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Accent The Student Voice of Austin Community College

April 2013

SXSW 2013 Photos p. 10 Reviews p. 11 Comics p. 13

GED Success Story p. 5

Thriving with Cancer p. 8

Austin’s Bag Ban p. 13

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South Korea





On the Record


Campus Closeup




Comic Relief




Student Voice






News Briefs

On the Cover: Photo by Shireen Fatehi-Sedeh, Reporter — A full-sized replica of the James Webb Space Telescope

On the Web

joins the Austin skyline as it sits on the lawn of the Long Center for the Performing Arts. During South by Southwest Interactive, the model was open to the public March 8, 9 and 10.

Audio: President Rhodes discusses ACC’s new partnership with the University of Texas

Photo Blog: The South by Southwest experience is revealed in full color

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Accent is Austin Community College’s award-winning, student-run publication. We operate a digital-first publishing model. Content is edited and posted directly to the website. We also print a tabloid-style magazine. In Spring 2013, we’ll distribute new issues on Feb. 28 (March Issue), March 26 (April Issue) and April 30 (Summer Issue).

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Editorial Team

Design Team

Era Sundar, Editor in Chief Clarissa Peereboom, Photo Editor Daniel Lopez, Photographer in Training

Ruby Piñon, Design Editor Kimberly Hancock, Graphic Design Megan McKay, Illustrator



Carizma Barrera, SAC Adriana Donati Shrieen Fatehi-Sedeh, NRG Joey Galvan Derek Shiekhi, RGC

Leo Furmunsky Keri Gabriele, PIN Payam Golshan Michael Malburg Gordon Murray Jordan Naylor Jordan Stubbs John Sutton Jacqueline Torres Janice Veteran Uyên Nhi Võ

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Contact Us Accent Austin Community College 4400 College Park Drive, Room 2107 Round Rock, TX 78665 Phone: 512.223.0122


Fresh  Fast  Flavorful

Elizabeth Sanchez

3 convenient area locations including Round Rock @ I-35 & University near ACC Round Rock

Era Sundar

Editor in Chief

ACCENT: What kind of work were you able to get without a high school diploma? SANCHEZ: I farmed rice and worked as a street vendor. When I first came to the United States, I was 21 and wasn’t sure what kind of work I could get. I went to cosmetology school and worked as a licensed manicurist for several years. I worked for the light company and then owned my own business. It was a Filipino grocery and coffee shop.

Clarissa Peereboom, Photo Editor


CC student Elizabeth Sanchez quit school in the third grade. Nearly 30 years later she is working to get her education back on track. Sanchez spoke to Accent about the circumstances that caused her to leave school and the career she is now pursuing.

ACCENT: Why didn’t you finish high school? SANCHEZ: When I was in third grade in the Philippines, my mother got sick and I had to quit school and work to help her. Even after she got better, I just never had a chance to go back

ACCENT: With all that success, what led you to take the GED preparation course at ACC? SANCHEZ: Even though I owned my own business, in the back of my mind, something was still missing. I wasn’t quite happy because I wanted that diploma. ACCENT: What was it like going back to school? SANCHEZ: During registration, the form asked for your highest level of education. The lowest grade listed was fourth grade, so I wasn’t sure what to circle. I was starting from scratch. Having only gone to third grade, I didn’t even know how to write an essay. But the teachers were very kind and patient.

ACCENT: How long did it take you to get your GED diploma? SANCHEZ: It took me approximately a year and a half. I started in October 2010 and I received my diploma in April last year. ACCENT: The test is changing from paper to a completely computerized format. How do you think the change will affect students? SANCHEZ: I would have had a hard time because I didn’t learn about computers before. It would work with the younger students, but I have seen elderly people try to go back to school and I think they would have a hard time. ACCENT: Do you have any advice for those who are planning to take the GED test? SANCHEZ: If I can do it with my background, anybody can. They just have to be committed and apply themselves.

Editor’s Note: This interview has been condensed and edited.

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April 2013 | 5



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News Briefs

Texas Independence Day

Professor’s Legacy Keri Gabriele Photographer

Shireen Fatehi-Sedeh Reporter

Keri Gabriele, Photographer Shireen Fatehi-Sedeh, Reporter

TASTE OF INDEPENDENCE — Students eat dinner and listen to speakers at the Texas Independence Day celebrations at the Eastview Campus March 4.


exas is a great place because of diversity, Peck Young, Director of the Center for Public Policy and Political Studies said. On March 4 at the Eastview Campus, ACC students, faculty and staff celebrated Texas Independence Day by discussing diversity in the Texas revolution. Board of Trustees Chair Jeffrey Richard brought attention to the hundreds of black Texans who lost their free status after the revolution and didn’t regain it for more than 30 years. He also shared stories of black Texans like William Goyens, a diplomat who negotiated with the Cherokee. History Department Chair

Shireen Fatehi-Sedeh, Reporter

Mariano Diaz-Miranda spoke on the treatment of Tejanos (Texans of Spanish or Mexican heritage). “Once Texas independence was won, Tejanos’ contributions were forgotten or ignored,” he said. Diaz-Miranda also pointed out that the issue of immigration was different than it is today. “The first illegals [in Texas] came across the Sabine and the Red River and they spoke English,” he said. In group exercises students wrote constitutions for their own fictional government. ACC history major Cole Wilson, 19, made decisions that shaped legislative term limits for the fictional Republic of Freedonia. “I believe there should be no term limits in the Senate today,” he said. “A senator, who creates a foundation and has power, should be able to continue building that foundation and exercising that power.” Diana Pier, a 61-yearold science major, said she usually dislikes politics but enjoyed debating the issues with students who had different perspectives.

CONSTITUTION BUILDING — Kimberly Love, a psychology student, prepares for a group constitution building exercise.

Dr. Nathie Marbury, ACC professor of American Sign Language Interpreter Training, donated a portion of the books, videos and teaching materials she developed to the Riverside Campus Library. The library held a dedication ceremony March 2 in which the collection was named in Marbury’s honor. Marbury has been teaching at ACC since 1999.

CKI Awards Staff Circle K International, an ACC service based organization, attended the 59th annual TexasOklahoma District Convention March 1-3 in Irving, Texas. The ACC delegation won several awards including: Outstanding Video Award - “Shaking up Service,” Outstanding Nontraditional Scrapbook, Outstanding New Member, Outstanding Chapter Committee Chair and Outstanding Adviser of the Year.


High Riding Leonid Furmansky Photographer

Leonid Furmansky, Photographer

Despite many crashes, ACC graphic design student Myles Overstreet is passionate about riding. “People who think riders aren’t productive members of society would change their minds if they got to know us,” he said. “When I’m not working, sleeping, or hanging out with my girlfriend, I’m riding. I am an artist. This is how I express myself.” April 2013 | 7

Campus Closeup

Photos courtesy of Daniel Gardner

ROAD TO RECOVERY — Gardner documented his journey in pictures from 2008 - 2012 (left to right). To follow his progress and view his artwork, visit

Thriving in Spite of Cancer More young people are surviving cancer than ever before. ACC student Daniel Gardner is one of them. Era Sundar

Editor in Chief


ike many busy ACC students, 36-year-old graphic design major Daniel Gardner takes advantage of the flexible scheduling provided by hybrid courses. Gardner attends class at the South Austin Campus once a week and receives the rest of his instruction online. This gives him time to recover from chemotherapy. In 2009, Gardner was diagnosed with a brain tumor. It was successfully treated but then returned in 2012. He is now undergoing his second round of treatment. Only a few years ago, a cancer diagnosis was viewed as a death sentence. It still accounts for one in four deaths in the United States. But a recent study from the American Cancer Association reported that the number of cancer-related deaths dropped 20 percent from 1991 to 2009, mostly due to improvements in detection and treatment. When Gardner was first diagnosed, doctors told him he had about 18 months to live. When the cancer returned nearly two years later, he was told that the survival rate under similar circumstances was only a month. Now, almost four years after his initial diagnosis, Gardner is living life on his terms and enjoying the person he is now. At 32, Gardner was in transition. With a bachelor’s degree in math from Cornell University and a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from Stanford University, he seemed on track to a promising career. But after trying various engineering jobs, his


career was stalled. Then one day, strange things started happening to his body. “My left thumb became numb and the left side

SELF PORTRAIT — “Before cancer I was very critical of my art. Now I realize every artist has to start somewhere,” Gardner said. of my face started drooping. It was pretty clear something was wrong, but I was in denial,” he said. In the months that followed his condition went from bad to worse. He couldn’t chew and lost

mobility. One day he collapsed and was taken to the hospital by ambulance. Within two days of being admitted, Gardner had his first brain surgery. For the six weeks following the surgery, he went through what he describes as an exhausting, daily ritual of radiation and chemotherapy. And then there were the side effects. “I couldn’t sleep, the steroids made me hungry all the time, and I gained about 60 pounds. I need a cane to walk, my left hand is completely disabled and, I can’t drive,” Gardner said. “But the scariest thing for me is when they say this disease has no cure. So we’re just delaying. Maybe it’s five months or it’s five years.” Despite all that has happened to Gardner in the last four years, his experience with cancer has given him a new outlook. Gardner’s older brother Ben has seen the change in his brother and the difference in the family dynamic. “With so many people caring for him, his personality became more relaxed. Before he was more of a loner,” Ben said. “The last three years since everything happened, our relationship is way better than it was before.” Gardner has refocused on his artwork and pursuing a degree at ACC. “This was the gift I couldn’t have asked for. I wasn’t really living my life before, and now I am,” he said. “For me this crystallized my attention and opened up possibilities. I wouldn’t change anything. Getting close to death helped me break through personal roadblocks.”

Campus Closeup

Support for Survivors

GED Test Changes Format Carizma Barrera Reporter

Era Sundar, Editor In Chief

YOUNG SURVIVOR — Nurse Navigator Maria Marek and ACC graduate Heather Thomas discuss cancer survival.


oung cancer survivors are part of a growing population. According to an American Cancer Society report published this year, “Mortality rates for childhood cancer have declined by 68 percent over the past four decades.” However, a patient’s experience with cancer doesn’t end with remission. “[Young adult] survivors face many challenges after treatment is over, including medical problems that may show up many years later,” Seton Shoal Creek Hospital and Community Care President and CEO Diana Resnik, said. ACC graduate Heather Thomas is a childhood cancer survivor. At age 4, she was diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia which affects the blood and bone marrow. Now 24, Thomas is married, the recent owner of a house and a nurse at Seton. But she remembers when her life was more difficult. “You could feel really good when you were on treatment and you could have days when you just didn’t feel like moving, ” she said. When her treatment was complete, Thomas, then age 6, had a pill smashing party.

“It meant I didn’t have to take the dreaded pills anymore,” she said. “My mom and dad lined them up in the garage and gave me a hammer and away I went at them.” Nurse Navigator Maria Marek works with the Seton Cancer Survivor Center to help young survivors like Thomas transition from pediatric oncologists to adult doctors and deal with their unique needs. “Some chemotherapy can cause low bone density, fertility issues and heart complications,” Marek said. Thomas said she has not seen any residual effects of having chemotherapy at a young age, but carefully follows a health maintenance plan with her doctor. The Seton Cancer Survivor Center is holding a special event April 6 for young adult survivors like Thomas. The event starts with lunch and will include a video booth so survivors can record their stories, sessions of laughing yoga and cooking demonstrations by chefs. The event is free of charge. For more information visit the Seton Cancer Survivor Center Facebook page.

The General Educational Development Test (GED) will switch from paper to a completely computerized format in January 2014. “Students will have to be familiar with typing and be able to perform drag and drop functions with a mouse to take the new test,” ACC Executive Director of Adult Education David Borden said. “A lot of the GED students sometimes struggle with using computers and may not have them at home.” The change also has some students concerned, because portions of the test Clarissa Peereboom, Photo Editor they have already taken SUCCESS STORY — ACC student Katie will expire on December Sanders encourages students to complete 31. The test is made up of their GED testing before changes take effect at the beginning of next year. five sections — reading, writing, math, science and social studies. Students Flores plans to take the who do not complete all five test by the end of March and parts by the December deadline is considering a career in the will have to retake the entire test. medical field. She said she’s Borden said students should concerned about the math make appointments early to portion of the test but is avoid possible backlogs, because confident in the instruction she is ACC only offers the test by receiving at ACC. appointment in the testing Katie Sanders, a student in centers at the Round Rock ACC’s paramedic program, Campus and Highland Business received her GED certificate last Center. year. She encourages students in ACC adult education students the process of taking the test to Jeremy Jackson and Medaly complete it by the end of the year. Flores are working toward “Just stick with it because finishing the test this year. when you get those scores, it’s so Jackson, who plans to study worth it, ” she said. “Having that computer technology when he GED opens up so many doors for completes the GED test, said you. ” he is not nervous about taking it because the adult education program has been helpful with finding study materials and filling out forms.

April 2013 | 9


SXSW Experience


ast month Accent’s mobile team covered the South by Southwest Interactive, Film and Music Festival. It featured many vivid reminders of Austin’s unique place in American culture. Below is a sampling of our best images from the week. For more SXSW visit Clarissa Peereboom, Photo Editor Janice Veteran, Photographer

Gordon Murray, Photographer Shireen Fatehi-Sedeh, Reporter

Janice Veteran, Photographer

Gordon Murray, Photographer


Shireen Fatehi-Sedeh, Reporter

Reviews > Pinnacle Community

> SXSW Movie Review

College Eats: Fishey Bizness SXSW Film Wrap Up Keri Gabriele Photographer

Era Sundar

Editor in Chief

‘Unhung Hero’

P Keri Gabriele, Photographer

TACOS A LA CARTE — Fishey Bizness serves up fish and shrimp tacos with a slice of

lime and zesty sauce.


ishey Bizness Seafood Company combos, they can also be ordered serves standard, seafood-shack a la carte. At $2 a piece, ordering fare. The blue food trailer items individually is definitely a good welcomes customers with picnic option for the thrifty college student. tables and brightly colored umbrellas. The drink selection was limited to Fish and shrimp, both fried and fountain drinks and water. grilled, are the stars of the menu and Fishey Bizness Seafood Company hush puppies and fries round out the is located in the new food trailer park food truck’s offerings. on Oak Hill, just before the Pinnacle Tacos are served with a slice of Campus at the Y. It’s open Monday lime, creamy tartar and a house sauce through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 simply called zesty. p.m. and is closed on Sundays. The fish or shrimp come wrapped in corn tortillas with tomatoes, tangy onion and crisp romaine lettuce. The fish fillet took up most of the tortilla and was crunchy on the outside with a flaky, buttery inside. The tartar sauce was tasty but unnecessary, because the fish was flavorful on its own. The shrimp was also enjoyable, having the same texture as the fish. Adding the zesty sauce balanced the flavor, but a few more shrimp would have been nice along with a cup of pico de gallo. Keri Gabriele, Photographer The menu consists mostly of WEATHERPROOF — Colorful tables combo plates which average about and umbrellas allow dining year round. $9. Although the tacos are listed as

atrick Moote’s girlfriend rejected his marriage proposal on the Jumbo Tron at a UCLA basketball game. The humiliating scene went viral on YouTube. Ouch. After learning that the size of his manhood played a role in the rejection, Moote sets out on a global and personal expedition to find out if size really matters. The film embraces humor and tongue-in-cheek puns, but Moote and director Brian Spitz manage to avoid making a crass, frat boy flick. Instead they produce an honest, soul-baring documentary. Moote starts out in a good-natured, not-taking-himself-too-seriously manner as he interviews old girlfriends, consults doctors and visits adult themed shops and museums. He even gets himself and his film crew thrown out of a sauna/bath house in South Korea. But as the film progresses, Moote succumbs to the stress of filming his intimate journey. In the process he reveals the support of a close-knit family and possibly uncovers a few truths about love. (The film contains some explicit material.)

‘Xmas Without China’


eeling patriotic and tired of throwing out their children’s Chinese-made toys because of lead contamination, the Jones family accepts a challenge from their neighbor — Chinese-born Tom Xia. The Joneses agree to spend the month of December — up until Christmas Day — without any Chinese goods. The Joneses soon find themselves taking on more than they bargained for. Stripping their home of all Chinese-made products means banishing comforts such as electric lights, the toaster, coffee maker and Xbox. Decorating for Christmas and shopping for presents also take on new meaning. The documentary soars in its exposure of raw emotion and internal conflict. Xia considers what it would mean to become an American citizen, and the Joneses try to balance national pride with the ideals of tolerance and acceptance. “Xmas Without China” begins as a political, socioeconomic commentary on American consumerism, but quickly turns into the touching portrait of two very different families candidly sharing their versions of the American dream.

April 2013 | 11

Join us for Preview Friday! Designed with you in mind, Preview Friday allows you to mingle with other transfer students and learn about: • How the transfer process works • Financial aid and scholarship opportunities • The Comet Connection tuition guarantee • Campus life You’ll also have the chance to talk one-on-one with an advisor in your major. Choose the date you’d like to attend:

Mar. 22, 2013 Apr. 26, 2013 May 10, 2013 May 24, 2013

RSVP at events. Directions to the UT Dallas campus available at

REGISTER NOW Jun. 7, 2013 Jun. 28, 2013 Jul. 12, 2013

Instant Admission Days Thinking of transferring to a 4-year university? Let Concordia University Texas help you decide! Our Admissions Counselors will be at the ACC campus locations listed below to answer any questions and provide an instant admission decision if you bring your transcript. April 2 – 4:30-6:30 pm Northridge Breezeway

April 15 – 12:30-4:00 pm Round Rock Student Commons

April 8 – 12:30-4:00 pm Cypress Creek Student Commons

April 16 – 4:30-6:30 pm South Austin Student Lounge

April 9 – 4:30-6:30 pm Cypress Creek Student Commons

April 17 – 11:30 am - 3:00 pm South Austin Student Lounge

April 10 – 11:30 am - 3:00 pm Riverside Bldg G Foyer

April 23 – 4:30-6:30 pm Riverside Bldg G Foyer | 800-865-4282 D E V E L O P I N G C H R I S T I A N   L E A D E R S

Comic Relief

Eating Healthy + Having Fun = Healthy Survivorship SAVE THE DATE APRIL 6, 2013 AUSTIN, TEXAS

Luxury Apartment Homes

-Minutes from the Lake Creek

Free Vegetarian Lunch

Bus/Metro Rail Station

Cancer Survivor and Advocacy Groups Healthy Cooking Demos

-Large Pets Accepted

Tips on Being More Active

-Washer and Dryer Included

Video Story Booth

CARE BEYOND CANCER SUMMIT II For Young Adult Cancer Survivors

Time 11:30 am - 5:00 pm

Location Casa De Luz 1701 Toomey Road Austin, TX 78704


Contact Christopher Hamilton 512-324-1000 ext. 18211

Call or Stop By for current availability and Austin Community College Specials!

13425 RR 620 N. Austin, Texas 78717 512-401-8110

April 2013 | 13

Student Voice

Campus Viewpoint Keri Gabriele Photographer

“It’s annoying because I forget the bags, and then you have to pay for the bags!” — Gabby Sanchez “It hasn’t affected my shopping at all, because I used to use reusable bags before, so it hasn’t changed anything.”  — Pablo Gomez

“I forgot my bags and had about $200 worth of groceries. The cashier said ‘Either put it all in the basket to take to your car or buy the bags.’ I don’t mind; I think it’s good.” — Allyson Crossley

How has the bag ban affected your shopping experience? “I actually don’t live in Austin, so not really yet” — Laura Johnson


“We live in Kyle, so they’re still using plastic bags. We haven’t done any shopping in Austin yet to notice a difference.” — Ana Valdez


Turning a Job Into a Career Era Sundar

Editor in Chief


raduation brings high expectations. Finding the perfect job, paying off student loans and even purchasing a new car may seem just within reach. However, job hunts sometimes produce more disappointment than actual employment. Graduates may have to start in lower positions than anticipated or take jobs unrelated to their interests just to make ends meet. This scenario is often described as settling for a job rather than embracing a career. The challenge then, is to turn a potentially ho-hum job into a satisfying career. Dawn Allison, a counselor and associate professor of human development at ACC, said thinking about any job as a dead-end job can lead to missed opportunity. A job, no matter how seemingly insignificant, can help an employee develop valuable soft skills. “Soft skills are not technical skills. They are about your ability to be successful in any business situation,” Allison said. “If an employee does really well in a position and the supervisor can say [he or she] was always on time, provided the best customer service and got along with co-workers, the employee is demonstrating skills that any employer would want.” It’s also important to realize that most careers aren’t built overnight. They require years of effort and cultivation. Sometimes the best way to show interest is to actually tell supervisors you want to move up. Allison gave the following example of what an employee could say to a supervisor: “I’m learning a lot at this position. What are some things that are needed to take it to the next level? If I wanted to lead a small team, what are some things that I could be doing?” Researching areas into which the company plans to expand, taking time to learn the corporate culture and connecting with mentors are ways to show personal initiative and move toward career advancement. Some companies have structured mentor programs. But if they don’t, professors, supervisors and admired professionals are valuable resources. Seeking the wisdom of others and actively participating in one’s own career growth are vital components of success. “If you want to set yourself up as someone

worthy of a raise, you need to demonstrate that,” Allison said. Taking on more responsibility before you are paid to do so and coming up with suggestions for increased efficiency show readiness for promotion. In “The Art of Negotiating a Raise, Promotion, Better Job Title, and Bonus,” posted on, professional resume writer and career strategist Teena Rose said, “When you’ve come to the conclusion that you need more, start by building a master plan.”

Rose’s suggestions include: •

• • • •

Create a bulleted list of fresh achievements. Include numbers, percentages, and dollar amounts whenever possible. Examples of sales generated, projects finished before deadline and product or service improvements are helpful. List added responsibilities that you’ve taken on in the last couple of years. List recent training, credentials or degrees that you’ve earned. Gather copies of letters and emails where clients, superiors and colleagues praise you. Place the above items in a decorative folder or binder to be used as part of a professional presentation outlining why you deserve a raise or promotion. Keep company timelines in mind when deciding the right time to ask for a raise.

Erica Breedlove, manager of Employment and Outreach Services at ACC, said, “You can request various things at any given time, but [the annual performance review] is the most common time. It’s when management is already reviewing how employees are executing their duties

Success is neither magical nor mysterious. Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying the basic fundamentals. — Jim Rohn, motivational speaker

and interacting with others.” It’s also a good idea to research the average salary range of the position you hold or are applying for. This knowledge allows you to make intelligent requests. Also research the company’s financial standing. Start-up companies and established companies going through hard economic times may be tight on money. However, they may be willing to make up for shortcomings in cash with benefit packages, extra vacation time or other considerations. Economic conditions and other setbacks may cause career detours and disappointment, but these factors don’t need to halt overall progress. Learn and develop as many skills as you can in a starter job and keep looking for ways to move forward.

Help pay for your classes with an ACC Foundation Scholarship The ACC Foundation offers hundreds of scholarships for many majors and it’s easy to apply: • Complete one application for hundreds of scholarships • Simple online application • Apply by May 1 for the 2013–14 academic year* *Deadline for most scholarships

Visit to apply.

April 2013 | 15









• SAC-SGA Board Forum

• RVS-SPLC Meeting


2 p.m.

12-1 p.m.

• Men’s Basketball • Women’s Volleyball sga online voting (april 1-5)





• EVC-Name your Game

• NRG-Shatter the Silence

• RVS-SPLC Meeting

• Men’s Basketball • Women’s Volleyball

• EVC-SOC Training and Meeting




• EVC-Who Are You?

• RVS-Leadership Speaker Series

• Men’s Basketball Tournament

• Men’s & Women’s Soccer/Flag Football • Women’s Basketball Playoff • Flag Football




• May graduation app deadline • Men’s & Women’s Soccer • Women’s Basketball • Flag Football 7


11-2 p.m.

1 p.m.

11 a.m.-1 p.m.

11 a.m.-12 p.m.

1:30-3 p.m.


9 a.m.-1 p.m.





student leader interviews (april 15-19)






• Nite in the Life Leadership Gala

• RVS-SPLC Meeting

7-9 p.m.




• Accent Summer Issue

Officers: 2-3 p.m. Committee: 3-4 p.m.

• Coffee with Austin LIT on Mondays/Tuesdays 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at CYP and Thursdays 11:30 a.m. at RRC • SGA Tabling on Mondays 3-6 p.m. at SAC • Fun & Games at PIN Tuesdays/Wednesdays 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

April Issue 2013  
April Issue 2013  

Student Newspaper of Austin Community College