The new student life commissioner brings her confidence and passion for student involvement to Valley College.
By Natalie Metcalf, Valley Life Editor
With a delightful smile and a down to earth personality, Arely Aguilar takes pride in creating student engagement, which will serve her well in the role of the Associated Student Union’s new student life commissioner.
The second-year Valley College student is family and community orientated, as she is a part of four major organizations on campus. Aguilar is a part of the Puente program, the Transfer Alliance Honors program, the Promise program and the ASU. The business administration major wishes to host an event connecting the Puente Program and the ASU, as both programs have helped her in her academic journey.
“I felt very lonely, the campus felt lonely,” said Aguilar. “There seemed to be little student life here. I thought this [the position] is perfect because I’m very prideful in what I do.”
When she was eight years old, her parents placed her in the Los Angeles Police Department cadet program. During her six years in the program, Aguilar learned discipline and integrity. The prior cadet would engage in her community activities such as tutoring junior cadets, donating to the community through fundraisers and hosting carnival events. The new student life commissioner takes pride in being an LAPD cadet, as she feels she has benefitted from the program.
“I want people to be more involved,” said Aguilar. “When you’re more involved with the things you do you develop a passion and become prideful. I want students here at Valley to feel pride and passion for coming here.”
As a first-generation college student, the student life commissioner wanted to take advantage of the resources Valley has to offer. The Puente program stood out significantly, as she navigated through her first year in college. Over the summer, Aguilar attended a STEM summer conference with the Puente program.
Holly Batty, who leads Puente at Valley providing students access to counseling, campus trips and tutoring, has witnessed first-hand the growth of the new commissioner.
“I think she [Aguilar] has really acquired a lot of leadership skills through Puente,” said Batty. “Attending the summer conference was really beneficial and inspiring for her. I think she took away a lot of information that motivated her to help other students.”
Academia is significant in Aguilar’s life, as she is taking on 16 units this semester.. On top of the busy course load, the transfer student plans on applying to the University of California Riverside. After spending four days at UC Riverside, due to a Puente program trip, Aguilar connected to the student involvement on campus, wanting to bring the same involvement to Valley’s campus.
“I just want to see people succeed with me,” said ASU’s student life commissioner. “There’s always room for everyone to succeed in anything.”