Category Archives: News

Veterans Succeed at Chabot

Veterans have a long history of utilizing their benefits for education and veterans at Chabot are no exception. Roughly three percent of our student population is veterans, and most of them utilize the benefits at the veterans office.

After World War II veterans were given educational benefits to help return them to the workforce and that tradition continues today. Many student veterans utilize the generous GI bill as they complete their educations.

Student Veterans tend to have a higher success rate than non-veteran students 72 to 42 percent higher depending on how you look at the numbers.

National Veteran Success tracker or NVST is a lobbying group that does have a vested interest in seeing the GI succeed. NVST does have some concern as Congress is rolling back some of the benefits. So they do try to make student veterans look more successful.

“Being a veteran makes you financially set up.” Said Krista a veteran program coordinator, Army veteran, Criminal Justice major, and second-year Chabot student when asked to justify why veterans have a higher success rate than average students.

Michael, a third-year computer science major and army veteran said, “Veterans have a sense of community and are willing to help.”

That being said why 42 percent vs. 72 percent? Their statistics do include 18 percent still attending college. And another 10 percent that got a vocational degree or certificate but may have even flunked out of college. That being said it still does beat the lowest number for civilians at 39 percent most likely due to readily available financial aid.

The typical veteran is a 25-29-year-old Latino or White man, older than most Chabot students. They make up roughly 3 percent of Chabot’s student population while making up 5 percent of degrees or certificates issues in 2016.

If you’re curious about what Chabot veterans center can provide from medical benefits to comfort dogs, please visit room building 2300, 2nd floor, room 2353 (Above the cafeteria). Melissa, the program coordinator, said: “she is happy to give back to veterans.” Chabot welcomes all those who serve, and/or plan to serve our country.

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Survive a School Shooter

In the past few years, the United States has unfortunately seen a spike in school shootings. Most recently, on March 20, two students were injured during a shooting at Great Mills High School in Lexington Park, Maryland. This comes just weeks after the tragic shooting in Parkland, Florida when a former student snapped and killed 17 people, including both students and staff.

There have been countless rallies and protest held against the current gun laws. Many parents are expressing concern for the safety of their children, and many students admit to being afraid of the “norm” that this has become.

In an attempt to make students aware and prepared in the case of an emergency, Chabot teamed up with the Hayward Police Department to join in on the ‘Run Hide Fight’ campaign. A campaign designed to teach students how to survive an active shooter.

The video is narrated by Lieutenant Antonio Puente, who walks us through the steps to take in case a shooter is on campus. While Puente speaks, the viewer watches a mock active shooter situation going through the campus of Chabot. The shooter is portrayed by actress/producer Connie Jo Sechrist.

Sechrist, a San Jose native and former Chabot TV employee, admitted she felt “very uncomfortable” while portraying the shooter in the video. “The whole point of making the video is to help save lives, and when we decided to make the shooter a woman, I was for it. But in reality, I had to step outside of my comfort zone to play the role. I don’t want people to be scared of me.” Sechrist hopes that this project sends a message to viewers to “stand up, protect yourself and others, to not let this continue and to fight back.”

I showed the video to a couple of students and got feedback on what they believe would be the best tactic to remain safe during a shooting. “I would run, but I would also try to locate where the shooter is and avoid that area,” a student named Gabriel said to me. His friend, Christian, followed by saying “I would try to find an empty room to hide in.” Both of which are great options to keep in mind.

Sechrist is currently working on a feature film about human trafficking in which she hopes to bring awareness and expose the truth behind the epidemic. To hear more about Sechrist upcoming projects visit her website, www.ConnieJoSechrist.com. This story was originally covered by the Spectator, last year.

Meeting With Our Chancellor: Jannett N. Jackson

The Chancellor of the Chabot-Las Positas Community College District, Jannett N. Jackson, visited our campus on March 1, 2018, for a series of listening sessions following last semesters vote of no confidence submitted by the Faculty Senate.

Student Senator Theresa Pedrosa says, “I was surprised that the chancellors listening sessions weren’t listed on Chabot’s online calendar so students would know about it.”

Student body president Zaheer Ebtikar says, “the chancellor was not there to apologize or make amends, but instead to justify her position to the faculty, classified, administrative, and student’s voice.”

In her opening of the last session in the series, giving some framework for the listening session, Chancellor Jackson says, “I am here to listen, I’m not here to speak.”

Chabot faculty member Andrew Pierson, reading from a note he received under his office door from a concerned colleague, says, “as a classified professional, I’m afraid to voice my concerns for fear of retaliation having heard about the actions of human resource management, which were inappropriate and in poor judgment.”

Pierson, continuing from the letter, “Chancellor Jackson has been asked about her leadership style and perception that the district acts as though the colleges are here to serve it as opposed to the other way around. She has dismissively stated that it is only Chabot and not LPC who has this concern.”

In response, Chancellor Jackson says, “My leadership style has fit this district for the last five years. The only concern has come up in this last year.”

Referencing the, “several issues, not adequately addressed in the public forum,”  Chancellor Jackson says, “face to face conversations are the best way to get to the core of the issue, instead of having a public dialogue where we’re trying to get our point across and aren’t really looking for information.”

As the session becomes more of, “a shouting match,” according to Board secretary Gin, Chabot faculty Ming Ho says, “I feel like I’m arguing with a ninth grader.”

Chancellor Jackson replies, “That goes both ways. I don’t know you, and I don’t think you know me.”

Reflecting on the listening session series, Chabot student Gladwin Sy says, “I came to observe, but didn’t see anything encouraging. There was a lot of tension, and the Chancellor seemed like she didn’t want to be there.”

Women in STEM

Empowered Women in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) was a three-part series in celebration of Women’s History Month. The first event of the series was a panel discussion on March 8.

The panel consisted of 3 Chabot faculty members, all women, and all working in STEM fields.

The series was largely organized by Mary Love, an instructional assistant at the STEM center, and Karina Milano, a Chabot student.

Mary Love sharing the importance of the event said, “Women are still severely underrepresented in STEM fields.” Love hopes that the series will, “inspire people to spread the word on why it’s important to add more women to the STEM field.”

Panelist Mera Horne is a lead engineer at the NASA Ames Research Center, and adjunct faculty at Chabot.

When asked why she chose the STEM field, Horne said, “I grew up in Egypt where engineering was not for women, they would say. I followed my heart. If I were to follow the stereotypes, I would be anything else but an engineer. I dared to dream.”

    Chabot student Brenda Marquez said in an interview, “I came to this event because I am a Latina in STEM going to school for medicine. I want to give free surgeries and medical needs to undocumented folks, or those below the poverty line. Discussions like this make women feel like they’re not alone.”

Panelist Brittney Harrison says, “the sciences and your social life, the way we treat people, they’re not separate. Everything is connected.”

Panelist Joanna Coham, a lab analyst, says, “majoring in a STEM field doesn’t limit you to that one thing you’re learning in college. You’re exposed to many different fields and can get a job in a lot of different science fields.”

Harrison says, “we need women in STEM because we have this ability grow life and have such a profound effect on life. How can we not have an affect on the world? We give life. Our perspective is so critical.”

Her Story Is Our Story

Hello, sunshine. Hello, spring. Hello, Women’s History Month! With the welcoming of March comes the welcoming of Women’s History Month.

On March 8, 1857, a group of female garment workers, in New York City, organized together to form a rally outside of the factory they were employed in. The ladies held picket signs and posters that read phrases that demanded the need for better working conditions and better pay. The rally proved successful and from this came the creation of the first women’s labor union.

Over 50 years later in 1908, on the anniversary of the garment workers original strike, thousands of women banded together yet again but this time taking to the streets of New York. They marched from Manhattan to Union Square and not only chanted for more change of pay but also attacked the issue of extremely long hours, voting rights, and child labor laws. A few months later in May, the Socialist Party of America declared that the last day of February be dubbed National Women’s Day, which was first celebrated the following year in 1909. This soon gained international attention and other countries started to follow suit and acknowledged February 28 as well.

As the years went on activist, began to realize that not only was there an issue with woman’s pay and very poor working conditions, but there was also painfully obvious lack of women’s contributions to the United States of America in school history books. In 1970 a group of activist gathered together and revised the school curriculum in Sonoma County which eventually spread across the county and went on to earn so much attention that in 1980 president Jimmy Carter proclaimed the first national women’s history week for March 2 – 8. Making sure to plan it around the anniversary of the garment worker strike.

As the movement continued to gain traction some parts of the nation went on to celebrate the entire month of March in honor of women. Thus inspiring the Women’s National History Project to lobby for an official longer observation period, which was successful and in 1987 Congress passed a proclamation establishing March as the official Women’s History Month.

Now in 2018, women are still fighting the good fight for equal rights, pay, and standards as men. Much of women’s success story has begun in somewhat recent times and has expanded to include the rights of women who area part of the LGBTQ community. It is safe to assume the fight is far from over, but more so just the beginning.

Upcoming Women’s History Month Events

Keeping the Grounds

Trash on campus

Trash on campus

It is the Maintenance and Operations mission to try to keep a clean campus and a safe environment for students, faculty, and staff. Maintenance and Operations has a 15 hour work day. Some of their jobs include sending out a sweeper truck, sending out men with backpack blowers, and also sending a few men to pick up trash all over campus. They all manage to achieve cleaning the campus every day before 8 a.m. right before the students and faculty arrive at Chabot College.

So when I asked Cord Ozment, who is the Grounds Supervisor of the Maintenance and Operations department, “What is the greatest challenge for grounds keeping here at Chabot”? He stated that “We spend a lot of time cleaning up garbage like I said, fifteen hours a day. Five people. Every morning and then we go on to the mowing and the pruning. That’s the fun stuff. It’s the garbage in the morning that’s a hassle.”

M&O Sign

M&O Sign

Maintenance and Operations work very hard to keep this campus clean. Wouldn’t you agree that it is also the student’s job to keep the campus clean as well? Ozment stated that ”If we weren’t here for a couple of days, it’ be amazing how dirty this place would get”. So remember, the next time you finish a meal, throw away your trash and make Chabot College shine. This is a home for many students, and it is yours as well. Treat it like one.

I also inquired to Ozment about any plans in regards to the plants at Chabot College. They have been affected by the weather and construction which can get in the way of landscaping. Ozment replied, “We have plants going into dormancy, so it looks like they’re dying, but they’re not. They’re going to come right back.” Ozment followed with, “I work closely with the construction superintendent on the projects, and we’ll make a bullet point list as they start opening up some of these gardens and you’ll see at the end of the whole project, we’ll come through and start replanting these areas.”

Maintenance and Operations does a fantastic job of keeping the campus clean and safe. We shouldn’t take them for granted.

Hayward Housing Crisis

On Tuesday, February 6th, Hayward City Council held a special meeting focused on the Hayward Housing crisis. Many renters are facing unlawful evictions and unexplainable rent increases as new management companies are capitalizing on the need for housing as a result of the tech industries new demand. Gentrification is happening now inside of our city; is it too late to respond accordingly?

At the meeting, rent control stabilized rent increases and development of affordable housing was discussed. There will be follow up discussion meeting being held on February, 26th at the Matt Jimenez Center at 28200 Ruus Rd. from 6-8PM. City Manager Kelly McAdoo and City Assistant Manager Kelly Hurtado shared a presentation on what is currently being done and what are some options are for the future.

“Section 8 of the Hayward Rent Stabilization Ordinance should be removed,” Hurtado stated. Referring to legislation that allows owners to “decontrol” units by paying a fee, allowing the property rent to be raised higher than 5% in one year.

Public comments dominated the meeting with at least 30 individuals opening their hearts and sharing frustrations.  One developer asked, “How can I build a 5-unit property for affordable housing when the city of Hayward charges $60,000 per unit before the cost of permits?”
There is a need for multiple solutions for all affected parties. Currently, the average rent in Hayward is affordable to those with an average income of nearly $80,000 when its citizens average about $45,000.

Residents like Maria Segura of the Aloha apartments on Jackson St, stated that she, “is now being charged utilities when she was gone for months and construction was constant.”
The company that owns Mrs. Segura’s apartment, has allegedly practiced unlawful evictions at another apartment, Solis Garden on Harder Rd. They are currently awaiting litigation with 3 remaining tenants.

City Council members Al Mendall and Francisco Zermeno were disgusted at the company that owns Aloha and Solis Garden Apartments. Zermeno asked several questions and shared ideas before putting a hand over his mouth as he said, “this is Shit!” Al Mendall blatantly states, “What the owners of the Aloha and Tiki (now Known as Solis) Gardens are doing is wrong!”

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History of Black History

Oh February, how we love you so. Winter is ending, birds are chirping and Black History Month is being celebrated. Although being Black is always something to be proud of and the culture should be praised year round, February is dubbed as the official Black History Month in the United States.

Dr. Carter G. Woodson, a Harvard Graduate from Virginia, is widely known as the “father of Black history.” Woodson, born December 19, 1875, couldn’t help but noticed the lack of proper representation (or representation at all) of Black culture in his US History studies. Determined for change and in an attempt to educate others on the impact of Black culture in our society, Woodson launched the Association for the Study of Negro Life in 1915. From this came the Journal of Black History (now known as the Journal of African American History), a publication that highlights the roles, importance, and history of Black people. His work brought in loads of support and encouragement, and in 1926 Woodson was able to organize the first-ever Negro History Week. This purposefully fell on the second week of February to celebrate both Frederick Douglass (former slave/national leader of the abolitionist movement) and President Abraham Lincoln’s birthdays. Woodson devoted his entire life to ensuring the presence of African American history in the United States. Sadly he died of a heart attack in 1950 before seeing his celebration go from a week to the entire month of February in 1976. However, Woodson left behind a legacy that goes hand in hand with the works of other astounding African American leaders.

Week one of February has been exciting as the celebration of Black history is in full effect all across the Bay Area. Celebrations and dedications have been held by the city of Hayward, Oakland and many more. Chabot’s Scholars of the African Diaspora (CSAD), a group of programs and organizations in place to promote the academic success of students of the African descent, has hosted motivational workshops and panel discussions all throughout campus. And not to mention we screamed Happy Birthday to Mrs. Rosa Parks as she would have turned 105 on February 4. Parks, of course, made history when she refused to give up her seat on the bus to a white man on December 1, 1955, in Montgomery, Alabama.Parks was arrested and tried for this event, but eventually made bailed and moved on to continue fighting against segregation and discrimination.

If you feel that you’ve missed out on the festivities, don’t worry! There is plenty more celebration to go around. Here at Chabot CSAD is hosting three more upcoming events including a “Get Out” film screening on the 15th, a Black Scholars Family Night on the 22nd, and an end of the month Carnival on the 27th. The Bay Area is jammed packed with events as well, most of which are free. For more information scan the code below for events around the Bay Area if you would like to join in on all the love. Also, tune into KTCH Channel 27, and catch an episode of Chabot News where Chabot’s Avier Brass will be doing weekly segments about culturally significant figures in Black history.

For more on Black History Month events in the bay area check Eventbrite.

DACA Update

DACA has once again been in the spotlight with it being the primary issue that lead to the government shutdown and potentially threatens another. DACA is an issue that is important to Chabot college due to us having a large population of Dreamer students. At the board of trustees recently declaring us a sanctuary campus like many other Californian campuses.
Chabot’s, status as a sanctuary campus means that we will not cooperate with Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) should they ask for records or attempt to apprehend a student on campus. This is made redundant by ICE’s policy of not apprehending people in “sensitive” areas such as schools and churches. Yet, under the Trump administration ICE has been much more proactive. According to The New York Times raiding a total of 98 7-Eleven’s in January resulting in 23 arrests.

In the short term, DACA recipients should have nothing to fear despite Attorney General Jeff Sessions announcing the end of DACA. The Chabot College Dream team recently sent out an email stating as of January 13, 2018, U. S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced it will again accept DACA renewal applications as a result of a recent order issued by a U.S. District Court.

Chabot has its own Dreamers Club that according to the group’s president Jacklen a first-year math major, “is to create awareness and support for undocumented people at chabot.” She went on to state the group provides scholarship information, guest speaker and group support for its members.

Chabot’s Dreamers club isn’t just for the undocumented, they accept allies as well. One such ally is Savannah a 1st-year business major. Savannah joined because “My friend was undocumented and a few of her family members and I knew of the fear and anxiety they face.”

President Donald Trump has stepped away from Mexico funding his border wall in the short term and sought to get the funding from Congress. But with Democrats opposed to constructing the wall along with any member of his party. President Trump has attempted to use DACA as leverage to strike a deal with Democrats. The disagreement lead to the first government shutdown with the ruling party holding the majority seats in Congress since Jimmy Carter.

Chabot Dreamer club meets on Thursdays at noon in room 506. DACAs future remains uncertain for the foreseeable future while both political parties seem to be unwilling to compromise.

Calculating Counseling

According to the Chabot website, we currently have 20 counselors available to the 13,875 registered students on campus. This number includes adjunct counselors and counselors assistants. Students have had to wait weeks, or longer, to see a counselor. Though satisfaction is reportedly moderate, suggestions for improvement have been made, and the need for additional resources is apparent.

Student Senate SSCC Student Trustee Juliet Garcia says, “I’ve always been in Puente. So I’ve never had to use the counseling in 700. Special program counseling is better because counselors in 700 give a lot of general information, they don’t have the time. Special program counselors really get to know you.”

Chabot’s Office of Institutional Research (OIR) coordinated by Dr. Carolyn Arnold, conducts a student satisfaction survey biannually. The results are based on a sample of our student population, 1,702 “student course enrollments,” providing 3 individual aspects of counseling in 2 different categories.

According to the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office website, cccco.edu, we have 13,875 students enrolled at Chabot College. The OIR survey sample results available online will indicate the opinions of just above 12% of our student population.

One category relevant to counseling was for the facilities. The other category was “experience and satisfaction with student services.” Facilities, “Bldg. 700 upstairs (Counseling, Career/Transfer Center, Special Programs),” collected 1,488 responses, totaling 71% either satisfied or very satisfied, 8% either dissatisfied or very dissatisfied and 21% neither dissatisfied or satisfied.

Within “experience and satisfaction with student services,” students were asked about, “Front Desk Counseling (quick counseling),” and, “Counseling Appointments.”

From the sample of a potential 12% of the student population, 75% were either satisfied or very satisfied, and 25% are not satisfied with their experience with counseling appointments. Out of the 1,679 students who answered this specific part of the survey, 22% have heard of but never been to a counseling appointment.

When asked about his experience with a counselor, Reid Alexander, a returning Chabot student says, “she was good…I didn’t follow her plan, that’s why I’m still here.”

SSCC President Zaheer Ebtikar, conscious of those he represents is aware that, “Many students aren’t able to capitalize on their education early enough because of the lack of counselor availability.”

Ebtikar, Alexander, and Garcia all reference the online option to get an appointment. Unfortunately, following the instructions on chabotcollege.edu to schedule an appointment, when instructed to, “Click on Find Appointments to select a date & time,” selecting “Find Appointments,” a new page loads displaying the message, “Appointments for the current allowable time frame are Filled.”

“We need more counselors, says President Ebtikar during the January 29 SSCC meeting, but with the deficit, there won’t be any money spent on additional counseling faculty for a while.”