Student Spotlight Richelle Pidong

Tell me a little bit about yourself (name, where you’re from)
Hello, my name is Richelle Pidong and I am originally from the big island of Hawaii.  I am 21 years old and will be graduating after the Spring quarter of 2017.

Why did you choose EvCC?
People ask me this question a lot. I get a lot of "why did you leave paradise to come here?" It’s always been one of my goals to attend school on the mainland and to become more independent. Moving here alone and attending EvCC has allowed me to do that. EvCC, best decision of my life.

What are you studying at EvCC?
I am currently studying for an associate’s degree in Human Services. My aspiration in life is to help people and make a difference. There isn’t a better degree fit to achieve that goal.

What’s it like being an RA at Mountain View Hall?
Being an RA in Mountain View has been such a great experience.  I love being able to use my creativity to create programs for the residents, I love getting to know and socialize with different students, and I also love being able to help residents, whether it be answering a question or giving them directions.

How are you helping students who live at Mountain View?
I help the residents here by helping them when they accidentally lock themselves out of their room, I help give them their mail and amazon packages, as well as being there for them when they need someone to talk to.

Do you like living on campus?
I love living on campus. If I forget something at home all I have to do is walk across the street. I work at EvCC, I'm a student at EvCC, and there's places to get food everywhere around me. There's nothing more convenient.  The only dislike I have is that I am away from my family.  Sometimes I get home sick, but I know that everything I'm doing is worth it.

What advantages do you think students have by living on campus?
They have the advantages of not using gas to drive to school, they can wake up 10 minutes before class and not be late, they have Resident Assistants to help them get involved, and they have a spectacular view of the mountains.

What do you plan to do next? (after you graduate from EvCC)
After I graduate from EvCC I plan to transfer to Western Washington University and study to achieve a bachelor's in human services.

Who has helped you succeed at EvCC?
There's so many people who have helped me.  Lea Wasson, the Director of Housing has supported me since the first day I moved here and is the reason why i am a Resident Assistant. Laurie Franklin,  the Dean of Financial Aid has also been there for support and is actually from the big island of hawaii herself. Brittany Padgett, the student ambassador program manager has always been there for me for encouragement and support. Lastly, the support from all my friends and family who want me to succeed.

Describe the best experience you had at EvCC?
The best experience that I've had at EvCC would have to be working as a student ambassador.  I love how my job allows me to volunteer for events and school tours. The people I work with are amazing people, and I feel so lucky to be surrounded by them all the time.

What advice do you have for new students coming to EvCC?
My advice to future EvCC students is to get involved. If you think you won't fit in or people won't like you, get rid of those thoughts. EvCC is one of the most welcoming schools I've ever gone to. We embrace people's weirdness and encourage their participation. If they get involved, I know they'll love EvCC as much as I do.