SMC Bragging Rights

• Her music is called a brand of “Gourmet Soul” – a blend of unique musical ingredients and influences. Nichelle Monroe, Administrative Clerk at the Science Learning Resource Center is a singer and better yet, she croons for a cause! Nichelle recorded a music video about California, called "Free We Is", for the "Stand Up to Cancer" foundation. Check out the video here and find out more about her on her website.

• Sign language interpreter Crystal Lagunas is also an amateur Muay Thai kickboxer! After a two year break from competing, Crystal Lagunas made her return to the ring on March 21 at Hollywood Park Casino. Though she came out with a split decision loss to Amanda de Rosa, she is happy with her performance and is currently preparing for next fight on May 16, 2015 at the same location. (Photo credit: Stephanie Drews)

• Talk about a busy summer! Mario Padilla, professor of English and Creative Writing, has a poem, “Mallarmé’s Faune,” that will appear in the Summer 2015 issue of Tulip Tree Review in Colorado. His musical, "Venice Beach", based on a book he co-wrote with his son Marcello Padilla and for which he wrote the music and lyrics will receive workshop performances at the Greenway Court Theater in August 2015. His collection of poetry "Blue Plums and Weeds" was a finalist in Ohio University Press Hollis Summers Poetry Prize. He will also be graduating from the Yoga Works 300 hr. Professional Teacher Training Program and will begin teaching yoga classes as a certified yoga instructor.

• Ish Shabazz, a network administrator in the IT department, is also an iOS app developer. His latest brainchild, a productivity app called Up Next helps users stay organized and was recently one of the “featured” apps in the App Store. Ish will also be appearing in a documentary about app development, slated for an end of the year release.

• Nat Trives, former administrator and part time professor at Emeritus College won one of the inaugural Mark J. Benjamin Community Impact Awards from the Human Relations Council of the Santa Monica Bay Area. Trives won this in recognition for his years of voluntary service to a number of organizations including the American Cancer Society, NAACP, Salvation Army, YWCA, WISE & Healthy Aging, and Santa Monica College – to name just a few.

• Gerard Burkhart, Adjunct Communications Professor and News Photo Advisor to the Corsair, has been accepted to the Fulbright Specialists Roster. It's an honor and a privilege to be considered an educational diplomat for this U.S. State Department program – and we’re proud of Gerard! He thanks English professor Carol Davis for her recommendation to the Fulbright Commission and SMC President Chui Tsang and the Global Council for the opportunity to be a part of the 2013 Faculty Professional Development trip to China. Gerard asks SMC colleagues for suggestions in the search for a connection to an appropriate international program in Communications, Photojournalism or Visual Anthropology.

• His work is called “ambitious in scale and scope” and “a feast for the eyes.” SMC Art professor Carlson Hatton had a solo exhibition at Patrick Painter Gallery in Santa Monica’s Bergamot Station which ran from late March to mid-April. If you missed it – don’t worry – you can click here to view some of Carlson’s work.

• And on the very day Carlson’s exhibit ended, another SMC professor would unveil her show at Sloan Projects at Bergamot Station. Eve Wood, Emeritus College professor’s show “Through the Trees, a Willingness” ran from April 18-May 16.

• Lizy Dastin, adjunct art history professor has launched a street art tour business called “Art and Seeking” which will show people where to find art outside of a traditional institutional context and also provides engaging and entertaining content through videos and blogs. Art and Seeking has been featured in the New York Times and on CBS and NBC. Read the NYT article and watch the videos here

• SMC Articulation Officer Estela Narrie won the 2015 CIAC (California Intersegmental Articulation Council) Service Award for outstanding dedication and service to the articulation community – anyone who has come across Estela and her out of this world knowledge and dedication knows this honor comes well-deserved!

• David Javelosa, Professor of Interactive Media has been falling out of the sky – literally. An advanced level skydiver for the past six years or so, David will be executing skydive number one thousand.

• Part-time music professor Greg Schreiner performed his show, Hollywood Revisited with Michael Feinstein and his orchestra at the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts in West Palm Beach Florida in February. Audiences get to experience what it's like to watch the stars walk the red carpet as their favorite Tinseltown classics come to life in this stunning musical revue which showcases a truly dazzling lineup of costumes actually worn by the stars in the original Hollywood films. In March, the West Hollywood Library premiered the movie, "When Bette Met Mae" which featured a score written and performed by Greg.

• Victor Osaka, who recently taught in the Interior Architecture Design department as an adjunct professor, did an interview on art education with the Autodesk Sketchbook Blog. Read his interview here.

• SMC English professor David Burak is proud to celebrate the 10th anniversary of a volume of essays on the poetry of A.R. Ammons “Considering the Radiance” which he co-edited with Roger Gilbert.

• Led by part-time professor Irma Figueroa, a team of students and faculty from SMC volunteered at the Ocean Park Community Center (OPCC) Shelter in Santa Monica. The givers were as touched as the receivers, as these testimonials will tell:

“Working at the OPCC was a very heartwarming experience…students took great care and pleasure in giving the ladies a make-over, and the results were amazing! The ladies were overjoyed by their transformation and expressed much appreciation and gratefulness.” – Jocelyne Kepler, Instructor.

“It was a time to give and to receive not just service but an expression of love and caring.” – Felipe Felix, Instructor

“To actually see the joy on the faces of the beautiful women was overwhelming. It reminds me that I am a part of a team concerned about others and are givers from the heart.” - Rosalyn Nunley, Instructor

“I liked going to the shelter and being able to help the women who live there. The whole experience made me appreciate how lucky I am to be studying something that makes people feel better about themselves.” – Ellen Korak, SMC student.

“Being able to see the smiles and to hear their testimonies and help lift their self-esteem was the best feeling.” – Tatiana Burton, SMC student

“This experience was a great reminder of the joy that simple acts of compassion can bring to those in need.” – Victoria Tyson, SMC student

“It was so much fun to go to the shelter and make the women beautiful and happy. We had great a time there doing haircuts, make up and waxing for them. They asked us when we would come again!” – Tatyana Shilova, SMC student

“They told us this was one of the best days they had had in a long time.” – Simone Bayfield, SMC student

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