Students, make your voice heard

By NICK MEYERS

For those who may have been out of the loop, Pima Community College has experienced a series of tribulations for the past several years but things are beginning to turn around.

Problems persisted leading up to the resignation of Pima’s former chancellor, Roy Flores, in 2012. That event served as an impetus for the college’s current situation.

PCC’s accrediting organization, the Higher Learning Commission, placed Pima on probation in 2013 after an audit. The move placed the college at potential risk of shutting down.

The entire college community rallied around a goal of getting Pima off probation. Earlier this year, we succeeded.

But the story isn’t over. The college has lots of work ahead of it, and Pima can’t do it alone.

On March 27, hundreds of college employees met to discuss Pima’s focus for the next several years in an unprecedented “Conversation with the Chancellor.” There was one undeniable necessity: students.

PCC needs help and not just any help, your help. Students, I’m talking to you.

It is time for the largest population at Pima to speak up and get involved.

The administration is already putting in motion ways for students to share their perspectives and ideas on the many decisions the college faces in the near future.

Five students spoke during the “Conversation” event to express concerns felt by students at every campus.

Last semester, students formed the LaPima club to aggressively advocate to local officials for policies that will benefit PCC. On March 23, the Advocates for PCC club met with Tucson City Council members to discuss the state’s $6 million cut from Pima’s budget.

The Aztec Press has covered many issues this semester, from delays for student veteran benefits to a pervasive lack of transparency in providing public documents to the questionable handling of work-study finances. We hope our coverage ignites change.

There are many ways that you can also institute change, whether you’re taking three credits or 20.

Sign up for student government or the Advocates for PCC group. Stop by your campus’s Student Life office and ask about upcoming opportunities.

Talk to your advisers and instructors, and ask how you can get involved. And, of course, read the paper.

Not only do we owe it to the college for the opportunities it has provided us, but we owe it to ourselves.

We all have the ability, right now, to influence the still-foggy future of this institution.

Many of us are grateful for the role Pima has played in our lives. Now it’s our turn to have a role in Pima’s life.

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