders on. Many don’t even know the college has a newspaper. Any increase in situational awareness would be beneficial to students looking for academic help or a sense of community.
There are opportunities abound at Los Medanos. But we have to take them.