Home / Community / Education / San Diego’s Southwestern College Introduces ‘Basic Needs Coordinator’ as Unparalleled Way to Help Students Access Support in Advance of Fall Enrollment

San Diego’s Southwestern College Introduces ‘Basic Needs Coordinator’ as Unparalleled Way to Help Students Access Support in Advance of Fall Enrollment

• Recognizing growing student needs in light of the pandemic’s impact, college hires Basic Needs Coordinator to show, and not just tell, students how to navigate system
• Empathy and socioeconomic awareness among her top priorities for diverse student population
• Community college encourages current and prospective students to inquire about support services as the June 14 fall enrollment opening approaches

San Diego CA— In preparation for upcoming fall  enrollment – Apply & Register – Admissions & Financial Aid – Southwestern College has fortified its commitment to its diverse student population by hiring Ms. Trina Eros as a Basic Needs Coordinator. Working under the umbrella of SWC Cares, Eros takes on the unprecedented role of campus student support coordinator. Recognizing that navigating services is already difficult, Southwestern College is also cognizant that the COVID-19 pandemic has been an added barrier to student success. Commitment to higher education has been challenged, especially for those affected by job loss and threats to community health. However, new opportunities have arisen with remote learning and access to technology; Southwestern aims to ensure these are known.

“In a time where the pandemic has disrupted our students’ ability to complete their educational goals, Southwestern College will be a stabilizing force,” said Southwestern College Superintendent/President Dr. Mark Sanchez. “Many of our students are already housing- or food-insecure. COVID-19 worsened that and forced many to abandon their goals. We’re here to say to students your dreams matter and we have the resources to provide for your needs and get you back on track.”

Southwestern College boasts an extremely diverse student body and pool of applicants, including those from binational, foster youth and military backgrounds. They also cover the entire range of the age and socioeconomic spectrums. With those unique communities come unique challenges, compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic, which also forced many students to discontinue their education or consider alternatives to completing their education.

  • Financial aid available through: a motel voucher program and housing organization referral program for housing-insecure students; CONNECTS Technology Loan Program to make laptops and other technology essentials available; Southwestern College Promise program for all first-time students and waives all tuition fees; California Promise program for approximately 75% of students; and more
  • Basic support services available through: the Jag Kitchen To-Go food pantry providing drive-up food distribution to students; one-time emergency grants, grocery and gas gift cards, textbook vouchers and more

Fall enrollment begins June 14. Southwestern College boasts a student populace that includes strong multicultural representation including those from Latino, Black, Filipino communities and more. There is also a special emphasis on those from military and foster youth backgrounds.

“Serving our students and prospective students is an honor because we’re serving the community,” said Basic Needs Coordinator Tina Eros. “So often students are fearful they’ll be told ‘no’ but we are saying ‘yes’ to their needs, to their dignity and to their aspirations.”


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