Past PPI Events



Hip Hop for Democracy Click image for flyer (PDF)

“…And for the support of this Declaration…we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.”

Dramatic Readings of the Declaration of Independence by SMC Theatre Arts students – in traditional and contemporary styles.
Tuesday, November 19 | 11:15 a.m.
SMC Main Campus Quad

Pop-Up Art on the Quad

Express yourself through art. Special interactive installations reflecting traditions of street art to be displayed and created.
Sponsored by SMC Art Club & SMC Art Department
Tuesday, November 19 | 11:15 a.m.
Various locations around SMC’s Main Campus Quad

Master Dance Class with Robbie Fairchild

SMC dance students may participate in this extraordinary opportunity to learn from one of the all-time great dancers, a former principal dancer with the New York City Ballet, and currently featured in the film version of “Cats.”
Wednesday, November 20 | 10:15 a.m.
CPC 304 & 308

“In This Life”

Film Screening and accompanying discussion and Q&A with renowned Dancer Robbie Fairchild and Director Bat-Sheva Guez, whose award-winning short film depicts the five stages of grief through the artistic medium of dance.
Wednesday, November 20 | 7:30 p.m.
The Broad Stage at SMC Performing Arts Center, 1310 11th Street, Santa Monica.
Free onsite parking

Ballet to Hip-Hop; Folk to Rap; Watercolor to Graffiti – the Arts as “democratic” Expression

An interactive panel discussion exploring why arts matter to public policy and vice versa. Panelists: Lizy Dastin, SMC Art Faculty; Shannon Daut, Manager of Cultural Affairs for the City of Santa Monica; Marissa Moreno, SMC Dance Faculty Hip-Hop Dance Instructor; Ronnie Wrest, Art Historian and Graffiti Scholar, Bakersfield College.
Thursday, November 21 | 11:15 a.m.
Orientation Hall (SSC 183), SMC Main Campus

Special Lecture by Art Historian & Graffiti Scholar Ronnie Wrest

With expertise in street art, its origins, cultural context, and societal impact, Professor Wrest will share his insights and provide an opportunity for interactive dialogue.
Thursday, November 21 | 2:15 p.m.
HSS 105

Keep It 100: Air Your Grievances

Open Mic Night – Students and community members are invited to air grievances in the spirit of the Declaration of Independence. Special guest speaker — Jose Bello, a Bakersfield College student who was targeted by ICE and held in custody in retaliation for reciting his original poem, “Dear America” critiquing the inhumane treatment of and discrimination against undocumented people at a Kern County Board of Supervisors’ open meeting.
Thursday, November 21 | 6:15 p.m.
Orientation Hall (SSC 183), SMC Main Campus

“Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop”

Screening of “Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop”, a 20-minute documentary created for the Annenberg Space for Photography, with accompanying discussion regarding the role of hip-hop music and culture in providing social-political commentary and inspiring societal change.
Tuesday, November 26 | 11:15 a.m.
Orientation Hall (SSC 183), SMC Main Campus

Wellbeing Summit 2019 – City of Santa Monica

Santa Monica is part of a global movement to focus on defining, measuring, and actively improving community wellbeing. The first-ever Wellbeing Summit will leave you inspired, more connected and motivated to act. Free with registration required.
Saturday, November 16 | 9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
SMC Center for Media and Design, 1660 Stewart Street, Santa Monica, CA 90404

The Nutcracker

Westside Ballet of Santa Monica, joined by the SMC Nutcracker Symphony and SMC dancers, presents the annual holiday extravaganza featuring Tchaikovsky’s majestic score and Balanchine’s exuberant choreography. Get tickets to The Nutcracker.

Exclusive SMC Preview: Friday, November 29 | 7 p.m.
Saturday, November 30 | 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Sunday, December 1 | 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Friday, December 2 | 7 p.m.
Saturday, December 7 | 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Sunday, December 8 | 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
The Broad Stage at SMC Performing Arts Center, 1310 11th Street, Santa Monica.
Free onsite parking

There Goes the Neighborhood Click image for flyer (PDF)

Gentrification In The Context Of Latinx, Queer Spaces & Social Justice

Kickoff with Mariachi Corazon de Mexico at 11 a.m. in the Quad
Tuesday, November 13 | 11 a.m. | Free | Quad

Intro by Dr. Yamissette Westerband, one episode of STARZ “Vida”
Tuesday, November 13 | 11:40 a.m. – 12:35 p.m. | Free | Art 214

STARZ “Vida” Viewing Party #1

Pizza Social in the Art Complex Courtyard at 6 p.m.
Screening of Episodes 1-3 in Art 214 at 6:45 p.m.
Tuesday, November 13 | 6 – 9 p.m. | Free | Art Complex Courtyard and Art 214

STARZ “Vida” Viewing Party #2

Pizza Social in the Art Complex Courtyard at 4 p.m.
Screening of Episodes 4-6 in Art 214 at 5:10 p.m.
Wednesday, November 14 | 4 – 7 p.m. | Free | Art Complex Courtyard and Art 214

Dr. Yamissette Westerband leads a panel discussion to examine themes from “Vida”
Thursday, November 15 | 11:15 a.m. – 12:35 p.m. | Free | Theatre Arts Main Stage

Guerrilla Theatre at Santa Monica College

The award-winning guerrilla theater troupe the Imagination Liberation Front (ILF) performs a secret play in a secret location. We can tell you that it’s hilarious, it’s political, it’s provocative, and it’s secret. All audience must call the ILF’s secure hotline for reservations and instructions: (209) 375-0411. Make sure you’re not followed.
Saturday, November 17, 8 p.m. & Sun, November 18, 7 p.m. | Free | Secret Location

Jonas Oppenheim, Playwright and Political Activist: “Theater and Landlords: The Strangest of Bedfellows?”

In this hands-on session, workshop participants collaborate with award-winning theater director Jonas Oppenheim and Landlords of America president Martin W. Dorn to explore an innovative partnership for arts funding. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (H.U.D.) is underwriting this unprecedented partnership in the inaugural year of the “Here Comes the Neighborhood” Initiative. The session leaders will share techniques and tactics for creating theater that brings messages of goodwill to residents of neighborhoods experiencing gentrification.
Monday, November 19 | 3 – 5 p.m. | Free | The Edye at SMC Performing Arts Center

The Nutcracker

Celebrate the Holidays with Westside Ballet, SMC Dancers, and the SMC Symphony Orchestra at The Broad Stage. Get tickets to the Nutcracker.

Preview: Friday, November 23 | 7 p.m.
Saturday, November 24 | 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Sunday, November 25 | 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Friday, November 30 | 7 p.m.
Saturday, December 1 | 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Sunday, December 2 | 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.

The Broad Stage at SMC Performing Arts Center

Download the Postcard Flier for the Art Forum


Following are just a few of the distinguished speakers at recent Public Policy Institute programs:

  • Trevor Albert, Filmmaker

  • Ben Allen, California State Senate (26th District)

  • Phil Ansell, Director, Los Angeles County Department of Social Services

  • Karen Bass, Member, U.S. House of Representatives

  • Kafi Blumenfield, Founding Executive Director, Discovery Cube, Former President and CEO, Liberty Hill Foundation

  • Julia Brownley, Member, U.S. House of Representatives

  • Sonia Caravalho, Partner, Best, Best and Krieger LLP / City Attorney, Santa Ana and Claremont

  • Erwin Chemerinsky, Founding Dean, UC Irvine School of Law

  • Rick Cole, City Manager, Santa Monica, Former City Manager, Ventura

  • La Shonda Coleman, Director of College Programs, the Rape Treatment Center, UCLA/Santa Monica

  • Diane Cummins, Senior Advisor to Governor Jerry Brown on Realignment

  • Susan Disney Lord, Executive Producer

  • P. Lamont Ewell, Former City Manager, Santa Monica

  • Debra A. Farmer, President/CEO, Westside Family Health Center

  • Cliff Graves, Senior Economic Development Officer, City of Carson

  • Dr. Mitchell Katz, Director, Los Angeles County Department of Health Services

  • Richard Katz, Member, Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority Board

  • Sheila Kuehl, Los Angeles County Supervisor (3rd District)

  • Abbe Land, Former Mayor, West Hollywood

  • Wendy Lazarus, Founder and Co-President, The Children’s Partnership

  • Abby Leibman, CEO, Mazon, A Jewish Response to Hunger

  • Barbra McLendon, Director, Public Policy, Alzheimer’s Association California Southland Chapter

  • Keith McNutt, Director, Western Region, The Actors Fund

  • Jerilyn Lopez Mendoza, Vice President, Los Angeles Board of Public Works

  • Cindy Miscikowski, President, Board of Harbor Commissioners, Port of Los Angeles

  • Jonathan Mooney, Author

  • Nicole Ressa, Sr. Director of Community Education & Training, Planned Parenthood Los Angeles

  • Dr. Sion Roy, Cardiologist, UCLA-Harbor Medical Center

  • Julie Rusk, Assistant Director, Community and Cultural Services, Wellbeing Project, City of Santa Monica

  • Freddi Segal-Gidan, PA, PhD, Assistant Clinical Professor, USC; Neurology, Family Medicine & Gerontology, Director, Rancho/USC California Alzheimer’s Disease Center (CADC)

  • John Singleton, Filmmaker

  • Paul Tough, Author

  • Suzanne Verge, President, Los Angeles Chapter, Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence

  • Antonio Villaraigosa, Former Mayor, Los Angeles

  • Terry Tempest Williams, Author

7th Annual Spring Symposium

Healing: Mending Lives & Seeking Healthfulness Through Innovative Policies and Approaches

Santa Monica College Public Policy Institute and the SMC Associated Students

Healing: Mending Lives and Seeking Healthfulness through Innovative Policies and Approaches

Mindful Monday

Screening of SMC student film, Life in Color, an official selection in competition at The American Pavilion Emerging Filmmaker Showcase at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival. After the film, SMC Film Production Program Professor Mickey Birnbaum will lead a discussion about the issues explored in the film and their relation to mindfulness and mental health. Twitter: @SMC_edu #PPImindfulness

Flourishing? What’s it Gonna Take?

Four professors will share their views on film, humor, and politics to prompt and facilitate a community discussion about what keeps us from flourishing in today’s world. Panelists: Paul Klumpe, Amber Katherine, Ali Mohsen, and Natalina Monteiro.

Lunch & Learn with Westside Family Health Center

Debra Farmer, President/CEO of WFHC will discuss “Women As Advocates.”

Healing the Body, Mending the Mind

Panel discussion exploring the interconnection between physical, psychological, and emotional healing from trauma with Operation Mend, an innovative UCLA program providing advanced medical treatment, comprehensive psychological support, and an intensive treatment program for post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury for post-9/11-era service members, veterans, and their families, in collaboration with SMC Veterans Resource Center.

Dr. Jody Haymann

Mayra Alvarez

How Does Health Policy Impact Lives and Opportunity?

This keynote panel features Dr. Jody Heymann, Dean of the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health and Mayra Alvarez, President of The Children’s Partnership discussing pressing issues in access to health care and other services essential to health in underserved communities. Reception at 6 p.m. program at 7 p.m.

Thanks to SMC Associates for their generous support.

Frank Stiefel

Screening of Academy Award Winning Documentary Heaven is a Traffic Jam on the 405

Film screening with producer/director Frank Stiefel and Mindy Alper, the individual featured in the documentary. The post-film discussion with Mr. Stiefel and Ms. Alper will explore the process of making this extraordinary film and the discoveries Ms. Alper made during the film. Audience questions will be welcome. The film is screened at 7 p.m. and panel discussion is 8 p.m. – 8:45 p.m.

Download the 2018 Spring Symposium Postcard

National Voter Registration Day

Tuesday, September 22, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Main Campus Quad

In 2008, 6 million Americans didn’t vote because they missed a registration deadline or didn’t know how to register. In 2015, we want to make sure no one is left out. On September 22, 2015, volunteers, celebrities, and organizations from all over the country will “hit the streets” for National Voter Registration Day. This single day of coordinated field, technology and media efforts will create pervasive awareness of voter registration opportunities–allowing us to reach tens of thousands of voters who we could not reach otherwise. Read more about Voter Registration Day.

Visit our booth in the North Quad of the SMC Main Campus.

  1. Register to vote and shout out #SMCvotes2016.

  2. Make sure your voter registration record is up-to-date.

  3. Encourage a friend register to vote. Research shows that personally asking someone to register and vote is the single most effective method.

  4. Learn about the voting process

    • The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization which encourages informed and active participation in government. It does not endorse either political parties or candidates running for office but seeks to influence public policy through education and advocacy. Read more about how to vote, about elections, upcoming ballot measures and candidates, and more.

    • In the November 2014 election, only 31% of eligible Californians voted and young people and people of color continued to be underrepresented. Although many factors contribute to low voter turnout, we believe that voter information is an important tool to engage and expand the electorate.” – LWV at

  5. Visit the Los Angeles County Recorder-Registrar/County Clerk at for current elections, voter registration, voting options, election resources, candidate and measure information, voter education, and poll worker information.

  6. Sign up to volunteer in October 2015.

  7. Join us. Request a VR packet for your classes, club, group, department, or service center.

We’re just getting started!

The SMC Public Policy Institute has partnered with The Black Collegians Club, the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority, and NAACP Santa Monica Venice to launch Voter Registration (VR) and Get Out The Vote (GOTV) campaigns for 2015 and 2016.

On Tuesday, the City of Santa Monica’s Commission on the Status of Women will help, too.

The SMC community is invited to participate in October 2015.

Contact to get involved!

U.S. Constitution Day Commemoration

September 18, 11:15 a.m. to 12:35 p.m.
SMC Main Campus at the Quad

Celebrate the U.S. Constitution!

The first 250 students to visit will receive a free pocket-sized U.S. Constitution.

Students from Dr. Tahvildaran-Jesswein’s Pol Sci 1 class will read the document aloud.

Commit to Voter Registration and Turn Out!

9 a.m. to 2 p.m., SMC Quad

The SMC Public Policy Institute has partnered with The Black Collegians Club, the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority, and NAACP Santa Monica Venice to launch Voter Registration (VR) and Get Out The Vote (GOTV) campaigns for 2015 and 2016.

The SMC community is invited to participate. Stop by our booth in the North Quad of the SMC Main Campus or contact

  • Register to vote

  • Learn how to register voters

  • Help us register voters

  • Make VR “clipboards” for canvassers

  • Assemble VR packets

  • Request delivery of VR application packets for your classes, club, group, department, or service center

  • Request a VR “clipboard” for your canvassing walk or to take to work, church, or friends.

  • Applications are available in Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Tagalog, Japanese, Hindi, Khmer, and Thai.

  • Sign up to volunteer for future VR and Get-Out-The-Vote campaign dates

The Violent Brain: Nature or Nurture?

Each year in the U.S. over 7 million people, mainly women and children, are directly exposed to violence. Are violent people conceived or created? Is there a neurobiological reason that a person is violent?

On Monday, April 25th join KCRW and the Santa Monica College Public Policy Institute for a fascinating panel discussion on the brain and its role in violence; featuring Dr. Michael Wilkes of KCRW’s A Second Opinion, James Fallon, Fulbright Fellow and Professor Emeritus of Neuroscience at UC Irvine, Skipp Townsend, co-founder and CEO of 2nd CALL, a violence reduction and reentry program based in South Los Angeles, and Gail Wyatt, PhD and professor of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences and Director at the Center for Culture, Trauma and Mental Health Disparities at UCLA.

In concluding remarks, a representative of the City of Santa Monica's award-winning Wellbeing Project will describe the project's origins, goals, progress, and impact on the community, and reflect on how a public policy framework might address some of the challenges presented by the panelists.

The event will be held at The Broad Stage in Santa Monica at 7 p.m. followed by a Q&A.


The Broad Stage
1310 11th Street
Santa Monica, CA 90401
View map

Our Panel

Featuring: Dr. Michael Wilkes of KCRW's A Second Opinion
James Fallon - Ph.D.; Neuroanatomy/Physiology, UC Irvine
Skipp Townsend - Former gang member/Community Activist
Gail Wyatt - Ph.D.; Psychiatry/Biobehavioral Sciences, UCLA<

Dr. Michael Wilkes is Host of KCRW's A Second Opinion (Sundays, 6:35 + 8:35 a.m.), and is a professor of Medicine at the University of California, Davis, and Director of Global Health. He is an award-winning journalist, having worked for the New York Times and the Los Angeles Time and has accrued more than 20 years in public radio.

James H. Fallon Ph.D. is Professor Emeritus of Anatomy & Neurobiology and Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior in the School of Medicine at the University of California, Irvine. He holds an Honorary Doctorate from St Michael’s College, a Sloan Fellowship, Senior Fulbright Fellowship (Africa) and NIH Research Career Award. He is a Subject Matter Expert in the field of “cognition and war” to the Pentagon’s Joint Command and Vice Chair of the American Land Forces Institute and is a member of the Vatican’s Arts and Technology Council. He was the national scientific coordinator for the NIH Functional Brain Imaging Research Network for ten years. His research program is focused on brain imaging, genetics, neuroanatomy, imaging genetics of psychopathologies, psychopathy, depression, schizophrenia, human cortical development, and psychopathy, murder, dictatorships, and the brain. He also discovered the neuroanatomical basis of psychopathy, and numerous discoveries on the associations between coding and non-coding genes, and behavior. Fallon and his colleagues are interested in the neural circuitry and genetics of creativity, artistic talent, extraordinary abilities, psychopathology, criminal behavior, levels of consciousness, and reconstruction of the paleolithic brain and genome. He is a regular contributing commentator on the brain, genes, and behavior on CNN, NPR, PBS, BBC, and Discovery. His major nonfiction books for lay readers are “The Psychopath Inside: A Neuroscientist's Personal Journey Into the Dark Side of the Brain,” and “Virga Tears: The True Story of a Soldier's Sojourn Back to Vietnam”.

Skipp Townsend is Co-founder and CEO of 2nd CALL, a violence reduction and reentry program based in South Los Angeles, serving the greater Los Angeles area. He also serves as an executive board member of the Southern California Cease Fire Committee. For over 27 years, Mr. Townsend was identified as an active gang member in the CAL Gangs database. After transitioning from a gang lifestyle, Mr. Townsend received various forms of formal training, such as Imagine 21 by Lou Tice and the Pacific Institute; California State University LA- Pat Brown Institute; Grief Recovery by Russell Friedman; and most recently, training through the University of Southern California School of Public Policy collaboration with the Advancement Project Urban Peace Academy. As a community activist, Mr. Townsend currently facilitates intervention training for Los Angeles city certified intervention workers and law enforcement officials through the Los Angeles Violence Intervention Training Academy. Mr. Townsend also regularly facilitates life skills courses throughout various communities in the greater Los Angeles area along with facilitating courses through various CA prisons.

Dr. Gail Wyatt is a clinical psychologist, sex therapist, and professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at UCLA. She was an NIMH Research Scientist Career Development Awardee for 17 years. She has conducted national and international research since 1980, funded by the National Institutes of Mental Health, the National Institute of Drug Abuse, and state and private foundations. Dr. Wyatt is Director of the UCLA Sexual Health Program, an Associate Director of the UCLA AIDS Institute and coordinates a core of behavioral scientists who consult with other researchers to recruit underserved populations and conduct research that effectively incorporates socio-cultural factors into HIV/AIDS research. Dr. Wyatt has received numerous awards and honors for her scientific accomplishments, mentoring, and teaching. She has also testified before the United States Congress eight times on issues related to health policy. She was the first African-American woman to be licensed as a psychologist in the state of California.

Overview of the Topic

Each year in the U.S. over 7 million people, mainly women and children, are directly exposed to violence. Tens of thousands die as a result of human-inflicted violence, as headlines remind us an increasing number die at the hands of mass shooters. Most of this aggression occurs in fits of anger, some are driven by substance abuse, and much of it is in the form of physical abuse or domestic violence. The core of the discussion is to explore whether violent people are a result of their genes (seed) or a result of their environment (soil). Are violent people conceived or created? Is there a neurobiological reason that a person is violent? Once a person engages in violent behaviors can new approaches to anger be learned such that they can be considered safe? There are many medical theories about what causes violence - are any of these evidence-based? The panel will focus on the brain and its role in the violence, recognizing that the brain mediates all human behavior; society and social pressures, and the role of peers and family.

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Westside Coalition presents the 33rd Annual Celebration of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: "Never Lose Hope: Unity Wins"

Join us for a weekend of free events celebrating the life and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., featuring a talk with iconic 1968 Olympic Medalist Dr. Tommie Smith. Admission to all events are free and take place at a number of community venues. For details on events and locations, visit

MLK Celebration 2018 SMC Associates

2017 Fall Arts and Cultural Affairs Forum

Flier for The Woman Question in American Culture 

Princesses, Ballerinas, and Warriors: The “Woman” Question in American Culture

Free Forum Events

The UnNatural History Museum

Enter this rare exhibition where you will encounter unusual curiosities, living attractions and extraordinary experiments in human evolution. A paradigm shift awaits you! Gather at the SMC Clock Tower where histories of gender don’t have to repeat, social roles are reversed before your eyes, and you can discover how to unlock the code and go back-to-the-future you. This performance art presentation is a collaboration between One Mile and SMC Public Policy Institute Interns.
Thu, November 16, 11:15 a.m. – 12:35 p.m. | SMC Clock Tower

Women, Gender, Power – Breaking Barriers in Entertainment and Politics

Kim Masters is Editor at Large of The Hollywood Reporter and host of KCRW’s The Business. Author, award-winning journalist for multiple publications, and talk-show host, Masters is respected as an important source of the news in the entertainment industry.

Korin Huggins is the Chief Executive Officer for Kronicle Media, a company she co-founded to create content for and about women from diverse perspectives. Huggins has established an award-winning career as a television producer.

Wendy Greuel served as the City Controller of the City of Los Angeles from 2009 to 2013, only the second woman to win a city-wide office in L.A., and as a Member of the Los Angeles City Council. She also was a candidate for Mayor of Los Angeles in 2013 and for Congress in 2014. Her political career followed five years at Dreamworks SKG, where she advised Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen.

This discussion will cover the current climate in Hollywood and in politics, and the challenges women in both fields face to break barriers and to break stories.
Mon, November 20, Reception 6 p.m. & Panel 7 – 9 p.m. | SMC Mainstage

The Unfinished Business of Feminism: The Recent Assaults on Women in Politics, Culture and Campuses and the need for a Gender Center at SMC

A Roundtable Discussion featuring SMC Students, Faculty, and Staff Leaders.
Tue, November 21, 11:15 a.m – 12:35 p.m. | SMC HSS Room 165

The Nutcracker

Celebrate the Holidays with Westside Ballet, SMC Dancers, and the SMC Symphony Orchestra at The Broad Stage.

Sat, November 25, 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Sun, November 26, 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Sat, December 2, 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.
Sun, December 3, 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.

The Broad Stage at SMC Performing Arts Center

For tickets, visit Westside Ballet.

Flier for SMC Associates Annual Kick-Off To the Point: “Fake News? Alternative Facts?” The Past-Present-Future of Journalism

A Candid Evening with KCRW's Warren Olney
October 12, 2017, 6:15 - 8:30 p.m.
The Broad Stage, 1310 11th St,
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Presented by the SMC Associates

Award-winning radio host Warren Olney has helped people become aware of regional and world issues throughout his 50-year career in journalism. With the demise of trusted sources of information, he represents the essence of integrity in journalism. Come hear Warren share the historical context of what we are experiencing today in the world of media and journalism–as well as his own personal insights into what the future holds.

Flyer for Spring 2017 Public Policy Symposium 2017 Annual Spring Symposium

May 8-11

Liberty and Justice for All !?#$*: Californians as Guardians of the Galaxy in a Post-Truth Era

Presented by the SMC Public Policy Institute and the SMC Associated Students

2017 Spring Symposium Flyer

Screening of Agents of Change

A film produced and directed by Frank Dawson.

Film is screened at 7 p.m. and panel discussion is at 8:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. (featuring Director and SMC Dean, Frank Dawson and SMC AS President, Terrence Ware)

Mon, May 8, 7 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Aero Theatre – 1328 Montana Avenue, Santa Monica, CA 90403

Truth vs. Post-Truth: Implications for Californians Defending the Galaxy

SMC philosophers deliberate over the meaning and prospects for objective knowledge as a path to public policy in the 21st century. Does the truth matter anymore? Facilitated by SMC Professors Amber Katherine, Paul Klumpe, Ali Mohsen.

Tue, May 9, 11:15 a.m. – 12:35 p.m.
Santa Monica College Humanities and Social Sciences Lecture Hall, HSS 165

Screening of After Auschwitz

A film written and directed by Jon Kean

Film is screened at 7 p.m. and panel discussion is at 8:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. (featuring Director Jon Kean, Rabbi Neil Comess-Daniels, SMC Professor Ali Mohsen, and Ahilan Arulanantham from the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California ).

Tue, May 9, 7 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Aero Theatre – 1328 Montana Avenue, Santa Monica, CA 90403

We the People: A Projection Installation

An education and advocacy video project unveiling personal narratives from SMC and beyond of what it’s like to live in the Post Truth-Era when your civil rights are on the line. The video will be followed by a panel discussion with the students who created the project about how the video can be used as a tool for change.

Wed, May 10, 6:30 p.m.
Santa Monica College Cayton Center, Second Floor Lobby

Sanctuary-State Superheroes to the Rescue!

Join us at the SMC Clock Tower for a speculative theme park to unleash, challenge, and develop your inner Californian political superpowers through games and dialogue on diversity, freedom of expression, immigration, healthcare-for-all and respect for the environment. Presented by One Mile and SMC Public Policy Institute Interns.

Thu, May 11, 11:15 a.m. – 12:35 p.m.
Santa Monica College Clock Tower Quad

The Justice League: Keynote Discussion with State Senator Fran Pavley, Santa Monica Mayor Ted Winterer, and Santa Monica-Malibu USD Superintendent Dr. Ben Drati

Join environmental advocate and former State Senator Fran Pavley, Santa Monica Mayor Ted Winterer, and Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Ben Drati for a conversation on the ways that California, through legislation and public policies, can continue to lead the nation and the world on important issues.

Thu, May 11, 7 p.m.
Santa Monica Bay Woman’s Club – 1210 4th Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401

2016 Voter Resources | PPI Homepage

Join PPI for the 2016 Fall Arts and Cultural Affairs Forum

Art Form - This is Hunger

The Fall Forum features speakers, panel discussions, and dance performances for audiences ranging from fifth graders to adults. All forum events are open to the public, and most events are free. Seating is on a first-arrival basis if reservations are not required.

“THIS IS HUNGER: A Photo Exhibit”

Daily through December 1

Explore selected images from the thought-provoking MAZON photo exhibit. FREE. Santa Monica College Cafeteria on SMC’s main campus (1900 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica).

“Why Art? The Power of Photography to Impact Public Policy”

Tuesday, November 22, 11:15 a.m | Guest Speaker, Barbara Grover

Renowned award-winning photographer and political activist Barbara Grover will lead a discussion on how photography can be used to educate and inspire activism on important public policy issues. FREE. Limited seating; reservations required (email with a number of guests attending). Humanities & Social Science Lecture Hall 165 on SMC’s main campus (1900 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica).

Documentary Screening: “The Armor of Light”

Tuesday, November 22, 5 p.m. and 8 p.m | Guest Speaker, Abigail Disney

Director Abigail Disney follows the journey of evangelical minister Rob Schenck as he struggles with reconciling his positions on gun ownership and opposition to abortion. Director Disney will participate in a community discussion from 6:45 p.m.-7:45 p.m. (between screenings). FREE. Laemmle Monica Film Center (1332 2nd Street, Santa Monica). Free parking available at City Parking Structure #4.

“THIS IS HUNGER: MAZON’s Mobile Museum”

November 23, December 1, 11 a.m.- 5 p.m.; November 28-30, 11 a.m.-7 p.m.

Experience and explore this interactive exhibit on wheels that presents a powerful community engagement campaign to educate communities across the country about the stark reality of hunger in America. FREE. Reservations required at (allow 1 hour to experience exhibit). Lot 6 (SE corner of 14th at Pico Blvd.) on SMC’s main campus (1900 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica).

“Illuminate Then Advocate: Engaging the Public”

Monday, November 28, 6:30 p.m. | Guest Speakers, Sen. Ben Allen (SD-26), Abby Liebman, Barbara Grover

Join us for a special roundtable discussion – with California State Senator Ben Allen (SD-26), MAZON Executive Director Abby Liebman, and Artist and Activist Barbara Grover – about the rising problem of hunger and food insecurity in our communities. This conversation will focus not only on the role that art can play in drawing attention to important issues but also on how art and voice can be used to engage elected officials and influence public policy. FREE. Santa Monica College Bundy Campus Room 123 (3171 S. Bundy Dr., Los Angeles). Free onsite parking.

“One Mile: An Interactive Art Walk

Tuesday, November 29, 11:15 a.m.

Through rigorous, yet playful strategies of art as a public practice, One Mile guides the community toward collective re-imaginings to generate enduring and harmonic solutions for local and global co-existence. FREE. Meet alongside MAZON Mobile Museum in Lot 6 (SE corner of 14th at Pico Blvd.) on SMC’s main campus (1900 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica).

Tchaikovsky’s “The Nutcracker” Ballet

November 25, December 1, December 2, 7 p.m.; November 26, November 27, December 3, December 4, 1 p.m. and 5 p.m

The Westside Ballet, joined by the SMC Symphony and SMC dancers, presents its annual holiday extravaganza featuring Tchaikovsky’s majestic score, Balanchine’s exuberant choreography, falling snow, and a Christmas tree that grows! See Westside Ballet for ticket details. The Broad Stage at the SMC Performing Arts Center, (1310 11th St., Santa Monica). Free onsite parking.

Thank you to everyone who attended and supported the 5th Annual PPI Spring Symposium - May 9 - 14

Pictures on SMC Facebook.

Adam Briggle Dean Kubani Spring 2016

“Saving The Planet One Town At A Time”

Monday, May 9 | Guest Speaker, Dr. Adam Briggle

Adam Briggle, who teaches philosophy at the University of North Texas in Denton, where he also serves on a citizens’ advisory group, helped lead an initiative to ban hydraulic fracturing in Denton. Briggle’s story is of an intellectual who became an activist and helped a Texas town successfully take on the oil and gas industry. Denton is now recognized as a beacon for grassroots democracy and a model for using regulatory processes to halt the spread of fracking.

Should we re-imagine environmental justice as “global citizenship”?

Tuesday, May 10 | Student Debate

SMC students will debate the question of whether “global citizenship” is the best way forward in the 21st century if we hope to achieve environmental justice. Some say “global citizenship” is merely ideology for global capitalism, while others claim it offers the best platform for environmental justice. Philosophy Professor Amber Katherine will facilitate this lively debate.

Naomi Klein’s “This Changes Everything” with Dean Kubani and Christopher Toussaint

Wednesday, May 11 | Film and Roundtable Discussion

Filmed in nine countries and five continents over four years, Naomi Klein’s film, This Changes Everything, is an epic attempt to re-imagine the challenge of climate change. A post-screening discussion will follow. Dean Koubani oversees Santa Monica’s citywide efforts related to water and energy efficiency, urban runoff, green buildings, hazardous materials, and sustainability. Christopher Toussaint is an award-winning producer, director, editor, and cameraman.

Climate Justice and Loving Other Species: Why Race, Class and Gender Matter

Thursday, May 12 | Guest Speaker: Dr. Chris J. Cuomo

The politics of race, class, and gender are fundamental to understanding the causes of global environmental harms. Luckily, they also help create alternatives. How can we blend social and ecological justice into multi-cultures of mutual respect, health and flourishing? What does it mean to really love other species? Come hear strategies, real-life examples, and philosophy. Chris Cuomo is a Professor of Philosophy and Women's Studies at the University of Georgia. She serves on the Georgia Climate Change Coalition.

Panel: How Should We Re-Imagine Environmental Justice?

Thursday, May 12

Introduction by:
Dr. Kathryn E. Jeffery, Superintendent, and President,
Santa Monica College
Santa Monica was represented at the 2016 United Nations Climate Change Conference held in Paris, France, by an extraordinary number of local elected leaders. State Assemblymember Richard Bloom, District 50, and Santa Monica Councilmembers Pam O’Connor and Terry O’Day will share their impressions and address key questions. PPI Co-Director, Professor Tahvildaran-Jesswein, will moderate.

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