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It takes a village: ASU resources for student success

August 19, 2021

A roundup of some of the most-requested services available to students

The dorm beds have been made and the Starbucks cards have been loaded with funds, but there’s plenty more Sun Devils will be needing to help get them through the school year. Luckily, Arizona State University is a place that prides itself in prioritizing those needs and making solutions accessible to all.

“There’s a lot that goes into taking care of the people who have been entrusted to us, and we take that responsibility very seriously,” said Joanne Vogel, vice president of student services.

In addition to the wide range of support provided by Educational Outreach and Student Services, from student and cultural engagement to career and professional development, ASU News has wrangled up a list of some of the most-requested services available to students. Here’s what we found:

Health

  • From the common cold to sports injuries, college is a time of life when you’re likely to have to deal with it all. ASU Health Services has more than 20 physicians and nurse practitioners who are board-certified in emergency medicine, family medicine, internal medicine, neurology, orthopedics, rheumatology and sports medicine. And with the pandemic still at the forefront of everyone’s mind, Health Services is offering vaccinations as well as the latest information on COVID-19.
  • Earlier this year, ASU Counseling Services made the move to be available to students 24/7, 365 days a year. They offer confidential, personal counseling and crisis services for students experiencing emotional concerns, problems adjusting and other factors that affect their ability to achieve their academic and personal goals.
  • Membership at all Sun Devil Fitness Complexes is included with immersion students’ fees and provides access to state-of-the-art facilities for cardiovascular workouts, stress-reducing yoga, strength training and more.
  • ASU’s Center for Mindfulness, Compassion and Resilience opened in 2017 with the goal of deepening the university’s culture of healthfulness, personal balance and resiliency among students and employees. It offers an array of workshops and events to help realize the power of mindful living to advance well-being and engagement through learning and connecting with the larger community.
  • Devils 4 Devils peer counseling and support is a student-led community for training, outreach and engagement for shaping an empathic environment at ASU.
  • The LiveSafe mobile app puts safety resources at your fingertips, whether you need to report a tip to the ASU Police Department, make an emergency call or get a virtual walk home.
rooftop pool

The Downtown Phoenix campus Fitness Complex features a rooftop pool overlooking the campus.

Academics

  • For those in search of a little extra help in the academic department, University Academic Success Programs provides free services to help currently enrolled ASU students succeed academically. And last May, the program took its tutoring services online, in addition to augmenting its offerings and expanding its hours.
  • Several departments, including pre-health and the School of Molecular Sciences, have also expanded their advising offerings. Regular advising services are always available as well; students can access a directory of advising offices online, or try out eAdvisor, an electronic advising and degree tracking program with a variety of online tools to help undergraduates explore majors and provide feedback on their progress.
  • The Student Success Center utilizes peer coaching to empower students to thrive both inside and outside the classroom and customizes their services to individual interests, strengths and needs.
  • Students with disabilities can find help with everything from degree program information to consultation and guidance with faculty and staff, as well as training and engagement opportunities to increase awareness and ensure accessibility through Student Accessibility and Inclusive Learning Services.
  • When you’re not sure if Canvas is down or it’s just your computer, and your paper is due in 20 minutes, information about ASU Outages on Twitter can be accessed at twitter.com/asuoutages. And a list of campus computing sites with software installation services can be found at https://uto.asu.edu/services/campus-it-sites.
  • Not sure how to request books from ASU Library or how to activate the free New York Times/Wall Street Journal student subscriptions? Find that and more at Ask A Librarian.
  • The “ASU Digital Backpack” offers free software and applications, including the Adobe creative suite, Dropbox and Slack. And the University Technology Office provides free Microsoft Office 365 to all faculty, staff and students.
woman walking next to woman riding in wheelchair

Student Accessibility and Inclusive Learning Services provides support and access to students with disabilities for programs and services. Photo by Deanna Dent/ASU News

Financial

  • ASU offers a vast array of financial aid and scholarship options, all of which can be viewed at scholarships.asu.edu. The university is also able to work with a student to reevaluate their financial aid package at any time. And in the event of an unforeseen challenge or emergency, the Dean of Students Office can offer additional resources to assist students with meeting basic needs to keep them on track in reaching their educational goals.
  • When students are struggling to pay for food (aka brain fuel), the Dean of Students Office also offer everything from emergency funds to meal cards and gift cards that in most cases can be picked up and used the same day. And if students are ever in a real pinch, they can always rely on the student-run Pitchfork Pantry, which provides everything from nonperishable food items to toiletries, free of charge.
  • Enterprising students in search of employment can find a wide variety of job listings at the online student employment job search. ASU Career and Professional Development Services offer Handshake, an online hub for all things career and internship. And job fairs are frequently listed on asuevents.asu.edu.
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The Tempe Pitchfork Pantry is stocked with food donations divided into categories: soups, fruits, grains, proteins and vegetables. Photo by Anya Magnuson

Social

  • Social engagement can be every bit as important as academics during college, and ASU is no slouch in that area. With more than 1,000 student clubs and organizations and countless traditions and activities to participate in, there’s bound to be an opportunity for every student to get involved.
  • For those looking for an especially meaningful way to connect, Student and Cultural Engagement provides opportunities to engage through unique experiences focused on community building, global leadership, inclusion, cultural celebrations, civic discourse and community change.
  • And don’t forget to check out the ASU Events page for hundreds of events each year, from theater to music to art to sports and literary offerings, you’re sure to find something that will appeal to any audience.
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Nursing student Eliscia Casarez (left) signs up for more information from the American Indian Student Support Services during the Indigenous Club Fair in November 2020. Photo by Charlie Leight/Arizona State University

Getting to and around campus

  • ASU intercampus shuttles transport students, faculty and staff between the Downtown Phoenix, Polytechnic, Tempe and West campuses, and can be tracked in real time with the Shuttle Tracker on the LiveSafe app.
  • Thousands of bike racks are available across the four ASU campuses, and the Downtown Phoenix and Tempe campuses offer card-access bicycle parking facilities, with bike valet parking as an option at three locations on the Tempe campus. To register your bike and find discounts on locks and free rides if your bike breaks, visit cfo.asu.edu/bike.
  • Several public transportation options are available to ASU students, faculty and staff across all four ASU campuses, and Sun Devils may purchase discounted transit passes to ride Valley Metro buses and light rail.
  • For those commuting to campus via their own personal vehicle, ASU Parking and Transit Services offer parking permits for several lots and structures, as well as a free motorist assistance program.
  • Those commuting on foot at the Tempe campus have access to safety escort reservations and DART provides on-campus transportation for students, faculty and staff with permanent or temporary physical disabilities.
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Pruthviraj Vala rides in the ASU intercampus shuttle as it heads out of the Tempe campus in December 2020.

 
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What is the future of Afghanistan?

August 19, 2021

ASU panel discusses policy failure and a future under Taliban rule

When President Joe Biden pulled U.S. troops out of Afghanistan this month, the Taliban launched a lightning blitz across the country and reclaimed it in days — the latest in a country called the "graveyard of empires" for its history of thwarted attempts to control it.

To examine these events, Arizona State University’s Center on the Future of War co-sponsored a panel discussion on Aug. 19 with Washington, D.C.-based think tank New America on the future of Afghanistan.

Roya Rahmani, a nonresident senior fellow at New America and, until July, an Afghan ambassador to the United States, described her reaction to last weekend’s events.

“Devastated … very worried, and angry,” Rahmani said. “I am angry because of how all this has been handled.”

She called the chaos of the withdrawl, the government’s rapid collapse and the desertion of Afghans who helped allies being left behind “a failure of international diplomacy. All our sacrifices and investments of 20 years have been disregarded in the way things are evolving. … It is going pretty badly and pretty slow.”

Moderator Peter Bergen, an ASU professor of practice and vice president of global studies and fellows at New America, asked Rahmani her reaction to Biden’s statement that “there was always going to be chaos” during an American withdrawal.

“I agree with him: It wouldn’t have been any different in six months,” she said. “But right now it is millions of Afghan people who have been thrown into this uncertain future dominated by fear.”

No intelligence indicated the collapse would happen in 11 days.

She said she didn’t receive intelligence briefings, but her past experience told her “it was totally not a surprise.”

The way the provinces collapsed with no resistance over the past few weeks? “It was very clear. There was no surprise about how fast it happened,” she said.

Rahmani was born a year before the Soviet invasion in 1979. “I have seen the country collapse many times,” she said. “I am looking for a miracle and magic that would turn this thing around.”

She blamed a failure of policy which threatens regional stability.

“But for Afghans it means they lose lives,” she said. “It has been going for 40 years.”

Candace Rondeaux, an ASU professor of practice in the School of Politics and Global Studies, a senior fellow with the Center on the Future of War and former strategic adviser to the U.S. special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction, lived in Afghanistan for five years.

“This was a predictable outcome as early as 2011 when Obama announced the beginning of the drawdown,” Rondeaux said. She suggested negotiations should have been led by a third party, like the United Nations.

Bergen asked if she thought the Taliban were as reformed as they claim to be.

“In terms of the Taliban, we already see the evidence of shooting into crowds in Jalalabad,” she said. “Clearly their rhetoric does not match their actions. … That’s nothing new. We’ve seen that for years with the Taliban. It speaks volumes to the discipline in their ranks.”

Rondeaux described the chaos at the Kabul airport as “an unmitigated disaster — a stain on the history of this country we will never live down.” No presidential administration planned for this, she said.

The future of Afghanistan looks like more of this, but worse, she said.

“I predict that we will start seeing all kinds of resistance," she said. "Some of it will be peaceful. Some of it will be quite violent, and you know the regional partners and players — China, Russia, Iran, Pakistan, India — all of them are going to pay a price for their inability to come to the table and press all the combatants and all the members who are part of the hostilities in Afghanistan for a negotiated settlement to the end to this conflict.”

The situation for women in Afghanistan will be bleak under the fundamentalist Taliban, she added.

“I was hearing today from the news that they are appointing a lot of religious experts to run cities,” Rahmani said. “This is by itself questionable.”

Under Sharia law, female doctors are allowed to treat female patients. Rahmani doesn’t see that changing.

Bergen asked about whether there will be a tolerant pose toward the Afghan press under Taliban rule.

“What is the tolerant pose?” Rondeaux said. “They’ve been targeting journalists and killing them. I don’t see any tolerant pose.”

And any independent reporting won’t last, Rahmani said.

“The way they are conducting themselves, the whole thing is that they really use fear as a instrument of control,” she said. “I’m sure that people will not be reporting necessarily independently for long.”

Bergen asked about the collapse of the Afghan Army.

It “collapsed due to lack of leadership from Kabul,” Rahmani said. “They failed to support the military. They failed to lead them.”

Rondeaux said rampant corruption and mismanagement plagued the Afghan Army.

Recent commentary has also questioned China’s future in the country, and whether the Taliban victory will affect that nation’s Belt and Road Initiative, a global infrastructure development strategy adopted in 2013 to invest in nearly 70 countries and international organizations.

Rondeaux said Belt and Road projects in southern Pakistan are already plagued with security problems. There’s no chance China will attempt anything in Afghanistan. She said the same thing for any chance China will attempt to mine the minerals and rare earth the country is rich in.

“I think anybody who sort of has this idea that China will come in now or in the next five years and take over the rest of Afghanistan is still living in a fantasy land,” she said.

The Center for the Future of War is a partnership between ASU and New America that explores the changing character of conflict and emerging global security challenges.

Top image: A U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III safely evacuated some 640 Afghans from Kabul late Aug. 15. Photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force via Defense One

Scott Seckel

Reporter , ASU News

480-727-4502