Saisha Mateo and Emily Duran are 19 years old and both chose to study at St. Augustine College (SAC) because they did not find the help and family atmosphere they were looking for at other colleges. Their classes began on Monday, August 28. Saisha has started to study a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work and Emily an Associate in Applied Science in Business Management.
 
They attended the Student Orientation meeting held on Saturday, August 26 at the Main Campus. At that meeting, teachers and counselors provided key information to new students including: administrative and academic services; strategies for better study practices; tips on how to take full advantage of what’s taught in the classroom; and the opportunity to meet academic and recruitment counselors as well as their new classmates. New students were also informed of such important dates in the current academic year as enrollment periods, deadlines for applying for financial aid, holidays, vacations, deadline for changing courses, deadlines for canceling enrollment, and the dates of exams, among others.

 

Direct from Puerto Rico

Saisha Mateo shared that she came to Chicago expressly to study at San Augustine College based on her sister’s recommendation; her sister studies Culinary Arts in SAC. “I just arrived three weeks ago and I am very happy to have listened to my sister. I was going to study at the University of Puerto Rico, but because of financial problems and because I did not get FAFSA scholarship, I opted to come to SAC, since my sister studies here and I know that she received a lot of help, especially when it came to financial aid,” she said.
 
Saisha also appreciated the fact that she could initially take classes in Spanish. “That is very important to me, because I want to develop in many fields as a social worker. I have always liked working directly with people. Luckily, I have confirmed that everything my sister told me about SAC is true and I am very happy about it,” she concluded.

 

Inspired by testimonials from SAC students

Emily Duran is from Ecuador and recently arrived to Chicago with the goal of studying a career that would help the flower export business her mother opened in Ecuador. Emily reveals that since she arrived to the city, she researched what school would best fit her goals and that she chose SAC “because I really liked the treatment and its first-rate teachers. I believe everyone who studied here and who is now a teacher or a professional is an example for those of us who are starting.” Emily has plans to graduate with an Associate in Applied Sciences to Business Management, and then plans to continue with another Associate in Liberal Arts & Sciences with a concentration in Business Administration.
 
“I chose St. Augustine College because I found a lot of help that I could not find in other institutions as well as the financial aid and scholarships it offers. But most of all I came here for the quality and the reputation that the university has across the United States,” she said adding that she found out about SAC from radio. “When I first started researching I heard a lot of good things that were confirmed when I visited the website. I came to an interview with recruiter Alex Alas and he was the one who convinced me that this was the university I was looking for.” Emily says that the testimonies of the counselors were the most moving because they came from young mothers who set out to improve their lives and found St. Augustine College the place to do so. “I hope to offer my own testimony after I graduate to inspire other people to change their lives as well,” she concluded.

by Eduardo Alegria

Translation to English: Johanna Castro