Parent Newsletter
Spring 2007Volume 8Issue 2

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FAQs: Financial Aid Information
University Award Recipients: Profiles of Excellence
UCSB Social Worker: A Safety Net for Distressed Students
Soothing College Stress through Meditation and Massage
Commencement Planning Begins Now
Staying Connected

Unique Student Resource Building Now Open

Group shot in the Student Resource BuildingTHE DIVISION OF STUDENT AFFAIRS is pleased to announce that the Student Resource Building (SRB) opened its doors in mid-February giving students access to critical services located centrally in one state-of-the-art facility. This unique facility is designed to foster social interaction and communication among students. According to the dean of students, Dr. Yonie Harris, "The minute you walk into SRB, you know you're in a special place; there is no other building like it on campus. SRB is not just a beautiful facility-it is a lively and dynamic community."

With a distinctive vision, the SRB brings together many student services and provides a facility that embodies the collective spirit of the communities and joint mission of the departments it houses. As a combination community center and student service resource facility, it draws students, staff and faculty together in support of the university's goals for connection among all communities. These services are fundamental to the mission of the Division of Student Affairs: to create a co-curricular environment that meets students' developmental needs by providing opportunities for their intellectual, social and personal growth.

The departments and programs that are housed in the SRB include the Campus Learning Assistance Service (CLAS), the Disabled Students Program (DSP), The Educational Opportunity Program (EOP), the Office of International Students and Scholars, the Office of Judicial Affairs, the Office of Student Life, Orientation Programs, the Women's Center, Student Affairs Development office, a computer laboratory, a satellite childcare center, African diasporic Cultural Resource Center, American Indian Resource Center, Asian Resource Center, Chican@/Latin@ Resource Center, Middle Eastern Resource Center, Re-Entry/Non-Traditional Student Resource Center, Resource Center for Sexual & Gender Diversity, and Greek Life Resource Center.

The SRB also provides exceptional naming opportunities in response to donations made to specific departments or to the Vice Chancellor's Fund for Special Initiatives. Gifts to specific departments will ensure the stability and longevity of support services such as CLAS, DSP, and EOP. Gifts to the Vice Chancellor's Fund for Special Initiatives will provide the significant resources required to advance important and time-sensitive projects that keep pace with students' changing needs. Larger gifts, including those to endow departments or to support spaces such as the Women's Center library and art gallery or the CLAS writing lab, will result in naming opportunities.

To make a gift to SRB, please contact Laura Lambert, director of development for student affairs, at (805) 893-8542 or To learn more about the SRB and its departments, please contact Dr. Yonie Harris, dean of students, at or Dr. Yolanda Garcia, assistant vice chancellor of student academic support services, at

Student Resource Building FrontStudent Resource Building Room

FAQs: Financial Aid Information

If a student has not yet applied for financial aid for the 2007-2008 academic year, is it too late?
No, although the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) priority filing deadline for 2007-2008 financial aid was March 2, 2007, students can still apply for financial aid for the 2007-2008 academic year to be considered for the Pell Grant, Direct Loans (subsidized and unsubsidized), and the Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS). The FAFSA application is available on the Internet at UCSB's school code number is 001320.

If a student has already applied for financial aid for 2007-2008, when will an offer of financial aid be received?
If additional documentation is required to verify the accuracy of the FAFSA information, an e-mail will be sent in April or May directing the student to check his or her "Aid Status" on the Financial Aid Office Web site ( When all documents requested are received, they will be reviewed and an offer of financial aid will be created. At that point, the student will be sent another e-mail with directions to view the Financial Aid Award Letter (FAAL) on the Web site.

What scholarships are available?
UCSB awards its limited allocation of scholarship aid primarily to continuing UCSB students who filed the FAFSA by the March 2, 2007, priority deadline and who meet the dual criteria of financial need and academic merit. Additionally, there are links to free scholarship search engines on the scholarship section of the Financial Aid Office Web site.

How does a student receive financial aid?
Most of the types of aid that a student has accepted will be credited to the student's account with the UCSB Billing Office (BARC). If the aid placed on the student's BARC account does not cover all of the institutional charges, he or she will be expected to pay the difference by the fall quarter fee deadline of September 15, 2007.

What is the PLUS Loan?
Parents may borrow a PLUS Loan on behalf of their dependent undergraduate student to help fund educational expenses. A PLUS Loan may be a type of loan offered on the student's Financial Aid Award Letter. The interest rate is fixed at 7.9%. All PLUS Loan applicants must pass a credit check to have their loan approved.

Is financial aid available for Summer Session 2007?
Summer session financial aid (grants and loans) will be available only to eligible continuing UCSB undergraduate students who are in academic good standing and who have a complete 2006-2007 FAFSA on file with the UCSB Financial Aid Office. To apply, a student must submit a summer session 2007 Financial Aid Application (which will be available on the Financial Aid Office Web site on April 16, 2007). The priority filing deadline for the summer session 2007 Financial Aid Application is May 31, 2007.

University Award Recipients: Profiles of Excellence

Students receiving awardsEACH YEAR IN JUNE just before commencement, we honor thea accomplishments of our most outstanding graduating students at a special ceremony. It is a time to recognize those special students who have achieved an important balance-being both good scholars and good citizens at the same time. In June 2006 we recognized fifty-two high achieving students; here are four profiles that demonstrate the many ways UCSB students develop themselves and serve others using their talents and passions:

Mariana Garcia served as an intern and coordinator for Students Teaching Alcohol and other drug Responsibility, striking a delicate balance between challenging students to look at their personal values and behaviors and listening to them in a non-judgmental way that made them feel heard and valued. She was also financial director and external vice-president of the Latino Business Association, and UCSB's representative to the National Hispanic Business Association.

Andres Mantilla was chair of the Neighborhood Council in the Residence Hall Association; a translator for the Family Literacy Program; coordinator for Parent's Night Out at Isla Vista Elementary School; and coordinator for the Advancing College Transitions program, which mentors local high school students.

Justin Pearson combined his creativity and technological know-how to write, direct, and edit several educational videos, including one that featured the MESA (Math, Engineering, and Science Achievement) Science and Technology Day.

Maral Tashjian was co-coordinator for the Education for Sustainability Program; helped establish a new student group, Transportation Alternatives for Livable Communities; and gained an internship to develop a statewide, higher education sustainability conference. She was one of eleven students nationwide last year, and only the third UCSB student, to receive an internship with the National Geographic Society.

UCSB Social Worker: A Safety Net for Distressed Students

IN THE EARLY PART OF THIS DECADE, faculty and staff at UCSB (as at campuses nationwide) began to notice a dramatic rise in the numbers of students experiencing distress or more severe mental health problems (suicidal behaviors, depression, anxiety, psychosis, etc.). Even though most students were connected into our campus services and receiving appropriate care, it seemed an increasing number would benefit from case management-assistance from a professional to help them navigate campus services, to coordinate referral to off-campus resources, and to work with roommates and others impacted by their distress.

In 2002, in an effort to meet these emerging student needs, UCSB created a pilot social worker position. Burt Romotsky, a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) who had many years of experience working in the broader community, was hired in a temporary capacity to create, implement, manage, and evaluate this new program. The original concept was to apply the social worker model to the university setting, providing outreach for students at risk and case management and coordination of services for those already in care. As the position evolved, however, it came also to include consultation with staff, faculty, family members, and friends concerned about a student's behavior. The pilot was such a success, and Burt Romotsky was so effective in this role, that he was hired into the newly created permanent position and has been serving this invaluable function for the last four years.

Social worker services at UCSB are voluntary and offered at no fee. They are also available to students who have left UCSB and are working toward returning. Students are referred for a variety of reasons, including crisis triage, financial problems, mental health or medical care needs, academic problems, and housing difficulties. All students receive a psycho-social assessment to evaluate treatment and support-service needs, and, if appropriate, a "check-in" to ensure proper support and linkage with services.

One of the goals of the program has been to develop effective outreach to distressed students and to lower the threshold for outreach in order to intervene as early as possible with at-risk students. UCSB's social worker has arranged with local emergency rooms and psychiatric hospitals to be notified when they have contact with a student so he can develop plans for continued treatment and support with consent of the student. If a student has to leave UCSB, he will help arrange appropriate care even outside of the Santa Barbara area. He has also collaborated with student affairs colleagues on creating the "Distressed Student Response Protocol," a guide to help staff and faculty identify and respond to distressed and at-risk students. Regular campus trainings are provided on the protocol, and the social worker serves as the main campus contact point, making referrals when it's unclear where a student should go for assistance. If he receives calls from a number of departments about one student, and there are risk concerns, he calls for an interdepartmental meeting the same day to develop an intervention plan to address the concerns.

Burt Romotsky truly admires the students he works with, noting that they must have "drive and complete their education when significant obstacles may block their progress."

If you would like further information about UCSB's clinical social worker position, you may contact Burt Romotsky by phoning (805) 893-3380 or e-mailing

Soothing College Stress through Meditation and Massage

STUDENT HEALTH SERVICE is pleased to announce two new services to help students deal with stress: meditation and massage. Meditation is offered free of charge three times a week by Kirsi Aulin, LMFT, a UCSB staff member and psychotherapist who has practiced meditation for ten years. The new program focuses on Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), which is a non-religious research-based meditation system developed at the University of Massachusetts Medical School by Jon Kabat-Zinn. MBSR has been thoroughly researched in the last twenty years and has been shown to be beneficial in helping to reduce and manage stress, anxiety, depression, high blood pressure, diabetes, psoriasis, and chronic pain, among other conditions. Your son or daughter can find the latest updates on meditation classes by searching for the "Meditation UCSB" group on Facebook.

Massage is offered by Terri Anton, LMT. A ten-minute massage for $10 (also billable to a student's BARC account) is offered at Student Health using a professional therapeutic massage chair. Massages are currently available two days a week and can be scheduled on-line at or by calling (805) 893-3371. For a longer session, consecutive appointments can be booked. As interest grows in this program, Student Health Service hopes to increase the number of times available as well as to offer full body massage. This could be a wonderful gift to offer to your son or daughter during midterms or finals!

For a comprehensive listing of stress-related services offered at UCSB, go to the Student Health Service Web site at and click on Stress Services.

  • ARE YOU A UCSB ALUM? If you are, it's time to come back home to your alma mater for the All Gaucho Reunion. Join your fellow alumni in a weekend celebration of all that is unique and wonderful about UCSB. The Alumni Association has planned an exciting array of activities for you and your entire family during the weekend of April 27-29, 2007. Friday's activities include the Engineering New Ventures Competition, a tour of the interactive aquarium, the 8th Annual Alumni Golf Classic, and a commencement green reception. Saturday's agenda gives you a choice of participating in a spring run in the sun 5K and Gaucho Challenge 10K, ocean kayaking, campus tours, a barbecue, Classes Without Quizzes, Family Vacation Center Kid's Camp and Teen Extreme, receptions and the All Gaucho Organization reunion in the evening. Sunday morning starts with a pancake breakfast, followed by sandcastle building, a Gospel Choir performance, tours, and the UCSB men's soccer alumni match. For complete information, visit the Web site at:

  • Parents' and Family Weekend is held every fall quarter. The date has not yet been confirmed, but plans are underway to welcome hundreds of students' families to explore the campus and get a firsthand look at what life is like at UCSB. You will have the opportunity to attend classes, participate in faculty presentations, take part in campus area tours and activities, as well as meet a variety of UCSB faculty and administrators, including Chancellor Henry T. Yang and his wife Dilling Yang. A schedule of events will be posted at in July 2007. For questions, send an email to or call the Office of Public Events at (805) 893-7382.

  • Do you have a son or daughter, currently in high school, who might be interested in attending the UCSB Summer Sessions Research Mentorship Pre-College Program? This six-week program, June 24 - August 3, 2007, is designed for serious, highly motivated high school students interested in participating in university level research. Accepted applicants enroll in two courses and earn a total of eight UC credit units. Last summer a local Santa Barbara high school student worked with a Nobel Prize winner in chemistry helping to develop a portable and fool-proof detector of cocaine. The application deadline is May 31, 2007. For more information about this exciting opportunity visit the Web site at; click on Research Mentorship Program.

  • CAREER SERVICES posts a monthly on-line parent newsletter, Career Alliance, which provides valuable information and announcements for you and your student. You are encouraged to visit the Web site at and, if interested, sign up to receive this monthly newsletter via e-mail to stay informed about career development opportunities for your son or daughter.

Commencement Planning Begins Now

Schedule of Ceremonies:
Sunday, June 10, 2007 - 11:00 a.m.College of Creative Studies
Campbell Hall
All Saturday (June 16) and Sunday (June 17)ceremonies take place on the Faculty Club Green
Saturday, June 16 - 9:00 a.m.Science and Mathematics
Saturday, June 16 - 1:00 p.m.Engineering and Science
Saturday, June 16 - 4:00 p.m.Social Sciences I
Sunday, June 17 - 9:00 a.m.Social Sciences II
Sunday, June 17 - 1:00 p.m.Humanities and Fine Arts
Sunday, June 17 - 4:00 p.m.Graduate Division

Students must make a commencement reservation for an open ceremony in order to participate in commencement. Special note: Parents, please remind your student that declaring candidacy for an official degree and making a commencement reservation are two separate actions on the GOLD system.

Please keep in mind that thousands of graduating seniors will be inviting family and friends to the commencement ceremonies. Students should limit their number of guests to a maximum of six to help maintain a high level of comfort and decorum.

For more information, call the Commencement Hotline at (805) 893-8289, send an e-mail to, or visit the Web site at For accommodations information visit Book hotel rooms soon; space is limited!

Grad Fair 2007
A graduating student fair will be held April 25-26 from 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. in the University Center lobby. Various campus department representatives and vendors will be available to answer commencement questions. Check out the Graduation Center on the Bookstore Web site at

Grad Gift: Gaucho for Life
Need a special graduation gift idea for your son or daughter? Consider giving the gift that will last a lifetime-a life membership in the UCSB Alumni Association. Benefits include career connections, job postings, networking, Coastlines publication, travel tours, alumni directory, and locator service. More information can be found on the Alumni Association's Web site at

Staying Connected

Campus Connection On-line

Campus Connection is published by the University of California, Santa Barbara, Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, to provide news and resources to the parents and families of UCSB undergraduates. UC Seal

The University of California, Santa Barbara, and the Division of Student Affairs recognize the diversity of our society and the many important people who have become “parents” to our students; these include stepmoms, stepdads, uncles, aunts, grandparents, siblings, friends and others who play a significant and supportive role in the lives and successes of UCSB undergraduates.

Editor: Candace Stevenson
Copy Editor: Debbie Fleming
Contributors: Kirsi Aulin, Ceclia Becerra, Allyn Fleming, Laurie Hoyle, Burt Romotsky
Design: Brenda Bernu Reheem

Office of the Vice Chancellor - Student Affairs
University of California
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-2036

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