Volume VI, Issue 5 | December 22, 2020

SMC In Focus

A bi-monthly newsletter connecting the Santa Monica College community. Celebrating endless possibilities, innovation, and resilience.

Making a Difference

This annus horribilis--the year 2020--will soon be behind us. What better way to bid goodbye and look ahead than by celebrating those who have made a difference one kind act, one student, one cookie, one cluster of corals at a time? SMC in Focus brings you Eva Ahmad, an advocate for her fellow students; Marina Drasnin, a cookie fairy spreading hope; a behind-the-scenes look at SMC's 30-year transfer success; SMC Foundation's Meal Project; Life Science Professor Garen Baghdasarian, who's working to save coral reefs, and more. We are #ProudToBeSMC!

Eva Ahmad

The Face of Mental Health at SMC

SMC nursing student Eva Ahmad realized her fellow students needed a voice, someone to tell them it’s OK to not feel OK right now. The year 2020 had been disastrous for her, too.

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SMC Arts

What Makes a 30-Year Success Story?

Santa Monica College marked a landmark anniversary: three (unbroken) decades as the #1 Transfer College to University of California. Four past & current transfer center leaders give us a look behind the scenes.

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Giving Thanksgiving

Food for Thought

COVID-19 proved devastating for students who were already struggling with food insecurity. The SMC Foundation launched the Meal Project, to deliver free nutritious meals. Read what two recipients have to say.

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Cookie Brigade

Baked from the Heart

Santa Monica resident Marina Drasnin has been the leader of a “cookie brigade”, spreading hope to SMC students through home-baked goodies.  Marina has delivered hundreds of cookies to the weekly SMC drive-thru food pantry.

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Sri Susilowati

Bragging Rights

A counselor who is a Disneyland fan raises thousands of dollars for laid-off employees. Two dance professors showcase their artistry in Indonesia. A lawyer continues to sharpen his geography and GIS toolkit.

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Garen Baghdasarian

The Teacher Who Loved the Sea

If coral colonies could do so, they’d surely be patting SMC Life Science Professor Garen Baghdasarian on the back. While he’s not figuring out how to save coral reefs, Garen is inspiring the next generation of ocean stewards.

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Giving Thanksgiving

Wellbeing - Eva Ahmad