Limited resources in a crammed corner

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By Veronica Widman / Staff Writer

No access (Jarred Jackson / Online Editor)

By Veronica Widman / Staff Writer

Students try everything to raise their math grades and exam results, but they haven’t thought about learning a new language.

According to the Association of Departments of Foreign Languages, research has shown that studying a foreign language can improve a student’s analytical and interpretive capacities, which correlates to a rise in English and math grades, as well as entrance exam scores.

Language study on someone’s record can also catch the eye of anyone reading the person’s job or college application.

Students who attend Riverside City College are given the opportunity to learn a foreign language at a community college price and hundreds of students are taking advantage of that opportunity.

But students who have chosen to study a foreign language at RCC have been experiencing grief in the Language Lab which they are required to attend as part of their language course.

As is the case with most programs on campus, the California budget cuts can be blamed, in part, for the issues that students are having in the lab.

According to Dorothy Gaylor, the department chair of World Languages, hundreds of students are being served in the lab with only 39 computers available, causing an overcrowding at times.

“We have an overflow room, with about 13 additional computers,” she said. “But we have not been able to provide staffing in this room, again due to budget cuts.”

Derek Brown, an RCC student studying French, has had to wait on numerous occasions for an available computer.

“I guess I can’t really complain since there were plenty of others who were waiting even longer than me,” he said.

The lack of computers is not the only problem students are having in the lab.

The hours of operation have also been reduced and the lab is no longer open on weekends.

Julia Goldfarb, an RCC student, is just one of the many who are frustrated with this change.

“I work all week so it was most convenient for me to come in on the weekends,” she said. “I know the school needs to save money but we need to pass our classes, too.”

Students are wondering what can be done to fix the issues that they are having in the lab.

“If the school could just buy a few more computers, I think it would help out a lot,” Brown said.

According to Gaylor, the lab has been able to meet most of the student’s needs, despite the tremendous overcrowding during peak hours; still, students are frustrated with the lack of space, as well as other problems the budget cuts are causing.

“I have to say that the only thing that can be done to improve the situation from what it is now is for Gov. Brown’s tax initiative to pass in November of this year,” Gaylor said. “If it does, then we may be able to sustain lab operations as they are now; otherwise, we are facing more cuts.”

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