Free-time activities to enjoy at Palo Alto College

By Brittany Bridgeforth
Pulse Staff Reporter

#ConnectWithNature backpack photo by Brittany Bridgeforth

Palo Alto College has an array of free-time activities for students and faculty, ranging from treating yourself at the Cosmetology Salon to bird watching.

Italia Barboza, a full-time student at Palo Alto who’s majoring in Social Work, has a three-hour break between classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. She spends her free time in the library.

Barboza said, “I have an online course that I can do and other things due throughout the week. I’m a mother of two kids, so my mom watches them while I’m at school. She tells me to stay and use the time wisely.”

Although some students may have their extra time planned out like Barboza, many don’t and aren’t aware of what activities PAC offers.

Jamie Sarmiento is a staff member of Before Anyone Else Be Safe, a program on campus that offers free access to birth control with a focus on sexual reproductive health. BAE-B-SAFE conducts workshops during and after school. Participants will receive a free program t-shirt, gift card and lunch at some sessions.

Sarmiento said, “We try to make ourselves approachable to students so they feel comfortable to ask questions about their body and relationships.”

Students can locate BAE-B-SAFE in the Student Center, Room 129, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Linda Plevak, the Access Services Librarian who began working at Palo Alto in the summer, shared information about the college’s #ConnectWithNature backpack.

Jim Edson, PAC Statistics professor, created a list of birds you may spot on campus and even donated a book to help you identify them. The backpack was created by the Viva Verde Committee and contains small binoculars and pamphlets that carry useful information about the different birds, butterflies and plants that you may come into contact with on your campus exploration.

You may check out the backpack at the Circulation Desk in the Ozuna Library between the hours of 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. through 5 p.m. Fridays and 1 p.m. through 9 p.m. on Sundays. They are closed on Saturdays. All that is needed is your Student ID or driver’s license to have access to the backpack for three hours.

 “I’m thrilled to see what feedback I receive,” said Plevak.

Along with these activities, one service that Palo Alto offers is an on-campus Cosmetology Salon.

“Sanitation is what sets us apart from other cosmetology schools. We want our clients to be serviced by our students in a clean area,” said Lydia Hannawi, the academic director of Cosmetology.

Stephanie Solano, a Cosmetology instructor at Palo Alto, said the salon offers facials, haircuts and manicures.

“So many different services. It’s hard to keep up, but if you name it, we do it here for men and women,” Solano said.

The salon is located in San Jacinto, Room 224. The days of operation are Monday through Thursday with hours that vary depending on the service needed. The available time frame is mainly afternoon or evening.

They plan on being a part of Paloween on Oct. 31 in the Student Center Annex from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. They will offer face painting to students, faculty and staff.

All services are offered by appointment. To set up an appointment, contact the salon by calling (210) 486-3177. You may also view work by students on Facebook under PAC Cosmetology. 

In October, they plan on showing their support of Breast Cancer Awareness by offering pink extensions, and on Nov. 14, the Cosmetology students will participate in the Recycled Fashion Show in the Student Center Annex at 12:30 p.m.

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