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The independent student voice of PCC. Serving Pasadena since 1915




WHAT’S INSIDE: RECORDS See how vinyl records are making a comeback in a digital world. PAGE 8>>


January 30, 2014

Grand opening draws hundreds

Benjamin Simpson/Courier The crowd outside the west entrance during the dedication ceremony for the Center for the Arts building on Jan. 23. While the building opened for classes in the fall of 2013, the official dedication ceremony took place in front of the arts building Thursday evening and was. Samantha Molina Staff Writer

Hundreds gathered to celebrate the offiicial grand opening of the Center for the Arts during the ribbon cutting ceremony on Thursday Jan. 23. Attendants had the opportunity to tour the building including classes, student displays and exhibits. The grand opening also included musical performances

from the solo pianists and piano ensembles, jazz singers, brass quintet, guitar ensemble, and the Lancer Jazz Big Band. In attendance was Pasadena Mayor Bill Bogaard, Vice-Mayor Jacque Robinson, Congresswoman Judy Chu, Assemblymen Chris Holden, the PCC Board of Trustees, the PCC Foundation Board, the Pasadena Chamber of Commerce, members of the Art Alliance, the Citizen’s Oversight

Committee and members of the community. Also in attendance was Academy Award-nominated director and PCC alumnus John Singleton who gave a short speech about his experience at PCC. “My first film classes were here at PCC,” Singleton said. “The first time I ever had a chance to access equipment and formulate my dreams of becoming a filmmaker began here so for me

to come here and see this new facility dedicated to the arts fostering creativity to a whole new generation of students just really warms my heart.” Designed by AC Martin architects, the Center for the Arts brings art and music together with its 14 classrooms and 3 performance spaces: the Robert and Adrienne Westerbeck Recital

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Increased enrollment may promise more funding Christine Michaels Editor-in-Chief

FARUK Nigerian Lancer center talks basketball, soccer, karate...and his mom’s cooking

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The college is expecting more than $3 million in additional state funding this year due to increased enrollment, according to college officials. Robert Miller, senior vice president of business and college services, explained that with over 27,000 students currently enrolled on campus, more funding from the state would be made available to increase sections for the college. Interim Dean of Enrollment Management Karen Semien also

explained that the total head count continues to grow each day. “Our current enrollment targets fluctuate as fall attendance records continue to be submitted,” Semien said. “I am happy to say that the college is on track to meet our enrollment targets for the 201314 school year.” Last semester, the total student head count was at 23,989. This semester, enrollment reached 27,493, the most in more than three years, according to Semien. Not only is the college able to receive more funding from

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Andrew French/Courier Krista Walter, Calendar Committee co-chair, speaks to the Academic Senate about the Fall 2014 academic calendar.

this academic year, but it will also receive retroactive funding for 2011-2012, when the state

did not fully fund the California Community Colleges because of ENROLLMENT page 3

2014 calendar still yet to be determined

John Peters II Asst. News Editor


Photo illustration by Antonio Gandara

The Shared Governance Calendar Committee reported that they have yet to start on the Fall 2014 academic calendar. “Currently, we are operating under an imposed calendar that is in violation of the law,” said Krista Walter, Co-Chair Calendar Committee. On November 27, 2013, the California Public Employee Relations Board (PERB) found that the District violated the Educational Employment Relations Act by unilaterally implementing a trimester calendar. “The District has, unfortunately, chosen to appeal the

decision of PERB,” said the Pasadena City College Faculty Association in an ad on January 7, 2014. Dr. Robert Bell, Co-Chair Calendar Committee, represents the administration and has not convened a meeting this year to work on academic calendars, Walter said. Academic Senator Martha House said the failure to plan now for the potential upholding of that ruling means the Calendar Committee will be stuck at the last minute working on the calendar. “Can Krista and Bell’s committee legitimately think of something in three or four weeks when they are (supposed

to have) the whole year?” asked Senator Melissa Michelson. “We just can’t give up,” said Senator Matthew Henes. “I agree with Matt,” Walter said. “We have to continue to put forward what it is that we want and what we think is best for the students and our academic programs. (It) is going to be very damaging to the college and its programs if we don’t get that calendar organized.” The Academic Senate passed a motion for the executive committee to write a resolution to be voted on at the next Academic Senate meeting asking for the Calendar Committee to be reconvened as soon as possible.



January 30, 2014

Associated Students funds lobbyists Christine Michaels Editor-in-Chief

Lobbyists for the federal education program Trio received nearly $10,000 in funding after the Associated Students Board unanimously voted to double last year’s funding at its meeting on Jan. 21. The Trio program focuses on helping incoming college students from low-income backgrounds to succeed in higher education. For the last few years the AS supported lobbyists from Trio, at the most gifting them with less than $6,000, according to Student Trustee Simon Fraser. Trio asked for over $9,800 this year from AS, much more than in the past. “Just to clarify, Trio is an amazing program,” Fraser said. “But the request [for money] is three times more than in previous years. What’s the rationale for the additional money?” Nicki Dixon, director of the Trio Talent Search Program, explained that having more advocates up in Washington D.C. would help to support their cause of aiding low-income students in higher education. “It’s important to have those advocates in Washington D.C.,” Dixon said. “They provide education Nagisa Mihara/Courier in training so we are prepared to talk to senators and President Jordyn Orozco going over the information for the future Associated Students Executive Board aides.” meetings at Campus Center on Jan. 22. Dixon also explained that Trio couldn’t use their own year,” she said. more PCC students is a great idea,” Belknap said. “While federal funding for lobbying, and have to find other Sarah Belknap, AS vice president for sustainability, being attacked with funding cuts, it’s really important to pathways to receive financial assistance for their cause. believed it was important to have more PCC representalet students lobby for their own benefits.” The programs also received a five percent funding cut tives up on Capitol Hill and was in favor of fully funding Dixon was very glad to receive funding from the AS. from the government, according to Dixon. Trio. “Our difference on the hill really does make a differ“The only way we can get assistance is by asking. Hopefully you have the opportunity to fund us this “I’m a first generation college student myself. Taking ence,” she said.

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Hall, the Boone Family Art Gallery, and the Black Box Theatre. “Where many community colleges and public schools have cut back on the arts, PCC has maintained its commitment to the arts,” Dr. Rocha wrote in a prepared statement. “The Center for the Arts will transform the landscape of the PCC campus and ultimately transform the lives of our students. To eliminate the arts would

be to deny our students the opportunity to create and to enlarge their understanding of what it means to be human.” The City of Pasadena partnered with PCC to host the mayor’s State of the City address in the Westerbeck Recital Hall on the same night. The State of the City theme this year was “Arts + Innovation = Pasadena.” Mayor Bill Bogaard reported on recent accomplishments by the City as well as future plans for the city government in 2014.

Photos by Benjamin Simpson/Courier Artist-in-residence Casey Reas (top) and Academy Award-nominated director John Singleton (bottom left) were in attendence for the grand opening of the Center for the Arts.


January 30, 2014



Lost and Found now accessible online Tiffany Roesler Asst. Online Editor

Let’s be real. At each point in the semester we lose our minds a bit, stress out, and become more forgetful then we want to be. By finals, phones start to disappear (along with homework assignments) and keys are misplaced. Now, campus police have made it easier for students, staff, and faculty to report and find missing items with the new lost and found online page. It allows anyone to fill out a form on the PCC website, which is then sent directly to the Property and Evidence department of campus police. There, Officer Karen

ENROLLMENT Continued from page 1

the recession, according to Miller. That amounts to 18 percent of this year’s Full Time Equivalent Student (FTES) load. One FTES, the unit the state uses to measure and allocate how much money to give each community college, is the equivalent of a 12-unit load. “The state is allowing us to recapture that 18 percent in this academic year,” Miller said. There is a catch, however. “If we do not recapture that 18 percent, we lose the ability to do so moving forward,” he said. Overall, the college would receive $1.7 million for the 20132014 year and $1.8 million from the 2011-2012 year, according to Miller. This adds up to an

Baghdassarian collects the information about the stolen item(s) in a database. “Before it took about a week [just to relay the information], and now this way is just a lot easier,” said Baghdassarian. “In one week we’ve returned three items that probably never would have been returned. It’s a lot more consistent, and a lot easier for the student, for the staff member, and for us.” The new system makes it easier for the campus police and its staff to identify the lost items quicker by narrowing down the search of specific objects, which means people are notified a lot sooner.

Say for instance someone lost an iPhone with a pink case and it’s turned in to the station. All Baghdassarian has to do is type in “iPhone” in the database to narrow the items down, then find the matching description with that person’s contact information. The best part is students can submit this online form at any time of the day, and they don’t have to wait in line at all. “We tried to make a change for the better so we can accommodate more people,” said Baghdassarian. To report a stolen item just fill out the form,

cfm and press submit.

expected $3.5 million in funding from the state. However, Miller cautioned that it is not likely the college will receive all $3.5 million. “Some of that is dependent upon whether or not we are going to get redevelopment agency funding that is owed us [from the state],” he said. So far the college has only received $700,000 of the $3.5 million. The district is still hopeful that it will receive more money, even if it may not be as much as it hopes for. The college is adding more opportunities for students to enroll in late start classes, which will help increase the FTES for this year, according to Semien. “The college has maximized our course offerings in faceto-face, online, hybrid, night,

and weekend courses,” she said. Weekend courses begin Feb. 8 and online courses begin March 17. Cynthia Olivo, dean of counseling, discussed the benefits of adding weekend and online courses for students who need the extra units. “Since we serve a large student body, it is imperative for us to continuously figure out ways to meet student demand for courses. Here are two more options,” she said. “ I’m especially thrilled for students who work and have family responsibilities—these two methods may prove to be helpful fitting into their schedules.” Miller agreed that it was good to increase class availability in

order to have more students meet full time status, which is 12 units or more. “Right now the average unit load is 9.61 units,” he said. “We want to drive the average unit load up… so that students are able to get the number of courses they need.”

File photo courtesy of Steven Valdez/Courier Karen Bagdassarian, lost and found clerk, shows the many items that get turned in.

Miller also explained that the college is changing its system of allocation sections to the different academic schools to increase the availability of high demand courses. In the past, the college would distribute courses based on an old model. The new method is driven by data for the demand of each type of class offered. “A data driven method allo-

cates FTES to that school based upon evidence of what students need,” Miller said. “[This is] based upon what the data says are needed for students to complete in an efficient matter in order to get a degree an AA or transfer.” The new system will be put in effect in the upcoming summer session, which begins May 19, according to Miller. For now, the college is excited to have more students attend classes, giving it an opportunity to grow academically. “We are excited that the State has increased our funding, allowing us to provide these much needed courses to students so that they can meet their goals in a timely manner,” Semien said.

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January 21st T.V. cameras valued at $11,000 each were stolen from the Center for the Arts building Recital Hall. The cameras were last seen Jan. 17th. Police made a report as soon as they were noticed missing. A Staff member reported a male sitting in her classroom awake but unresponsive 10 minutes after a class had been dismissed. The man was “staring straight ahead” according to the police report and had been experiencing a panic attack. He was transported to Huntington Memorial Hospital. January 24th A suspicious male was reported standing outside of room C111. An officer escorted him off campus, but was unable to check for warrants due to JDIC system being down. January 25th Several rose bushes were reported missing by the mirror pools according to the Facilities supervisor. January 26th Campus police reported an unknown person hijacked a district owned electric cart and ran it into a display case on the west side of the V building. ~Compiled by Emma Koffroth

UPCOMING EVENTS Today L110 transfer advisement will be available to PCC students from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.. For more info visit the Transfer Center . PCC’s Finance and Investment Committee meets from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in C217. Friday Think Transfer from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in L-110 Speak to an advisor about transfer opportunities. Saturday Office of Community and School Relations holds “cash for college” from 8 a.m. to 2p.m. Located at Gabrillino High school, in San Gabriel . Meeting helps high school students and parents to plan for college programs, services, and admissions procedures. Board of trustees meeting from 8 a.m. - 2 p.m. at the Marriot Courtyard Hotel in the city of Pasadena . Monday General Transfer advisement from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. in L-110. University Rep from CSULA visits in the quad from 10:30 2p.m. ~Compiled by Aerika Dave

January 30, 2014

College violates Title 5 equal employment opportunities plan Kristina Wedseltoft Staff Writer

PCC has not been in compliance with state law that requires the school to ensure equal employment opportunities among district staff, forcing administrators to create an Equal Employment Opportunity Plan (EEOP) for the district to follow, officials said. Title 5 addresses community colleges and the support and services they provide through the Disabled Student Programs and Services (DSPS), and the EEOP will further address possible areas of underrepresentation in the workplace, according to Terri Hampton, executive director of human resources (HR) at PCC. The EEOP is composed of 16 components ranging from policy statements to definitions and a 17th component solely for assisting students with employment at California Community Colleges. Each step allows a workplace to identify barriers that could possibly hinder the participation of women and minorities at every level of the workforce. The purpose is to ensure the opportunity for full and equal participation regardless of race, color or national origin. “We actually have not had an EEOP for quite some time,” said PCC President Mark Rocha. “And we’re required to do so and to submit that plan to the State Chancellor’s Office.” For the past 6 months, Hampton and the HR department have been drafting a model plan that must be approved by the PCC Board of Trustees and submitted to the State Chancellor’s Office to be in compliance. The EEOP will address “what the district’s goal is in terms of a diversified workforce and how we go about addressing areas of underrepresentation,” Hampton said. According to the State Chan-

Josh Balmadrid/Courier Terri Hampton the executive director of human resources gives a presentation at the College Council meeting on Jan. 23.

cellor’s Office, underutilization is defined as “those monitored groups – gender, race, ethnicity, disabled; any of those groups where there is less than 15% in terms of ethnicity or gender.” “We identify those and begin to address steps to remedy our underrepresentation,” Hampton said. Hampton recognized the limitations in terms of how the district can assess underutilization. For example, information is not presented on a department basis but rather analyzed from information held within the State Chancellors Office. The EEOP will help to define the areas of underrepresentation and clearly state the goals needed to fix that without lowering the employment standards. The HR department recognized that effective Equal Employment Opportunity Plans, set goals, monitor the process and report recommendations. “Our focus is access,” Hampton said. “We need to find remedies for underrepresentation

and we have a lot of work to do in order to rectify our areas of underrepresentation”. Hampton noted that studies have shown that students tend to learn better in diverse environments, and that the EEOP will try to replicate that within employment. President Rocha discussed the fact that out of the 11,000 community colleges in the United States, PCC is in the top 100 of producing graduates in every category. Though the school is out of compliance with Title 5, it is still ranked 35th in the nation for graduating minority students and 3rd in nation for graduating Asian students. The majority of faculty at PCC is white, however. Hampton discussed the need to address underrepresentation as an organization, and component 13 of the plan would deal with the methods to address those areas specifically. “The district would request the Equal Employment Opportunity Advisory in conjunction

with the executive director of HR to review the recruitment procedure and make recommendations/modifications that would assist in under representation,” Hampton said. “We would also then increase the advertising/recruitment budget (in order to) increase a diverse applicant pool.” Preferred qualifications, then, may be eliminated if it hinders the ability to attract a diverse audience by preventing unnecessary barriers, which could cause a problem attracting a diverse pool of applicants for a position. Next, the EEOP must be approved by the PCC Board of Trustees and then by the State Chancellor’s Office. When the proposed plan is approved it will be put into effect July 1, 2014, and will hopefully create a more diverse work environment around the campus.

according to the proposal. PCC would receive 1.9 percent of the money and an estimated $875,000 from cost of living adjustments that would be used to add more students. However, the proposal states that funding would be given to districts, “ identified as having the greatest unmet need in adequately serving their community’s higher educational needs.” “What it likely means is...completion,” clarified Miller. The budget proposal would also provide $87.5 million for instructional needs, which the school has not seen in years and needed greatly. PCC’s share could be as much as $1.65 million of the $87.5 million from the state for instructional needs should the school match what is

given by the budget. While there are already plans for how the money is to be used, faculty member Julie Kiotas was surprised that faculty was not consulted on the matter. “I would think that the faculty would be the one’s who would be asked about instructional needs.” The school also stands to receive $11.9 million in deferrals, or money that has been deferred by the state from previous years. This amount is a one time cash payment that could potentially be used to fund such areas as the under funded worker’s compensation self-insurance fund, instructional equipment or Other Post-Employment Benefit (OPEB). In attempts to receive more

funding for full time student equivalents, the administration has been working to provide more students with more classes. As a result of Proposition 30, school districts are expected to get at least $100 per full time equivalent student from the Education Protection Account. To have more full time students, PCC has implanted a block schedule, weekend classes beginning February 8th and an online program starting in March 17th. “We are aggressively chasing every FTES we can find,” said Miller. The next meeting had to be rescheduled as Miller had another obligation and will no longer be on the 27th.

Committee emphasizes need for state funding Jessica Arceo Staff Writer

The Budget & Resource Allocation Committee met last Thursday to discuss some of the much needed help the Governor’s proposed budget for 2014-2015 would provide PCC and the challenges the budget still faces. Robert Miller, Co-Chair of the committee, explained the ins and outs of the Governor’s budget proposal and its focus on providing funds to schools with programs that focus on higher completion rates. The Governor pledges to provide $155.2 million to California Community Colleges to fund a 3% restoration of access,

January 30, 2014


2012 JACC General Excellence Award-Winner Editor-in-Chief Christine Michaels Managing Editor Philip McCormick Asst. News Editor John Peters II Online Editor Justin Clay Asst. Online Editors Tiffany Roesler, Aerika Dave Opinion Editor Raymond Bernal Asst. Opinion Editor Tiffany Herrera A&E Editor Samantha Molina


Those annoying petitioners are just part of the college experience Paul Ochoa Staff Writer

If you are a student at PCC and you’ve set foot in the Quad or anywhere on campus where large groups of students congregate, chances are you have heard this question more times than you’d care to answer it. And all you’re trying to do is make your way to the C-Building to your philosophy class. The requests are always different. “Subscribe to this,” “join that,” or “sign this.” And for most students walk-

Asst. A&E Editor Lucy Patrikian Features Editor Aubrey Quezada Asst. Features Editor Monique LeBleu Lifestyle Editor Paul Ochoa Asst. Lifestyle Editor Janel Leonard Sports Editor Daron Grandberry


Cartoon by:

ing by these people, the answer is almost always the same: “no.” Who are these people to come to my school and bother me with their gym memberships and petitions to help save the whales, right? Wrong, PCC is a public campus, which means that access isn’t limited to students; it’s open to the public as well. And as for the vendors on campus, they must get approval from the school, according to the school’s website. A vendor interested in doing business with PCC has to send a

letter of introduction and information about the company. People have a right to come here and say whatever they want, whether it sounds like music to your ears or garbage being flung at you. And they also have a right, with the permission of the school, to sell you snake oil, newspaper subscriptions, or whatever it is they’re peddling. People must remember that it is just another part of the college experience. While it may not be part of a pleasurable college experience


for some, others might disagree. Just because you don’t want a membership to L.A. Fitness does not mean the student walking behind doesn’t also want one. So while you may think these peddlers and venders may be a nuisance, others might see them as a convenience. For some students it was in the Quad where they registered to vote, the reason they became vegetarians or why they finally got in shape. You never know, a few moments of your time might just change your life.

Petition Peeves

Aimee Scholz

Asst. Sports Editor Andrew Salmi Photo Editor Antonio Gandara Asst. Photo Editor Nagisa Mihara Online Photo Editor


Benjamin Simpson

What are your thoughts on the peddlers and vendors on campus?

Scene Editor Billy Skelly Social Media Editor Concepcion Gonzales Staff Writers: Jessica Arceo, Matthew Kiewiet, Emma Koffroth, Mary Nurrenbern, Robert Tovar, Kristina Wedseltoft Staff Photographers: Joseph Adajar, Josh Balmadrid, Jorell Brittenum, Victoria De La Torre, Andrew French, Chris Martinez, Mary Nurrenbern, Barney Soto, Daniel Valencia, Rocio Vera, Charles Winners

“It’s a very diverse campus with all different age groups. “ Larry De La Rosa, Democracy Resource (petitioner)

“I don’t like them. I just hate it.” Steve Johnson, computer science

“Where do you sign up? I wouldn’t mind making a few bucks.” Zach Duke, spanish

“I think in a way it’s beneficial. It keeps you notified on how you can help others. “ Brittany Quiambao, nursing

“It’s pretty cool and exciting. They have a lot of cool stuff to offer. “ Alex Luna, engineering

“You need to get to a place and there’s always someone there. They’re also extremely pushy.” Carla Contreras, music business

“They kind of bug me a little bit, but I feel bad for them at the same time.” Amanda Muro, administration of justice

“As long as they aren’t intrusive, I don’t mind...Maybe designate them to a certain spot?” Chris Fett, English

“I don’t mind the vendors. But the people who want signatures are so pushy.” Morrigan Bratcher, accounting

“They don’t really provide enough information when you ask them what it’s about.” Andres Lopez, radio production

Faculty Adviser Nathan McIntire Photography Adviser Tim Berger Advertising Coordinator Daniel Nerio

The Courier is published weekly by the Pasadena City College Journalism Department and is a free-speech forum. Editorials and comments are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the position of the institution and its administration, student government or that of the Pasadena Area Community College District. The Courier is written and produced as a learning experience for student writers, photographers and editors in the Journalism Department. Phone: (626) 585-7130 Fax: (626) 585-7971 Advertising (626) 585-7979 Office: 1570 E. Colorado Blvd., CC-208 Pasadena, CA 91106-3215 © Copyright 2014 Courier. All rights Reserved.

Reporting by: Matthew Kiewiet Photos by: Nagisa Mihara

Note to Readers Letters to the Editor The Courier welcomes letters to the editor. Letters should be about 300 words and may be edited by Courier staff. All letters must contain your full name and a correct daytime phone number. Letters can be delivered to the Courier office in CC 208 or sent by email to Corrections The Courier staff endeavors to ensure accuracy in all aspects of its reporting. If you believe we have made an error, please contact us at (626) 585-7130 or via email to

ONLINE POLL RESULTS Online, we asked: Do you think the affluenza defense holds water? Results as of 5 p.m. Wednesday: Yes, some rich people don’t know any better: 11 % No, why should rich people get privileges when it comes to the law: 88%

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January 30, 2014 COURIER





January 30, 2014

Vinyl record sales still going strong Aerika Dave Asst. Online Editor

Rocking out for more than 130 years, the everlasting and historically appreciated vinyl record stands firm in the audio recording media industry. Although the turn of the century brought the desolation of record sales, the LP-driven design continues to prosper. Students at PCC, vinyl collectors, artists, club disc jockeys and other media indulging circles have been some of the contributors who enable the sales of vinyl records to continue. Record buyer for PooBah’s Record Shop in Pasadena, Ras G said buyers need to clearly understand the fine line between good music on vinyl and the commonly misconstrued hipster mentality. “Vinyl is for that patient person,” he said. The physical connection with the public is what artists want to go for, he said. One-on-one interaction with the listener from the artist is built when purchasing a Photos by Billy Skelly/Courier vinyl record. Despite the vast popularity of downloading MP3s, vinyl records are still thriv“The importance of love through music ing at Pasadena’s Canterbury Record Shop. is embedded with vinyl as opposed to mu-

sic you just like through mp3 downloads,” he said. Pasadena’s Canterbury Records, owned by Charles Gordon, is one of two record shops still around in the City of Roses. Gordon said the record business is as booming as ever. There are business initiatives that labels are throwing out to keep the vinyl buying community thriving, including offering packages like greatest hits compilations and deluxe editions with bonus materials. “Records are always selling and lately it’s becoming a trendy thing among young people,” Gordon said. “Some barely know what a record is yet appreciate vinyl, which is great.” Stephen F. Jones, an adjunct professor in the music department said the need for vinyl relates to sound quality. “The quality is better warmer, and sounds better where as the digital audio format used on cds and mp3s just are not as warm,” Jones said. PCC students Jourdan Tyner, Catalina Akbar, and Patrick Jordan, who are all involved in media production, agree that vinyl records are still in full swing.

Comic books still a viable Reas brings unique visual art to campus entertainment medium Justin Clay Online Editor

Since the format was invented in the early 1930s, comic books have been an important medium in entertainment and demand for comics remains high. According to Diamond Comics Distributors, the nation’s largest comic book distributor in North America, the company distributed over $517 million worth of comics, magazines and trade paperbacks last year, up 9 percent from the previous year. It isn’t just comic books themselves that are drawing people’s attention. Movies adapted from comic books generate millions of dollars at the box office every year and comic book video games generate huge retail numbers. With a comic book shop within walking distance of campus, many avid fans of comics at PCC can easily get their fix. “The storylines are interesting,” said Jason Villasenor, biochemistry. “Good usually triumphs over evil, like when Bane broke Batman’s back and how epic of a story it was when Batman had to come back stronger.” Villasenor, who is a fan of “Deadpool” and Japanese man-

gas, says that comic books are still popular because they portray stories in the way that movies and television shows can’t. “Not only are there pictures and a storyline, but you get to see what the characters are thinking and feeling,” he said. Russell Latiolais, photography, is a fan of “Star Wars,” “The Goon” and crossovers like “Batman vs. Predator.” “I like the visual aspects of comics,” said Latiolais. “No one artist can draw the same thing the same way and I enjoy the creativity of it.” English professor Elise Rivas Gomez, who teaches a class dealing with graphic novels, says that comic books are popular because they are easily accessible. “Comics are really diverse, just like any other art form,” she said. “There’s a comic or graphic novel for just about everyone. Unlike novels, most people aren’t intimidated by a comic book or graphic novel.” Rivas Gomez says that comics have the crossover appeal to create other forms of media and vise versa. “There are great stories in comics and that’s what drives film, TV, and video games too,” she said. Located blocks from

Photos by Nagisa Mihara/Courier Dennis Sisos checks down a list at The Comics Factory in Pasadena on Jan. 20 . He is one of the friendly staff members who makes the store a comfortable haven for graphic novel lovers.

Kristina Wedseltoft Staff Writer

campus, Comics Factory serves many PCC students addicted to comics and created new fans as well, according to store associate Dennis Sison. “The beauty of being at this location is that we get a lot of PCC students that come in and some of them have never read a comic book before,” Sison said. “There’s the standard stuff like ‘Superman,’ ‘Batman’ and that kind of thing. But in the last 10 years there have been a lot more titles that aren’t necessarily super hero comics. Titles like ‘Saga’ and ‘Manhattan Project,’ so it’s really fun for us to figure out what people are looking for.” Sison says that the store encourages respectful browsing and so customers have a chance to sample things and hopefully find something that they are really into. The rise of comic-inspired movies and video games tends to create a spike in interest for comic book content. “When a new ‘Captain America’ movie comes out, Marvel is pretty savvy about releasing a new ‘Captain America’ title and so there will be people coming out of the woodwork who might have just seen the movie that come in wanting to read more about the character,” Sison said. Even in the age of the Internet, Netflix, hundreds of TV channels and video games, students still find the time to get their fingers dirty with comic ink.

PCC’s annual artist-in-residence for 2014 will be Casey Reas, who will showcase his work in an exhibition entitled “Yes No”. The Exhibition will be on display until Mar. 29 in the Boone Family Art Gallery in the Center for the Arts. “I hope the work makes people think and ask themselves questions about what the work is and what it means to them,” Reas said. “I hope people will see something familiar and also strange so each individual has something to relate to, but also needs to resolve what she/he is seeing.” During his residency, Reas will exhibit his artwork and create a new work to become part of the college art collection. He will also interact closely with the campus community from Feb. 3 to Feb. 7. “I’m looking forward to the workshops,” Reas said. “We’re planning two or three workshops where I’ll work with the students on drawing exercises related to the themes in the exhibition as well as coding workshops.” There will be a public lecture held by Reas on Feb. 3 at 7 p.m. in the Vosloh Forum, followed by a reception for Reas n the

Boone Family Art Gallery. Reas’s art is a meeting place between computer software and visual arts, meant to define a unique area of visual art that builds upon many different artistic mediums. He described his art as “relational systems.” Together with Ben Fry in 2001, they began “Processing,” what he calls an “open source programming language” for visual arts. His art has been featured in exhibitions across the world and he has received awards from the Whitney Museum of American Art and the New World Symphony in Miami. Brian Tucker, PCC Gallery Director, hopes Reas’ exhibition will serve “as a model of the kind of forward-looking possibilities for art that we want to promote at PCC.” The largest piece in the gallery entitled “Tox Screen” features two side-by-side projected images that stretch across the entire gallery wall. “Each of the projectors is attached to a computer containing a unique program that Reas wrote for this piece. Over-theair television broadcasts are processed by these programs, creating a constantly mutating, visually dazzling display of rearranged elements of the broadcast signals,” Tucker said.

Daniel Valencia/Courier A sneak preview of Casey Reas’ art work that was installed in the Boone Family Art Gallery on Jan1.

January 30, 2014





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January 30, 2014

Is the end of bookstores quickly approaching? With the digital age advancing and online book sales rising, book stores across the nation are closing. Will technology take over the hard copy world? In late December Barnes and Noble in Old Pasadena closed. A hand full of PCC book lovers had no idea. Where are students getting their books now? “The feel of turning a page and holding an actual book helps my mind absorb the knowledge,” said Michael Vargas, music. Students seem to be reaching to all sorts of outlets to have a hard copy book in their hand. Matthew Ellison, music, agreed. “I feel like the library is the cheapest and most underutilized tool that we have,” Ellison said. “It’s just logical as many books as you like and there all free if

you return them on time.” Why are bookstores going out of business? Well, for the nationwide chains such as Borders and Barnes and Noble, the age of Amazon has arrived and a slow economy has devastated the ability of the bookstore to turn a profit. “I love being able to reach in my pocket wherever I am and order what I want instead of having to hunt it down and wait in line,” Miggy Perez, undecided, said. From A-Z, Amazon seems to cover it all and takes the stress out of shopping. “The only downside is waiting,” Perez said. Independent bookstores now seem to have some hope. Retailers are individualizing stores to fit their consumers interests. “[Independent bookstores] have simply found ways to make the service and selection

at a small stores more desirable, giving customers something that big-boxed stores and online retailers simply can’t provide,” The Open Education Database (OEDb) states on its website. Vromans Book Store in Pasadena is an independent bookstore that has been servicing Pasadena for over a hundred years. How have they managed to stay in business all this time? “Novelty,” said Jade Hollingsworth, a supervisor at Vromans Book Store. “We are one of the few bookstores left that isn’t a chain. We have also been around for many, many years so people automatically think of us. Also, most stores that sell books don’t have a knowledgeable staff, which is a novelty in itself.” With the hard copy world slowly running out of business, independent bookstores give us page turners some hope.

wouldn’t think about using them because I go to my doctor,” he said. “Me personally I believe we shouldn’t be forced to pay for it but in fairness to others it’d be best if they had a choice. I’ve been here two years and never used it once.” Other students feel the oppo-

site, Adriana Sanchez, geology, who has used the services multiple times, does not understand the lack of trust some students have towards Health Services. “They’re not there to hurt you, that’s not why there’re there, they are there to help.” Adilene Sanchez, English, said

that while some students feel they may never need the Student Health Services, they shouldn’t put it off. “Just because some people don’t use it they don’t know what is going to happen to them, you don’t know when you’re going to get sick,” Sanchez said.

Janel Leonard Staff Writer

Christopher Martinez/Courier Edenilson Valle sits at the Mirror Pools in front of PCC as he reads for class on Jan. 22. He says he still very much enjoys reading and buys his books from Amazon.

Student Health Services provides useful help and care Paul Ochoa Staff Writer

No health insurance? No problem says Jo Buczko, coordinator of PCC’s Student Heath Services. “If they are worried about their health, we have services to offer them,” Buczko said. “Whether you have insurance or not doesn’t matter to us, [that’s why] students pay a health fee.” While Student Health Services offers a wide array of services from immunizations to clinical services and everything in-between, Buczko said if a student comes in with an issue they can’t take care of, they give them a referral to off campus offices that can take care of it. “If it’s beyond our level of care we can refer out but most of the students that come in were able to take care of,” Buzcko said. As for students who might not visit the health services out of fear or anxiety about a problem, Buzcko said the best thing to do is just go in and get it over with. “I can understand them being anxious about coming in but a lot of energy goes into worrying about the worst case scenario but most of the time its not.” And while there are many students that may never actually

come into the health center, Buzcko says they can still benefit from the services offered. “In the time we’re open there’s a lot of students that come in and don’t see us, they just pick up condoms or use the machine.” She also suggested students subscribe to the online college magazine Student Health 101 where they can get updates straight to their phones regarding health tips on problems that effect students. “It’s a college health magazine for PCC students and they can sign up free,” she said. While most students are aware that Health Services are available to them, some still choose not to use them for their own personal reasons. Max Barkley, anthropology, said that even though he has never needed to use the Student Health Services, he wouldn’t feel comfortable using them if an issue did come up. “I’d feel more comfortable using someone through my family,” Barkley said. Calvin Rivera, television and radio, said he would also feel uncomfortable using the Student Health Services’ doctors and nurses and feels that the $13 Student Health fee should be optional. “I have never really needed them and if I did I


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Barney Soto/Courier The Health Center, located on the first floor of the D Building, offers a variety of heath services to PCC students.

A Higher Degree of You


January 30, 2014



PCC’s 6’7” center hails from Nigeria Monique LeBleu Staff Writer

For Faruk Oyalade, basketball was not his first love. With an background in soccer in Nigeria, and having earned a brown belt in Karate, Oyalade chose to apply those learned skills and practiced agility in the new sport of choice, which was further fueled by a rapid growth spurt. In a three-year span, he shot up five inches to his current 6 foot 7 inch height. A native of Port Harcourt Nigeria, Oyalade obtained an education visa for the next two years, choosing computer science as his major here at PCC. “I have been in the U.S. for about a year and two months now,” Oyalade said. “I have a student visa for two years and as long as I am in school I am planning on transferring to any division one school – any four year college.” Despite the joys of playing basketball, Oyalade misses his friends and family in Nigeria.

but, he is able to communicate frequently with them via Facebook and on Skype. And although he loves a good cheeseburger, in addition to missing his family, Oyalade misses the native food of his country. “I miss my mom’s food,” Oyalade said. “We have a traditional [dish] we call Garri, and Egusi Soup. The soup is made with ground Cassava, seeds of melon and vegetables and meat or chicken or fish. You dip your hand into the Garri and you put it on the soup.” A graduate of Amazing Grace High School in Nigeria, the Lancers center is currently averaging 7.1 points and ranks fifth in the division in rebounds. Oyalade lives in Riverside with his aunt, Grace Apiafi, a professor of natural sciences at PCC, where he commonly makes the 50-mile commute via train and bus transfer. It was Apiafi who brought Oyalade to PCC during basketball practice, where head coach

Michael Swanegan first saw his skills as a ball player. “Coach saw me play for the first time last summer,” said Oyalade. “My aunt brought me to the school and I was given a chance to practice with the players. He was like ‘Oh, I think he’s good. I think he’ll be a promising player for the school’. That’s how I got in the school.” Oyalade’s experience in martial arts exhibited his grace and agility, which was clearly observed by Swanegan. “He tells me he’s a better soccer player than he is a basketball player,” said Swanegan. “He grew up playing soccer. And that usually gives [him] a better balance, because he uses his feet. He loves soccer, but he’s playing basketball, so that tells you that he has a passion about the game.” During his time at PCC,

batters, assistant coach Dave Walters pulled Bonilla out of the game in favor of sophomore pitcher Tim Shiba. “The biggest thing for us will be to try and keep our opponents off balance, hit spots, and play solid defense,” said Clark after the game. “This will allow our pitcher to settle down and be more relaxed on the mound. We will also have to score some runs to give the pitching staff a cushion to work with.” Heading into the top of the second inning facing a 6-1 deficit, the Lancers fought to get back in the game. After a walk by freshman outfielder Steven San Miguel, who advanced to second base on a balk, Pasadena cut into the LA Mission lead. Freshman outfielder PJ DeZotell singled, which allowed San Miguel to come around and score. Then Limon singled in another run to cut the deficit to 6-3 in the second inning. DeZotell finished the day with two hits in three at-bats. However, that was as close as the Lancers got on offense as they were silent the rest of the day. Pasadena allowed three more runs in the fourth inning, one run in the sixth inning and two runs in the eighth inning.

Clark, a letterman from 2011 who led that team with 20 RBI, said the team needed to maintain momentum in upcoming games. “As a team we will have to find different ways to keep the momentum going,” said Clark. “Baseball is a long game and it’s not easy to maintain the same energy throughout the game. There are going to be errors made, a hard hit ball will be caught to rob someone of extra bases, or a double play after a leadoff hit. All of which stop any momentum we have going for us.” Head coach O’Meara remains very confident in his players going forward, as this is a very young team with many new faces from the 2013 Lancer baseball team. “In the preseason practices, I noticed a more close-knit group of players here than in the past,” O’Meara said. “We really want to turn it around, and it’s going to take some hard work in the pre-conference schedule to be prepared for South Coast Conference play.” Pasadena will play its home opener at Brookside Park’s Jackie Robinson Memorial Field on Feb. 8 at 11 a.m. in a double-header against Cerro Coso.

Billy Skelly/Courier Faruk Oyalade replicates a famous scene from, “Game of Death”, a movie in which one of his favorite basketball players, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, plays a kung-fu master.

Oyalade has faced a few injuries, which he has taken in stride. “Injuries don’t bring me down,” said Oyalade. “I still play with it because there’s a saying that when you’re determined to go somewhere, you don’t have to look back at it, you just play with it.” Recalling additional fond memories of how he was encouraged in his home country, Oyalade said he would like to return the favor. “I’m definitely planning to go back, “ said Oyalade. “I miss my family. So I’m planning to go back to see my family and friends and to work. Even if I play pro basketball, I will still go back and share with the young ones. I want to still go back and run a camp for the young ones over there.” Pleased, but not surprised by this information, Coach

Swanegan again smiled with pride at his student’s desire to encourage others. “I think it is great that he would want to go back to his country and help his people to understand what it’s like to play basketball in America,” Swanegan said. “You know, we are the epitome of basketball in the United States. There are so many countries playing basketball right now, that it’s – it’s unbelievable. With his country, it would be a good thing.” But when faced with the choice of being offered a pro basketball position and getting a four year degree, Oyalade was clear. “Well, if that opportunity comes before then, I’ll decide to play pro ball,” said Oyalade. I want to be a pro ball player. That’s my dream.”

Baseball offense falls Softball routed flat in season opener 9-0 by Antelope Andrew Salmi Asst. Sports Editor

The Pasadena City College baseball team had first-game jitters in their season opener, unable to overcome an early deficit as they were beaten 12-3 by the LA Mission College Eagles on Monday at El Cariso Park in Sylmar. Although it was an extremely rough opener for the Lancers, there were a handful of positives to take away from the first game of the season. There were especially bright spots in the outfield as four of the team’s five hits on the day were smacked by outfielders. Freshman outfielder Arnaldo Limon, who had two hits and a walk in three at-bats on the day, led off the game with a double in the top of the first inning. Then, with two outs, sophomore catcher Jason Clark singled to score Limon, giving the Lancers an early 1-0 lead over LA Mission. The Lancers then ran into serious trouble in the bottom of the first inning, as freshman starting pitcher Calvin Bonilla struggled in his Lancer debut. After allowing six runs and six hits while only retiring two

Valley College Tiffany Roesler Asst. Online Editor

The women’s softball season home opener against Antelope Valley College proved to be a rough start to the 2014 season for the Lancers, who lost 9-0 in five innings against the Marauders. “The game was rough,” said third baseman Katelyn Thordarson. “Our pitchers walked a lot of people, but I’m excited for the season.” The Lancers’ sophomore outfielder Vanessa Contreras had the only official hit of the game for PCC. The team batted a combined .083, compared to Antelope Valley’s .400 batting average. “AVC is a tough team and played a good game,” head coach Monica Tantlinger said. “First game showed me as a coach that these players are willing to fight. Their energy was consistent start to finish. I felt that they never thought they were completely out of it.” Sophomore pitcher Casey Ramirez pitched three innings, allowing five hits, three walks and no earned runs. Freshman

pitcher/ utility player Breanna Rodrigo allowed three hits and six earned runs—amounting to a 25.20 ERA— in relief. “Rodrigo played three key positions, showing her athletic versatility,” Tantlinger said. “Ramirez came through in a huge way throwing innings and didn’t give up a single earned run.” Efforts from sophomore catcher Allie Lacey, sophomore outfielders Audrey Serna and Sarah Quintero, along with freshman infielder/ utility player Karen Najera contributed to PCC’s defense. “You can’t really tell how a team plays together as a whole on the first game because several of us were nervous and had the jitters, so we didn’t play to our potential,” said Serna. “After this weekend I can answer that question.” This weekend the Lancers head to Palm Desert to participate in the College of the Desert tournament, and will face off Imperial Valley College and College of the Desert tomorrow at 5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. respectively.



January 30, 2014

Tyler Crockom: Knees of Steel Daron Grandberry Sports Editor

With her high school basketball career plagued by injuries, Lancers’ sophomore forward Tyler Crockom’s biggest nemesis became her health. While the pain is gone and her mobility is back, the scar on her right knee reminds Crockom of the long road she’s traveled to get back on the basketball court. “My love for the game motivated me to get back on the court,” Crockom said. Despite two major knee injuries, which required Crockom to undergo surgery and forfeit her high school playing career, the versatile and determined Crockom has battled back to help lead this year’s women’s basketball team to an impressive No. 5 ranking in the latest state poll. “I didn’t want to give up on the game right away because of injuries,” Crockom said. “I’ve been playing this game since I was five years old and I knew I had to get my knee stronger and get my confidence back. Quitting was never an option for me.” A graduate of Pasadena High School, the 5-foot-10 kinesiology major and versatile forward can play multiple positions, according to assistant head coach La’Nette Dillard. “TT (Crockom) has the biggest role on our team,” Dillard said. “She plays the backup point guard and she starts at the power forward position so she has to transition from playing in the post and getting rebounds to running the team. She’s a very important piece to this year’s team.” In the Lancers’ first game of the season, Crockom displayed her versatility on both sides of the ball with an array of steals and precise outlet passes that led to easy layups for her teammates. In a dismantling of West Los Angeles College, Crockom came close to a triple double with nine points, nine assists and 10 steals.

“Any given night Tyler can have a silent 15 points or silent double-double,” sophomre guard Skai Thompson said. “She knows how to calm us down and get everyone in the groove. When we’re all rushing its Tyler who slows us down and gets everything together.” Beyond the wide smile and precision passing, Crockom’s willpower and dedication to the game she loves continues to motivate her teammates. “I’m so proud of Tyler,” sophomore center Kaitlyn Parks added. “She’s come so far off of her injury and she’s gotten her confidence back and her swagger as well. I just really love watching her play and drive to the basket.” On the season Crockom is averaging 7.4 points, 5.8 rebounds and ranks fourth in the South Coast North Division with 3.9 assists per game. “I like assists,” Crockom added with a smile. “I like to give the ball up and share the ball. If everyone is contributing or if someone is on fire that gives me motivation to facilitate and get the ball to them.” Although Crockom’s significance doesn’t always show up on every boxscore, her indirect leadership and versatility makes her an important part of this year’s team, according to coach Dillard. “Sometimes she (Crockom) may not appear on the stat sheet as she should, but she’s always getting our team going. She’s our second engine in our car.” Dillard added. Crockom credits her parents for being her support system and admitted that following her older brother around as a child led her to the game she currently loves. “My parents are my biggest inspiration because they have always supported me in everything I do,” Crockom said. “Growing up I followed my brother’s lead and he was always into sports, so I guess I have to thank him for that.” “Tyler’s a real key to this team,” Parks added. “She’s our surprise factor because she pops up whenever we need her. She can play both guard and forward positions, she rebounds, she finishes around


Friday, January 31 Women’s Softball: v. Imperial Valley 5:30 p.m. at College of the Desert Tournament v. College of the Desert at 8 p.m. at College of the Desert Tournament
 Baseball: at Antelope Valley 2:00 PM Antelope Valley College, Lancaster Women’s Basketball: at Long Beach City 5:00 PM - Long Beach City College at Long Beach Men’s Basketball: at Long Beach City 7:00 PM - Long Beach City College at Long Beach Saturday, February 1 Women’s Softball: v. TBA at College of the Desert Tournament College of the Desert, Palm Desert Baseball: at Antelope Valley 12:00 PM - Antelope Valley College, Lancaster

Benjamin Simpson/Courier Tyler Crockom relaxes in the Hutto-Patterson gym on Thursday.

the basket and I really enjoy playing with her and watching her play.” Even though Crockom has helped the Lancers to an impressive 16-5 record, currently first in the SCC North, she said there’s still room to improve on defense. “Right now our main focus is finishing games strong and keeping our defensive intensity for the full 40 minutes,” Crockom said. “We’re a talented team, but we just need to maintain our defensive intensity throughout the entire game.” The talented and versatile sophomore

has come a long way from two major knee injuries which could have ended her playing career. Crockom admitted to finally being healthy and ready to make a postseason run with two healthy knees. “Last year I felt like I was babying my knee too much and I wasn’t as confident as I am now,” Crockom added. “This year I feel great, I don’t even think about the knee or hesitate to go to the basket anymore, no swelling and no brace. I’m good and we’re ready to make another postseason run.”

Men’s basketball drops second conference game against Cerritos Daron Grandberry Sports Editor

The Lancers men’s basketball team was unable to continue its winning streak Wednesday, failing to overcome a sluggish start in losing 72-61 to the Falcons. The Lancers (17-6, 5-2) were hampered by foul trouble the entire game, forcing head coach Michael Swanegan to go to the bench early in the first half. “We didn’t execute on defense like we should have,” Swanegan said. “We have to go back to the drawing board. It’s just one loss. It’s not the end of the season.” Four of the Lancers’ five starters were benched early with two personal fouls, including sophomores Jeffrey Dockett and Taj Spencer. Dockett and the Lancers coaching staff were assessed technical fouls early in the first half. “We just have to come to practice tomorrow focused and play better as a team,” freshman guard Jevon Shields

said. “Height should never be an excuse. We just have to work harder on the boards.” Shields continued his emergence as a starter, recording 10 of his 12 points in the first half. Shields’ jump-shot was falling in the first half, and he hit back-to-back three pointers to cut the Falcons lead to two, 21-19. But the Lancers would never take the lead. “Our heart wasn’t in the game for the full 40 minutes,” Spencer said. “We needed this loss to keep us hungry. We know we are capable of playing better. We needed this loss to stay hungry.” At the half the Lancers trailed 3830. The starting backcourt of Dockett and Freshman Adrian Miles were held scoreless in the first half. Dockett finished the game with four points, five assists and five rebounds, but shot just 2-of-13 from the field. “We’re still in first place,” Swanegan said. “The last couple of games we haven’t been as focused and aggressive as we need to be. When you go up against good teams you have to be ready. We just have to come back and play harder. We’re a

good team and good teams rebound from tough losses.” Spencer finished the game with a team-high 16 points and seven rebounds. Sophomore forward Bryce Clifton added eight points and five rebounds and freshman guard Jonathan Henderson added eight points off the bench. Freshman center Faruk Oyalade scored seven points to go with a team-high 13 rebounds.

Billy Skelly/Courier Faruk Oyalade goes up for two against Cerriots College in the Hutto-Patterson gym on Wednesday.

PCC Courier 01/30/2014  
PCC Courier 01/30/2014  

Pasadena City College Courier January 30, 2014 Vol. 109 Issue 2