The Campus - Fall 2013/Issue 1

Page 1

The Student Voice of College of the Sequoias


Issue 1, Fall 2013 Since 1933

Student Senate elected, voter turnout low

last year's election, Douglass said, and that the turnout may fluctuate up to a hundred more. total of 139 students voted on Au"It depends on the students running," gust 28 and 29 to elect new student Douglass said. "In some years, I've had representatives for the college's maybe five, six, seven hundred students Student Senate, and the results of the races vote, if it's a big [election]." are in. While the turnout was incredibly small Student Senate, formerly known as the compared to the total number of students, Associated Student Body, held its elections Douglass said that the turnout was not out online through the Banner Web system for of the ordinary compared to other commuthe first time in order to give students with nity colleges. tight schedules and students attending the Student Senate plans to use banners and Tulare and Hanford campuses ample time word of mouth from senators to help spread and opportunities to vote. the word for the next vote cycle; Douglass Although this was the first time the elcsaid that she was neither disappointed nor tion was held online, excited about the turnvoting went smoothly You grow as a person; you get out given the change and was made easy for to know who you are, and in method and the destudents, according to lay in what it is you're capable of. Debbie Douglass, DiBoth Douglass and ­— Fidel Madrigal rector of Student Acthe newly-elected Stutivites & Affairs. dent Senate President, Students were able Fidel Madrigal, encourage students to get to vote on the adoption of a revised Stuinvolved with Student Senate. dent Senate Constitution; they were also "You grow as a person; you get to know able to choose between two candidates for who you are, and what it is you're capable the Student Ambassador, Commissioner of," Madrigal said. "You get to see a differof Activities, Commissioner of Clubs, and ent part of yourself when you meet differCommissioner of Records positions. ent people." The positions of President, Vice Presi"The students that do get involved [in dent, Student Trustee, Commissioner of leadership roles] .. it changes them, changes Finance, and Commissioner of Publicity who they become," Douglass said. were won by default. Both Douglass and Madrigal stressed Information on all the candidates — inthe importance of voting for student senacluding their pictures and a short canditors and the importance of student leaderdate's statement — alongside information ship on campus, especially during this tuon the revised constituion was made availmultuous time in the college's history. able on the college's website by the Student "Your vote matters," Madrigal said. Activities & Affairs office before the elec"Now, with accreditation, and the student tion was held. senate having a bigger say than we had beThe revised constituion was voted in 119 fore now would be the perfect time to take to 14; in total, 139 students fully completed an initiative on things that students find the voting form. 16 left their vote form inimportant." complete, and four declined to vote. The turnout was roughly the same as TONY MALDONADO



Brandon Bewley/The Campus

Football players practice at the college early on Sept. 10.

COS 2.0: The football is new SEAN GREGORY

Staff Writer


fter waiting all summer, College of the Sequoias football is back and are looking to a fresh start this season. The team is young and unproven but Head Coach Irv Pankey feels confident in his team’s abilities. With such a young team Pankey believes that they don’t understand the college game yet but still feels confident in his team. “We’ll be okay,” said Pankey. Even with the lack of experience and not having seen them in a real game yet Pankey believes that the team is strong in the running back and linebacker positions. One area that may see some early struggles will be the offensive line. Four of the five lineman are freshmen and the lone sophomore played mostly defensive line last year. With all the youth and experience Pankey hasn't set up too big of a goal for his team this season. "Just want to win the first game," said Pankey of his teams goals. Opening the season up on the road doesn’t sound like the way a young team would want to start a season but Pankey

thinks it will be better for his players. He feels that trying to win your first game of the season in front of a home audience can be too much for young players and that a road game will take some of the pressure off. "We would love to already have a win coming into the first home game," said Pankey. Pankey also has the added pressure of coaching under the Interim head coach tag and could possibly not be back next season. However Pankey is not thinking about it and is just going about his business trying to coach the team and make them better, and of course win football games. He will worry about his job title for next season after his team's last game. But has admitted he would like the job. "I'm not really thinking about it, but I'm sure I'll throw my name in the pot," said Pankey. So with the goal of just trying to win their first game the COS football team is ready for the season ahead, and Pankey is ready to coach them. "We got a bunch of blue collar guys," said Pankey, "we will go out and be competitive and play Giant football."


New president, senate executive board set Fidel Madrigal, President

See also: "New president, new senate" on Page 2.

Do only 139 students care?


orgive us if you think we're taking this a bit too seriously, but we had a look at the results of the recent Student Senate (née ASB) election, and we were just a bit shocked at what we saw: out of a student body of over 10,000, only 139 students voted. The school's elections were moved online in an attempt to not only increase turnout amongs students across the Visalia, Tulare, and Hanford campuses, but also to make it easier for all students to vote. The process was simple: log into Banner Web — a tool students already use for checking Financial Aid status, registering for classes, and checking grades — fill out a five-minute vote form, and call it a day. Evidently, students won't even vote when all it takes is opening a new tab in their browser. One of the few direct outlets students have shaping the direction of the college is electing their peers to the Student Senate: the Student Senate has seats at the tables of power at the college: members of the Student Senate are asked to provide direct input from a student's perspective to the Board of Trustees and administration. Especially as the college undergoes


an accreditation-forced transformation, one might be led to believe that students would be even more concerned with who represents them and how their voices are heard. Many students, it seems, had no idea to begin with that elections were happening, or didn't get the memo that the elections were happening online. There's no doubt that the change in semester and method had something to do with that, but students were made aware in multiple manners that these elections were happening — through email blasts, direct solicitation from candidates, and signs plastered over most of the campus. We have no doubt that the newlyelected members of Student Senate will perform this function admirably, but what does it say about the over 10,000 students at the college that only 139 of them can open a new tab, log into Banner Web, and take five minutes to vote on who has a hand in shaping the future of a Tulare County institution? All we'd really like to ask, in short, is that more than 139 students start caring: these votes matter when the people you're voting for have a direct impact at the college; now more than ever.

Juan Moreno, Vice-President

Diana Garcia, Student Trustee

Michelle Rivera Commissioner/Clubs

Abbi Gregory Commissioner/Records

Danielle Rivera Commissioner/Publicity

Ryan Wullschleger, Student Ambassador

David Rivera Commissioner/Activities

André Gomez Commissioner/Finance

Visalia City Council member meets students AMANDA WILBUR

Staff Writer

Greg Collins, a Visalia City Council member running for reelection, spoke Tuesday about his past in politics and the upcoming election. "I'm running for City Council because there is a number of things I want to accomplish on a city level," Collins told the California Young Democrats. One of Collins' main objectives is keeping a balanced budget. For this reason, Col-


lins is against urban sprawl. In a compact community, it is cheaper to have services that are essential for cities such as trash pick-up, repairing streets, or public safety. It also allows the City Council to focus on the already vacant lots that are in the city, rather than developing into farm land. He also wants to give employees a pay raise. He feels that it is important to keep employees happy if you want them to successfully complete their jobs.

Continued on p.2



Editor-in-Chief Tony Maldonado Managing Editor Jordon Dean Ad Manager Nico Rodriguez Exec. Copy Editor Stephanie Swonger Copy Editor Christina Reeves Sports Editor Stefan Barros Video Manager Brannon Parish Advisers Judy House Gary Kazanjian

Photographers & Videographers Brandon Bewley Nicholas Millan Daniel Nunez Jazmin Omos Ricardo Pena Raelyn Piercy Omar Salazar Artist Amanda Kahler Reporters Justine Cappuccio Veronica Felipe Sean Gregory Jessica Mustin Daniel Nunez Aurora Puente Adrian Ramirez Bryan Urrutia Erick Vasquez Amanda Wilbur

VOICE We accept — and encourage — letters to the editor and submitted guest columns from students, staff, faculty, and community members from the College of the Sequoias and the three communities it serves. These can be submitted in multiple ways: • Delivery to Rm. Kaweah 260 on the Visalia campus • Email to • Submission on our website, The Campus was produced by students enrolled in journalism classes at College of the Sequoias. Any views expressed are those of the students and not faculty, staff, or administration. The Campus is a student-produced First Amendment newspaper. The Campus works diligently to correct any errors as soon as we are notified. If you notice any errors in this edition, in our online edition, on our social media venues, or in any other version of The Campus, we welcome you to notify us. You may reach the editor-in-chief by calling (559) 737-4856, emailing campusnews@, or using the "Contact Us" feature of our website.

The first three copies of this edition of The Campus are free. Subsequent copies are 25 cents per copy.


New president, new senate COS Golf dents about the current accreditation goEditor-in-Chief ings-on, providing them with a condensed form of the latest information available. idel Madrigal is starting off his In addition, he wants to improve the third semester at College of the quality and quantity of activites on campus. Sequoias as its Student Senate One of the events in the cards for this President. semester is a smash-a-car Madrigal, 22, a event called "Smash Against Human Resource Drunk Driving"; the proManagement major, ceeds would go to Mothers was previously ComAgainst Drunk Driving. missioner of Finance Madrigal also said he'd during the 2012-2013 like to see an extension of academic year. the accreditation forums Originally from that have taken place at the San Diego, Madrigal Visalia campus out to the moved to the Valley college's other two camfour years ago; he curpuses. rently lives in Porter"We're in the process of ville. planning a trip to the other He originally attwo campuses," Madrigal tended Porterville said. College, but left after Fidel Madrigal, Student Senate He also encourages stupresident. he came with a friend dents to join the leadership to the COS campus. development class and seek leadership roles "When I came here, I felt like this was in the Student Senate. a better environment for me — I'm not re"I never would have even thought about ally too sure how to explain that," Madrigal running for president, ever," Madrigal said, said. "I felt like this was more of a college "until I actually took initiative to see what atmosphere, and that's the reason why I deit takes to become a leader." cided to come here." "I love helping people; whether it's Madrigal, with experience under his homework, whether it's personal probbelt, is jumping straight into his new role as lems," Madrigal said. "I will always give Student Senate President. you a hand up." One of his first tasks, he said, was to Madrigal encourages students, commuhelp inform students about the accreditanity members, faculty, and anyone else to tion situation that the college has found reach out to him and the Student Senate if itself in. they have any concerns or comments. Student Senate, he said, will continue They can attend Student Senate meetto have a table every Thursday in front of ings every Tuesday from 11:00-12 or stop the Student Activities Office to inform stuby the Student Activities Office, he said. TONY MALDONADO



"Keep your people happy, and they will make you look good." "We need to find out how to recharge our ground water." Collins believes that is important to find a way to recycle our water. He doesn't think that Cal Water is concerned about this important conservation, and he wants the City Council to act on it. The city will be recycling and trading water in order to conserve the water for Visalia. Collins identifies himself as a Democrat; he was one of the youngest people elected to the council when he first ran in 1975. He attended COS for two years before transferring to a university, and coached Water Polo at the college later on. Although he is a Democrat, he stressed that most of the work on City Council is nonpartisan. It does not come down to party politics,


n a surprising turn of events, the same regional accrediting body that placed COS on Show Cause status will have to “show cause” of its own to continue operating. A complaint filed by the California Federation of Teachers on April 30, 2013, according to the CFT website, alleges that the Accrediting Commission of California Junior Colleges has violated several of the Secretary of Education’s Criteria for Recognition as an accrediting institution. City Attorney of San Francisco Dennis Herrera has also filed a lawsuit against the ACCJC, saying that, “the private agency unlawfully allowed its advocacy and political bias to prejudice its evaluation of college accreditation standards.” The ACCJC stated in a press release that the lawsuit is “an attempt to politicize and interfere” with CCSF’s accreditation process. These accusations against the ACCJC follow its decision to revoke the accreditation of City College of San Francisco. CCSF had been placed on Show Cause status on July 2, 2012, and lost its accreditation one year later, a decision which the school has appealed. In the letter stating the decision to terminate CCSF’s accreditation, the ACCJC includes failure to correct deficiencies noted in the Show Cause report, most notably problems with “financial accountability” and “institutional deficiencies in the area of leadership and governance” as justification for the action.


The COS Baseball team is hosting their annual COS Baseball Golf Benefit. The event will take place Sunday, October 13th at the Valley Oaks Golf Course in Visalia. Registration begins at 10:45 a.m, with teeoff at 12 p.m. The admission for this event is $100. This price includes: golf, cart, dinner, and five raffle tickets. Those interested can preregister by completing the player information on the COS website ( or call the baseball office at (559) 737-6196. There are no steel spikes allowed on the course. All participants must be at least 8 years or older. Multiple sponsorship packages are available: Hall of Fame: $1,000.00. Benefits include: one team in golf tournament, four COS hats and shirts, sponsor's company banner posted on first hole, and one season pass. Gold Glove: $500.00. Benefits include: two COS hats and shirts, sponsor's business or personal name posted above the sign up table, one 10 game pass. Silver Slugger: $250.00. Benefits include: one COS hat and shirt, sponsor's business or personal name posted above the sign up table. Rookie: $125.00. Benefits include: one COS shirt, sponsor's business or personal name will be printed on a 11x8.5" sign and posted at one of the 18 tee boxes. Tee Sponsor Sign: $75.00. Sponsor's business or personal name will be printed on a 11x8.5" sign and posted at one of the 18 tee boxes.

Omar Salazar/The Campus

Greg Collins speaks to the Young Democrats at College of the Sequoias on Sept. 10.

but what is best for the community, he said. Collins will be re-running for his seat

Political bias, inconsistencies and prejudiced evaluations alleged STEPHANIE SWONGER


Staff Writer

Continued from p.1

Column: ACCJC faces its own challenges Exec. Copy Editor


The U.S. Department of Education responded to the CFT complaint on August 13, 2013, with a letter to the ACCJC specifying the areas in which the accrediting agency needs to reach compliance within 12 months. One of these areas involves the evaluation teams having too many administrators and too few faculty members. Another is the appearance of conflicts of interest, specifically that ACCJC President Barbara Beno’s spouse has been an evaluation team member. The DOE is careful to state that no actual accusations of a conflict of interest are being made, but that the appearance of such must be avoided just as well. The third and fourth item in the letter involves inconsistencies in the use of the term “Recommendation” — which has been used to mean either an area that could use some work, or an actual deficiency. This has led to confusion when some "recommendations" have been treated as actual sanctions on follow-up visits. Also, recommendations can be given for the purposes of “increasing institutional effectiveness” or to “meet the standard.” However, there is no clear way to tell which category a recommendation falls within and therefore no way to know how serious it is. It certainly seems that all this turmoil could interfere with the school making any progress on its appeal, but maybe somebody had to sound the alarm. The accrediting commission seems to have gotten away from its role in helping community colleges to improve the value of the education they provide, and moved toward focusing on things like assessment and planning instead. Just as the schools it oversees, the commission needs oversight itself. People are obviously tired of feeling

pushed around, but it would be wise not to jump on the bandwagon. The process has already begun and the commission will be held accountable for its own deficiencies, the same as the schools it has sanctioned. Perhaps someone needed to speak out, and we will see what is to come of it, but COS is doing what needs to be done without raising a fuss and making itself a target. Still, the fear of losing accreditation is very real. Could COS be headed for the same fate as CCSF? In flyers titled “What Does the Accreditation News Mean to Me?” COS addresses concerns of both current and prospective students, and of faculty, staff, and administrators. One of the items common to each flyer asks whether other schools are facing similar accreditation problems. Of course, the answer is yes, but it is made clear that COS is not dealing with financial insolvency issues or problems with its Board of Trustees. The impression is that it is not as bad as it could be. COS mobilized to meet the compliance requirements for accreditation immediately after learning of its own Show Cause status in February. An accreditation Response Task Force was created, bringing administrators, faculty, and students together to deal with each of the deficiencies noted. COS President/Superintendent Stan Carrizosa appeared confident of the school’s progress in the first Fall 2013 Accreditation Forum, and expressed that others felt the same way, including California Community Colleges Chancellor Brice Harris. “The word out, among community colleges, is that we should bottle how they’re doing it at College of the Sequoias, because that’s the process that people should be looking at to model,” said Carrizosa, quoting Harris.


on the council during the upcoming election on November 5.

Review: Cafe improved OMAR SALAZAR

Staff Photographer


n campus there are not always decent places to grab a bite to eat. Finding a place to eat with quick service and good quality can sometimes be harder than it seems. Looking for the ideal place, I came to try out the new and improved COS Cafe. I was attended with decent service, and ordered The California — a sandwich with turkey, bacon, lettuce, red onions, cucumber, and avocado. I received my order fairly quickly, no more then three minutes. As soon as I placed my order they immediately started preparing it. As for the price this sandwich went for around $4. I was content with the size and contents of the sandwich. The sandwich had a nice texture with the crispness provided by the lettuce, cucumber, and onions. It also had a nice amount of moisture provided by the turkey, mayo, and topped off with some green avocados; it was delicious. I would definitely choose this meal as a healthier substitute compared to the fatty burgers sold in the same building. The sandwich was very filling and I barely finished the first half. Overall, it was a filling sandwich with just the right amount of ingredients and flavor. For the price, I'd say it was worth it for something quick and cheap. The COS Cafe has stepped up their efforts to provide better food for the students at COS. It has also shown me that there is at least one good place on campus to visit for a good meal, and I am eager to return to try something new.

FALL 2013


Who says you can't go home again? Column: Fantasy

Football Takes Over STEFAN BARROS

Sports Editor

Jordon Dean/The Campus Brent Davis, COS's new Athletic Director.


Sports Editor


rent Davis was chosen to be the new athletic director at COS back in April. Along with the job comes a lot of responsibility, but in no way is Davis in over his head. "Being a former student-athlete here at COS, I have a familiarity with many of the people who work here and an understanding of why students attend COS." Davis was born in Tulare, but raised in Visalia and graduated from Redwood High School in 1996. After Redwood he attended COS, where he played basketball. During the 1997-98 season, Davis also was an assistant basketball coach at Redwood. "Practice for COS ended at 3 p.m., so I would have to hurry over to Redwood for practice at 3:30." After COS, Davis transferred to San Diego State University, where he would eventually obtain his bachelor's degree. After San Diego State, Davis stayed in San Diego to be an assistant coach at San Diego Mesa College. Before coming to COS, Davis was an assistant basketball coach at San Jose State university for eight years. When he received the call saying he got the athletic director job, Davis says it was an exciting feeling. "It was both exciting and a sigh of relief;

it was just a great feeling." Even while Davis was away from COS he still cared about the institution a great deal. When he was in San Jose, he heard the news regarding COS' accreditation. He wanted to do something to help. "When I heard the news about COS possibly losing its accreditation, I just wanted to help out in some way; I think this is a good start." Davis goes on to say that he does have experience working with athletic directors in the past, so it made for a smooth transition for him. "I have worked at three other higher learning institutions and have worked closely with other athletic directors, so the job has been what I expected it would be." Davis really felt this was the job for him because of his experience being around administrators. "With my skill set I was able to fit right into an administrative role, and was also encouraged by coaches at other schools to take this job." The job has been enjoyable for Davis so far, and he enjoys working in a fast paced environment, which is what the athletic director job entails. "I have been here for a couple months now and this job is fast paced, but I wouldn't

have it any other way." As far as the surprises that can come with being an athletic director at a junior college, Davis hasn't come across any. He knew what he was getting into. "There hasn't been any surprises, per se, because this job is really about helping the students and the coaches move their programs forward, which covers a broad spectrum." When it comes to actual goals that Davis wants accomplished in the athletic department, community was the theme. "I want to be able to produce championship-level programs that are always competitive. I also want them to make connections with the community and become a respected part of COS." Davis feels that COS athletics is in a great place and will only get better. "We are headed to an even better place than we are already in, we have veteran coaches that are respected. I just want to help them build. I see nothing but positives." When it comes to Davis' future at COS, he wants to stay and doesn't see himself going anywhere else. "I really have no motivation to ever leave, all my chips are right here at COS."


Watch sports live throughout the semester - go to to see the full schedule of broadcasts Volleyball: learning from the past STEFAN BARROS

Sports Editor


his 2013 volleyball squad is one that has a ton of potential, and is aiming to make playoffs for the first time in three years. Head coach Pete Rasmussen, who is entering his 15th season atop COS volleyball, has high hopes for his team this year, after a disappointing 2012 campaign. "This team has a lot of potential, they have a great attitude, and they have a lot of athleticism," Rasmussen said. The team team is young overall, with eight freshmen and only five sophomores. Despite how young his team is, Rasmussen does believe that this team is greatly improved over last year's team. "Last year we had a lot of players out of position, this year we have a strong defense and five or six strong offensive threats." Rasmussen does believe there is a lack of experience with some of the players, but doesn't think it will affect their perfor-


mance. "They all work really hard, and they will be able to overcome any inexperience that they may have; even the girls with experience are working really hard in practice." The identity of a team is the heartbeat, what makes a team tick, and how they will go about trying to win the entire season. Hard work will be a common theme the entire year. "This is a hardworking team that wants to win. They are all very coachable and unselfish; the girls all want to get better." There have been some pleasant surprises for Rasmussen so far in practices and in their one tournament. Sophomore Haley Laplant is one of them. "She has really surprised me; she played for me two years ago, but didn't come out last year. She is a huge weapon out there." Rasmussen believes that he has a leader on his team, and believes that she is a coach out on the floor. Her name is Bri Rupble, a sophomore setter.

"She knows what's going on out there at all times; she really understands the game. She also played for two years before playing at a JC in Texas last year." As far as the future of this team is concerned, Rasmussen feels like his team is ready to win now, and ready to compete with any team. "Right now with our team, I feel we have a chance to step on the court and compete with anybody; there's nobody in our conference we can't compete with." Realistic expectation can be different from what you want to happen in the season, but the two are pretty much the same with this team, according to Rasmussen. "Our biggest goal is to make playoffs. We've missed out the last two years, and we really want to get back there this year. That's what we're striving for."


With the start of the NFL season people are getting their fantasy teams ready. It's fair to say that fantasy football is bigger than the actual games themselves. I can attest to this. When you have a fantasy team, you find yourself rooting for players on teams that you flat out hate. You may even be rooting against your favorite team if their opponent has a player on your fantasy team. For example, I am a Dallas Cowboys Cowboys fan, and they played their first game against the New York Giants. One of my starting running backs was Giants running back David Wilson. I found myself wanting see him score a touchdown and got excited when broke out for a big run. It really is a weird feeling to be rooting against your favorite team's best interests, but that is the power of fantasy football, and the pot of money you win if you come on top in your league. Not to mention the bragging you rights you'll have over your buddies for a year. I do believe that, even though I love fantasy football, it has made it less important to win in the NFL. To a fantasy owner,they don't care if your team won, if the player racked up awesome stats, that's all that matters. It takes the emphasis off the actual game itself. I'd really like to know what NFL players think about fantasy football, because there could be some extra pressure on them. A lot of people around the country are relying on certain players to perform, and if they don't, the fantasy owners lose out on a lot of money. Well, so do the teams they play on. It is just astounding to see how much fantasy football has grown over the last 5-10 years. It went just being a fun thing to do with a couple of buddies, to an all out war amongst larger groups of people. People in the league can put however much money into the pot as the want, but the stakes keep going up. For example, in my league there's ten guys and we each put twenty dollars into the pot, so the winner will get two hundred dollars. Fantasy football really has become a runaway freight train in terms of the popularity it has gained. I think it will only get bigger over the next couple of years and the sky is really the limit for this quickly growing industry.

Sky's the limit ADRIAN RAMIREZ

Staff Writer


omen's Soccer has begun their 2013 season —their current standing, after competition in the Oxnard Seabreeze Tournament, is two ties and a loss over a combined three games. This year's team consists of more freshmen than returners. "We have four starters that are returners and seven newbies," said Osama Hamid, the team's head coach. Hamid wants his team to maintain its integrity and to see players as themselves this season; he also wants them to be competitive and make a run at the playoffs this year. "I want to continue to build a program," said Hamid. The players have been working together to prepare the team for the season. "We have the potential to be a dynamic offense," Hamid said, while talking about the team's strength. "We have to continue working on our rhythm and pace." Hamid mentioned Brittany Ontiveros, a Redwood graduate, as a standout freshman who has made an impact on the team. "She is the loudest person without talking," he said. In her first game of the season as a Giant, Brittany scored two goals. "She is really athletic and has players' respect." The team's motto this year is "The Star of the Team is the Team," Hamid said. The team will face Long Beach City College at home on Friday, Sept. 13, at 4 p.m.

FALL 2013


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FALL 2013

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