The Cerro Coso campuses in Bishop and Mammoth Lakes have expanded EOPS (Extended Opportunity Programs and Services) this academic year. This fall there were approximately 40 students enrolled at both campuses, and adjunct faculty Courtney Diffner, a licensed clinical social worker, is continuing to enroll students at both campuses to expand the program.
Recognizing that students from low socioeconomic backgrounds face extraordinary obstacles to academic achievement, EOPS addresses these issues with counseling and support in career assessment, tutoring, transportation, textbook vouchers, printing, and cultural activities.
In October, Courtney and ESCC EOPS students participated in a field trip to Manzanar, an example of the EOPS activities which are designed to promote peer relationships, cultural awareness, and a sense of community. Courtney is uniquely qualified to lead and assist students in EOPS as she has worked as a social worker in New York and Los Angeles. At both locations she worked with children, adolescents, and adults and supervised graduate students. Her background in facilitation and leadership with these groups of individuals makes her a great fit for students at Cerro Coso in Bishop and Mammoth Lakes.
In addition to providing counseling to EOPS students, she supports Eastern Sierra ACCESS students by advising them in the DSPS program. Both roles allow her to reduce barriers so all students have both access and opportunity in education.