PSPOn October 17-18, 2019, Skyline College hosted the Fall 2019 Promise Scholars Program – CUNY ASAP Convening. This convening was a vital component of Promise Scholars Program (PSP) Replication project partially funded by the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office (CCCCO) Award for Innovation in Higher Education grant. Organized by Lauren Ford, Project Director for the PSP Replication, the site visit included teams from the three San Mateo County Community College District colleges (Cañada College, College of San Mateo, and Skyline College) along with Cuesta College, Lake Tahoe Community College, and Pasadena City College who are planning for replication of the PSP. The PSP is recognized replication of the City University of New York (CUNY) Accelerated Studies in Associates Programs (ASAP) model.

Working in collaboration with the CUNY ASAP Replication Team, we created an informative, robust, and engaging experience. The convening included two tracks: one for counseling faculty, PSP leads/directors and PSP staff, and one for college leadership (presidents, vice presidents, and deans). This made the visit meaningful and impactful for all constituents attending.

The leadership track included in-depth conversations about balancing student to counselor ratios by integrating across programs such as EOPS, TRiO, and Learning Communities, programmatic considerations, data and reporting, collaborating with instruction, and strategic funding and sustainability. The counseling teams completed an in-depth training facilitated by the CUNY ASAP Advisor Training Team and supported by Skyline College PSP counseling faculty. The counseling training started with an overview of the history of CUNY ASAP, a grounding discussion about equity in counseling, a review of the ASAP model, and case studies to identify the ways in which SMCCCD faculty and staff can apply the ASAP model within the Promise Scholars Program.

Many thanks to the CUNY ASAP team: Mary Hiebert, Clara Chen, Amy Prince, Elizabeth Rincon, and Lesley Leppert for their collaboration in developing this convening. Thank you to Kim Davalos, Kent Gomez, Ellen Murray, Marisol Quevedo, Lizette Bricker, Priscilla Menjivar, Allie Fasth, Ray Hernandez, Chris Gibson, Zahra Mojtahedi, Angélica Garcia, Jennifer Taylor-Mendoza, and Aaron McVean for your assistance in developing engaging activities for participants. Thanks to Roger Marcelo for your technological genius. Much kudos to Pacific Dining for keeping us fed and nourished. As always, thank you to the facilities team who helped with set up and maintaining a space for our engaging conversations.

Article by Lauren Ford and Aaron McVean | Photo by Ricardo Coronado

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