Name: Deborah Parker
Major: Mental Health Aide/Advocate Certificate Program*
Transfer Goal: Yes, I definitely plan to pursue an advanced degree. I am considering school with a counseling program; this occupational area is aligned with Mesa's Mental Health Aide/Advocate Program and some of my earlier experiences. Additionally, I believe that as energetic as I am, I believe that I can handle attending class part-time and maintaining full-time employment!
How are you involved at Mesa College? Well, in addition to being a member of the Mental Health Aide/Advocate Certificate Program's initial cohort, I have two other roles. My first role is a tutor for the second cohort and the other as a participant in a field experience assignment on campus.
How long have you attended Mesa College? I have attended Mesa College since Fall Semester 2009.
Why did you choose Mesa College? It is a long story. However, the succinct answer is--I heard about Mesa College from the Employment Development Department in Escondido. This past August when I was first approached with the idea of training to update my skills, I just could not wrap my faculties around it. Of course, by the time I did it became a race against the clock, because in less than a month of hearing about these training opportunities many of the programs were full. Consequently, by the time I contacted Dr. Boyd here at Mesa, he said, "...there was one seat available in the Mental Health Program. Moreover, it was mine if I wanted it." From my perspective, that was an offer too good to turn down - I accepted the last seat, a modern version of a serendipitous event.
What have you enjoyed most about your Mesa College experience? I enjoy everything about my Mesa College experience. There are so many awesome people, on this campus, that deserve a thank-you and I would like to say to the entire staff group, I notice and appreciate all I see! It is through their activities-the gardening, meal prep, and similar happenings that make each of the nearly twelve hours per day that I am on campus a pleasurable experience. It does not matter where I study indoors or outdoors, in the cafe or LRC (Learning Resource Center), I am comfortable.
How is Mesa College preparing you to achieve your academic goals? Mesa College has enabled me to confirm that I am still capable of achieving academic excellence. There is always something to prepare for-a quiz in one class, a paper due in another, so while this certificate program is highly specific in the courses studied, the abilities and skills I use are the highly transferrable to other settings.
What resources/services have supported you through your Mesa College experience? Two key services that I treasure daily are LRC based the awesome book collection and Wi-Fi service. When I think about supports I am recall The Stylistics' song, "People Make The World Go Round." If I may, I'd like to mention some of them now-- Dr. Arthur Boyd, Denise Aceves, Brian Stockert, Espen Correll, Dr. Dina Miyoshi, Laurie Mackenzie, Dr. Stephen Scherer, Dr. Robin Beltran, Dean Ashanti Hands, and LaWanda Foster , Kathleen Fennessey, Joyce Skaryak, Sue Saetia, and Louisa Falo. It is truly amazing how much synergy is involved with maximizing my experience.
How would you describe student life at Mesa College? In a word, exhilarating!
Where do you see yourself in 10 years? WOW! I love this question. A long time ago, I learned to make no small plans - I see endless possibilities and successes. However, I will share just a few of them. I see my name in one or more World Authors books. I see myself doing book tours for some of my bestsellers (I have several projects in progress now, some are for young readers and others are a series of non-fiction works geared for adults.). In addition, I see myself spending time guest lecturing here at Mesa College and at other campuses in the District. Naturally, there is always time for travel of course.
What excites you most about your participation with the Mental Health Aide/Advocate Certificate Program? The excitement of getting another chance to do something noble--enriching my mind. The excitement of sitting in a formal academic atmosphere and soak up as much knowledge as I absorb while l help my contemporaries do likewise, because helping another is the ultimate form of love. And finally, to remind myself that on a daily basis the possibilities are limitless. Epictetus is credited with saying, "Good fortune, like ripe fruit, ought to be enjoyed while it is present." And I am!
*Pending State approval by the California Community College Chancellor's Office.