By |
March 22, 2010

Under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, City College students filing their own tax returns can reap rewards from a variety of new deductions and tax credits aimed at offsetting the rising cost of higher education.

“Now the new credit — this American Opportunity Credit — is probably the most generous,” said Shanna Stein, City College professor of accounting. “The new credit has a max credit of $2,500, but the Higher Education Tax Credit has a $4,000 deduction, but that’s different because it is a deduction. A deduction reduces your taxable income. A credit reduces your tax. Credits are good, deductions are good too, but credits are better.”

“I think it is [a good credit] for students,” said full-time City College student Jones Robinson. “Because students can get that money back for expensive books that maybe they thought were overpriced.”

According to the Internal Revenue Service, the new credit modifies the existing Hope credit for tax years 2009 and 2010, making it available to a larger range of taxpayers, including many in higher income brackets and those who owe no tax.

“The Hope credit’s been around a number of years. So student have always known they’ve got a…» Read More

Not your grandfather’s barbershop
By |
March 22, 2010

City College has provided male students with a forum for outreach and support with a newly chartered student club known as The Barbershop.

“There’s a disconnect in general between males and college,” said Barbershop adviser Parrish Geary.

The Barbershop concept originated four-and-one-half years ago as a result of Vice President of Student Affairs Michael Poindexter and former City College President Art Tyler’s idea, to cultivate young men into successful students and upstanding individuals by providing an arena with positive role models.

Traditionally, barbershops have been a place of conversation, where men not only go to get haircuts, but also to discuss the current state of affairs. City College’s Barbershop is the same way, minus the haircuts.

Geary said the goal of the club, first and foremost, is to fix that disconnect by encouraging males to be more involved and successful at City College.

“[Men] got a lot of negative stereotypes that are on campus,” Poindexter said. “But a lot of it is because people don’t know how to be men.”

Between Poindexter and Geary, the men hope to create an environment in The Barbershop where students can take control and make changes.

“It’s males trying to bring males together, and…» Read More

The Nisei Diploma Project
By |
March 22, 2010

Imagine being in class, listening to your English teacher talking about the next essay that’s due when all of the sudden, you are forced to leave your class, go home, pack as many belongings as you can and forced into a bus being shipped off to a place you know nothing about.

This is what happened on the tragic day in May of 1942 just before graduation, what was known then as Sacramento Junior College to Japanese American students forced out of school by the Executive Order 9066. The order demanded the students to suspend their studies and be sent to internment camps.

Supervisor of Admissions and Records Kim Goff and RISE counselor Keith Muraki are teaming up with the California Nisei College Diploma Project to coordinate a graduation ceremony that will be held for the people and family members who went through Executive Order 9066 and whose education was interrupted.

The graduation is scheduled for May 19, and will present those who suffered through the tragedy with honorary degrees during City Colleges commencement ceremonies.

Kiyo Sato, former City College student who is now 86 years old, frequently speaks about what happened to her in 1942. She was one of…» Read More

From Egypt to City College
By |
March 22, 2010

A mass of people traveled out of Egypt on an epic journey across the desert, mountains and seas—but no, Charlton Heston did not part the Red Sea. Four hundred Egyptian students spread out across the United States in August 2009.

Fourteen of those students traveled to Sacramento to study at City College and American River College for one year as a part of the Fulbright Scholar Program. The program’s main purpose is to expose students to different cultures in an effort to promote an understanding and bond between two countries.

Never having traveled to the United States before, many of them had conflicting expectations.  Ahmed Aboelnour, 28, was always taught that America is the “mother of all countries.”

However, according to Ashraf Abdelbaky, 23, the foreign policies of the Bush Administration caused many in the Arab world to distrust America. Most are now hopeful that President Obama will change those policies and bring peace to the region. The students expected two things of American culture: sex and discrimination against Muslims.

All four say that they have not been discriminated against during their stay in America, and Abdelbaky says that American students are eager to learn about Egyptian culture and Islam,…» Read More

Tutoring center aids struggling students
By |
March 22, 2010

In the era of Furlough Fridays, budget cuts and ever-present pink slips, a City College program aimed at providing students with necessary skills has managed to survive another semester.

While the Web site for the Learning Skills and Tutoring Program indicates the College Success

Workshops program is unavailable, according to one of the program coordinators, because of some last-minute funding, the workshops, which employ students to help those in need, will continue.

“We’ve been offering workshops since about 2006,” said evening and weekend tutor coordinator Kakwasi Somadhi. “We’ve had pretty good staffing levels up until we lost about half of our tutoring staff. We normally will employ between 40 and 50 students a semester [but now] we’re down to about 20.”

Workshops are geared toward improving academic performance and providing students with the skills necessary to improve success in college.

“Quite a bit of what we do is what instructors are telling us, and we set up workshops accordingly,”

Somadhi said. “Faculty are always trying to get their student to improve on how they approach subjects. So they will often give their students a bit of extra credit for coming to those workshops.”

Some of the upcoming workshops offered this…» Read More

By |
March 21, 2010

Friends and family of those suffering eating disorders have a responsibility to speak up and offer help that may save a life, a City College expert says.

“It is very important to be direct, express your concern and willingness to help with support because eating disorders can result in death,” Psychology Professor Dr. Sylvia Spencer says. “I would not disguise it or get their consent to be silent and ignore it.”

Eating disorders are a serious, potentially life-threatening problem in the United States. Nearly 10 million females and 1 million males are struggling with anorexia nervosa, bulimia and binge eating, according to the National Eating Disorders Association. Individuals who suffer from these disorders are obsessed with their body shape and weight.

“When they look in the mirror, they really see themselves as much larger than they are,” Spencer says.

Anorexia nervosa is the cycle of self-starvation. The body is denied the essential nutrients it needs function naturally. Slow heart rate, low blood pressure, severe dehydration, body weakness, dry skin and hair loss are some of the health issues associated with anorexia. A layer of hair called lanugo appears from face to feet as the body tries to maintain body heat.

» Read More

Public RT hearing sounds like change
By |
March 13, 2010

In response to a $13 million deficit in the 2010 fiscal year and an expected $25 million deficit for the 2011 fiscal year, Sacramento Regional Transit District is considering making some changes to public transportation.

A public hearing was held Monday, March 8 at the Regional Transit Auditorium, located at 1400 29th Street. More than 250 public transportation users showed up to address their concerns…

» Read More

Kitties kitties everywhere!
By |
March 10, 2010

They hide in the bushes, watch students walk to class, live on the campus and have the ability to multiply. They’re cute, furry and sneaky. They are the cats of the City College campus.

Although the Kitty Committee has been an on-campus organization since 2003, most students and faculty members don’t know of its existence or what the cause of this organization is all about. Holly Kivlin is an admissions and records clerk at City College and the woman behind the nonprofit Kitty Committee. Back in 2003, Kivlin formed the committee to regulate the feral cat population and help care for them.

“Different students and staff were feeding them over the years and a complaint was made that the cats were peeing in one of the team’s locker rooms,” says Kivlin.

So she decided to do something about it. Before the committee started, Kivlin was trapping and feeding the feral cats on campus and later found journalism professor Janis Haag at the opposite end of the campus taking similar measures to help the feral cats. Both women joined up and presented a plan to the administration that would monitor the population of cats while also keeping the campus cats healthy…» Read More

No longer a man’s world
By |
March 8, 2010

While a March 2009 study published in the American Psychological Association’s Psychological Bulletin suggested that women are underrepresented in science and math-intensive fields in the labor force, City College women are making their mark in traditionally male-dominated careers.

“By nature, I ask a lot of questions and am insatiably curious, which did not always make me an easy kid to handle in school or at home. I moved away from considering the sciences as a major when I did not easily take on math during junior high and by high school,” said Carmen Hirkala, a biology lab technician at City College. “It was not until I took a few classes in anthropology at Fresno City College and took professor David Wyatt for environmental science here at SCC that I really regained my confidence that I could succeed in a science-oriented career.”

According to Anne Licciardi, dean of the City College Mathematics/Statistics and Engineering Division, close to 50 percent of the faculty in her unit is made up of women.

“I do believe that faculty plays a key role in how students choose to continue their education,” Licciardi said. “Mostly when someone’s decided to major in math, it’s because they were inspired…» Read More

Tardiness plagues City College
By |
March 8, 2010

While many students at City College are committed to their education, getting to class on time can be an exercise in frustration, leading to tardiness and class disruptions.

Many on campus cite the parking situation as a contributing factor to tardiness. With a student population of more than 24,000 and can be complicated.

“I think a lot of the time kids are tardy here is because this parking is so bad,” said City College student Parker Stewart.

Parking is not the only contributing factor to tardiness on campus. Students who elect not to purchase a parking pass for the semester must rely on the $1 daily parking permits. However, this process is further complicated when the machines malfunction because of constant use.

“I didn’t even want to buy a permit,” said Michael Krebsbach, journalism major. “I financially didn’t need to, and it didn’t make any sense to, except for the fact that so often those machines are broken that I have to spend extra time running around the parking lot to find a machine that actually works.”

While many students who use the light rail to commute to campus enjoy the convenience of the City College station, some also experience…» Read More