December 2002


Mt. SAC Hosts 'Character' Seminar

Walnut, CA . . . Mt. San Antonio College will host a three-day "Character Development Seminar," conducted by trainers from the Josephson Institute of Ethics, to be held at Mt. SAC, March 6-8. The registration period for this seminar is January 15-29.

The seminar taught by Josephson national trainers provides an opportunity to engage and train about 35 campus and community members with ethics and character development models and techniques, as well as to inspire possible applications and action.

The seminar explores moral and leadership dilemmas in business, politics and society, as well as issues involving sportsmanship, plagiarism, ethical decision making, and campus and community character development programs. Michael Josephson, founder of the Josephson Institute, speaks about these everyday on his radio commentary on KNX 1070.

The seminar is sponsored by the Mt. SAC Associated Students and the Center for Constructive Leadership.

For more information, call Mt. SAC’s Student Life Office at (909) 594-5611, ext. 4525.

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Mt. SAC 'Puts on the Hits'

Walnut, CA . . . What type of a fund-raiser brings together celebrities like Britney Spears, Frank Sinatra, and Elvis? The answer is the Mt. San Antonio College Faculty Association's scholarship fund-raiser "Puttin' on the Hits" to be held Friday and Saturday, January 24 and 25, 8 p.m., in Mt. SAC's Clarke Theater. A special matinee performance will be held Saturday, January 25, at 3 p.m.

Mt. SAC professors, managers, and staff in full costume will impersonate famous celebrities and lip sync in this event with proceeds going to student scholarships.

The event raises approximately $8,000 per year for scholarships.

For tickets, call the Mt. SAC Performing Arts Box Office at (909) 468-4050.

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Pacheco Elected Mt. SAC Board of Trustees President

Walnut, CA . . . Gayle E. Pacheco was elected President of the Mt. SAC Board of Trustees for a one-year term, and Fred Chyr was elected Vice President at the Trustees’ organizational meeting on December 18.

Pacheco, who was elected to the Board in 1999, is the president of her own manufacturing business in Covina. She holds a business degree from the University of Redlands and a law degree from Western State University. She has been active at Mt. SAC serving on the Mt. SAC Foundation Board of Directors, the Mt. SAC Community Leadership Advisory Council, and the Mt. SAC Cultural Arts Committee. Pacheco is also active in the community with service to the Walnut Valley Unified School District, the Industry Manufacturers Council, and local chambers of commerce.

Chyr, who was elected to the Board of Trustees in 1995, has more than 20 years of experience in marketing and sales for Southern California businesses. He has served as an advisor on the Forum of Pacific Christian College and on the 60th Assembly District’s Citizens Advisory Committee.

Trustee Dr. David K. Hall, who has been a member of the Board of Trustees since 1995, will serve as Board Clerk.

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Mt. SAC Offers Manfacturing Technology Classes

Walnut, CA . . . Mt. San Antonio College will offer a wide variety of Manufacturing Technology courses for Mt. SAC’s spring semester, which begins January 13.

Offerings this spring include classes in Computerized Numerical Control (CNC) Operations, Computer Aided Drafting (CAD) and Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM), SurfCAM software, and others. Course offerings provide the essential skills for the workplace in today’s manufacturing technology field.

For more information on Manufacturing Technology classes, call the Mt. SAC Manufacturing Technology Department at (909) 594-5611, ext. 4770.

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Mt. SAC Offers German Courses

Walnut, CA . . . The Mt. San Antonio College Foreign Languages Department will offer a series of day and evening German classes this spring semester beginning January 13.

Learn German conversation, reading, and writing for travel, business, and fun. This spring Mt. SAC will offer three levels of German courses that, in addition to helping students learn the language, also offer exposure to German culture and history. Earn college credit while you learn the language that is the native tongue for more than 100 million people in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.

For more information on German classes at Mt. SAC, call (909) 594-5611, ext. 4570.

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President's Circle Meets at Mt. SAC

Walnut, CA . . . A breakfast meeting with Christopher C. O’Hearn, President of Mt. San Antonio College, and the members of the President’s Circle was held on December 4 at Mt. SAC to provide information about College’s future and to help chart its course.

The President’s Circle members provide input to the College President as active participants in shaping the future of Mt. SAC. Individuals give $1,000 or more each year to the Mt. SAC Foundation to support current College needs that will not be funded by the state, student scholarships, and other priority needs. President Circle members meet twice a year with the President and are recognized for their support at a yearly dinner given in their honor.

Each member was presented with a Certificate of Appreciation at the breakfast meeting held in the College’s Art Gallery. Members had the opportunity to see a unique exhibit of art by Native American artist Kevin Red Star, whose work has received national recognition. They also provided input to the President on how the College can help business and industry in the San Gabriel Valley.

This year’s member of the President’s Circle include: Assemblyman Bob Pacheco and Gayle Pacheco (incoming president of the Mt. SAC Board of Trustees), Sophia B. Clarke, Don Rogers, Barbara Price, Heinz Gehner, Connie Hsi, Chris Huang, Joseph T. Kung, Scarlet Treu, Pat Rasmussen, Barbara Crane, James L. Gilliam, Nancy Stuve, Rick Meza, Spenc Lyons, Francis Maschio, Margie Chitwood, James L. Gilliam, Leann Garrett, Al Alves, and Tula Demas.

For more information about joining the President’s Circle, call the Mt. SAC Institutional Advancement Office at (909) 594-5611 ext. 4121.

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Alumna Finds Opportunity at Mt. SAC

Walnut, CA . . . When architecture student Yamin Oo left her home country, she was looking for opportunities in education and the chance to express herself through design. She found those opportunities at Mt. SAC when she began at the College in 2001.

"We didn’t have freedom in design," said Yamin, a Mt. SAC alumna who recently transferred to Cal Poly Pomona to continue her studies in architecture.

Today, Yamin can express her ideas and has the opportunities to be successful. But that wasn’t always the case.

In 1995, she was studying architecture at the Yangon Institute of Technology in her home country, Burma. As a reflection of the political and educational conditions in Burma at the time, she created a design studio project she called "One Screw Loose," which portrayed a military general with a screw coming out of his head and a light bulb that wasn’t shining. The project was decorated with military slogans depicting the Burmese military government in control, and while her teachers and fellow students appreciated her idea, the government did not. Educational freedom for her seemed to be at a standstill.

"We couldn’t ask questions, and they (the government) didn’t like criticism," she said. "I didn’t have the opportunities to express my ideas in my design."

She was summoned to her professor’s office where a military officer was waiting. She was severely warned to discontinue this commentary on the government, she didn’t receive a grade for her project, and the project was removed from the exhibition and destroyed.

Then in 2000, she came to the United States following the advice of a friend, and in 2001, she enrolled at Mt. SAC.

"I came here to continue my education," she said. "As soon as I got here, I could feel the difference between dictatorship and democracy."

She began taking general education and architecture classes. Her educational experience was about to take a turn for the better.

"Mt. SAC was a lot different than the education in my country," said Yamin.

In addition to her studies, she became involved with various student activities. She joined the EAGLE Club (an environmental action club at Mt. SAC), she volunteered for clean-up projects at Mt. SAC’s Wildlife Sanctuary and a beach clean-up project, and she helped as a volunteer for Mt. SAC facilities bond measure in fall 2001. In short, she found opportunities that were closed to her before.

"I have good memories of my time at Mt. SAC," she said. "I didn’t have these opportunities in my country."

New to her were the benefits of counseling, career advising, and other services. The professors at Mt. SAC were helpful, and the idea of environmental protection, which now figures greatly in her architecture plans, was introduced to her at Mt. SAC.

"I want to build buildings for everybody that keep nature in mind," said Yamin of her future architectural designs.

She finished at Mt. SAC with a 3.59 grade point average and received the California Community College Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS) Association’s Outstanding Student Scholarship of $1,000.

Then this fall, she transferred to Cal Poly Pomona with plans to create environmentally-friendly architecture, and while she is well on her way to realizing her dream, Yamin Oo will always remember the opportunity she found at Mt. SAC.

"I love Mt. SAC," she said. " In the future if I can, I want to come back to take some more classes."

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Physics Students Bring Science to the Classroom

Walnut, CA . . . Mt. San Antonio College physics students are doing more than hitting the books—they’re bringing the books with them to teach elementary school students through a community outreach project that makes science come alive and gives future teachers experience.

"The students get a real teaching experience and have a great time doing it," said Mt. SAC Physics Professor Martin Mason, who teaches the class that incorporates the elementary school outreach project now in its third semester at the College.

Through Mason’s Physical Science 7 class at Mt. SAC, students who are interested in the teaching profession develop short physics lessons that include experiments to teach fourth and fifth graders at local elementary schools. The college students, meanwhile, are learning not only about physics but also about teaching.

"The course helps our students decide very early on if teaching is something for them," Mason said. "The vast majority are planning on teaching at the kindergarten through fifth grade level."

The course is linked through Mt. SAC Teacher Preparation Institute, which is designed to encourage college students interested in teaching through course material and hands-on experience. One of the main motivating factors for the students is that they are working at something that could be their future.

"They feel that they’re doing something directly relevant in the class to what they want to do in the future," said Mason.

The assignment is straightforward: How would you adapt a particular experiment for a fourth and fifth grade classroom? Using kindergarten through fifth grade science standards, the Mt. SAC students work in groups to develop activities that incorporate one of the standards. The activities are mini-experiments designed to take 30 to 45 minutes each. The experiments range from any number of activities, including experiments that involve electrical conductivity to the building of compasses.

For the elementary school students, the experiments help to foster an interest in science, and for the Mt. SAC students, the teaching experience gives them a taste of the difficulties encountered in the classroom.

"This experience gives them a good idea what types of things work and what doesn’t work with elementary school students," Mason said.

Another unique component of the course is that the Mt. SAC students get a double dose of subject matter. While learning about physics, the students in this linked class also learn about teaching strategies, critical thinking skills, and the learning styles of those they will eventually teach. The concept of active learning takes center stage as students are engaged in activities that make them responsible for their own learning and in turn are encouraged to use this same approach as part of their teaching strategy.

"We try to make students more active learners," said Mason. "We talk about teaching pedagogy in the context of the course material."

Yet while the core material is science, the added goal of the course, funded by a NASA Pre-Service Science Class grant through Cal Poly Pomona, is teaching. The idea is that, in the long run, the class will help these Mt. SAC students become versatile teachers for the future.

"We try to give them portable skills that they can use in any classroom," said Mason.

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Mt. SAC Respiratory Trio Place Fifth Nationally

Walnut, CA . . . Two Mt. San Antonio College Respiratory Therapy students and their professor tied for fifth place in the national Respiratory Care Bowl, an academic competition, on October 5-8 in Tampa, Florida.

Students Marc Gelfand of Diamond Bar and Mitch Mayhew of Arcadia along with Mt. SAC Respiratory Therapy Professor Terry Krider of Loma Linda represented California through the California Society of Respiratory Care at the national tournament where 21 teams from across the U.S. competed.

The competition was comprised of questions on the respiratory care practice, anatomy, microbiology, lab testing, and physical examination. Competitors included top respiratory care professionals from across the country.

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Mt. SAC Planetarium Presents Annual Holiday Program

Walnut, CA . . . The Mt. San Antonio College Planetarium will present its annual holiday program, Season of Light, Friday, December 13, at 7:30 p.m., in the Mt. SAC Planetarium, building 26-C.

Season of Light explores the history of the holiday season and its connection with this astronomically significant time of year. The show examines the astronomical phenomenon of the "Christmas Star" and the beginnings of the holiday traditions, including decorating, feasting, and the exchanging of gifts.

Admission for adults is $4.50, and admission for children is $3. Children under four cannot be admitted. There will be no late seating, and tickets must be bought in advance.

For tickets, call the Mt. SAC Performing Arts box office at (909) 468-4050.

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Mt. SAC Professor Helps Students Appreciate All Things Literary

Walnut, Calif....Supporting Mt. San Antonio College's (Mt. SAC) annual Writers' Day Contest is just one of the ways English Professor Dionne Loera helps students to appreciate the language arts. Loera also works with a team of professors to promote Mt. SAC's literature courses, while, on a personal note, she writes educational books for children. The author of 13 autobiographical stories and ten children's books, Loera writes with an eye toward teaching.

"My children's books typically feature animals and teach their habitats and feeding habits," explains Loera. Although not professionally published, Loera has printed some of her works for use in preschools. She has also written more than a dozen autobiographical stories, which she intends to compile into an anthologized version for teaching adolescents.

Loera's forwards her passion for writing and reading through involvement in Mt. SAC's many student-focused activities. Her role as a member of the Literature Publicity Team requires her to deliver in-class demonstrations about various literature courses, many of which are transferable to California's public universities. Loera also promotes and serves as a judge for Mt. SAC's annual Writers' Day Contest in which Mt. SAC students submit work in three separate categories.

"Students submit in the categories of fiction, poetry or critical essay," explains Loera, who teaches Freshman Composition and English Writing this semester at Mt. SAC. Winners of the writing contest enjoy the acclaim of being published in a Mt. SAC publication of students' works. First place winners also receive monetary awards. The Writers' Day Festival takes place on March 29, with submissions due in late November.

Loera earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in English at California State University, Fullerton. Prior to joining the full-time faculty at Mt. SAC, she taught at two other community colleges - Victor Valley College and Chaffey College.

Loera, who is a new faculty member this year, says she has become more familiar with Mt. SAC's English Department and now wishes to expand her involvement within the Mt. SAC community even more. In addition to her current courses, she plans to teach a class about Shakespeare during the upcoming Spring, 2003 semester.

For more information about the English Department at Mt. SAC, please call (909) 594-5611, extension 4706 or visit the College website at