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Gay Marriage PG. 3 Ron Paul PG. 2 Libertarian icon speaks at convention center March 8 - April 25, 2012 SFCC employees to take pay cuts Podcasting PG. 4 The future of podcasting Should gay marriage be legalized? Volume 43 | Issue 8 President of SFCC prepares to step down Alicia Villa As cost of living and gas prices continue to rise across the country, salaries decrease. The Communicator Rockford Radke The Communicator SFCC faculty and staff are due to take a 3 percent pay cut starting July 1. There has been and will continue to be a cost-of-living pay increase freeze in place for state employees. Then the state legislature adopted a 3 percent reduction for all state employees -- including higher education -- for both years of the budget. That means that state employees have not been given a cost-of-living raise in quite a while, even though the cost of living has continued to climb and now state employees are being told by state legislature to give up even more. “I don’t ever like giving money Nadia Kurakin | The Communicator Jeff Davis, reference librarian at SFCC, will be taking a pay cut, along with all employees. up, but we are in tighter times,”said SFCC Art Instructor Tom O’Day. “If I had a choice I’d say, ‘no I don’t want it.’” For a bit of perspective, a salary of $30,000 being reduced by 3 percent would mean a loss of $900 a year for that employee. That may not seem like much when looking at it from a simple perspective, but many people are already on a tight budget and with gas prices speculated to approach $5 a gallon by this summer, the pay reduction could hurt the pocket book of faculty and staff. “I guess, just personally, you’re not getting ahead; you’re constantly going backwards,” said library circulation worker Babs Hachey. “The cost of living, they say, is flat, but it really CUTS | Page 2 “Statewide, the average salary for a community college faculty member was $48,202 two years ago.” Source: Christine Frey Steps taken to prevent suicide among students Three students committed suicide last quarter, encouraging administration to take a close look at the problems facing students. Rockford Radke| The Communicator Sabrina Votava, suicide prevention trainer, has been training SFCC faculty on the issue of student suicide. trainer Sabrina Votava. “I talked to a student reporter last quarter about the suicides that occurred,” Votava said. “I decided to follow up with the college administration and they asked me to come give the faculty training, so I did.” Suicide prevention effectiveness Clayton Kraft falls in favor of peer recognition over Rockford Radke authority figures, however, so it was The Communicator determined that student trainings were needed. Sabrina had already SFCC’s administration responds to been asked to put on a training, so the rising trend of suicide on camthey merged it into a public student pus by starting a series of prevention training. seminars. “Very rarely do I end Three SFCC up at colleges,” Votava “Ages 18-22 are the students comsaid. “Which is too bad mitted suicide highest risk groups for because I think college during the Fall suicide.” campuses could really quarter, so -Sabrina Votava benefit from this kind Suicide prevention trainer the response of training. is focused on “Ages 18-22 are the recognition. The highest risk groups for suicide, and first training seminar occurred in the that’s mostly who’s here.” Sn-w’ey’-mn building on Feb. 29, The training was open to the and was run by suicide prevention Despite her retirement this June, President Pam Praeger vows full commitment to the remainder of her term. “I do have plans for the rest of my term, and it is to continue to serve our college and our constituents to the best of my ability,” Praeger said in an email. Praeger is currently working on increasing student support services such as broadening accessibility to tutoring services, providing for responsive new student opportunities such as orientations, timely distributed financial aid and assistance and intentional and individualized academic advising and counseling. All of which are services Praeger would have in the works whether or not she was soon retiring. “It is not right for me to be a lame duck and not to continue to do the work of my position,” Praeger said. “Major decision making and the responsibilities required of my position are the same whether I am here next year or not. “I would never want to leave SFCC in a deficit position through irresponsible decision-making.” Some of these decisions would include budget cuts and management. “As a state higher education system, we are struggling with greater demand and fewer resources,” Praeger said. “So budget cuts and budget allocations are based on data-informed decision-making and budgeting for now and the future.” Praeger is retiring after her second year as interim president, a temporary position she filled after the last president left the position in 2009. “I would have preferred that we do a presidential search when Mark Palek, our previous president, retired,” said English instructor Mark Doerr. While the work of the Presidential Search Committee has been kept confidential for privacy reasons, the new president may be in office before Praeger finishes her term. “Normally we have the new president come in before the current one leaves so there is a smooth transition, SUICIDE | Page 2 INDEX NEWS................................2 FOCUS SIDELINES CULTURE Online dating Tailgater PRESIDENT | Page 2 Golf for beginners PERSPECTIVES...................3 FOCUS..............................4 The Communicator PG. 4 509.533.3602 PG. 5 PG.6 PG. PG.8 8

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