Profiles

A man playing a stand-up bass.
By | Guest Writer
Nov. 28, 2012

The bar is dark and you can hear the clink of glasses and laughter. But only just. There is a jazz combo on stage and they are swinging through a Duke Ellington tune. The horn player is softly blowing and the smoky sound transports the listeners back in time.

The bass player is wrapped around his instrument like it was a woman. His left hand is caressing her neck and his right is wrapped around her waist. His head is bowed and his eyes are closed as he reaches out with his senses to feel the song and the mood of the other players.

Every note is perfect; every bar pushes the listener further into the mist.

Bassist Gerry Pineda has been playing music since he was 9 and at the age of 57 is regarded by his peers as one of the best musicians in town. He has given private lessons for over 20 years, and since 2009 has taught at City College. In that time he has introduced hundreds of students to the transcendent joys of playing music.

Pineda, who plays in at least eight bands, is a slim, dark fellow with long quiet fingers and a wicked…» Read More



Art of Rejection
By | Staff Writer
Oct. 24, 2012

Displayed on the stark white walls are 33 letters sent to art galleries, jobs and art programs. 33 letters of hope asking for an opportunity, for just one chance. 33 letters respond with encouraging words, but no words of acceptance.

And there are many more.

Rejection hurts. Few would argue that hearing the word, “no” can damage the soul—and it happens to everyone.

Sacramento artist, Arthur Gonzalez, revealed his way of dealing with rejection as an artist in his exhibit, “The Art of Rejection,” currently showing in the Kondos Gallery at City College.

Now, letters of rejection that have been converted into art pieces line the walls of Kondos Gallery. What began as a way to deal with continued dismissal turned into a story of pain, humor and opportunity, said Gonzalez at a discussion panel with John Natsoulas, founder and owner of the John Natsoulas Center for the Arts, at Kondos Gallery Oct. 10 to celebrate the exhibit.

Gonzales says he didn’t initially think of the rejection letters as a future art exhibit.

“They [the letters] were never intended to be seen by anyone except me,” said Gonzalez. “It just sort of happened.”

The drawings vary from cartoonish to realistic,…» Read More



City College Professor Debra Crumpton at her desk.
By | Staff Writer & Photographer
Oct. 22, 2012

The quality of the education someone receives is said to be only as good as the quality of their teachers. There is no doubt that that there are teachers with different teaching styles and students with different learning needs.

Debra Crumpton, City College business technology professor, has been an instructor for five years, and all of those years at City College. One of her biggest tools as a teacher is to understand and relate to all her students.

“Community college students matter and they matter largely. I think they are the most important college population because in the world of changing demographics, they are the future,” Crumpton remarked.

Crumpton joined the military when she was 19, and retired 18 years later as a Major in the Army. She went on to start a mortgage business.

“I didn’t know I wanted to be a teacher,” says Crumpton. “From the speaking and consulting I was doing [in the mortgage business], I thought maybe I got to teach and I started exploring the idea.”

In Crumpton’s classes a hint of her military experience is present in the way she teaches. She stands firmly with authority, enforces discipline and speaks loudly—but always with kindness.

» Read More



Football helmets and shoulder pads located in a storeroom.
By | Staff Writer
Oct. 19, 2012

City College has a vast variety of students filled with athletic talent and is well-known for having outs

tanding sports programs, which allow students, who share an undoubted passion for sports, the opportunity to use their talent to excel at their sport of choice.

Many students play sports, ranging from football, to basketball, to volleyball and they play for all sorts of reasons, but have you ever wondered how they chose their particular sport?

City College football player Trent Thompson, a kinesiology major, has been playing football since he was 7 years old.

“I just naturally took to it,” says Thompson in response to why he chose football in particular.

Thompson says he also participated in rugby, for which he was featured in the Express last semester at the beginning of the season. He is currently the wide receiver on the Panthers’ football team.

“I like the commodity and family atmosphere you get with football,” says Thompson.

Another  athlete,  Jonathan Averette, kinesiology major, was surprisingly introduced to track and field after he says he was asked to join the track team by its coach because Averette applied too late to be on the football team.

Averette says his passion is…» Read More



By | Staff Writer
Oct. 15, 2012

A world without sound.  The sound of the rain pouring onto a tin overhang, gone. The sound of a sultry singer’s smooth falsettos, gone. The sound of a loved one’s familiar voice never known.

This is the everyday life of someone who is deaf. While this seems sad to those who can hear, the silent world is all people of the deaf community know.

Many people only know that people are deaf, and they speak sign language. Most do not know much about the deaf community.

Pat Masterson is there to teach people about the many different aspects of the deaf community.

Masterson, 59, is a sign language professor at City College.  Every semester she comes to campus hoping to excite students about sign language.

“I want to get them so excited that they want to stay in class,” Masterson says.

Students can become frustrated when they feel like their workload is too much in one class.  Sign language can be one of those classes.

“Once they realize how much work it is, if I don;t have them excited, then they will drop,” Masterson says.

Masterson knows all about the work it takes to get through sign language courses when…» Read More



A man stands in the office facing the camera.
By | Guest Writer
Oct. 15, 2012

His stride is still long, and his stance is still tall.  His demeanor exudes confidence.  From a glance you would not know it, but he still carries himself like a Marine.

The motto for the Marines is “Semper Fidelis,” which is Latin for always  faithful.  Though the term has been reduced to Semper Fi, it has never lost its true meaning.  Another saying, “Once a Marine, always a Marine,” may seem simple, but is complex.  Some Marines embody the saying to its core.

Jake Kattan is one of those men.

No longer as active Marine, Kattan has never stopped being a Marine in spirit.  One would not know it aside from the fact that he still wears a military style haircut and carries himself with the same confidence as a full-dressed Marine. Kattan continues to find ways to serve his country, his community and his fellow veterans.

Today, Kattan can be found in the Admissions and Records Office at City College.  He serves as a clerk.  He is also a member of a team made up of classified staff, faculty and administrators, known as the Veterans Resources Center Planning Committee.

“The VRC Planning Committee is a committee created to improve…» Read More



By | Guest Writer
Oct. 11, 2012

Being born as the middle child and only daughter in a traditional Hmong family, May Yang understands being an underdog and fighting for attention. She grew up competing against seven brothers.

Today, Yang continues to fight. However, since 2008, she chooses to fight for college students by assisting them with work and internship experience as the internship developer in the Career Center at City College.

“I love it because a lot of the students are my age and for me to help them and see them successful, it reminds me of how I struggled through college, trying to find people to support me academically,” Yang says with a big smile.

At 26, standing 4-foot-11-inches and weighing 98 pounds, the internship developer enters the cubical ring with her hair tied back, along with a light touch of make-up, wearing a cardigan and a pair of slacks.

On a regular basis, you’ll find Yang keyboarding left and right while coordinating her eyes on two computer screens, hunting internships from employers for students. To keep her motivated, she surrounds her desk with colorful academic fliers and personal thank you cards from co-workers and students.

“I see about 20ish students per week. They are…» Read More



The silent world of sign language
By | Staff Writer
Oct. 11, 2012

A world without sound. The sound of the rain pouring onto a tin overhang, gone. The sound of a sultry singer’s smooth falsettos, gone. The sound of a loved one’s familiar voice never known.

This is the everyday life of someone who is deaf. While this seems sad to those who can hear, the silent world is all people of the deaf community know.

Many people only know that people are deaf, and they speak sign language. Most do not know much about the deaf community.

Pat Masterson is there to teach people about the many different aspects of the deaf community.

Masterson, 59, is a sign language professor at City College. Every semester she comes to campus hoping to excite students about sign language

“I want to get them so excited that they want to stay in class,” Masterson says. Students can become frustrated when they feel like their workload is too much in one class. Sign language can be one of those classes.

“Once they realize how much work it is, if I don’t have them excited, then they will drop,” Masterson says.

Masterson knows all about the work it takes to get through sign language courses. She…» Read More



A love for words
By | Staff Writer
Oct. 10, 2012

City College student and poet Marlette Reaves is a 23-year-old English major who says she’s known for her trademark love poems that were influenced by her yearning for true love.

Inspired by music and the desire to have an actual romantic relationship, Reaves says she began writing at the age of 14 and has been sharing her raw emotion ever since.

Reaves, who won third place at the City College Poetry Slam contest on Sept. 10, aspires to encourage people of all ages who go through the highs and lows of being in love and says she hopes to touch as many souls as possible throughout her journey of becoming a famous poet, author and an accomplished song writer.

“When I recite, I want people to be inspired to want true love, to get over heartbreak and to understand that people only put you through dirt so you could see that you want to be clean and free,” says Reaves.

Reaves’ love poems not only inspire her fans who can watch her recite them on her YouTube channel, her friends say, but also those who are close to her because they are relatable and pertain to real life.

City College student Terry Buford, 21, is a close friend of Reaves and an inspiring poet. He says he remembers a Valentine’s Day card that Reaves gave him…» Read More



By | Features Editor
Sept. 26, 2012

Economics professor Sandra Camarenasays she believes that teaching the basic principles of economics should be taught in manner in which students can grasp realism.

She relies on Deborah Saks, new dean of Business Division, to help figure out a way to continue teaching in a way that she believes will best reach her students.

“The second unit of my class on supply and demand is very important because it affects everything [in microeconomics],” says Camarena. “I take a little more care, precaution, and time with this unit in my class because if the students aren’t able to accurately grasp the theory I will lose them for the rest of the semester.”

Camarena holds auctions to teach to her students about supply and demand: students bid on items for cash and the highest bidder takes home the winnings. However, in order for an auction to be successful, to demonstrate demand there must be an adequate supplier.

Saks, dean of the Business Division, says she does what she can to help with Camarena’s process.

“I want to do what I can to help [with] that,” says Saks. “I’ve taken economics and I know that it can be a little bit dry. Having…» Read More