This episode features an interview with Central Oregon Community College (COCC) student Dray Aguirre, who offers great insights from his advocacy work at the local, state and national levels focused on student basic needs insecurity. Dray emphasizes the importance of students shaping policies and shares some of his own lived experience as a student facing basic needs insecurity. Dray was highlighted in a recent KLCC NPR story focused on food and housing insecurity among college students in Oregon.
COCC Instructional Dean, Jenni Newby, and Pathways College and Career Success Coach, Marcus LeGrand, talk about college-wide strategies to support students holistically through their Pathways to Opportunity work and how critical it is to listen to students like Dray to understand more clearly where COCC needs to prioritize their efforts.
Bri Nguyen and Natasha Bennett from SJI (Seattle Jobs Initiative) share information on their Student-Centered Design initiative in collaboration with colleges in Oregon and across the country and describe a variety of ways they engage students in this work to improve access to benefits and resources.