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November+December 2023 Featured Campus: Santa Ana College

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Santa Ana College is our Featured Campus for November/December! “The Santa Ana PAVE team has shown a great deal of growth over the last year and is incredibly involved both on and off campus. They have provided extensive programming, offering support to both their student veterans and the wider community. Additionally, they have built relationships with 4-year schools and continue demonstrating dedication to providing creative and comprehensive support for their veteran and military-connected students,” says Emma Czajka, PAVE Program Coordinator.

Santa Ana College’s PAVE team, led by Team Leader Joseph Jimenez and Student Services Coordinator Mark Canett, has four Peer Advisors. Together, they serve a population of almost 500 military-affiliated and veteran students, with outreach expanding to include dependents. “We take it student by student, and as long as we’re impacting one student, we’re doing a great job,” says Dr. Brenda Estrada, the Director of Special Programs and the Veterans Resource Center.

The Santa Ana College PAVE team excels in the strength and number of their connections, both with their students and with other programs and institutions. According to Mark, their team has connections with several 4-year universities both in the local area and across the country and has trips every semester to take their military-affiliated students on tours of these campuses. These campus trips are just one of many ways that the Santa Ana PAVE team connects with their surrounding community and works to provide the best resources and outcomes for their student veterans. “We can really have an impact on students and see within 2 years where they go, so that’s very rewarding,” says Mark.

According to Mark, the PAVE skills imparted to student veterans at Santa Ana College translate well to 4-year schools, and many PAVE students transfer to them to pursue additional education. These skills include learning to find and to utilize resources both from the VRC and within the community, “and through PAVE and other school programs, you can gradually see that students go from being receptive to being proactive about them,” says Joseph. 

Keep up the great work supporting your student veterans and military-connected students, Santa Ana College!