CAMPUS: Santa Clara University supports AVID students

SCHS recently implemented a new program in collaboration with Santa Clara University undergraduates, providing tutoring support for students in the AVID program.

For the past ten years, SCHS’s AVID program has been united with SCU students in collaboration with student support on campus, with some SCU students chosen to come to SCHS and assist classes during first period every Thursday morning. Although the program has been going on for a while, this year, the program has become more prominent and frequent.

According to AVID teacher Risha Shah, the tutoring planning process included the teachers sending out a tutorial request form to SCHS students beforehand, allowing the teachers to determine which students need tutoring during that tutorial session. Teachers then place the students who need help on the same subject in groups of five and pair them with an SCU tutor.

The tutoring program allows students to make connections with other students who are older than them and can help with various questions, outside of the classroom as well.

“We now are introducing our high school students to college students who they can form a mentorship sort of bond with,” Shah said. “A lot of the relationships continue between these SCU students and the SCHS students because the students realize, ‘Hey, maybe I can email you, and you can even help me after you’re done with your community service hours.’”

To give back to the community and fulfill their credits this semester, SCU students come to SCHS to help out.

“Their (SCU students’) classes encourage them to give back to the community, and their form of community service is to volunteer first-generation or underserved students coming from low socioeconomic backgrounds or disadvantaged backgrounds,” Shah said.

Shah aims for tutorial in her AVID classroom to be a place where SCU students can guide SCHS students to collaborate within their groups and successfully gain an understanding in the subject they need help in.

“We want to encourage them (SCU students) to get our students to think critically, to think outside the box on how to solve the problems that they’re having in their classes, to use the resources that their teachers are providing,” Shah said. “Their goal is to actually get the students to help each other versus them giving the answer to the students.”

Junior Donovan Sanchez enjoys the program and believes it benefits his comprehension for various assignments.

“Even if I don’t get the direct answer to my question, I get a better understanding of the topic,” Sanchez said.

For SCU senior Rohan Krishna, coming to SCHS once or twice a week gives him the chance to help others and refresh his memory on concepts he learned in high school.

“I’m able to revisit topics that I forgot from high school, or some that I looked past in high school,” Krishna said. “Also, I love mentoring people, so it’s an opportunity to use that skill to help students.”

SCU Senior Ryuya Sekito also believes that this mentorship program is beneficial and helps everyone who is involved.

“Even for high school, students don’t talk to upperclassmen, or even college students that often, so I feel like it’s a good opportunity to ask them questions, especially because they’ve been in your footsteps,” Sekito said.

A majority of the senior students in the program have also been supported with information about college applications from the SCU students’ assistance. AVID teacher Talia Orsetti-Ng believes her AVID students appreciate the connection between them and their SCU mentors.

“I feel like the students enjoy having someone closer to their age and someone who’s actually in college now who has more current information about what college is like giving them advice,” Orsetti-Ng said. “Having accessibility to that kind of knowledge is really helpful.”