By Nathan Schiller, Director of Academic Support

When Joyce Moore (L) and Debra McCrary (R) started at MCNY a few years ago, they had never heard of the CA. Trying to understand—let alone complete assignments in—this new class/project/experience was confusing.

One day, Ren Evans, Lead Writing Specialist in the LEC, visited their class as part of the Embedded Academic Support program, an LEC-Library-Undergraduate Purpose 1 CA partnership. Afterward, Debra and Joyce met Ren in a computer lab.

“After tutoring sessions with Ren, it changed,” said Debra. “Ren made it easy by breaking it down, being patient, so we could understand.”

Debra and Joyce found it productive to attend LEC sessions together, and soon they began working with Barrington Scott, LEC math specialist for more than a dozen years, to improve their math skills. He gave them homework with examples and sample problems.

They worked with Ren and Barrington for their first six purposes.

Then they had a statistics class. Online.

“I knew nothing about stats,” said Debra.

“I was going to drop stats,” said Joyce.

They both started working closely with Ha Diep, Lead Math Specialist in the LEC. Ha helped them learn concepts and challenged them to show their work.

“He would ask me,” said Joyce, “‘How did you get there? Why did you do that?’”

“Once we got an understanding about it, we were good,” said Debra.

She and Joyce later worked with Ha in their accounting class, and continued to work with Ren on their writing. They finished their undergraduate coursework in Human Services and, this semester, enrolled in the MPA in Public Affairs and Administration at MCNY. Both know they’ll be returning to the LEC.

“The individual sessions allow you to get the attention you don’t get in the class,” said Debra. “The specialists sit there and let you talk. They’re here to help you, and they enjoy it, and that’s why we feel good about coming.”