Monthly Archives: October 2017

Trump Backpedals on DACA

After meeting with Democratic leaders on September 13, President Trump struck a compromise to increase the protection of undocumented immigrants and to replace DACA. The deal, however, does not include plans for a wall, but that of a border security package according to New York Times.

The meeting on Sept. 13, improved the morale of Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer and Representative Nancy Pelosi. In a joint statement they said they had a “productive” meeting with the president, “We agreed to enshrine the protections of DACA into law quickly and to work out a package of border security, excluding the wall, that’s acceptable to both sides.” This was however shot down by the president the next day, claiming that a deal had not been struck.

While the Democrats have pinned this as a victory for their policies, his flip-flopping position has left the Republican side in a stagnated state and has alienated some of his strongest allies.

On Sep. 13, Breitbart, known for their support for Trump during the elections, and run by the former chief strategist, Steve Bannon, had the headline “Amnesty Don.” on their website.

On the Sept. 14, Chuck Schumer was caught by a microphone on the Senate floor talking about his meeting with the President, “Here’s what I told him, I said, ‘Mr. President, you’re much better off if you sometimes step right and you sometimes step left. If you have to step in one direction, you’re boxed.” Stating the need to be malleable to both sides to get things done.

President Trump gave Congress the task of finding a replacement for DACA, which was previously enacted under President Obama, extending the protections offered by the previous administration but also slowly winding it down over a six-month period. Though it already has shown signs of being bogged down as it “isn’t at the top of the agenda right now” says Republican Representative Mike Coffman, as Congress deals with a slew of other issues.

This comes after the announcement of the ending of DACA. In a speech given by Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Sept. 5, in which he stated he would end the program due to the strong surge of unaccompanied minors across the border, along with the humanitarian crisis it has yielded. Stating that DACA has “denied jobs to hundreds of thousands of Americans by allowing those same jobs to go to illegal aliens.”

Originally started under the Obama Administration, DACA protects an estimated 800 thousand undocumented immigrants by granting them the legal status to work under protection and diminishes the risk of deportation.

The changes to DACA have been widely met with negative criticism from many. Chabot student Wagner Perez states, “It’d be a disappointment to me and many others if DACA is withdrawn due to the progress we have made in recent time to help accommodate immigrants.” he follows up with, “So the fact that this is being proposed just feels like a giant step in the wrong direction. Whether we like it or not, the US has to have some border security. The Wall was always a dead idea. I had no doubt in my mind it wouldn’t happen.”


During the Sept. 18 Student Senate meeting, representative council members affirmed their dedication to the student body, and solidarity with all students as updated research information on DACA was described in preparation for their panel discussion at the following afternoon’s town hall.

Puente Project Counselor, Sandra Genera, said, “ Wow! Thank you very much, representatives. It’s been very nice to see your leadership grow here at Chabot, and to know how prepared you are by coming and presenting during the Chabot Town Hall.”

Sept. 19 was this school year’s first Student Senate sponsored Town Hall. In a notice to the entire campus via email, SSCC President Zaheer Ebtikar emphasized that the focus for this town hall would be Chabot’s response to the DACA program announcement, updates on SSCC projects, resources and information available on campus, and getting input from the students on current issues.

President Ebtikar kicked it off by updating all in the room on DACA related information at the state level. Ebtikar referenced Governor Brown’s $30 million earmarked for financial aid and legal services, “to help young people brought into this country illegally as children,” in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s announcement regarding the DACA program.

Ebtikar also compared the DREAM Act to the American HOPE act of 2017, emphasizing the benefits of the Hope act. The American HOPE was introduced by Luis Gutierrez, a Democrat from Illinois, with 116 sponsors. “The DREAM Act requires that Dreamers graduate from or complete two years of a higher education program, complete at least two years of military service, or be employed for at least three years to become lawful permanent residents. The American Hope Act has no such requirement,” says Christian Penichet-Paul, Policy and Advocacy Associate for the National Immigration Forum.

The SSCC with President Ebtikar, followed by members of the representative council including Valeria Diaz, Jeremy Yu, Lesly Avendano, Tatiana Howard, and Kirsten Fraser all showed their commitment, dedication and solidarity with the student body of Chabot College and those affected by immigration reform directly or indirectly. According to the SSCC during their Sept. 18 meeting, there will be a follow up to this in the form of a drafted resolution for Chabot College in response to DACA and the tragedy in Charlottesville. The resolution is said to cover free speech and expression over hate speech and violence, and to declare solidarity with all Chabot students.

Know DACA?

On September 5, news spread of Trump’s newest decision to end DACA. For those who don’t know DACA (Deferred Action for Child Arrivals) grants young adults from other countries the ability to work within the states for a limited time.

Recipients of DACA, unfortunately, will no longer be able to apply for renewal. Chabot College is located within the Bay Area where a wide variety of our residents are of Latin or Asian descent. Many, now have concerns regarding their residency.

But what does this mean for our students here on campus? Andrea Cardenas, a freshman at Chabot, states, “Chabot has promised to protect its’ students and stand true to being a sanctuary campus, meaning no information will be released to any federal organization regarding a DACA student.”

Professor Richard A. Harris who teaches Sociology shared his opinions on what students can do. “Make sense of all of this and try to understand how it affects each group; each group should take steps to be political.”

A source from Visa Inc. Diversity team stated, “Trump’s decision will hinder the growth of the people culturally and in the workforce. Who does he think is going to run this country 20- 30 years from now?”.

As for our students, it is not too late for you to get involved and know that there are people in your defense. On October 19, in building 300, Room 354, there will be a Dreamers Transfer Workshop catered to students that are a part of the DREAM Act. Mission Asset and Weingart Foundation has funded $495 for students to renew their status.

Also, Governor Jerry Brown has committed 7 million dollars to support undocumented families. This issue stretches further than just Chabot. This affects the majority of the Bay Area.

Be sure to research when the next protest or petition signing will be held for you to extend your opinion about the closure of DACA.

Hayward Mural Program an Expression of Art

According to the Hayward Police Department, 35% of reported crimes have been from vandalism cases. Within these cases, many in the city of Hayward have been simply from “tagging” around local businesses and architecture. Graffiti is writing or drawings that have been scratched, painted or sprayed illicitly on a wall, or other surfaces in a public place, but it is also an art form.

The ongoing community effects include declining property values and neighborhoods suffering increased rates of other types of crime as well gang violence.

The Hayward Mural Program has been behind the call-to-action prevention of vandalism related to gang violence around town. In changing the appearance of the city of Hayward, and decreasing the escalating “tagging” in Hayward, the City Council’s top priority has been a pro-active and appealing approach.

The Mural Art Program extends to graffiti-prone commercial buildings, schools, utility boxes, fire hydrants, benches, underpasses, and book drops.

PG&E and Union Pacific Railroad, along with the Hayward Unified School District and homeowners associations, have gotten involved with the Hayward Mural Program.

Program administrators estimate that at least a thousand volunteers throughout the Bay Area have been associated with this program. The program’s efforts have cultivated an increase in job creation, civic pride, cultural enrichment and sense of community identity through inspirational artwork.

One of the artists in the program, Jean Bidwell, has been painting murals since high school and in 2009 began working with the Hayward Mural Program. Skilled with surface prep and restoration, painting, wood carving, calligraphy and many more art forms, Jean’s masterpieces include notable murals around schools, utility boxes and community wall structures.

Jean Bidwell described the program as, “something, unlike anything I have ever experienced. It’s a strong, albeit silent, impact and that’s the beauty of it… to draw people together… whether it’s curiosity or a passion for all things creative.”

As an artist captivated with the history of the place, and someone who paints in the realist style, she was presented with the distinction of an Alameda County Arts Leadership Award in 2013. Her designs have been those of a “historical nature,” and creations of “educational memorials” shared around the community.

By pausing a moment in time and creating a piece of art, the muralist Jean Bidwell has been able to “tell the story without words, hence her portrayal as a “visual scribe: a keeper of place.”

Jean Bidwell’s recent projects have been in the surrounding community including Downtown Hayward’s Utility Boxes on A Street, Jackson Street’s Southern Retaining Wall Mural west of Watkins Avenue toward the BART tracks and Hayward Main Library Book Drop Boxes on C Street and Watkins Street.

Chabot Pop-up Pantry

Every Month, right here on campus, food is provided for free to anyone passing by and willing to sign in. The Food Pantry supplies fresh groceries, fruits, veggies, loaves of bread, canned and packaged goods all lined up with volunteers loading up tote bags provided by the Student Senate for all to take home and enjoy.

“Food insecurity” is the occasional or constant lack of access to the food one needs for a healthy, active life. According to the California Association of Food Banks, the state of “California produces nearly half of the nation’s fruits and vegetables, yet 1 in 8 Californian’s struggle with food insecurity.”

Chabot’s Food Pantry is an initiative started, and primarily managed by the RAGE club. Revolutionaries Advocating for a Greener Ecosystem is one of the most active clubs on campus with their communities health at the forefront of their intent. Vice President of RAGE, Enya Daang says, “our mission is to address food insecurity at Chabot and within the larger community to reduce hunger as a roadblock to educational achievement.”

Dr. Julie Schwartzbard, MD, says, “hunger is a distraction we’ve all had. Many studies show the negative effects that hunger has on school-aged children and young adults. Hunger is tied directly to low blood sugar which quickly leads to fatigue and low energy levels, and all wreak havoc on your ability to focus.” We’ve all experienced being hungry. Many experience hunger beyond anything which could be considered safe. Regardless of which degree you have experienced, we can all recall this state, and inability to focus.

Enya Daang of RAGE says, “it’s really difficult to focus on your classes and other responsibilities if you’re hungry. There are some people who have to choose between getting a ride home or a meal to eat. When there is such an abundance of excess food, no one should face this problem. The Food Pantry is not only a place to get free, fresh food, it’s also a place to get resources to help people in tough situations.”

Jorge Duarte, a Chabot student, when asked about The Food Pantry said he was not aware of this initiative. As a Chabot student, “I feel proud. It brings me joy inside knowing if I were struggling, I would have help. If I were stuck in a hole I would have somewhere to turn.”

The Food Pantry has its food donated and delivered by the Alameda County Food Bank. This giveaway takes place once a month on different days. So, keep your eye open for signs around campus for the next Food Pantry where volunteer opportunities are also available.

Eden Night Live!

Beginning in July and continuing through October, Eden Night Live has brought families together through music, sports and local vendors in the Ashland area, near the Hayward and San Leandro border.  

After a successful series of events last year, Eden Night Live is making an impactful return with an emphasis on community. RJ “KoolRaul” Navalta, has been putting together these events with the help of volunteers, Deputy Sheriff’s Activities League and the Castro Valley Chamber of Commerce.

While attending the September 8 event, I first noticed a radiant vibe that I could not describe at first, but soon it came to me as welcoming. Children were seen with smiles from ear to ear, running around and playing basketball, or soccer and even rock climbing.

Families gathered around the stage waiting for the Backyard Party Kings to perform an assortment of soulful tracks and oldies covers with a twist of hip-hop. Opening acts included; DJ Tasi from KCRH 89.9 FM and Lyricist, Ray Mon who rhymed and beat boxed at the same time. While jamming out to the performance, I ate some delicious cookies and spoke to an author who was signing her books.

Eden Night Live partners with local businesses and provides a platform for their services by allowing pop-up tents and canopies for vendors to sell their goods.

How did this all begin? During my visit, I was fortunate to ask the man who put it together, RJ himself. He declared, “We want our community to have a space to enjoy each other.” Both locations, last year’s and this year’s, were merely vacant lots with huge spaces dedicated to nothing. “We plan to turn those lots into comfortable, safe, and welcoming environments for everyone. We hope that they return to these areas long after Eden Night Live finishes its series of events.”

Enjoy live music and your neighbors’ company at Eden Night Live’s last events on October 13th & 27th at 16640 E. 14th St. San Leandro.

Parking Problems at Chabot

At the beginning of every semester, the Chabot student parking lot is always a problem for parking, and the ticket dispensers don’t work. Sometimes these problems cause students to be late or even drop out of classes.

Omar a student here at Chabot says “I don’t park in the student parking lot I mostly park down on Hesperian I know it’s farther to walk to my class but I don’t have to worry about paying or about being late to class because the time I come sometimes it is packed” In this case many students do not park in the student parking lot but in the parking lot of Quickly, Burger King, or down Hesperian Blvd. just to save money or not to worry about the hassle of the student parking lot.

Campus Safety Officer Moore says, “We have received numerous complaints about ‘there isn’t enough parking’ or ‘the ticket dispensers don’t work’ unfortunately, the amount of parking is not an easy fix, but the complaints of the ticket dispensers are easy to resolve if a student contacts the Campus Safety Department in a timely manner. There’s a lot that we can do to resolve ticket dispensers but nothing for student parking spaces.”

At the start of the semester some students take other alternative transportation to get at Chabot “During the first three weeks I always take A.C. Transit. I live in Oakland and I have to get up earlier but it’s worth not worrying where to park? Or if there’s enough space to park” says an anonymous student. The Campus Safety Department encourages students to use other alternatives like; carpooling, Uber, Bicycles or taking A.C. Transit.

While students still complain about not having enough parking spaces or problems with the ticket dispensers another dilemma students have is the fact that faculty/staff are parking in student spaces even though they have their own. The student parking lot has just over two thousand parking spaces with more than fifteen thousand students attending Chabot, yet the faculty/staff Parking lot has just over 400 parking spaces. Why do they park in the student parking lot? Maybe because of close parking. Some students question this practice, do the faculty/staff members get citations for parking in the student’s spaces? According to officer Moore, “The faculty/staff can park on campus in any parking lot as long as they display a valid parking permit.” faculty/staff has more parking advantages than students.

Kitchens on Wheels

So you’re looking for a bite to eat on campus, but the usual snacks, drinks and food aren’t cutting it. You’re looking for something different without walking very far. Look no further, the food trucks arrive every week, around noon. These local traveling kitchens of deliciousness park themselves in between the 1300 and 1600 buildings.

There are three food trucks that take turns serving students every other day. On Monday and Wednesday, Mae Mae’s Kitchen rolls onto campus with a helpful serving of southern charm. Stuff My Waffle takes over on Tuesdays and Thursdays. They combine waffles with other food items for a “Waffle Sandwich.” Island Gourmet brings you the best of Filipino cuisine all in an amazingly mobile service station.

Stuff My Waffle is the go-to truck if you want your waffle fix. Stuffing can include Cheese, strawberry jam, bacon, banana slices and more. Their menu is a cluster of crazy edible foods stuffed in between many types of waffles, including buttermilk. If you are feeling quite bold, Stuff My Waffle’s menu contains many crazy combinations.

The “Banana-Fana” contains Nutella, banana slices and bacon stuffed between two chocolate chip buttermilk waffles. If you ever wanted fried chicken on your waffle, then the “Chick-In-My-Waffle” has you covered, with Jalapeño jam, fried chicken and butter between two whole wheat waffles.

If you are not too bold on the whole “Waffle-Burger” idea, then the menu at Mae Mae’s Kitchen has you covered. From hot wings, hot dogs, chicken strips and cheeseburgers, Mae Mae’s kitchen can be your destination for good old homestyle cooking. One student stated the chicken nuggets were “Very good.”

Perhaps another culture’s cuisine might suit your taste. The Filipino cuisine of Island Gourmet brings the deliciousness on the go. Pancit, Chicken and Pork Adobo, this truck brings out the best of Filipino cuisine straight to your hands. Food trucks will arrive on campus throughout the week, serving students from 9 a.m. to Noon.

California’s First Firehouse Clinic

California is known for its health care innovations and now Hayward is home to the first Firehouse Clinic in the state. Don’t worry about your local firefighters being overworked. The building is the only one working two jobs as it houses both; a fully functioning fire station and a health clinic.

In general, Firefighters and ambulance are first responders in life and death situations. More often, people require medical attention that is not categorized as extremely vital but call for emergency services. The attached health clinic is aiming to prevent such confusion, and with its availability, regular care is accessible to the public, increasing overall health and decreasing the emergency calls that can happen due to minor complaints.

Without health insurance, people may need more than patience to become a patient with an average wait time of up to 72 hours. In the city of Hayward, St. Rose Hospital was the only option. With Tiburcio Vasquez Health Center Inc. staffing the clinic the majority of the fire station, patients do not have to wait as long. “Patients that need to be seen today will be seen today,” David Vliet, Tiburcio Vasquez Health Center CEO stated, “If they want to be seen tomorrow, that’s fine, but they will not have to go past 72 hours.”

The clinic is designed to cut down on patient time by using more electronic devices like tablets and having medical supplies ready ahead of time. Although it is attached to the fire station, it is not cutting any corners. The clinic features an on-site lab to run blood tests. Before this development there was no public health clinic available to adults, Tiburcio Vasquez also runs the pediatric Silva Clinic on Tennyson Road.

The project is funded by Alameda County and by its third year it will be self-sustaining in terms of funding. Its hours of operation are from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m for the clinic.

Wifi That Works

During the Summer 2017 semester, students were surprised to find a new “splash page” when connecting to any of the Wi-Fi hot spots around campus. Students were greeted with a page that had an accept button. This initiative was meant to clear up bandwidth for many of the hot spots around campus, meaning students could actively choose whether to connect to the hot spots.

The new “splash page” went into effect on May 30, during the summer semester at both Chabot and Las Positas campuses to give students a choice to access the Wi-Fi, hopefully freeing up much-needed bandwidth. The Student Senate of Chabot College and the Information Technology department collaborated on the change, with the Student Senate proposing this new page. Chabot and Las Positas staff both approved and supported the change. Before this change had occurred, students could automatically connect to the hot spots at any time without encountering the splash page

After the summer semester, it seems the splash page has been disabled and has not been implemented for the Fall 2017 semester, but a number of new hot spots have been added to outside areas to improve connectivity. These areas include Cesar Chavez Plaza and the Grand Court, in front of the Library. Now students traveling to and from places can use the campus Wi-Fi efficiently without suffering from being too far from the hot spot.