Ortiz helps Latino college students at GC

For college students from Elkhart County all the way in which to Puerto Rico, Adriana Ortiz, assistant director of admissions at Goshen School, is normally a part of the preliminary levels of a scholar’s expertise.

Though many see the smaller elements of Ortiz’s job, like an e-mail letting somebody know the subsequent step of their admissions course of, she will not be a standard admissions counselor. In reality, she does far more than that, particularly for Latino college students at GC.

Ortiz mentors, advises and most significantly, listens to potential and present college students. Whereas listening, she learns extra in regards to the college students to know their “why,” their potential and their challenges.

“I wish to advocate for potential college students,” she mentioned. “I wish to take heed to their tales.”

Ortiz spends numerous hours assembly with potential households, strolling them by means of the GC expertise and admissions course of step-by-step.

“I wish to arrange a whole lot of conferences the place we embrace the entire household,” Ortiz mentioned. “We need to ensure that the communication is shared.”

“We all know that within the Latino neighborhood, the faculty course of begins with the coed, however really, on the finish of the day, it’s a household resolution.”

Within the final two years, Ortiz has began two neighborhood teaching programs: “Si Se Puede” and “Familias Unidas.” In these packages, Ortiz meets month-to-month with college students and households to teach them in regards to the school course of, expectations and assets. “We information dad and mom to be the strongest help system for the scholars,” Ortiz mentioned.

Ortiz grew up in Mexico Metropolis and moved to the states the place she earned a level in social work. She has three youngsters: Pamela and Erick, latest GC grads, and Ivonne, a present scholar.

Earlier than working at GC, Ortiz taught parenting lessons within the surrounding neighborhood. Whereas she helped many households navigate challenges, she seen that many points have been associated to training. Mother and father usually didn’t all the time perceive the US training programs, which sparked her curiosity.

Though there are various issues Ortiz loves about her job, she enjoys seeing her college students round campus, beating the percentages and succeeding in larger training.

She notices “not solely the massive successes, which is seeing them graduating, however the small successes … remembering the tales, remembering the challenges that they’d.”

Since coming to GC eight years in the past, Ortiz has seen the development of Latino college students in the neighborhood. Her mission is for GC to be the brand new face of Elkhart County by serving to college students end school and pursue skilled levels.

GC’s latest designation as a Hispanic Serving Establishment is thrilling information for Ortiz and is reflective of the exhausting work and dedication that has been put into serving Latino college students and households.

“It appears to be like good to say 30%, nevertheless it means tireless, tireless hours and hours of labor put into the neighborhood,” Ortiz mentioned. “I believe it’s a enormous step in altering the face of Elkhart County.”

Though this designation was an accomplishment for GC, the problem now’s adapting the GC curriculum to raised serve its present college students.

On prime of that, variety in college and workers will likely be one other problem with a purpose to symbolize not solely Latino however the entire spectrum of variety.

“Now we have to symbolize extra of what we’re saying we’re,” says Ortiz.