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Santa Monica College|Administration & College Governance|Associates|History



The SMC Associates was founded in 1981 by a group of community leaders and college educators with a mission to enrich the college campus environment and to broaden students’ understanding and appreciation of the larger world.

Through its membership dues, the SMC Associates has annually brought in and funded a variety of events, speakers and performances. Admission to events is generally free and open to the public, extending the benefits to the wider community. The Associates has also provided financial assistance to gifted art students, the Dale Ride government internship program, and to other SMC students involved in special projects.

Some of the notable Associates-sponsored programs in past years have been anthropologist Jane Goodall, former Massachussetts Governor Michael Dukakis, US Secretary of the Air Force Dr. Donald Rice, JPL Mars exploration program director Dr. Firouz Naderi, authors Jared Diamond, Khaled Hosseini and Jonathan Safran Foer, German Body World’s creator Dr. Gunther von Hagens, British astrophysicist Stephen Hawking, first woman astronaut Sally Ride, legendary entertainer Steve Allen, Nobel Laureate in Chemistry Dr. George Olah, and the Actors From the London Stage in week-long residence on campus.

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