Work-studies get real world experience on campus

Work-study Jeremy Broach monitors students working in the Ozuna Academic Learning Studio. Photo by Joshua Porterie.

By Joshua Porterie
Pulse Staff Reporter

Palo Alto is home to a lot of employees, many of whom are faculty, staff and administrators, but student employees, or work-studies, are also part of this campus.

“PAC currently has a total of 72 work-studies hired,” said Lucy Rodriguez, Financial Aid advisor. “Sixty-one on-campus work-studies, 11 off-campus community-based work-studies, with PAC IT-Computer Lab having the most work-studies.”

“I get 15 work-studies to manage the lab,” said David Amaya, manager of the Academic Learning Studio and Network Specialist. “Our work-studies do more than just stay in the lab. They deliver paper, toner. We also get them to help the IT department, as well. They also help the students with their Canvas, getting into ACES, and any other applications, such as Word or anything they need help with. Our work-studies are here to help the students with that.”

During the spring of 2015, the pay rate for work-studies went up from $7.25 to $9 an hour, with 19 hours per week. As the summer sessions came around, work-study hours were cut from 19 to 15 hours per week.

“Since work-studies are only allowed a limited amount of money, and because the amount of pay went up from minimum wage to $9, Financial Aid decided to make a cut in hours,” said Amaya.

Like every job in the world, being a work-study has its benefits. It gives students skills they can use in the real world, and the position looks good on resumes.

“Some benefits of being a work-study is having some extra money,” said Jose Galvan, freshman Liberal Arts major and Recycling work-study. “To pay for gas, school, or other needs, like books.”

Work-studies do not have to worry about the long shifts some students have working at local businesses. Working only 15 hours a week is perfect with students who are taking a full load of classes.

“The hour cut is all right because some students have classes through the day, and long hours make it difficult,” said Galvan.

Many work-studies have duties that only concern their job, but for some they will be asked to do things for the campus. They might even get asked to help with events going on around campus.

“As a work-study in the Fitness Center, I am responsible for scanning in students, staff and faculty,” said Emilee Almazan, a sophomore English major and Fitness Center clerk. “I also help set up for any events that may be going on in the Gymnasium.”

As a work-study, students are giving back to the campus, and at the same time, they are getting paid to do so.

“Being a work-study means that I have the support and financial assistance from the Alamo Colleges, and my supervisors to help pursue my goals,” said Almazan. “I am fortunate enough to have found a job which works around my school schedule, and gives me no reason to fail myself when it comes to my education.”

For students who want be a work-study, it is highly recommended to fill out applications now at In order to be a work-study, certain requirements must be met. Students must have a 2.0 or higher GPA, be enrolled in six or more credit hours at Palo Alto College, and they must qualify for financial aid.

For more information on work-study positions at Palo Alto College, contact Lucy Rodriguez at (210) 486-3606.