Golden Ticket Offers Knowledge Instead of Chocolate At East Campus Learning Support Center

Jeremy Gottschalk, Editor in Chief

A “golden ticket” offers students a way to transition into study spaces with one-on-one tutoring options. (Jeremy Gottschalk )

The East Campus Learning Support Center has hidden not-so-secret tokens around campuses encouraging access and familiarity with the tutoring student services on campus. Valencia College’s “Willy Wonka” is Math Center Coordinator Richard Weinsier. His Tutor Tickets are being offered to professors who can grant one-hour, one-on-one access to student tutoring in their respective curricula. While Weinsier focuses on math, Stacy Ramos serves as the General Tutoring Coordinator for science professors.

Nicolas Lopez, Instructional Lab Assistant, General Tutoring at East Campus Learning Support Center, explains the process. Lopez says, “The tutor ticket are given to our professors with the purpose to target those students who may likely fail or withdraw from the classes. Most students attend our services after their first exam. We are working to identify and help those students as quickly and easily as possible.” Students can also attend group tutoring sessions together, drop-in, receive homework aid and final exam review.

Lopez says this ticketing system is a way to help students and promote the Learning Support Center. “Once they visit, students won’t need more Tutor Tickets.” Lopez continues,”We want to make it like a ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ experience. We want to make it fun and special.”

Intermediate Algebra student, Andres Cardenas, 18, Aerospace Engineering, says it does just that. “It does reminds me of ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’. It’s a cool ticket. Instead of chocolate, you’re getting knowledge.”

Ivarie Melo, Valencia College alum ’20, Biomedical Sciences, is an Instructional Lab Assistant, for the Math Center at Learning Support Center. Melo says, “We have all math courses taught. I think the ticket serves a purpose as a gateway. It allows up and personal experiences. Statistics show once a student attends a tutoring environment three times, their grades increase.”

“As tutors, we are the first line of defense,” says Physics tutor, UCF student and Valencia College alum ’19 Charli Cristobal. Cristobal was the recipient for the National Science Foundation’s Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority for Participants (LSAMP) financial assistance in the 2018-2019. The program aims at providing resources and support to underrepresented students in STEM. Cristobal says the experience led to tutoring Physics students and describes how the Center eases students into the tutoring environment. “Most students we find don’t know about the tutoring program. Getting the comfortable with the spaces, the Physics room, and the tutor is so important.”

Physics tutor and Valencia alum Charli Cristobal , ’19, poses with a V8 engine used to explain demonstrations and offer enrichment during tutoring breaks. (Jeremy Gottschalk)

Intermediate Algebra and Trigonometry Professor and Valencia College alumna,  Lisa Potchen, visited the Learning Support Center as part of orientation for her students. “I will hand (a ticket) to a student who I know is struggling and all ask students if anyone wants one. I make sure they promise to use it to get the help. There is a huge benefit.”


Have you found your golden ticket? Talk to your professor, visit the Learning Support Center at East Campus Bldg 4, First Floor or online at

Hours of operations vary.