Students had the chance to ask questions, voice concerns and snack on some free pizza at the “VP Chat with Victor Ramos,” hosted by the Lancaster SGA on Oct. 6. Ramos, who is in his third year as vice president of the Lancaster and Lebanon campuses, introduced himself and Dean of Academic Affairs Mike Corradino, who Ramos invited to help answer students’ questions.
Students sought help for problems with their virtual learning classes, concerns about professors and the lack of materials in the biology room of the tutoring center. Ideas for future improvement included more counseling options, a request for student lockers, and even to have pineapple juice available for purchase on campus.
“At the end of the day, we can’t improve on things we don’t know about,” Ramos said, as he took notes and listened to students’ questions. When he responded to students, he spoke in a calm voice and had an easy grin.
“He definitely tries to be supportive of the student body,” Miles Breisch, a second-semester student at HACC and the president of the Environmental Science Club who came for the pizza and soda and stayed for a short time, said of Ramos.
Diane Bennett, a student in her third year at HACC and an SGA senator, was concerned about the condition of the anatomical models in the tutoring center.
“They are beat up and I can’t tell the difference between the deltoid and the gluteus maximus,” she said. “Health Science is one of the biggest majors at HACC.”
Every student going into a health science career has to pass anatomy and physiology class, she explained. Students only have three hours a week to use the materials in the lab and the models in the tutoring center she has to use to study outside of lab hours are falling apart.
“How can you expect us to learn when we don’t have the materials we need?” Bennett asked.
Bennett and other students also wondered why faculty don’t show up to more of the small events that the SGA plans.
Ramos said that faculty members often cannot attend because their primary focus is on teaching and holding office hours for students.
Corradino, who sat in the windowsill to provide seats for the students, recommended personally inviting faculty in a face-to-face interaction. “Don’t underestimate how powerful that is,” he said.
Hyein Hong, an exchange student from South Korea in her fourth semester at HACC, was dissatisfied with the answer from Ramos and Corradino, agreeing with Bennett that more faculty should attend student events.
“I want them to participate in minor events with the SGA and Student Programming Board,” explained Hong, who also serves as the SGA treasurer.
Students walked in and out during the chat, getting in on the discussion for an hour.
“We are always open for a conversation,” Ramos concluded, adding “We are here for you.”