Resource Guide for Pacific Islander students at Sacramento City College

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SCC Sees You

Pacific Islander Resource Guide


diversity. you!

SCC has a longstanding tradition of empowering students who come from diverse backgrounds—of varying experience, resources, age and ability—to reach their academic and career goals. SCC recognizes and values the varied Pacific Islander heritages and cultural experiences of our students. Whether students plan to transfer, earn a degree or certificate, or improve career skills, you will find that SCC offers a broad array of courses and services to help you achieve your goals.

WELCOME TO YOUR GUIDE TO RESOURCES AND SERVICES FOR PACIFIC ISLANDER STUDENTS AT SACRAMENTO CITY COLLEGE Welcome to Sacramento City College! On this campus we celebrate diversity, nurture personal growth, and inspire academic and community leadership. Just as we ask you to be leaders at the college, the college also commits to being a leader for you. We take part in innovative learning and work to put the college at the forefront of educational empowerment. Our graduates have achieved success in many professions, excelling in our community and beyond as teachers, elected officials, cosmetologists, lawyers, nurses, dental hygienists, entrepreneurs and more. We are dedicated to providing you the support you need to achieve your goals, whether you are planning to transfer to a university or go directly into a career.

Michael Gutierrez

Sacramento City College President

At SCC you will find a vibrant Pacific Islander community of students, staff, faculty and managers that are leaders both on campus and in the greater Sacramento area. By working together across the campus we are able to bring together people and resources that create a supportive and fun learning environment. I hope you will join our Panther family and explore the opportunities that are available to you at Sacramento City College.


G We encourage you to get involved, participate, and take pride in your identity and cultural background in whatever you do here at SCC. Cultural events and programming has always had a vital role in our campus life at SCC. Every semester there is a wide variety of ever-changing events for students to engage with all cultures on campus including the Pacific Islander community.

PACIFIC ISLANDER ORGANIZATIONS Get involved with students and the campus community

SCC Cultural Engagement Centers Pacific Islander Club Active since 2004, the Poly Club celebrates all people and cultural aspects of Pacific Islander ancestry. Students come together to share cultural experiences amongst themselves and the broader SCC community. Members also strive to improve recruitment, academic success, and retention of PI students.

SCC offers a wide variety of cultural retention and engagement opportunities, to make sure our students are successful. The Asian Pacific Islander engagement center is just one of our Cultural Engagement Centers on campus.

ZPeer mentoring ZStudy spaces

ZSupport services ZWorkshops

STANDING UP FOR ISLANDER RIGHTS Get involved with students and the campus community

WAVEMENT is a youth climate change organization established by Marshallese students who attend Sacramento City College. Wavement is a movement that was started to bring awareness about climate change and how it has been affecting all the islands in the Pacific.

SCC Faculty and Staff Voices Amelia “Lia” Tuifua — Tongan RISE COUNSELOR & HUMAN CAREER DEVELOPMENT PROFESSOR

Nyla Vaivai — Samoan STUDENT PERSONNEL ASSISTANT Hello! I am from one of the most beautiful islands in the world called Samoa, located in the South Pacific. I have been part of the SCC family since 2012. During my time here I’ve met classmates, co-workers and professors that became like family and lifetime friends. What I most appreciate about being part of the Los Rios Community Colleges is the support system that I’ve been blessed to have found in all four campuses, SCC, ARC, CRC and FLC.

“Understand who you’re working with so you’ll know who you’re working with.”

Amelia is a proud Alum of Sacramento City College. She is the first Tongan faculty member at SCC and is the advisor of the Pacific Islander Club. Amelia was the first in her family to attend college. As a firstgeneration student it was difficult balancing familial and cultural obligations while navigating the community college system however, everything changed when she joined the Pacific Islander Club and the RISE Program. She met friends who became family and mentored her. She also received guidance from counselors like Keith Muraki and Juan LaChica. She transferred to UC Berkeley and got her Bachelor’s Degree in Ethnic Studies and eventually her Master’s Degree in Social Work from USC. Several of Amelia’s siblings and her father are now also proud SCC graduates. She credits her success to her grandparents who sacrificed everything, leaving the island of Tonga with the hopes of creating better opportunities for their family. She honors their sacrifice through service to the Pacific Islander Community and to the SCC Community as a whole.

“Your ancestors did not survive everything that nearly ended them for you to shrink yourself to make someone else comfortable. This is your warcry, be loud, be everything and make them proud”. —Nikita Gill

Resources for Dreamers and Undocumented Students The Undocu-Resource Program at SCC advocates for undocumented students, their families and community members affected by the undocumented experience. We encourage students to break the barriers in education and we empower them to become leaders of change. We understand the complexity and struggle of constantly changing immigration policies and multiple identities each undocumented student holds. We want dreamers to succeed and thrive at Sacramento City College.

The West Sacramento Center works closely together with the City of West Sacramento to create educational programs that serve the community and remove barriers to education.

The Davis Center is the only community college located on a UC campus! The proximity to UC Davis presents a unique opportunity for students to transfer to a UC with a network of friends, fellow students and university faculty already in place.

Student Voices What has your experience been like at SCC especially as a Pacific Islander student? “My experience at SCC has been a blessing because you’re able to find people with the same mindset by wanting better for themselves and their families. Let alone the encouragement and support is amazing.”

What advice do you have for incoming students?

Library Resources The Sacramento City College Library not only offers a wide range of resources for all students, but also houses a robust collection of culturally inclusive materials. Students can check out books and DVDs that explore a wide range of topics concerning Pacific Islander heritage and contemporary issues.

ZResearch Help Desk ZTextbooks on reserve ZSilent Study areas & Group study rooms ZComputers and Printing Visit us on the 2nd Floor of the LRC or online A

“Learn more about yourself and be proud of it and take your time because it’s not easy, trust me. I’ve been here for 3 years only because I want my mom and sisters to be financially stable before I officially leave. Don’t worry about time—just go on your own pace! Let alone the encouragement and support is amazing.”

“NoQu Kalou, NoQu Vanua!” Fijian for “My God, my land”

Melini — Tongan/Fijian Communications Major

SCC is committed to your success These support services provide additional benefits to SCC students who qualify based on their specific backgrounds or student needs.

RISE Program RISE is a support service for students that eases the transition from high school to college using a “family approach” to make students feel welcomed on campus. RISE has been a proud home to many people, especially to the PI community. RISE becomes their “home away from home” where they develop community bonds. As students grow with the program, many can find employment through RISE as student assistants.

“RISE has been a really helpful program for me this semester and I highly recommend people take advantage of these resources like the fast counselor appointments, free tutoring, and textbook loaning.”

Cassandra — Fijian, Tongan, Black Ta’ahine Students in the RISE center on campus

Film Production Major

Disability Services & Programs for Students (DSPS)

EOPS EOPS provides resources to students who are financially and educationally disadvantaged and helps them complete college and achieve their career goals.

CARE CARE provides extra benefits for EOPS students who are single parents and head of household receiving public assistance from CalWORKS or TANF.

NextUp Program for Foster Youth NextUp connects Foster Youth students to valuable resources and tools that can help them succeed in college.

DSPS offers support services designed to improve access to educational opportunities for students with disabilities.

Math, Engineering, Science Achievement (MESA) The MESA program provides academic support such as tutoring, a study center, computer lab, textbook checkout, and other personal and professional development opportunities. The program emphasizes collaborative study and helps students achieve high academic achievement.

Veterans Resource Center We have an on-campus facility designed to help Veterans and their dependents with homework, VA benefits and Admissions. It also provides computer access, free printing, appointments with a designated VA counselor, and a place to hang out with other Veterans on campus.

Transfer to a university Prepare for your career Sacramento City College has resources to help you accomplish your career goals

Career Center

Dreamers First in your family Overcoming challenges Beating the odds

Explore career options with workshops, assessments, and guidance. Connect with employers who are looking to hire students.

Transfer Center Each semester we provide workshops, tours, and fairs to assist students with their transfer goals.

Work Experience & Internships Internships give you hands-on experience in paid and volunteer work for real employers.



Stories of Success

STEPHEN ISILELI KOLOKIHAKAUFISI Tongan I am a first-generation Tongan and college student and proud Sacramento City College Alumni. I am currently pursuing a Bachelors of Dance Degree from the University of California Los Angeles. My career goals are to attain a Master of Fine Arts Degree and to teach the history of Polynesian dance and the importance of oral tradition.

“My grandparents voyaged across the vast oceans of Polynesia for my siblings and I to have better opportunities at life. They would always say, ‘Our family is not rich in money, but we are rich in love.’ They knew education was key and I owe it to them and my Pacific Island community to be something great.” FA’AFATIATAMA’I PUAPA’E FOLAU Samoan The programs at SCC like RISE, Phi Theta Kappa, EOPS, the Honors Program, and Polynesian Club helped fuel my drive and passion for higher learning. Currently, I am an undergraduate at UCLA, where I am majoring in History and minoring in African American Studies. At UCLA I serve as a peer mentor and office assistant for the Center for Community College Partnerships. Recently, I was admitted to the UCLA McNair Research Scholar Cohort, where I will begin my research on Anti-Blackness in Oceania.

“At SCC I learned the importance of community, reciprocity, the power of networking, and my purpose in life-serving others.”


Start your journey at SCC APPLY ONLINE Fall Semester — Apply in April Spring Semester — Apply in November Visit our welcome center in the Student Services building

Jada Hawaiian, Filipino, and Black Nursing Major

What advice do you have for incoming students?

What resources at SCC have helped you the most?

“Don’t be afraid to explore and get to know people. Coming to Sac City isn’t just about going to class. This is a time to grow and do uncomfortable things, even if it’s as small as speaking to a classmate. You never know the types of bonds and relationships you will establish. It’s not about how long it takes you but the fact that you did it and you finished!”

“My first semester was kind of tough, but through the RISE program, I was able to keep up with my classes. My professors have been really understanding and helpful, especially the RISE counselors. I would advise future PI students to communicate with their professors as much as possible and take advantage of any resources on campus.”

Petaia — Fijian Early Child Education Major

Apply for Financial Aid The Financial Aid Office can connect you to a variety of Federal, state, and local sources of financial assistance for those SCC students who meet the eligibility requirements. Submit the FAFSA application online or through the myStudentAid mobile app

If you are not a US citizen, permanent resident, or eligible non-citizen, start by completing the California Dream Act online instead of the FAFSA

Apply for financial aid as early as October 1 of the year before you plan to take classes. Applications are due by March 2.


First-time, full-time student?

We will waive your tuition fees for the first year! No income requirements!

You must be a California resident or eligible AB 540/AB 2000 student. Enrolled in at least 12 units, no more than 18 units per semester. If you have a documented disability that affects your ability to be enrolled in 12-18 units, contact the Disability Services and Programs for Students (DSPS) office at (916) 558-2087

Everyone is welcome here