“I requested a Chromebook,” said EOPS/CARE academic counselor Eric Barnard, “because I don’t believe I could use my old laptop, now that I am home, to be able to completely help students with the counseling that I usually provide in my office space.”
As a counselor, Eric offers guidance, support, and encouragement to help SMC students on their way to transferring to a four-year college or university, earning an Associate degree, or completing a certificate program. With the borrowed Chromebook, he can live-chat with students, communicate with other counselors, and have access to student records and other information, all while observing COVID-19 safe-distancing recommendations and stay-at-home orders.
"The transition from on-campus to online was easy,” he said. “It took me about two-and-a-half minutes to set up the Chromebook, and it’s been easy to use.”
Eric, who has worked with EOPS for 12 years, is also an SMC alum. He has long been familiar with the college’s efforts to support students in their education, and said he feels a trust in “the leaders in my EOPS program, in all the counselors I work with, and with all the many campus deans and chairs.” The laptop-lending program is just one more example of “the very forward-thinking college we work at.”