The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

Not all transfer programs are worth the cost

Illustration by Eugene Chang

Are you familiar with the Puente Project?

Puente Project is a transfer program that helps community college students with their academic plan. They offer “counseling and mentoring program” to help transfer to a four-year university.

Last semester the El Camino Puente Project was removed from a hiatus announced by President Tom Fallo in the last board of trustee meeting.

According to the EC Puente Project website, the mission of the program is to “increase the number of educationally undeserved students who enroll in four-year colleges and universities, earn degrees, and return to the community as leaders and mentors to future generations.”

The missions of the program sounds good on paper, but is it getting anything accomplished?

With 30 years of helping EC students, the number of students involved in the program has decreased every academic year, according to a letter from Vice President of Academic Affairs Francisco Arce and Jeanie Nishime last September.

During the 2012-2013 academic year, 22,401 students were enrolled at EC, according to the 2013-2014 Final Budget.

The Puente Project only had 25 students last semester and when the project was on hiatus, these students were transferred to First Year Experience (FYE), according to a letter from Arce and Nishim e last September.

During the academic year of 2013-2014 the Puente Project had 106 students enrolled in the program and the budget of this was $70,601, according to a letter from Arce and Nishime last September.

The actual staff that is in charge of running this program is getting a new method to have better results in this program, according to a past article of the “The Union.”

It’s good that they want to change their work methods so that the project can get better results but the cost of maintaining the project is too much.

Clearly it is a better choice to reduce the budget and use the extra cash to support other programs on campus that have more registered students. An alternative is to spend more time and money to promote the program so that it appeals to a larger mass of students.

If this program is properly promoted, the results will be different and the money spent maintaining this program will be more worthwhile.

Last semester the Puente Project former co-coordinator Margaret Quinones-Perez said by a lack of faculty of the Puente State Office had affected their work here and she did not understand why the Puente Project was in hiatus, according to a past article of “The Union.

However, the future of this program is not very encouraging, seeing how well known it is to the students. No matter what the mission states or Fallo says, the college is spending a lot of money on a program that does not have a convincing result.

More to Discover