Student workers face reduced hours, lost positions


Rashimi Luthra, a secretary at the Student Union office, deals with incoming paperwork and helps with inquiries from students. (Photo by Travis Jenkins/The Inquirer 2010)

Yuno Imai

An expected nearly 50 percent cut in federal work study funds for the 2010-11 school could leave the 72 DVC students currently in the program without jobs or with fewer hours.

David Reyes, federal work-study coordinator, said student workers and supervisors were notified of the budget cut earlier this semester, so it wouldn’t come as a surprise.

The new budget is expected July 1, Reyes said.

Surprise or not, the changes will significantly affect students who count on the program for their jobs on and off campus.

Having learned his hours will be chopped from 20 hours weekly to 10, Michael Burnside said he plans to quit his job in the college’s high tech center.

Burnside worked 30 hours weekly during the fall 2009 semester and was cut to 20 hours weekly spring semester.

“For me, it’s not about money,” said Burnside who earns $9.74 per hour. “It’s about doing my job right.”

Burnside said he worries about what will happen when he leaves.

“Students I have been seeing are going to suffer,” he said. “People depend on me being there.”

Burnside stays extra time, and helps students anytime when they need help, student Lilian Benitez said.

Student Angela Page said she has been helped by Burnside, “If he is not there, I don’t know what I’m going to do,” she said.

Miguel Zaragoza, who has a work study job in the EOPS office as a peer adviser and a DVC student ambassador, said the budget cut situation makes it “much harder to get a job.”

“[It is] targeting the programs that help students,” he said.

Student worker Erika Back earns $8.03 an hour cleaning classrooms 18 ½ hours a week in the work study program.

“It helps out paying the bills and works out with my class schedule,” she said.

Rashmi Luthra, who works at the Student Union Building as a senior student office assistant, said in an e-mail interview she will have to quit school for a while and work off campus.

“I do not get any financial help from anywhere else besides financial aid,” she said.


Contact Yuno Imai at [email protected]