Mt. San Antonio College, located in Walnut, Calif., is one of the state’s many community colleges. Mt. SAC, as it is known among students, serves nearly 20 communities and a million residents in the San Gabriel Valley.
The school opened its 400-acre campus in 1946 with an initial enrollment of 635 students. Today, enrollment has reached 40,000 students and the college offers more than 200 degree and certificate programs. The school offers a comprehensive list of subjects for students to study, and they have several unique programs that other schools do not have, such as aviation management and histotechnology. Students can also enroll in online learning, hybrid courses, or distance learning if their schedules do not allow time for regular classes. This school is dedicated to helping its students grow and succeed.
There are eight different academic divisions and departments: Arts, Business, Continuing Education, Humanities and Social Services, Natural Science, Library and Learning Resources, Physical Education, and Technology and Health. Students can earn an associate of arts degree or an associate of science degree, depending on their major.
The Arts Division offers a fine arts and performing arts program that has received local, state, national and international recognition. Degrees and courses are offered in a range of disciplines, including theater arts and music. Classes and public performances are conducted in the college’s Sophia B. Clarke Performing Arts Center. The Business Divisions offers 30 Associate degrees and more than 80 certificates. The Humanities and Social Sciences Division, the largest division on campus, offer a broad selection of general education courses in art history, communications, language arts (English, American Sign Language, and foreign languages), literature, history, geography, journalism, political science, philosophy, psychology, education, and sociology. Humanities and Social Sciences is also home to the Honors and Study Abroad programs. The Humanities Division also provides tutoring, the Writing Center, and the Speech & Sign Center.
The Division of Technology and Health offers 13 areas of study, including aeronautics transportation, aircraft maintenance, electronics and computer technology, manufacturing technology, public service, medical services, mental health, nursing, and respiratory therapy.
An Associate in Science Degree is offered in Radio Broadcasting, which emphasizes radio on-air performance skills and prepares students for an entry-level job in the radio broadcasting Industry, including disc jockey, news anchor, sportscaster and commercial voice-over actor.
A number of online classes are offered that are delivered primarily via the Internet and have few or no meetings on campus. Students can also participate in hybrid classes, which are partly delivered via the Internet but can include required on-campus meetings.
Study Abroad and Honors Programs
The college participates in the Southern California Foothills Consortium for Study Abroad. In the fall semester, the college is offering students the chance to study in London, England, a semester-long program at Citrus College in that city.
The Honors Program meets the needs of students with a strong academic records, offering honors sections of general education courses, seminar-style classes, and special projects and activities. Honors courses strengthen students’ college transcripts and increase their chances of transferring to four-year institutions.
The college also offers the ACES Program, which is funded by a $220,000 annual grant from the U.S. Department of Education. ACES assists low-income students, disabled students, and students who are the first in their family to attend college to obtain an Associates degree and transfer from Mt. San Antonio College to a four-year institution. ACES services include individualized academic, transfer, career and financial aid counseling, tutoring and guided study groups.
cultural enrichment activities, referrals to college and community resources, a state of the art computer lab, and mentoring.
The continuing education program serves more than 58,000 students a year and offers 11 free non-credit programs, including a Child Development Careers program, an English as a Second Language program, and WIN, a program designed to assist student-athletes in maintaining their academic eligibility and preparing to transfer to a four-year university. The WIN program services 400 to 650 student athletes a year.
Most Popular Fields of Study
Anyone over the age of 18 can apply for admission by completing the online application and submitting officials transcripts from any high schools, colleges, or trade schools attended.
The school also offers a College Starter program to high school juniors and seniors interested in taking advanced scholastic or vocational work at the college.
Students must take course placement tests at the Assessment Center before registering for classes because many classes have skill prerequisites that must be met by incoming students. All new students and first-time transfer students must attend an orientation before registering for classes unless exempted.
A variety of federal, state and private financial aid programs are offered, including aid from the Mt. SAC Foundation. Grants, work-study opportunities, scholarships, and loans are all available. All students may be eligible for some form of assistance based on their financial need. Students must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form.
The Scholarship Program offers nearly $250,000 in scholarships to students each academic year. Students apply for scholarships in the spring, for use during the following academic year.
Mt. SAC is a community college, so students commute and no housing is available on campus. But the Associated Students organization keeps a log of available housing and rental properties in the surrounding region. Students looking for rentals or roommates can have their information listed by the Student Life Center.
There are 40 student clubs and organizations on campus, including an active Student Government, a flying team, a Taiwanese student association, a Muslim Students Association, Meals for Mankind, a Japanese Pop Culture Club, an International Students Club, an Italian Club, Honors Ambassadors, and Future Teachers of America. There is a student-run newspaper, The Mountaineer, which also has an online edition. And the campus radio station, KSAK, won three Golden Mike awards at the Radio and Television News Association of Southern California’s annual awards ceremony in January 2011.
There are plenty of campus events as well, including an annual Athletics Fair and BBQ, movie days, ping pong tournaments, blood drives, concerts, and an annual Culture Fair.
The Student Center is a focal point for activities and programs, social functions, lectures, and club meetings. The Center has study lounges, TV lounges and free wireless Internet. A variety of games can also be checked out at the Student Center, including table tennis equipment, chess boards, and Trivial Pursuit games.
A number of restaurants and coffee shops are open on campus, including the Campus Cafe, a sit-down restaurant serving three meals a day; the Common Grounds Coffee House, which serves Starbucks beverages; and Mountie Grill, a fast food burger place. Students can also pick up snacks and supplies at five campus convenience stores.
The Mt. SAC campus also has a Wellness Center for students, which houses exercise equipment including treadmills, stationary bikes, ellipticals, stairmasters, rowing machines, exercise balls, and strength training equipment. And the aerobics studio at the Center can accommodate 50, offering classes such as yoga, step, kickboxing, and cardio dance.
The Wellness Center offers three-, six- and 12-month memberships, along with discounted semester rates.
The college also has a popular Performing Arts Series, which includes four theater productions each year, two dance concerts, wind ensemble, percussion ensemble, jazz band concerts, and performances by its chamber choir and concert choir.
Student Enrollment Demographics
Over the past seven years, the Mounties have captured four second place, one fourth place, one sixth place and one championship in the annual National Alliance of Two-Year College Athletic Administrators Cup, a national community college athletic program. Since 2000, the school’s teams also have won 22 state California Community College Athletic Association championships.
Athletic facilities include Hilmer Lodge Stadium, home to the college’s football and track and field programs. The stadium seats 13,000. The Marie T. Mills Aquatic Center, which houses a 50 meter, 25-yard Olympic sized swimming pool and is home to the swimming, diving, and water polo teams. The college also has a wellness center, a cross country course, tennis courts and a softball stadium.
Justine Ventimiglia graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Michigan – Dearborn. Currently residing in a 1950’s modest ranch in Metro Detroit, she enjoys researching and writing about Mid Century Modern furniture and decor as she works on restoring her home and documenting the process.