Letter to the Editor: Students Frustrated with DVC’s ‘Misguidance’ Counselors

To the Inquirer,

I read Natalie Costanzo’s letter “A bit of advice for those unhelpful advisers” in the October 23, 2008 issue and I understand her confusion.

I came to the United States as an international student three months ago and since that time I have experienced the same misguidance. I appreciate the counselors’ professional assistance because this service is not offered in my home country. But at the same time I absolutely agree with Natalie Costanzo that this service could be improved.

The U.S. educational system is very different from the one in Russia. This is why initially I really sought their help. But instead of spending an extra five minutes with me, the counselor just gave me bunch of IGETC, CSU and other papers and sent me back to the admissions office.

When I met the counselor next time he wasn’t even able to name the requirements for my AA degree. Some time later I made another appointment with the counselor. When I showed up for my appointment I was informed that my name was not on the schedule.

I believe that counselors can provide useful information and help students in their personal and educational endeavors, but my experience shows that these “advisors” don’t have the student’s interests at heart. Thanks to my determination and curiosity I eventually adapted to the studies and language.

Although I didn’t always get answers to my questions I didn’t stop asking and now I feel comfortable and take pleasure of the exciting American college life.

Signed, Olga Kapustina- DVC student