Special Populations Collaborative

Effective Practices for Single Parents & Displaced Homemakers

San Diego City College – New Horizons Program

Title: New Horizons Program

Student Planner Document

College: San Diego City College

College Contact: Elena Adams, Director, or Mary Ann Kruse, Program Coordinator

1313 12th Ave, San Diego, CA 92101

619-388-4540; eadams@sdccd.net

Description: The ultimate goal of the program is to enable students with barriers to education, training, and employment to be more successful through better time and life management. San Diego City College’s New Horizons program conducted a needs assessment that determined that single parent and displaced homemaker students have similar concerns. These include where to locate child or medical care, how to access transportation options, time management issues, questions about resumes and interviews, etc. The staff was also faced with increased demand for service and thus the need to streamline services. They decided to develop a planner than would enable students to manage their time, access resources, and understand career options. The Planner includes:

• Student services available at San Diego City College

• A 16-month calendar with no dates in order to increase the usefulness and decrease the cost per/semester

• Career Development Tips including:

• Career selection

• Career Opportunities

• Non-traditional careers

• Employment Development techniques including:

• Preparing for, finding, and keeping a job

• Resume writing

• Life skill Strategies on Effective Parenting, Money Management, Stress Management, Time Management

• Community and Emergency Resources

• Personal Directory

The project coordinated with the graphic design department and development costs were kept to a minimum by having graphic design classes compete to design the cover of the planner. Because much writing was done prior to design and layout decision, considerable re-writing had to take place. To avoid this, starting with the layout (size and shape) is suggested, allowing for the writing to fit the design. The planner was funded via a mini-grant from the San Diego Regional consortia for $3,400. There was a $200 prize for the winning cover design. Printing was $2.12 each and 1500 were printed for a total of $3380.

The planner was sent and marketed to all vocational education instructors at San Diego City College. The students who have received and used the planner have reported back that the use of a planner has made their educational and personal lives more focused, organized, and enabled them to plan their time and classes more effectively.

Mary Ann Castellanos, a New Horizons student, and Academic Planner user, says that she is better able to see the future outcome of her goals as she has them listed and broken down in steps week-by-week. Additionally, she says that she likes that she can see the path her education will take as she has it listed by semester. She says that it makes her better able to “see the light at the end of the tunnel.”