Photo by KJ Ryan/Collegian: Maria Santos and Ben Pankratz are campus tutors. Work keeps them busy, but tutors find time to hang out.

By Emily Branson / Staff writer

When it comes to college classes, students can be left feeling like they have no idea what they’re doing.

Whether it’s staring at an algebra problem with a befuddling look, or getting discombobulated in the periodic table. However, at Hutchinson Community College, there is a group of tutors that is dedicated to helping students with their classwork. These tutors are located in Rimmer Learning Resource Center and spend many hours each week tutoring students.

“I work about 21.5 hours a week here,” said Maria Santos, Belém, Brazil sophomore. “My schedule is pretty fun. I have individual tutoring by appointment, and then I also work in the math lab.”

This semester has been busy for the tutors, which leaves little time for outside activities.

“This semester, it has been crazy,” Santos said. “Usually on exam weeks, we have a lot of people. Students come in and get help to make sure they understand everything before they take their exams.”

Despite the fact that the tutors spend much of their time helping out their peers, they have also found time to get together and spend quality time with each other outside of work.

“We all built snowmen after the tutor training that we had Feb. 12,” Santos said. “It was snowy and it was my first time building a snowman, so it was very fun. I really like the tutors that we have this semester. We have a lot of fun.”

Building a bond like this between coworkers is crucial to having a positive work environment, and the tutors have accomplished that.

“We are very close this semester,” Santos said. “Since we see each other very often, we all try to maintain a good relationship. If there are good relationships, it reflects the way you are going to work.”

This feeling seems to be mutual throughout the Rimmer tutors. Ben Pankratz, Inman sophomore, also said he feels like the connections through tutoring make him feel more at home with his job.

“I think there’s a really good camaraderie here,” Pankratz said. “In all of my jobs that I’ve worked, I’ve always looked for that camaraderie. I’ve really found that here with these tutors.”

With a team that has good chemistry and communication, it results in a higher morale and an overall more enthusiastic and encouraging environment for everyone involved.

“Everybody is just exceptional in helping each other out,” Pankratz said.

“It goes a lot deeper than just coming to work every day, I really appreciate that about this job.”

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