Educational journeys lead to inspiration and opportunities

By Vivian Hernandez-Serna
Pulse Staff Reporter

Top: Photo by Esther Ramos. Bottom left: Photo by Mandy L. Goynes. Bottom right: Photo by Dr. Denise B. Richter

Palo Alto students have gone out of their way to explore future goals by representing the school and serving the community while gaining college experience outside of the classroom.

The week before Spring Break, Mandy L. Goynes, adjunct Theatre instructor, took five of her students to the four-day Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC) Convention in Mobile, Alabama.

The SETC is a convention for the up-and-coming theatre generation. Undergraduate theatre students from across the country gathered for this convention, taking advantage of job opportunities and countless workshops.

“By sending them off to these other theatres, they are going to learn from other professionals and work with other people and gain new skills that they can bring back and then they are just that much more prepared for life after college,” said Goynes.

At the convention, students go through on-the-spot job interviews and attend workshops to learn about custom design, while gaining skills and making connections.

Rebecca Milligan, a sophomore Theatre major, received a job offer at Stagedoor Manor in New York as a Theatre Scenic Painter.

“I’m excited for all the experience I’m going to get and to learn different techniques,” said Milligan.

Sergio Gutierrez, also a sophomore Theatre major, received four different job offers. He will be working as a Theatre Scenic Carpenter at Monomoy Theatre in Massachusetts.

Gutierrez said he learned a lot while at the convention and would like to bring back what he learned to Palo Alto next fall.

“This experience has made me realize that I had a lot more to offer than what I am used to,” said Gutierrez. “It shows the hard work that I put out and the hard work they put out in teaching us in what we do.”

Communication and Journalism students also had the opportunity to attend a convention related to their field.

PAC’s Mass Communications professor, Dr. Denise B. Richter, took her Editing class to Dallas for the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association conference from March 21-23.

Every year, media students from all over Texas gather to compete and to learn from instructional workshops.

PAC’s Comm/Journalism students had time to interact with students from other colleges and learn from professionals about opportunities in their respective dream jobs.

“I enjoyed every single workshop that I was able to attend, and I took a bit of valuable information from each one,” said Monica Lopez, Journalism/Mass Communications sophomore.

Lopez attended various workshops, including her favorite one on Tips to Build Your Online/Social Media Brand.

Evelin Ortega, Advertising sophomore said, “Looking back on my own habits and the advice given out at the workshops I attended, almost all things seem to say that it’s important to network and be able to communicate effectively with others in order to gain success in this field.”

Students at PAC are also finding themselves through community service.

This past Spring Break, a group of students were sent to either New Orleans, Louisiana, or Los Angeles, California, for an Alternative Spring Break.

Rather than partying or staying home, these students had the opportunity to help these communities.

Daisy Ramirez, Education sophomore had the opportunity to work with Midnight Mission, non-profit organization, to help and serve the Los Angeles homeless community.

“I can’t imagine doing my Spring Break differently, but it was nice to give back to another place out of my hometown,” said Ramirez.

Esther Ramos, Liberal Arts sophomore said, “It was an amazing opportunity to work with like-minded students with one goal in mind, and that is to help.”

For more information on Service-Learning, contact Hunter Bates, coordinator of Student Success, at (210)-486-3198 and



Blog at

%d bloggers like this: