The Disabled Students Program and Services has begun to pair students with counselors who specialize in their field of study.
Stephanie Crosby, director of the program, said this change will help students plan their academic careers more effectively because the counselors understand what they need to succeed in their chosen fields.
This also gives students more one-on-one time with the counselor, creating a more established relationship and guaranteeing more success because of the counselor’s involvement, Crosby said.
“This is a campus-wide plan to help streamline counseling services for ease-of-access for our students,” states Crosby.
Other improvements coming to DSPS this fall include a closer interaction between students receiving services and the staff who attend to them.
Crosby said her team is currently working on how to improve employee interactions with students through weekly meetings and review of customer service and students’ satisfaction. DSPS staff will receive training in customer service and as well as ongoing feedback on how to improve interaction with their students.
As stated by Crosby, “We have bi-weekly meetings to discuss how more effectively we can assist our students.”
Crosby said that students who are uncomfortable with the closer working relationship could opt out and work with their previous counselors.
DSPS, a designated department at Fresno City College, provides assistance to students with disabilities. They are primarily responsible for determining what kind of academic adjustments and changes are necessary to help improve the success rate of the students they serve.
Crosby said these adjustments may include providing volunteer note takers for the students to allow them to gain the most from their courses; audiobooks for students who prefer audio-based learning; in-class interpreters for the Deaf community as well as designated rooms for test taking.
The DSPS office is also directly involved with the planning of better accessibility for students with physical disabilities. Crosby said DSPS has found greater success in their students when these additional services are provided.
Crosby said that in addition to providing access and improved academic experience for their students, DSPS works to eliminate the stigma that is often associated with receiving help. She said she is committed to creating an equitable environment so the college provides all students a safe and welcoming space.
“We appreciate any form of feedback students provide us, and always take all of them into consideration when making any changes,” states Crosby.
As I final reminder to all students involved with DSPS, or thinking of getting involved with DSPS, Crosby states “We are here for you.”