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Lariat WEDNESDAY, DEC. 6, 2017 // VOL. 50, NO. 5 LARIATNEWS.COM | FACEBOOK.COM/LARIATNEWS twitter.com/lariatnews | twitter.com/lariatsports

OPINION. Uber may soon have plans to partner with NASA. They hope to create the world’s first flying taxi service // page 6

the student voice of Saddleback College since 1968

ALLY BECKWITT/LARIAT

INDULGE IN A ‘FEAST OF LIGHTS’ The Saddleback College Choirs and Symphony holiday performance has been tradition for over 25 years! Perhaps one of the oldest traditions at Saddleback, this year’s program will highlight both old and new holiday favorites. // page 11

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You see them on campus. But who are they? Stay-athome mom turned full-time student

OPINION

SOCCCD Board of Trustees’ decision to postpone Canvas compensation causes controversy

NEWS

Strikeouts and sunflower seeds: The Gauchos baseball team gears up for next season

SPORTS

LIFE

Saddleback College fine arts dominate December with Tony Awardwinning ‘Assassins’

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News

Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017

District haults compensation

SOCCCD BOARD MEETING

Controversy in the boardroom, faculty awaits final verdict on the Canvas conversion stipend AUSTIN WEATHERMAN MANAGING EDITOR

The South Orange County Community College District’s Board of Trustees amended to postpone voting on the Faculty Association’s campus-wide Course Management System compensation stipend Monday, Nov. 13. This is the second time the board has held off from voting on the agenda item. Saddleback College is currently in transition from using Blackboard Learn to Canvas by Instructure for its web-based learning management system. The stipend is intended to compensate the labor of faculty members district-wide spent converting their classes’ online platforms from Blackboard to Canvas. The District Faculty Association and the district’s administration negotiated the stipend for five to six months according to Faculty Association President Mark Blethen. The District Administration put together a compensation for $3.6 million for the time spent converting classes to the Canvas platform by faculty members. The stipend included onetime payments of $5,000 for the conversion of fully online classes, $2,500 for hybrid classes and $1,000 for face-to-face

“This item, in my opinion, is beneath the dignity of our faculty, represents grievous overreach on their part and violates every tennent of our basic aid policy.” David B. Lang

Board of Trustees Member

classes that use Canvas for supplemental materials. Both bodies agreed upon the the compensation package, making the board’s decision to postpone the agenda item an unforeseen obstacle for many in the district. “Neither side anticipated that the board would discount or disregard the recommendation of their own professional staff when it came to a very detailed and complicated proposal,” Blethen said. “In reality, the board needed to decide whether it was right to pay faculty or not.” Controversial statements were made by several trustees at the Nov. 13 board meeting that shocked many faculty members, embodied in board of trustees member David B. Lang’s criticism of the stipend.

“This item, in my opinion, is beneath the dignity of our faculty. (It) represents grievous overreach on their part and violates every tennent of our basic aid policy,” Lang said during the board meeting. “I cannot support it.” Blethen opposed the board’s movement to postpone the vote in an email sent to faculty throughout the district informing those who weren’t in attendance or had left early that the stipend decision had been put on hold until further negotiations. The email went on to recommend faculty stop their work of converting classes to Canvas, to entirely halt the use of the learning management system and to inform their deans that they intended to teach all their classes

face to face for the spring 2018 semester. “I think he dismisses the fact that faculty across the district do a considerable amount of additional and extra work as professionals because it’s best for our students without ever seeking or asking for additional compensation,” Blethen said about Lang in an interview. “There is some deeper issues here philosophically with certain members of the board based on their comments and statements at the last meeting.” “In my opinion, it was a questionable action to delay the vote because we don’t normally negotiate stipends or other things like that,” Academic Senate President Dan Walsh said. “There were a whole bunch of stipends approved on the agenda that weren’t negotiated. One of the board members said that this was an illegal negotiation, which I found humorous because they are basically saying that their own district negotiated illegally.” The board of trustees member cited by Walsh is T.J. Prendergast III, who made the first move to postpone the stipend decision citing that the board


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vol. 50, no. 5

had received information from a mated that transitioning the plat“general council” that the pack- form of one online class would age had been negotiated illegally. take approximately 45 hours. The board will revisit the Statements made by faculty agenda item at its next meeting members teaching pilot classes Dec. 11. But how did this pro- put the number of work hours posal, created by the district it- much higher than the commitself, become such a complicated tee’s estimation. Conversions situation? take anywhere from 80-100 In 2013, Saddleback College hours. The main problems faculwas one of 24 colleges selected ty members face are the various to pilot Canvas as a part of Cal- differences between Blackboard ifornia’s Online Education Ini- and Canvas. tiative, a statewide program to “Learning a new learning provide students with online re- management system is like sources and classes to help with learning a new language,” Cubtheir educational goals, accord- bage said. “Certain programs ing to the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office website. Participation in the OEI Exchange program would grant SOCCCD schools partially free access to Canvas for their first four years, saving the district millions of dollars. Before the board of trustees approved the district’s conversion to Canvas, the Faculty Association wished to arrange a formal compensation agreement. April Cubbage The board approved the item Co-Cordinator for Online Education without its assent. Irvine Valley College was the first of the two colleges in work differently than they did on the district to transition to Can- Blackboard, forcing faculty to vas in fall 2016. The Distance learn the LMS on top of creating Education and Online Education course material.” Committee noted that IVC faculTechnical support and onety still needed time to transition on-one sessions are offered to its LMS. faculty members to further their The committee also stat- knowledge of the LMS, but the ed that updating one college’s time spent learning Canvas is CCMS before another would unpaid due to the terms of the mean that “there will be an add- faculty’s contracts. ed burden to the District to sup“The amount of money saved port both by the district from switching LMS for students,” as “the learning systems needs to be indistrict is committed” to sup- vested in training and time spent porting “the LMS decision once by the faculty,” Cubbage said. it is made,” according to meeting Former Saddleback College minutes from April 11, 2016. president Tod Burnett had statAccording to Saddleback’s ed that there would be compenco-coordinator for Online Edu- sation for the amount of work cation April Cubbage, the com- needed to convert classes over plete transition from Blackboard before he resigned last semester. to Canvas would take approxiNow the current executive mately 18 months. vice chancellor of Advancement In 2015, a Faculty Associa- and Special Projects at Brandtion-appointed workgroup esti- man University, Burnett declined

to comment on the issue. Former Faculty Association President Claire Cesareo has experienced the troubles Canvas presents firsthand: Cesareo spent over 100 hours converting one of her six classes to Canvas this summer. Cesareo said that despite the board’s statements, members of faculty do quite a lot that is not covered under their base pay like serving on committees, spending extra time on keeping their courses. Converting her classes to Canvas for free is not one of those things. “This work goes above and beyond what we are compensated for in our base salary,” Cesareo said during the public comments portion of the Nov. 13 board meeting. “Teaching an online course in community college is very different than teaching in any of the four-year institutions which provide instructional designers to take content and put it into online versions, and which also generally provide teaching assistants to facilitate the ongoing online discussions. In the community colleges, we are required to do all of this ourselves.” New faculty members would be given time to familiarize themselves with the new LMS. Established instructors have to teach their classes while learning the new LMS and converting their classes over to it. “I think my course is stellar and I believe the students benefit from all the effort put into it,” Cesareo said at the Nov. 13 board meeting. “I do it for my students and because I am a professional. But I want my work to be recognized and valued.” The Academic Senate is allotting 10 minutes to discuss to the faculty’s reimbursement for class conversions to Canvas. The board is set to vote on the stipend Dec. 11.

“The amount of money saved by the district from switching learning systems needs to be invested in training and time spent by the faculty.”

25

3

The percent of Saddleback courses that are taken online.

24

The total schools participating in California’s OEI Exchange Program.

42

The pecent increase of online education enrollment.

14

The decrease in percent of on-campus enrollment.

3.6

The maxium amount estimated in millions to be given out through the Canvas stipend.


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News

Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017

Saddleback stands with Dreamers at DACA Day ADAM GILLES NEWS EDITOR

The Saddleback College PreLaw Society hosted an informational event Nov. 8 in the Student Quad regarding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. The DACA Day event featured guest speakers including two immigration attorneys and Saddleback President Gregory Anderson. The culinary arts department provided food for guests. “Our main goal for this event was to educate and spread awareness,” said Pre-Law Society President Shirin Sami. “Hopefully create some sort of activism and be unbiased, but have the students create their own opinion of the topic.” The DACA program, announced by President Obama on June 15, 2012, granted temporary protected immigration status to almost 800,000 American residents who entered the country illegally as children. President Trump recently made the announcement to revoke the DACA program. Pre-Law Society vice president Arianna Aveni stressed that time is of the utmost importance regarding people who may be affected by the recent DACA decision. “On March 6, people will start losing their work permits and they will start getting laid off because their status will be expired,” she said. “It’s right now that it’s time for us to mobilize and move.” A number of colleges and universities have filed lawsuits against the Trump administration to oppose the cancellation of DACA. The California Attorney General filed a motion on Nov. 1 as part of a pending lawsuit to block the implementation of the DACA recision. The hearing is scheduled for Dec. 20. “Our college has a responsibility to serve students regardless of the papers they bring,” said Sad-

ADAM GILLES/LARIAT

Immigration attorney Parvin Wiliani addresses the crowd in the student quad on campus during DACA Day. dleback College President Gregory Anderson. “It’s not our business where they’re coming from, it’s our business to help them achieve their academic success.” Immigration attorney Parvin Wiliani spoke to the audience about her own experience com-

which Trump said is a “total disaster” that “implodes by itself” in 2017. Trump has also said that he will “let Obamacare fail.” According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, more than 600,000 people signed up for Obamacare plans for 2018 during the first week of open enrollment for health insurance this year, up from 415,000 during the same period last year. The final deadline for DACA recipients to renew their applications was on Oct. 5, but there are still other avenues available for financial assistance for those who may have missed that date. “A lot of students think, ‘Well I don’t think I’m qualified,’ or what their legal status is, and they get scared, and they don’t ask, and they think it’s just a dead end, and it’s not,” said Saddleback College Financial Aid Ambassador Stephanie Garcia. “We have a whole bunch of stuff that’s available to them.” Representatives from the financial aid department provided students with information regarding all of their options for assistance outside of DACA, including the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien

“Our college has a responsibility to serve students regardless of the papers they bring.” Gregory Anderson Saddleback College President

ing to America and being able to help others along their path toward U.S. citizenship. “I’m an immigrant and proud of it,” Wiliani said. “I came here with a suitcase.” Besides just cancelling the DACA program, Trump has spent the majority of his time in office when he isn’t playing golf, according to trumpgolfcount. com, attempting to cancel most of the key policies that were put in place under President Obama, such as the climate change rule for power plants, the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal, the travel and trade deal with Cuba, and “Obamacare,” of

Minors Act and the AB 540 program, which allows eligible undocumented, legal permanent residents and U.S. students to pay in-state tuition at public colleges and universities. The DREAM Act of 2017 is a bipartisan bill, introduced to Congress by Senators Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., that includes a path to citizenship for DACA recipients, undocumented residents and other people with temporary protected status who graduate from U.S. high schools, attend college, enlist in the workforce or enlist in the military. “You don’t necessarily have to have DACA to apply for the DREAM Act—that’s what we’re trying to get across here,” said Saddleback College Financial Aid Specialist Katelynn Cope. “It’s safe to apply for the DREAM Act, because that information isn’t shared with any other governmental agencies besides the Department of Education.” Immigration attorney Atoosa Vakili spoke about the importance of the need for immigrants and those who support them to take matters into their own hands and be proactive with government representatives. “One thing that I’m here to really stress with you all is that you need to be advocates on your own behalf,” Vakili said. “The Senate Democrats want to include DACA legislation into the end-of-the-year spending bill that has to be dealt with by Congress by the end of the year. So it’s very important right now, between November through December, that we show a lot of advocacy, we approach our representatives, expressing support for DACA.” More information is available at dreamers.fwd.us. A petition demanding that Congress pass the bipartisan DREAM Act can be found at dreamers.fwd.us/petition.


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vol. 50, no. 5

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First healthcare deadline approaching DANIELA SANCHEZ MULTIMEDIA EDITOR

Becoming an adult comes with various responsibilities such as building a career, time management and paying your own bills. Often times, individuals stay on their parent’s health insurance plan until age 26, but everyone’s situation is unique. Many people are not offered employer-funded health insurance, so they can apply for coverage under the Affordable Care Act of 2010. However, the open enrollment period ends December 15 so one must act quickly. People can only apply after this deadline if they qualify for a “special enrollment period,” if they want coverage to start as soon as possible, according to the ACA’s official website. To qualify outside the window for open enrollment, one must have a change in household status, like the having a baby or a death in the family, a change in residence or a loss of health insurance. The Obama Administration implemented the ACA in 2010. The policy intends to make healthcare affordable to a variety of people, even lowering costs for households at the poverty level. It also encourages new ways to create cost-effective healthcare in general. “The ACA mandates that an individual qualifies to stay on their parent’s health plan until the age of 26,” said Lee Daigle, an insurance consultant with OC Health Solutions, via an email. Saddleback College international business major Lucy Lopez, 19, is not sure when her coverage ends. “I feel like I should get started, actually, since I moved here from Mexico,” Lopez said. “That would affect me.” She does not worry about her coverage status as she is currently covered under her father’s work insurance.

PUBLIC DOMAIN/LARIAT

DEADLINE: Health insurance deadlines are coming up for those interested in applying. Animal science major Raeli Gamez, 20, is more involved with making sure her insurance is covered. She has not paid for 2018 yet because she pays her insurance through mail. “I basically pay every month for healthcare,” Gamez said. “I know how much I owe, I know how much or when I’m late.” Daigle noted there are two more periods to apply for coverage. “If an individual applies for coverage between Nov. 1 – Dec. 15, their coverage would start on Jan. 1,” Daigle said in an email. “If an individual enrolls in coverage between Dec. 16 Jan. 15, their coverage would start on Feb. 1. If an individual applies for coverage between Jan. 16 Jan. 31, their coverage would start on March 1. “ Although the ACA requires Americans to get coverage or pay a tax penalty, Daigle said the current government administration will “not impose the tax penalty” starting this year. People have the option to not buy health insurance. However, in the case that someone needs healthcare, the International Revenue Service has the power to

deduct the fees from the patient’s tax refund. At this point, the person has no say on what happens with his or her tax refund. College students who reside in California are able to get a personal health plan with Covered California during the open enrollment period, Daigle added. A childless, unmarried applicant who earns between $17,000 and $45,000 in annual income can qualify for premium assistance as long as they file their taxes and don’t claim themselves as a dependant. “If the student’s annual income is below $17,000 for the year, then they could qualify for Medi-Cal coverage, which is low or no cost insurance provided by the government,” Daigle said in an email. “Medi-Cal does not have an open enrollment period and an individual can apply at any point during the year.” Students at Saddleback College who do not have healthcare coverage can utilize the college’s Health Center as it’s open to all enrolled students. Students pay approximately $20 per semester for a health fee unless they have a fee waiver.

Saddleback Health Services Director Dr. Jeanne Harris-Caldwell shared the various services that the Center offers including diagnosis and treatment for the cold and flu. “Basically anything you would get treated at an urgent care center with the exceptions of x-rays,” Harris-Caldwell said in an email. “So colds, flus, sore throats, women’s health including birth control and pap test, STD testing, pregnancy testing, wart removal, skin tag removal, cuts and lacerations, minor burns, ear and eye infections – pretty much any short term illness including rashes.” The Center also treats students who have urgent or emergent medical issues without an appointment during the hours it is open. “It is free to see a medical doctor, registered nurse or therapist once you have paid your health fee,” Harris-Caldwell said. “Prescriptions and laboratory services may have additional low-cost fees for services.” For further information, there is a Covered California Health Insurance Enrollment Fair today in the Quad.


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Opinion

Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017

Lariat “Saddleback’s student-run newspaper since 1968” Editor-in-Chief Colin Reef Managing Editor Austin Weatherman News Editor Adam Gilles Opinion Editors Ally Beckwitt Life Editors Maria Marquez Diana Tomseth Sports Editor Hanna Peterson DJ McAllister Media Editor Daniela Sanchez Copy Editor Sam Price Staff Writer Joseph Fleming Faculty Advisers Tim Posada MaryAnne Shults Instructional Assistant Ali Dorri

phone: 949-582-4688 email: lariateditor@gmail.com web: www.lariatnews.com address: 28000 Marguerite Parkway, Mission Viejo CA, 92692 For The Record The Lariat is committed to accuracy. To reach us, call 949-582-4688 or email us at lariateditor@gmail.com. Please specify if you are referring to content from the newspaper or the website. Contributions The Lariat gladly accepts contributions in the form of guest articles from students and letters to the editor from anybody involved in the Saddleback College community. Please submit any articles or letters to lariatnews@gmail.com. Advertising The Lariat offers advertisers many opportunities to reach a diverse audience through color or black and white ads. For rates, call 949-582-4688 or email lariatadvertising@gmail.com. On The Web

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A stay-at-home mom at school DIANA TOMSETH LIFE EDITOR

You’ve seen women like me on campus with our cap sleeve dresses or workout gear, comfy shoes and hair either in a messy bun or down in beach waves. We look more like mommy bloggers on Instagram versus the “just out of high school” college students. Sometimes we look lost. We can look out of place, but we are exactly where we belong. We are moms. And we are going back to school. Perhaps it’s no surprise that 4.8 million college students are parents—71 percent of are mothers—according to a 2014 study by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. I am in my mid-30s, and I am one of them. I am old enough to be some of your mothers. So what is a middle-aged woman doing back in school? Well, I am here for some of the same reasons as many of you: to learn as much possible so I can land a job in my field. Since I was 8 years old, I have wanted to be a journalist. And I headed towards that path. I attended Cal State Long Beach and earned my bachelor’s in communication, landed an internship at KABC-TV Los Angeles and my first job was working for a newspaper in Arizona. But after all that hard work, I took a long break. It’s been 13 years since I first stepped foot into a classroom. But after being a stay-at-home mommy for 10 years, it was time to go back. A lot has changed in my field thanks to advances in technology, so I needed to update my skills. A community college right down the street was a great way to get the experience I needed while being close to home. At Saddleback College, over 37 percent of students are ages 25 and up, with 25 to 64 year olds making up 35 percent.

Saddleback College offers resources for student parents including the Re-Entry Center, an on-campus daycare and day and night classes are offered, making it easier for moms to choose classes that work for their schedules. Moms go back to school for a variety of reasons, especially financial ones, making it more necessity than choice. One group of student mothers struggles more than others. Two million of them are single, many of whom don’t receive support from a spouse or partner. Single mothers re-entering the

What’s it like at home? Loud. Lots of chaos. The kids need diaper changes, food, hugs and kisses. They need BandAids when they get hurt, advice on how to deal with that bully at school, help with homework, doctor appointments, sports practices and games, help with school, lunches, carpool, plays. Moms are tired. We are exhausted. Somehow we have to fit in time to clean the house, make dinner and study. It is not easy. But, still as hard as it is, kids are not a burden, they are our whole lives. We would do anything for them. They do require a lot of time, love and patience. And help is needed so moms can attend class, study and do homework. If babysitting is too expensive, moms can reach out to grandparents, friends, family for support. To make the decision to go back to school is a big commitment. But we are moms. We are warriors. We are resilient. The point is to be an example to your children. To show them they can follow their dreams and goals. To show them perseverance. And to show yourself you are capable of so much more than you realize. You can do hard things with obstacles all around you. You have school, someday you will have a job. It will all be worth it. All the long nights, reports, studying and writing papers. So be kind to the moms and dads sitting next to you in class. Most likely, they had to make dinner, help with homework, attend their kids’ school sports, take their kids to appointments, deal with tantrums and diapers, all while going to school and doing all that they have to do at home. They are tired, overwhelmed and hope all of this time away from their children will pay off.

To make the decision to go back to school is a big commitment. But we are moms. We are warriors. We are resilient. workforce aren’t graduating at the same rate as married mothers who have support, according to recent studies by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. I am lucky to have the support from my parents and husband. I have four small children. Yes. That is not a typo: four. They range in age from 10 years to 9 months old, and they are all beautiful and amazing, of course. With three boys and one girl, plus myself and my husband, we have a very full house. Making the decision to go back to school is a big commitment. Attempting to study while in the loud house is difficult. Many more fast food dinners. More TV watching than I would like. Less fun than we are used to having. I was always available at the drop of the hat, but now my children must learn patience. And they have been. It’s hard, but they’re very proud of Mama.


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vol. 50, no. 5

“Looking around at all the Christmas lights.”

“Putting up the tree, then putting up decorations on it with the family.”

Mariah Navanjo 25 | mathematics

“As a Mexican, we open up our presents at midnight on Christmas Eve.”

“To make Christmas cookies.”

Rylee Argue 18 | liberal arts

“Singing Christmas songs with my family like ‘Jingle Bell Rock.’”

“Getting matching clothes with my family, honestly. We go and get matching sweaters, shirts or pajama pants that are Christmas themed.”

Trevor Johnston 18 | undeclared

“It’s nice to just get the day off, no homework, no school, no work, a day to relax, hanging out with family.”

Bonnie Swartz 22 | nursing

What is your favorite holiday tradition? Dolpher Hernandez 19 | marine biology

Uber signed a Space Act Agreement with NASA collaborating to create an “unmanned traffic management system” for their flying taxis design, called uberAIR, on Wednesday, Nov. 8. Uber’s chief product officer Jeff Holden made the announcement at the Web Summit technology conference in Lisbon, Portugal. “These are exactly the kind of partners we need to make uberAIR a reality,” Holden said of NASA. “Doing this safely and efficiently is going to require a foundational change in airspace management technologies.” Last April at the Elevate Summit, Uber partnerships had already been revealed with aviation companies as well as Dallas, Texas and Dubai, working to bring flying cars to those cities According to CNBC, Uber trusts that flying cars are necessary to protecting their business. Uber believes that flight will be apart of daily lives and that they will be able to offer flying car rides for the same price as an UberX, already projecting to make hour and a half car rides into 30 minute flights. The plan is to have a fully functioning uberAIR by 2023. They’ll rely on high traffic areas, low altitude flights and vertical takeoff and landing vehicles technology, or “VTOL.” In 2019, recommendations from Uber and partners will be given to the Federal Aviation Administration. According to CNN, the FAA will then regulate the best approach towards establishing these air trafficking systems. Testing will take place in Los Angeles, in 2020, with Uber’s goal in mind to be “several years ahead” of transporting services

for the 2028 Olympics, also in LA. Along with uberAIR, the billion dollar company has also devoted time and money into self-driving cars, looking to be ahead of the transportation game in the sky and on land. “If you’re not planting the seeds 5-10 years out,” Holden said, “you have no company in five to 10 years.” Transportation in LA alone is outrageous, with the 2028 Summer Games in addition it’ll be straight up atrocious. Uber is a multibillion-dollar ridesharing app, actively trying to stay on top. But there are a lot more current issues in our country, let alone the world, that need to be attended to before tackling the complications of traffic. Some of these include the Flint, Michigan Water Crisis, the violence in Chicago, or the thousands of those who are homeless. We need to stop forgetting about victims of the three hurricanes in the past year, a month after they happen, rather than look a decade ahead into transportation concerns. Let’s think of others before The Jetsons. NASA is the best of the best, but this VTOL technology is an accident waiting to happen. Any transportation, whether in the sky or on land, has a chance of a problem occurring. No one wants to see anyone get hurt, especially during such a globally anticipated event such as the Olympics. This outlook should be taken into consideration, especially when everything that goes up must come down. Let’s focus on resolving these problems on the ground, before getting lost in the clouds.

Analisa Arrington 21 | liberal arts

STAFF WRITER

Jessie Nanora 19 | biology

JOSEPH FLEMING

ampus comments

Brandon Breeze 20 | computer science

NASA, Uber collaborate– We really don’t need this

7

“Eating cinnamon rolls for breakfast with my family.”


8

Feature

Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017

ADAM GILLES/LARIAT

REHAB: Margie Fleitman (left) and members of the Solace Foundation talks to event attendees about the dangers of opioid use, providing information about their support group. The convention (top right) aims to eliminate the stigma of drug usage. A film still from “The Long Way Back,” a documentary about the life of Sublime’s former lead singer Bradly Nowell.

Opioid addiction hits heart of OC ADAM GILLES NEWS EDITOR

AUSTIN WEATHERMAN MANAGING EDITOR

Margie Fleitman awoke June 10, 2010 thinking she was going to take her son Mitchell, 22, to rehab. The former Saddleback automotive student struggled with opioid use for some time, realizing he wanted to shake drugs and get his life back in order. Fleitman found her son dead in his room from an accidental overdose the previous evening. Fleitman said her son wanted to use heroin one more time before getting clean. The death of her son devastated the Fleitman family, but she did not let Mitchell’s passing control how she was going to live the rest of her life. Following her son’s death, Fleitman co-founded the Solace Foundation, a support group for families and individuals struggling with the effects of drug addiction. “Through my loss and grief, I just tried to survive it somehow. So I started reaching out to other families who have had this happen to them to prevent other overdoses,” Fleitman said. “I co-founded this support group that meets every Wednesday. We support families who have lost a loved one and those who are struggling with it.” The Solace Foundation joined the anti-opioid conference “Problems and Solutions” at

the Laguna Hills Community Center Thursday, Nov. 30. Event sponsors Strength in Support and Pacific Solstice hosted several speakers, including Jim Nowell, father of deceased Sublime guitarist and lead singer Bradley Nowell, as well as providing booths to various organizations aiming to end the opioid crisis. Purdue Pharma first introduced OxyContin to the general public in 1996 It made $45 million in sales its first year of business. The drug was often given to individuals in hospice, aiding people with chronic pain.

“As long as there’s breath, there’s hope.” Margie Fleitman Co-Founder of the Solace Foundation

in 2000 the Department of Veterans Affairs adopted the drug as a way to treat soldiers returning from foreign deployment. The Nowell Family Foundation was part of the group organizing the event. Bradley Nowell died of a heroin overdose in 1996. “The Long Way Back,” a film about Sublime’s influence during the early stages of the opioid epidemic , was screened at the event. The film portrayed the glamorization of drug use in the music industry.

“If all people ever hear about is the glamorous side of drug use and addiction then they’re going to want to be a part of that,” Nowell’s sister Kellie said. “For some people, it just grabs a hold and doesn’t let go, and that’s a huge waste, whether it’s somebody who is a librarian or somebody who is a multi-platinum musician. That’s what we’re trying to help.” According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons’ 2017 statistics, almost half of all people incarcerated in federal prisons were convicted for drug offenses. African Americans account for 50 percent of State and local prisoners incarcerated for drug crimes. African American youth are also 10 times as likely to be arrested for drug crimes as white youth despite a 2011 report published in the Archives of General Psychiatry that whites are more likely to abuse drugs. Retired police Lt. Cmdr. Diane Goldstein with Law Enforcement Action Partnership would like the US government to adopt a drug policy similar to the country of Portugal, which decriminalized the use of all drugs in 2001. While the drugs themselves are still illegal, Portugal treats drug possession and drug use in small quantities as a public health issue instead of a criminal issue. Since adopting these measures 13 years ago, Portugal reduced the number of adult drug overdose deaths to 3 for every


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vol. 50, no. 5

Opioid Factoids

National Opioid Overdose Epidemic •

• • • •

Drug overdose is the leading cause of accidental death in the US, with 52,404 lethal drug overdoses in 2015. Opioid addiction is driving this epidemic, with 20,101 overdose deaths related to prescription pain relievers, and 12,990 overdose deaths related to heroin in 2015. The overdose death rate in 2008 was nearly four times the 1999 rate; sales of prescription pain relievers in 2010 were four times those in 1999. In 2012, 259 million prescriptions were written for opioids, which is more than enough to give every American adult their own bottle of pills. Four in five new heroin users started out misusing prescription painkillers.

94% of respondents in a 2014 survey of people in treatment for opioid addiction said thechose to use heroin because prescription opioids were “far more expensive and harder to obtain. Source: American Society of Addiction Medicine

1,000,000 citizens in 2015. “We’ve known for years what the cure for drug abuse is: public health strategies,” Goldstein said. “Simply from an economic standpoint, we know that the drug war is a failure, and so the trillions of dollars and the millions of people that we’ve arrested and criminalized has done little to stop the flow of drugs in our communities.” Goldstein advocates for addicts who receive drugs on a prescription basis and use the drugs in monitored facilities. She gave her thoughts on claims that decriminalization and monitored use would turn the U.S. government into a bunch of drug dealers. “We’re already drug dealers at this point,” Goldstein said. “Let’s just take a look at the history of the CIA, or even the DEA. I mean, our country, in attempting to stop drugs from coming into our country, has in fact collaborated with horrific cartels in order to flip them. They’ve allowed certain cartels to freely bring drugs in so that they could get information in order to arrest other people. Our government’s hands are not clean on this issue.” According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, drug overdose death rates nearly tripled from 1999-2014, but one antidote on the market can bring down the number of casualties. Fleitman is a certified Naloxone trainer. She teaches individuals how to administer Naloxone, a medication designed to reverse the effects of opioid overdoses. The So-

lace Foundation has helped 600-700 families according to Fleitman. Before creating the foundation, she visited several support groups for families that have lost a child. Despite being surrounded by others that understand the feeling of loss, Fleitman said she felt like people judged her son for using drugs. She said her support group in Mission Viejo is past the stigma and ready to solve problems. “They realize that there are people living in their own neighborhoods that are struggling with this too and they realize that instead of hiding, they can come out, become empowered, learn from others and support each other,” Fleitman said. “As long as there’s breath, there’s hope.” Fewsmith dealt with opioid addiction in the 1970s while living in New York.. Fewsmith said he has been clean and sober for 27 years and that many individuals at that time were driven to hard drugs by past traumas or victims of sexual abuse. “I was a victim of sexual abuse, and like many people who suffered such an event I had PTSD. I learned to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol,” Fewsmith said. “That quickly escalated. I found myself addicted to opioids. That was a long and horrifying time of hopelessness and self-shame. The thing that I did to stay alive is the same thing that turned against me.” Fewsmith has practiced psychotherapy in the Mission Viejo area for the past 20 years. One of Fewsmith’s first experiences Fewsmith of the worsening opioid crisis occurred when

9

two of his teenage patients said they were using drugs with their friends. The students told Fewsmith they had used Oxycontin and that the group they were in used it as well. 52,000 people died of drug overdoses in 2015 according to the American Society of Addiction Medicine. In comparison, 58,000 military personnel died in the Vietnam War. Fewsmith is optimistic about helping individuals who struggle with addiction and says that addiction is curable. “Addiction is a terrible and dangerous disease,” Fewsmith said. “But as serious as it is, it is completely treatable. So if anyone is suffering from addiction or knows someone who is, please seek professional assistance. Be careful where you seek it from — there are a lot of bad players in this industry, but there are a lot of competent mental health professionals that want to get you the help you need.” For Tom Buckley, director of business development and community relations for Pacific Solstice and Community Outreach for Strength in Support, the evening’s message hit close to home. “I was born into addiction,” Buckley said. “My dad died when I was in fifth grade from an overdose. My brother killed himself a year later from mental illness and then I, in my teens, started my own journey of addiction.” Buckley said becoming a social worker and drug and alcohol counselor has been his calling since kicking his own drug addiction 13 years ago. He believes that time is of the essence in the treatment and rehabilitation of drug addicts. “I lost my father and I lost my best friend and my brothers currently on the street, so when someone has the motivation to get help you have to strike, you have to get them help immediately,” Buckley said. “I’ve seen more real treatment happen in skid row and in jail than anywhere else.” Buckley spent a decade in LA county and skid row working as a social worker. He also worked three years as a drug and alcohol counselor in the LA county jails. Buckley believes that addicts who are the most down on their luck are the easiest to connect with and treat. “The inmates were so thankful to have someone who was willing to talk about the root of their issues and 90 percent of those guys were just like you and I and just had horrible horrible luck and were born on the shitty end of the stick,” Buckley said. “A lot of those guys just have poor, poor environments and just not a chance in the world, and they wanted anyone to connect with, anyone, and that’s what a big part of that was, was connection, making them feel human.”


10

Life

Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017

Finals Week: Let the studying begin Top five study tips from Saddleback professors DANIELA SANCHEZ MULTIMEDIA EDITOR

Finals are nearing. While others are preparing for the holidays, Saddleback students will be gearing up for finals week that will begin Dec. 14 through the 20. Here are the top five study tips according to Saddleback professors. 1) Find a study partner Jillian Chapman, a 26-yearold English major, tutors students in humanities at the Learning Resource Center at Saddleback. She said studying with other people is helpful because everyone has certain learning types. Some are visual learners, while others are auditory learners. Self quizzing also gives students insight on what concepts they need to focus on. For her, she likes to collect her notes from class and rewrite them. “Just the act of physically writing it down helps your brain to remember the information better than just reading it off a screen or book,” Chapman said. 2) Choose classes depending on finals schedule Math Instructor Larry Perez gave advice that we could all use before picking classes. Most students choose what goes best with their sleeping habits and work schedule. However Perez said that this is not the way to go. Doing the best on your finals actually depends on what day your finals are scheduled. The trick is to choose classes with final exam periods that do not overlap on the same day. Having multiple finals on the same day is not ideal be-

DANIELA SANCHEZ/LARIAT

NOTES GALORE : Taking many notes and reviewing throughout the year is best way to keep the material fresh all semester long, so when finals come along, there is no panic. cause there is not enough study time for each subject. When choosing your classes look on the description to find out the dates of the finals. Choose classes where there is enough time to study between final exams. “Start talking to your employers and ask if you could take time off,” Perez said. 3) Focus on time management He learned the self study and disciplined habits while he was in the navy. Perez also advised students pace out their study sessions, for math, the test dates are given out ahead of time. So write the dates on a calendar and and make study periods for each test. Perez has a website called algebra2go where students can look up notes, practice quizzes, video lectures and other college math resources. 4) Utilize your classroom resources/ Google Docs Math instructor Karla West-

phal got all of her students to write their contact numbers on a list on the first day of class. “There is a place for students to list their name, phone, email, and also to indicate whether they are interested in forming a study group.” Westphal said. “Signing it is entirely optional, as I know and respect that some students may prefer not to give out their contact information.” This list that everyone has access to eliminates all the anxiety built up when you attempt to make a study group. Students also can find someone to call if you are running late or missing class. With this list students are able to create a collaborative google doc. Google Docs is a service from Google that allows you to make written projects that one can access on any computer with internet. Google docs is available on your phone, so students can write essays on

the go . One can also share their documents with fellow students and work on the same document simultaneously. 5) Review notes consistently Students can write their own share of notes throughout the semester. So anyone who didn't understand the lecture or missed on on class can use it to their advantage. It is also good for collaborating on projects and midterms. It is very handy to have flashcards, jot down when the professor has said something you know you’ll forget or key phrases that the instructor repeats. The accumulation of flashcards over the semester will end up as study set that took minimal effort to make. This next tip is also based off of consistency. Read the lecture notes everyday as it adds up. Students can avoid cramming because they are constantly familiarized with the class material.


lariatnews.com

vol. 50, no. 5

11

The 25-year ‘Feast of Lights’ tradition returns Kick-off the holiday season with Saddleback’s Choirs and Symphony ALLY BECKWITT OPINION EDITOR

Saddleback College’s Choir and Symphony performed A Feast of Lights in the McKinney Theatre from Dec. 1-3. This holiday concert kicked off December with different Christmas songs in which the choir and symphony performed both together and separately. There were two separate conductors for the night, Yorgos Kouritas and Scott Farthing. Kouritas is the Director of Instrumental Studies at Saddleback and Farthing is the chair for the department of music and also a tenured music professor teaching voice classes, applied voice, choir, musical theatre and in the Honors Program. The two swapped places as conductors throughout the night depending on which piece it was and who was playing in it. The night started off with “Festival First Nowell” which is a traditional piece, the symphony was already seated and as they started the piece the choir slowly entered the theatre singing along. They surrounded the whole audience, creating a big circle around them as they sang. Then towards the end of the song they slowly filed onto the stage. The concert then proceeded with 11 other songs, each different holiday classics, some per-

ALLY BECKWITT/LARIAT

‘TIS THE SEASON: The chair for the department of music, Scott farthing and the conductor, Yorgus Kouritas continue the holiday tradition through chorus and orchestra. formed by both groups together as well as each music group separately. Then before the final song, the choir included a Feast of Lights Sing Along, where the crowd could stand and sing together with the choir holiday classic songs. The sing along included songs like “Jingle Bells,” “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” and “Up on the Housetop.” One of the two pianists for the night, Catherine Tibbitts, arranged each of the five songs. “My favorite piece was the Feast of Lights Sing Along,” Isaac Mordiani said, tenor. “It was a lot of fun having the audience sing along with us and I think it brought joy to us all.” “The Twelve Days After Christmas” was one of the songs that only the choir presented. This song is a humorous piece about the 12 days

after Christmas, instead of before, and it is all the things that happen when something very bad happens on Christmas day. “My favorite piece is probably ‘The Twelve Days After Christmas,’” Seani Zeni said, an alto in the choir. “We are supposed to look all serious and professional when the lyrics are really funny and you can hear the crowd laughing, which means we did our job.” Along with sing alongs and classic holiday songs, there was also a special guest soloist piece with John Huntington, an award-winning stage and musical director and choral conductor. Huntington performed in this piece, acting as if the narrator of the story. A Feast of Lights overall is different from the rest of the music performances through-

out the year. This concert has a different dynamic to it because the choirs and the symphonies come together to perform together for the holidays. “Feast of Lights in my opinion is so much different than other concerts,” Brandon Rashtian, tenor section leader for the choir, said. The concert was concluded with a decorated reception area where the audience could enjoy treats and talk with the performers. “It doesn’t simply entertain one of our senses. Feast of Lights provides an amazing experience to our audience with music, visuals, and even food. My favorite part of the Feast of Lights is simply talking with the audience once the concert is finished and hearing the reactions to the music we’ve just made.”


12

Life

Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017

COLIN REEF/LARIAT THE SHOOTING GALLERY: The entire Saddleback College fine arts cast sing as they finish the first act (left). Lee Harvey Oswald and the proprietor mull over the harsh realities and disillusionment of the American Dream.

Tony Award-winning ‘Assassins’ kill it COLIN REEF

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

The Department of Theatre Arts at Saddleback College presents “Assassins,” on Dec. 1st-10th in the Studio Theatre. A book by John Weidman, from an idea by Charles Gilbert Junior and music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. Multiple Tony Award-winning theatrical tour-de-force, “Assassins” combines Sondheim’s signature blend of intelligently stunning lyrics and beautiful music with a panoramic story of our nation’s culture of celebrity and the violent means some will use to obtain it, embodied by America’s four successful and five would-be presidential assassins. Bold, original, disturbing and alarmingly funny, “Assassins” is perhaps the most controversial musical ever written. “Stephen Sondheim’s score explores the country’s would-be presidential assassins motivations, from John Wilkes Booth to John Hinckley, but also, in its pungent use of American histo-

ry, burrows deep into the national character that bred them,” said Edwin McCormick who plays the proprietor gun salesman who provides the characters with their weapons at the beginning of the show. Portrayed as pathetic, sometimes comically deluded misfits on their own, they become the symbol of a much larger problem in our country. Each one of the assassins feels that he or she has been promised the American dream in some way or another. They believe that if one works hard enough in life, they can succeed and become rich and famous. But this isn’t always possible, and it hasn’t been for these characters. “Assassins” is not an attempt to pardon or make light of the men and women who made these assassination attempts,” Director Mark McQuown said. “It tells their stories so that the audience might see the other aspects of their lives and surroundings - the injustices, disillusionments, and personal hardships that led each of them to attempt

an assassination of a U.S. President, looking to exact some kind of revenge for perceived wrongs committed against them or against our country.” In a song toward the end of the show, the narrator character, who acts as a voice of reason, converses with the assassins. He answers their desperate pleas with dialogue that states that the nation feels foolish against the reality of their lonely lives. But the assassins overwhelm his hopeful narrative with another melody. It becomes a dark, twisted version of a patriotic ballad. They become the singers of their own national anthem. An anthem for the losers, the downtrodden, and the angry people who feel they have been denied the prize they were promised. As we watch them, we begin to become aware that these outsiders have found a terrifying meaning in the American dream. The meaning they choose to believe is that when the riches and success don’t come to fruition, violence is the only thing that will make them

famous. In the final scene, John Wilkes Booth quotes “Death of a Salesman,” another play about North American disillusionment, when he says to Lee Harvey Oswald that “attention must be paid” to the lost, the struggling, and the disenfranchised. “The only way that these characters achieve that attention is by committing an unthinkable act that will ensure they are remembered. Hated in the eyes of the American people, but remembered,” McCormick said. The great thing about theater is that it can force us to confront and examine the darkest parts of ourselves in the confines of a dark room, in the safety of what is essentially made up. It can show us people whose actions seem unmistakebly monstrous and put us temporarily in their shoes, so that we might understandwhat motivates them. It is only by facing these people and experiencing this radical empathy that we can hope to change.


lariatnews.com

vol. 50, no. 5

13

Jordan Robart vaults into track season other and learning from one another has taught him how to train properly and in a way that is most comfortable for the splints. “Back in high school the team was much larger,” Robart says. “The smaller team in college is really helping me on a more personal level. It’s easier to improve and work on the little things.” Pole vault may not be a contact sport, but Robart has had his fair share of incidents. He snapped two poles, one of which bounced from

The freshmen finds “it’s easier to improve” in a smaller program MARIA MARQUEZ LIFE EDITOR

When talking about a runway, most think of a fashion show. Saddleback Freshman Jordan Robart is used to something a little different. A runway nonetheless, but one that is narrow and lead by a giant pole that ends with a trampoline like landing pad. “Back in high school I didn’t know what I wanted to do during the track season,” Robart says. “I noticed pole vault and thought it was unique. Once I joined the team I fell in love with the sport. The coaching staff and just the uniqueness of the sport really got me dedicated.” Unique for sure, Robart spends about two hours at team practice and then works out another two hours on his off days. This sport really tests Robart in a lot of aspects such as patience, tolerance, and agility. The frustration builds when he is trying to reach a new height and is off by inches. In High School, Robart dedicated a lot of his time to perfecting his jump and run, so much that he became one of the pole vault captains at Aliso Niguel High School. This feat did not come easy on a team of over a hundred people, but joining the Saddleback track and field team has changed the atmosphere he was so used too. This season will be Robart’s first season with the Gauchos and although the season has not started yet he is already learning a lot from his teammates. Robart got a shin splints injury that still re-occurs to this day when training in High School. Having such a small group teaching each

“The coaching staff and just the uniqueness of the sport really got me dedicated.” Jordan Robart

COURTESY OF JORDAN ROBART

JUMP OFF : Freshman Jordan Robart does some test jumps for the upcoming season in hopes of beating his own record.

the landing box and hit him on the back of the head leaving a mild concussion. With poles made of fiberglass and carbon fibers, they are sensitive when not used properly. The biggest challenge Robart has faced is patience. He changes his form until developing the one that works for him. There are so many small details that have to be taken into consideration in order for jump run to be executed safely. “Over the years my form has evolved based on what I’ve seen that works and doesn’t and sometimes it’s frustrating because you think you’ll never get it right,” Robart says. Robart has a few things he plans to work on this season and, hopes to beat his own personal jumping record. He plans on reaching a 13 foot jump and improving his runway takeoff in order to reach that goal. And most importantly he wants to be an asset to the Gauchos.


14

Sports

Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017

Gauchos take over first and second all-conference teams this season To receive this honor, players are selected by all coaches in the division HANNA PETERSEN SPORTS EDITOR

The National Division Southern League all-conference teams were posted on Saturday, Nov. 25 starring 19 of Saddleback College’s football players with seven Gauchos making the first team and 12 on the second team. The Southern California Football Association regulates all 37 communiy college football programs in Southern California and was in charge of posting the all-conference teams. The seven that made the first team included offensive center Babak Ghadaksaz, offensive tackle Tim Anderson, wide receiver Clinton Allen, running back Emari Demercado, defensive end Chris Evagues, safety Donte Hamilton and kick returner DaQu’an Davis. “It’s a pretty cool deal to be noticed as one of the best in the conference because there’s a lot of talent too,” Allen said. He is no stranger to all-conference teams, though, being recognized his junior and senior years with Bishop Blanchet High School’s football program, as well as making all-state his senior year. In order to make the all-conference teams, players have to be recognized and hand selected by all the coaches in the division. Earning a unanimous spot on the all-conference first team means those players will have a chance to make the all-state team later on in the year. Of the seven making the first team, three Gauchos earned this prestigious honor including Clinton Allen, Emari Demercado and Donte Hamilton. There were also 12 Gauchos who made the all-conference second team including quarterbacks Cam Humphrey and Max Gilliam, outside linebacker Korey Mariboho, kicker Mateo Thompson, all-purpose back Chris Spiering, defensive tackle Kimani Keith, defensive end Jake Hudson, linebackers Zachary Brumbaugh and Brad Toepfer,

AUSTIN WEATHERMAN/LARIAT

TAMING THE BEAST: Emari Demercado fends off a Golden West defender as makes his his way down field during the Homecoming game.

cornerbacks Darryl Wyrick and Kyle Corder and punter Harrison Avila. “It’s nice to have someone acknowledge that you worked hard,” Corder said. “It’s cool to get an award.” Missing two conference games due to injuries, Corder said he could have played stronger if those injuries had not held him back but is still excited he made the team. This is his first time being recognized for an all-conference team. Being recognized for an all-conference

“During the summer we had a lot more depth but for the overall season I think we did good for the guys that we had.” Kyle Corder

team shows coaches and recruiters how each player did throughout the season rather than with just one single game. “It helps to show more of your potential since you’re one of the top players,” Demercado said. “I’m pretty sure coaches recognize

that.” Jake Hudson has already committed to the University of Toledo. Other players like Allen are getting official and unofficial offers thanks to making the all-conference teams. “I got my first offer a couple weeks ago from Middle Tennessee State,” Allen said. “I’ve had a couple coaches talk to me but no other official offers yet.” Allen plans to stay at Saddleback another year to get his associate degree before transferring. The Gauchos as a team finished the season with a 8-3 record. Saddleback football made it to the first round of playoffs where they played the undefeated Fullerton College Hornets and lost 33-21. “During the summer we had a lot more depth but for the overall season I think we did good for the guys that we had,” Corder said. The football team had close to 20 players move on to other programs by the end of the 2016 season, many of which were all-conference and all-state players. The first official signing day is scheduled for Wednesday, Dec. 20. This is just the beginning for possible athletic transfers. Players and coaches will be communicating with other schools for transfer offers and scholarships and will be doing so throughout the year. There are also more signing days down the line for all athletic teams.


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Join the OC News Team (attached to JRN 106 Video Journalism), the Lariat newspaper and website (one of four News Media Production courses), or Orange Appeal (JRN 125 Magazine Journalism). Visit OCNewsTeam.com, LariatNews.com, or OrangeAppeal.org. www.orangeappeal.org • 37


16

Sports

Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017

‘Play in May’: baseball preview Saddleback baseball coach, Sommer McCarney and his team gear up for the spring DJ MCALLISTER

CO-SPORTS EDITOR

For baseball fans, fall usually means one thing: October baseball. The playoffs. The World Series. The Major League Baseball season is typically over by the end of October or early November. But for Saddleback College Gauchos baseball team, fall brings about the beginning of their season. Although they don’t begin the regular season until Feb. 1 against Santa Barbara Community College, the Gauchos have been working since early September in hopes of a successful season. Head Coach Sommer McCartney and his staff have been overseeing and helping the development of their players throughout the whole offseason program. “The guys are working hard, the offseason program is more like an evaluation period. We have a lot of new faces, a lot of new freshman, but, you’re also trying to develop what you have, and so far they’re working pretty hard and showing signs of being competitive.” McCartney said. “We test them when they come in, their body fat, their strength, their explosiveness. We work on that in the weight room three days a week. We’re on the field, we’re practicing five days a week and working on every aspect of their game to make them better. ”

DJ MCALLISTER/LARIAT

DUEL ON THE DIAMOND: The Gauchos compete in an intra-team scrimmage as part of their offseason program. The black and cardinal squads were chosen by player captains. Player development is so crucial to any sport, whether it be at a youth or professional level. All of the hard work put in when nobody’s watching will hopefully pay off when every pitch matters. Although development is the main focus at the junior college level, there are still games to be won. “Obviously we want to be competitive, but also our goal is to help them move on to the next level. Trying to develop their strengths and their weaknesses at the same time.” Said McCartney. “We talk about goals, and what are guys’ plans, the whole objective is to get to next level. I think winning is by product of developing players. If everyone is working to get better and play at the next level whether it’s to get drafted or play division I or II, and that should be enough motivation already.” The Gauchos have the potential to be pretty dangerous on offense, while having a solid pitching staff. Having a balance

of production is key to staying consistent during the season. “I think when schools recruit a ball player, they want recruit someone who can handle the bat and hit, not bunt. That’s west coast baseball, really small ball kind of stuff,” McCartney said. “A big plus is our pitching has been pretty outstanding. We have a saying, play in May. If we can stay healthy, I think we can compete with anybody, I like our chances. We’ve made the playoffs the last six years in a row, and I expect us to play in May, that’s when playoffs start.” While everybody must do their part if the Gauchos plan on making the playoffs, McCartney expects sophomore catcher Brett Auerbach to be right in the middle of the team’s success. “Brett Auerbach was first team all-conference last year. He’s not the most vocal guy, but I think he’s going to be a leader type. It’s nice having a catcher,

a guy behind the plate, be that leader. I think the pitchers like throwing to him, he’ll also hit in the middle of our lineup. He does a lot of good things for us.” At the collegiate level, athletes are required to excel not only at their sport, but also in the classroom. Being a student athlete is not easy by any stretch of the imagination. Coach McCartney wanted to make a special acknowledgement that his team is not only putting in hard work on the diamond, but also in their academics. “Five out of the six years we’ve had over a 3.0 GPA. These guys go to study hall every week, they do their three hours. We have a lot of bright student athletes. I’ve been really impressed with how these guys have done academically.” Hopefully the squad’s commitment to all-around excellence will result in a rewarding season on the field and beyond.

Vol 50 issue 5  
Vol 50 issue 5  

Lariat is the student-run news publication covering Saddleback College, part of the South Orange County Community College District.

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