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UTPB creates new position to help support students in College of Health Sciences and Human Performance

The focus of the position will be to assist and mentor those who are underrepresented and at-risk — such as first generation and transfer students.

ODESSA, Texas — UTPB has announced a new position in its College of Health Sciences and Human Performance called "BEST COACH."

It's an acronym that stands for "Becoming Excellent Students Transition Creating Opportunities And Careers Healthcare."

A lengthy acronym for a unique role that will be stationed by now BEST COACH instructor Cassie Hernandez, who will be in charge of making an impact in the lives of students.

Most colleges and universities have some form of support for their students.

At Odessa College, they have college life coaches who can assist the entire student body.

Midland College also has a department that aims to help its students, and all faculty looks to offer support when needed.

But this UTPB position is different from those in that it focuses on one sector of students in one department: underrepresented and at-risk — such as first generation and transfer students — in the College of Health Sciences and Human Performance.

"Knowing that someone is here to answer questions, provide resources and just be there for them can make a huge difference to help the student become successful," said Hernandez. 

The ultimate goal for this novel approach is to develop the skills necessary to be successful in various health care and human performance roles.

Hernandez also welcomes incoming high school students and other students on campus to visit her if they need assistance or mentoring. Her main piece of advice is for students to ask questions and not shy away from being seen and heard, as the staff is there to help. 

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