Helping our Students Through this Crisis

In every team and department at Northwest Vista College, there are always great stories to tell that show faculty and staff going above and beyond.

While it’s hard to capture every story, we hope to periodically share in this space some of the major accomplishments or projects that are taking place. Members of the executive team will write about important topics that they feel NVC employees should be made aware of.

Let us know about the positive things your area is doing to help students or improve processes by contacting myself or NVC Marketing & Strategic Communication.

– Dr. Ric Baser, NVC President

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Debi Gaitan
Vice President of Student Success

Vista’s quick adaption to remote teaching, learning and support services demonstrates a profound can-do-spirit in the face of a world-wide pandemic. Your collaboration, agility, and resilience are an absolute example of Vista’s culture. Our spirit of togetherness and student-centeredness are about to be tested like never before.

In September 2019, San Antonio news headlines stated “San Antonio’s Poverty Rate Tops the List of Large Metro Areas.” The San Antonio metropolitan area has the highest poverty rate in the country out of the 25 largest metro areas as reported by the 2018 Census Bureau. The Census Bureau determines poverty based on income and family size. For example, an individual is classified as living in poverty if he or she makes less than $12,752 a year. A family of four (includes two children) would be classified as living in poverty if its income is less than $24,858.

In April 2020, news headlines state “San Antonio’s Generational Poverty Endangers Its Most Vulnerable Residents During the Coronavirus Crisis.” Our students are experiencing housing and food insecurities, loss of jobs and child care, and countless other crises that are impacting their ability to continue to be students.

Vista is here for our students, and together, we can provide much needed support. We are anxiously waiting for funding from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES-Act). The CARES- Act—Notable Provisions for Institutions of Higher Education is a bill designed to provide financial support and resources to individuals and businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. It was signed into law on March 27, 2020. Vista expects to receive $3.4 million CARES-Act dollars that will go directly to our students to support their emergency financial needs. Please know that we are awaiting final guidance from the Department of Education on the stipulations of CARES-Act criteria.

Please refer students in need of emergency aid, counseling support, and community resources to Vista’s Student Advocacy and Resource Center:

  • Vista Email: nvc-advocacyctr@alamo.edu
  • Vista Student Advocacy Phone: 210-486-4181
  • Alamo Colleges Student Advocacy Helpline: (210) 486-1111
  • Available: Monday – Thursday 8 am – 7 pm, Friday 8 am – 5 pm

I want to give a special shout out and thanks to our Vista Student Success family for their incredible can-do-spirit. Please join me in sending them a message of appreciation as they have rallied to the front lines to provide direct support to our continuing and prospective students. We could not be in the best place possible if it were not for these caring heroes. I am grateful and thankful to everyone at Vista.

As our Vista Vision statement says:

To become responsible members of our world community, we create exemplary models for:

Learning to Be…
Learning to Work…
Learning to Serve…
Learning to Lead…

Together…even during a world-wide pandemic.

 

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