For Career Education and Training Day, South Coast College reached out to our alumni to share their experiences in becoming a court reporter at South Coast College. We received a number of heartfelt responses, and here are just a few.
Andrea Rinker Chavez, CSR
South Coast College is the premier school in California for court reporting, and I am honored and proud to be a graduate. After receiving my bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and second guessing my choice to go to law school, I found court reporting and I was hooked. South Coast provides the best tools to get their students in the program and graduated. Being a court reporter is a tough career, but it’s one that SCC has prepared me for, and one that I absolutely love. I make more money year over year and was even able to purchase a house before I was 30 years old (an accomplishment I am very proud of given our current economy). SCC is THE BEST court reporting school in California! #CETday #IChoseCareered
Brigette Quiroz, CSR
I still can’t believe this day has come! South Coast College has given me the skills to accomplish my goal of becoming a CSR. I am so grateful for the encouragement, staff, and tools to succeed that SCC provided. I am recently a new mom, and I want to provide my son with the best life possible. Court reporting provides the flexibility that I want to be present for my son! I am extremely grateful for the staff and all their encouragement. All the times I felt like giving up, I always had someone to push me to finish it through. This journey has been the most stressful and most difficult thing I’ve ever done, but I can now say I am a CSR. I couldn’t have done it without SCC and their dedication to helping us to the very end!
Cassandra Caldarella, CSR
Hi. My name is Cassandra Caldarella. I am a graduate of South Coast College in Orange. I’m happy that I chose a career college because it specializes in my career. The laser focus on court reporting meant that I graduated in less time, and I have more knowledge about the profession than I would have gotten elsewhere. I now have a strong network of other court reporters that came from the program. #SCCbred #cetday#Ichosecareered
Diann Dans Prince, Paralegal
I started attending South Coast College in the Court Reporting program. After going through a painful divorce, I quit the program. I realized I wanted to work in the legal field, and Jean Gonzalez from South Coast College moved me over to the Paralegal program. I now am the office manager of a great law firm Corfield Feld LLP, and I’m very involved in our litigation cases. I’m so fortunate to have found my place in the legal field. Along the way, I encouraged my son Dan Prince to become a court reporter and his girlfriend Krista Crane as well. South Coast College has provided the 3 of us careers! Thank you!
Katy Magner, CSR
South Coast College changed my life in more ways than just my career. It helped me to become a better person overall. Through the education I received from the teachers and staff, I learned what it is to be a professional reporter; but most importantly, they provided me with the drive and determination to become the best version of myself.
I’d never accomplished much of anything before attending South Coast College. I went to a few community colleges, taking a few courses here and there while working in childcare full time. I expected that I’d end up in some mediocre job, struggling to make ends meet like my mom and her mother before her, because that’s all I knew. But because I made the decision to receive a career education rather than a general education, I was given the opportunity to change the direction in which I was headed.
While I’ve only been a professional reporter for a short time, my life has changed immensely. Having gone through most of my life living paycheck to paycheck, this career has provided me with the financial independence, stability, freedom, and the self-confidence I never had before. I love my job. I’m my own boss. I choose which days I want to work and which jobs I want to take. I have complete control over my career and not the other way around. I owe everything to South Coast College, and I’m grateful every day to all the teachers, staff, administrators, and fellow students who supported me during school and after.
Thank you for all you do, Jean Gonzalez! You’ve changed the lives of every person who has stepped through those doors. And we all love you for it.
Leah Tommella, CSR
Without South Coast College, I wouldn’t be the court reporter or person that I am now! I went through the court reporting program in just about 2 years, and I couldn’t have done it without every member of the staff there. They supported me and helped me through every step of my unique situation.
I lived about 80 miles away –one way– from SCC. I commuted just about 5 days a week in order to attend this amazing school! That’s almost 200 miles a day. They accommodated me and allowed me to push myself at my pace so I could reach my goals efficiently. They opened the doors for me at 6 a.m. and walked me out at 10 p.m. I learned that if I want something bad enough and have an extremely great support system, I can achieve my dreams confidently. I am so happy and PROUD to be a court reporter, but I am even happier that I am a court reporter from South Coast College.
I don’t think I would be the same caliber of reporter if I went to another school. SCC gave me confidence as a reporter and as a young professional adult to be able to work in the superior courts of CA. I am humbled to be in such a professional and respectful environment every day when I walk into my courtrooms.
Thank you everyone at South Coast for believing in me and letting me reflect the quality of your program, standards, staff, and students when I go to work every day. I owe it all to you!
Maria Salgado, CSR
I still can’t believe I’m done with court reporting school. I think I’m still in shock. I knew this day would come. I knew that all the hard work would pay off. I knew what I wanted when I started school. I knew that starting school when my son was only 3 months old would be worth it at the end. It is just hitting me now that I am officially a court reporter. I think I want to cry of how relieved, scared, and excited I feel at this moment. These 2 years in court reporting school have been some of the most stressful and best days of my life. I know that everything happens for a reason and that I am where I have to be. I know that my son is going to have amazing court reporter for a mom. I want to thank Jean Gonzalez for always being so patient and helpful and just for being an awesome human being. Thank you for making this an incredible journey. School wouldn’t have been the same without you. Now, I’m going to sit here and let this all sink in. Aahhh! I’m officially a court reporter! #SCCbred #CETday
Noe Huizar, Medical Assistant
South Coast College was MONUMENTAL in changing my life. Before coming to this school I had worked many different jobs and had no idea what I wanted to do as a career. After realizing that community college was not for me I decided to look into something else and stumbled upon South Coast College. Although their claim to fame is Court Reporting, Medical Assistant caught my eye. After a quick tour by the admissions staff, I knew this was the school for me. They seemed to actually care about people and not the tuition you bring in. The course was very hands on, and they really took the time to make sure you understood everything properly. When I finished the course, I was offered a job with Dr Payne (sounds fake but he isn’t) and was also offered the lab assistant position at South Coast, and I have to say I really didn’t think about it that long. Seeing how hard everyone works and how much effort they put in it made me really want to be part of this team. Thank you Jean Gonzalez!
Stephanie Leslie, CSR
My career is AWESOME, and I owe it all to South Coast College! Their track record speaks for itself. I graduated from SCC 12 years ago and have been working full-time ever since. I have learned so much doing what I do. I get to sit back and learn from others’ mistakes and hear very interesting stories. I have since started my own firm and have been able to travel internationally for work several times. I have recently taken the depositions of some high-profile criminals in Colombia, some village fishermen in Africa, as well as a former NBA player, and a celebrity musician. I am posting some pictures from my recent travels and will also post a video expressing what South Coast means to me.
Private court reporting schools produce 70% of our state’s certified reporters. If they are not allowed to continue training and educating us, our industry will not be the same! Thank you, South Coast, for all that you do!