Category Archives: Campus Events

Campus Events

Jimmy Blues Band Noon & Night concert

Jamie Koebke
Business Editor
The Jimmy Blues Band with vocalist Joan Crawford will perform a free concert series at St. Clair County Community College Nov. 12 at noon and 7 pm in the Fine Arts Theater. The noon concert will feature different performers than the night concert. The noon concert will feature both Joan Crawford and Jim David on piano. The night concert will feature a quartet along with the Jimmy Blues Band. Both will have original and improvised music performed by the musicians. Admission is free to both shows.
SC4 will offer more Noon and Night concerts throughout the Fall and Winter semesters. Different musical styles will be offered at each concert. More information on the Noon and Night concert series can be found at sc4.edu/arts.

Sweets for a Greater Cause

katie's thing
SC4 Business Club’s bake sale supports MS
Katie Hunckler
The Staff Writer

The sweet smell of cookies in the oven, the tender and tangy flavor of an apple crisp, the twenty different colors of frosting smeared across a chocolate cake; baked goods surround us, and if I do say so myself, they make life significantly more enjoyable. What if baked goods provided more than a delightful taste, though? What if they could positively impact lives and change futures?
The Business Club here at SC4 has made this possible. For two days, Oct. 28 & 29, the club sponsored and staffed a bake sale in the lobby of the Main Building.
The purpose of this sale was to raise funds that would support the fight against Multiple Sclerosis (MS). The National Multiple Sclerosis Society website defines MS as “an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body.”
Justin Comer of the Business Club explained their reason for supporting this cause: “A few people in the club have friends and family who have MS, so we did it in honor of them.”
The display tables were chock-full of baked goods ranging from ordinary to exotic, a variety sure to please even the most picky dessert eaters. Between the donuts and brownies, one could encounter lime and orange popcorn, caramel apple cookies, and ghost-themed Nutter Butters. All of the sale’s baked goods were donated by Business Club members and faculty.
“The smiles of people have been unbelievable,” said Business Club member Justin Woolman.
According to Woolman, the sale was very successful. In addition to ordinary traffic, two classes came to the sale. Over $300 was earned in the first day alone!
“I personally want to thank this guy,” said Woolman, speaking of one person in particular who made an extremely generous donation. Their final customer of day one donated $100, only asking for a single cookie in return. “Must have been one heck of a cookie!” laughed Woolman.
And as for the end result? According to Justin Comer, 50 percent of proceeds were to be donated directly to the Michigan Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, while the other 50 percent would be put back into club funding to support future charity fundraisers on campus. All leftover baked goods would be donated to Mid City Nutrition at the culmination of the sale.
“The smiles of people have been unbelievable!” Woolman said as he wore his own smile.
For more information on Multiple Sclerosis and its effects, as well as how you can involve yourself in the fight against it, visit www.nationalmssociety.org.

Thirteen years and half a million dollars later

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This year’s Red Carpet Affair raises $48,190
Emily Mainguy
Editor-in-Chief

Clean black tablecloths, red roses, white roses, jazz music, and food vendors adorned the Red Carpet Affair on Saturday, Nov. 7.
This year’s theme of the Red Carpet Affair was Black and White on the Red Carpet. The college’s fundraising campaign was for raising money to purchase new technology for our nursing, allied health students and medical community training; which includes purchasing a birthing simulator, and newborn infant simulator.
According to Jody Skonieczny, the new simulation lab will be a partnership with McLaren Port Huron.
New to the program this year were a couple of award presentations such as the Martin E. Weiss Distinguished Service, the Alumni of the Year, and the Red Carpet Affair Marquee Award.
The Awards were presented to the following:
– Martin E. Weiss Distinguished Service: Martin E. Weiss
– Alumni of the Year: Harold Burns
– Red Carpet Affair Marquee: Lynches Irish Tavern
“It’s a wonderful opportunity to support our community college… we want to support the foundation that supports students and the community,” explained Jennifer Kusch, an attendee of the event.
The way this event raises money for the designated program is through ticket prices, donations, raffled jewelry, and auctioned items the night of the event.
This year the event alone raised $48,190. Although, this year’s Red Carpet Affair started the fundraising early bringing the total up to $99,190.
According to Dr. Kevin Pollock, the Red Carpet Affair has been held annually for 13 years and has raised over $500,000 dollars so far.
“If you ever have an opportunity to be involved in the red carpet affair I highly recommend going for it. I had just as much fun serving the guests as they did, if not more,” exclaimed Justin Comer, 24, Business Club President and volunteer at the event.

Shake, rattle, and roll

Of PeacocksNoon and Night concert series dances to life
Nick “Chico” Hernandez
On Oct 22, viewers young and old came to the Fine Arts Building to witness Ann Arbor Dance Works’ “A Feast of Dancers” as post of SC4’s Noon and Night Concert Series. A variety of dancers performed eight different daces for the crowd, including some solo dances. The main attendance was a mixed group of retirees from the nearby retirement home, and fifth graders from Garfield Elementary. The Garfield Elementary students were at SC4 as part of an arts program sponsored in part by Studio 1219, were they learn to work with clay and theater etiquette.
In the last 15 minutes of the show, the fith grade students were allowed to question the dancers. One student’s question was, “Does it take a lot of time to learn the dances?” This was answered by Kathryn “KC” Shonk, “Usually the dances take a lot of time. About six weeks, four hours a day. On rare occasions, two weeks for three hours a day if it’s a simple dance.”

Noie Porat said, “We all can make the choice to not do it, but we
are also required to do a certain amount of dances per semester.”
On Oct 22, viewers young and old came to the Fine Arts building to witness Ann Arbor Dance Works’ “A Feast of Dancers” as part of SC4’s Noon and Night Concert Series. A variety of dancers performed eight different dances for the crowd, including some solo dances.
Managing Editor
This was answered by Kathryn “KC” Shonk, “Usually the dances take a lot of time. About six weeks, four hours a day. On rare occasions, two weeks for three hours a day if it’s a simple dance.”
The main attendance was a
In the last 15 minutes of the show, the fifth grade students were allowed to question the dancers.
Another student’s question was, “Do you get to choose what you dance to?”
Dan Williams, 72 of Port Huron, said that “I enjoyed the show, even if I wasn’t really sure what was going on.”

Subjects come to life!

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Knowledge and passion circulate at the STEM Conference
Katie Hunckler
Staff Writer

Passion oozed from presenters like lava from a volcano during SC4’s third annual STEM Conference; it was as if they just couldn’t hold back their excitement about their topics any longer, so it all burst out in one grand event! This passion had a contagious flare, and it would have been a challenge for any attendee to leave the conference without catching it.
STEM is a grouping of subjects – specifically Science, Technology, Engineering and Math – aimed at appreciating and improving the world in which we live. The STEM Conference therefore had the purpose of educating and exciting people of all ages about STEM-related topics.
Events kicked off Friday evening, Oct. 23, with a presentation by keynote speaker Neils Johnson, Symantec Technology Evangelist. The conference continued Saturday morning with a series of hands-on workshops for all ages.
Professionals and enthusiasts from around the community gave 45 minute presentations about their field of expertise. Mark Priess, Global Security Manager at a manufacturing company, gave a presentation entitled “Cyber Security: Why Hackers are Winning the Cyber ‘War,’” which included live demonstrations of how easy it is for hackers to infiltrate a computer while disguising themselves. (In a matter of seconds, Priess changed his IP address to make it look like he was in Sweden!)
In addition to helping people protect themselves on the internet, Priess indicated that he participated in the STEM Conference because he wanted to talk to and encourage kids to enter the field of Information Technology (IT). “If you’re good at that, you can work for companies all over the world,” he concluded.
Other presenters simply wanted to inform their audiences about important issues of today. Elaine Bailey, Consultant with Michigan Antibiotic Resistance Reduction Coalition (MARR), explained her reason for participating, “Antibiotic resistance is one of the most urgent issues of our time, and we need to get the message out!”
Although activities were widely available for all age groups, kids appeared to have the most abundant platter from which to choose. There were miniature drones, popsicle stick architectural challenges, iPads, Legos, fun math activities, and much more that they could do. “It challenges your brain,” said Casie Paul, 12, of Marysville, referring to the math activities. It seems that quote could apply to all the other activities as well.
SC4 Student Ambassadors Lydia Palmateer and Breanne Gotham noted the high level of excitement they saw in the young children who passed by them. “There’s a lot of little kids, and it’s very educational,” said Gotham.
Some kids even took on the role of presenter themselves. The Marysville Middle School Robotics Team infiltrated the lobby of the CEM building with their robot demonstrations; it was a challenging feat to dodge the zippy machines while traveling from one side of the lobby to the other. “Last year was the first year ever that they had a robotics team; they did like tremendously well last year,” said Andrea Paul, teacher at Marysville Middle School. According to Paul, the team did so well that they traveled all the way to Iowa for competition.
All in all, the third annual STEM Conference involved a lot of contagious excitement and passion that showed itself in presentations and activities. Student Ambassador Olivia Kelley summed it up, “It gives a lot of information in a short period of time on a diversity of subjects.” What more could one ask for?

A dark turn for a light hearted play

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A review of SC4 Players of the production of Relatively Speaking.
Jenelle Kalaf
Photo Editor

The words of Tom Kephart, theatre director for SC4, ring through my head, “Comedy isn’t easy to do well.”
“The SC4 Players all proven willing and able to tackle the challenge of these three comedies, each quite different in its style, and I’m very proud of their work,” Kephart stated.
That’s about the best way to describe the SC4 Players production of Relatively Speaking.
And they deserve every ounce of praise.
The play follows 3 stories, that don’t really have anything to do with each other.
The first looks into the private sessions between doctor and patient. Larry, played by Brennan Fisher, is sick and his doctor, played by Shyela Reimel, only wants the best for him, if she could get a word in edge wise.
The story first seems like fun banter, but then takes a dark turn as you discover what Larry did for him to need treatment.
It also explores Larry’s childhood home, and why Larry may be the way he is.
The first act was great. A good way to get into such a strange play. The actors really made you like the characters.
The second act was longer then the first. It followed Carla, played by Haley LeMerise, a stressed women who just fought with her husband. She waits up all night for her husband to call, but is then visited by Doreen, played by Emma Dunlop.
Doreen claims that she and Carla used to be friends and needs support after her rich husband passed away. As the play unfolds, Doreen turns out to be clueless and helpless and asks Carla, to allow her to stay the night. This creates more tension and a mess ensues.
This was probably my favorite act. The light comedy turned dark made the audience uncomfortable, but still burst out into laughter.
“Tom, our director, helped each of us channel the best performances possible, and although I’ve done plays in high school before, I felt like this was the first time I’ve ever truly “acted” due to the wonderful guidance I received,” LeMerise said about her role as Carla.
This act probably took the darkest turn and really dug deep into a mother-daughter relationship almost too far to fix.
The third act followed a bride, a groom, the groom’s father, and everyone else that was part of the mess of a wedding.
A bride, played by Courtney Roles, and her lover, played by Garrett Hadwin, show up to an old, broken down motel for their honeymoon. It just turns out that her lover isn’t her husband, but his dad.
The rest of the play pieced together a strange story about love, romance, loyalty (or lack thereof), and a wedding no one will forget.
This act dealt with topics most plays wouldn’t touch with a ten-foot pole, and still pulls it off effortlessly.
The actors did such a great job really setting the mood and forcing you to see something that most people would pretend didn’t happen.
So congratulations to the SC4 Players and another well done performance. If you missed a chance to see this play, or be a part of it, visit sc4.edu/arts and click the calendar to find the next show the Players will perform.

Parking Blues

The problems (and solutions) of the tarmac
Katie Hunckler
Staff Writer

parking article 2Whoever said finding a needle in a haystack was difficult obviously had never tried finding a parking space on a community college campus.
Parking can be a challenge to begin with, but add in the fact that many students have only a narrow window separating the end of a work shift from the beginning of a class, and the experience of searching for a parking space can become an all-out frazzling experience, especially if there are surprises involved.
“On Monday, I got here about 15 minutes before class. I got to McMorran and saw the long line of cars to get in,” said Capac commuter Jacquelyn DeMink.
DeMink, unaware of the event taking place at McMorran that morning, arrived surprised that they were charging a fee to enter the north McMorran lot, which is usually free student parking. She traveled around town, significantly out of her way, and ended up parking in the “boonies” near the M-TEC Building. Zipping to her class on the opposite side of campus, DeMink arrived minutes later obviously flustered and completely out of breath.
Although parking is not as bad when the north McMorran lot is functional, there seems to be a consensus that something is lacking.
“I think we need more parking!” Declared Jen Brock without hesitation. Brock, who commutes to campus every day, finds parking especially challenging in the mornings when the majority of students have classes. Additionally, with the south McMorran lot under construction and out of the picture at the moment, she has no decent backup plan.
However, there is no doubt that parking has improved immensely over the course of the past several years. “I could expect students to be 10 to 15 minutes late because they couldn’t find a parking spot,” said Janice Fritz, SC4 Biology professor, referring to the time periods immediately preceding the 2010 parking lot remodel. Enrollment was through the roof at that time. “Now, I almost think we could not rent McMorran and not have a problem,” she concluded.
The best way to beat the parking lot blues? Avoid driving altogether! Fritz has been an active advocate for alternative forms of transportation, specifically bus and bicycle. As part of the transportation subcommittee, she attempted to land a student deal on bus passes, but Blue Water Area Transit wanted the college to subsidize the deal. Unsure the number of interested students, SC4 declined.
Fritz’s next goal was to get the campus bike racks covered so inclement weather would not be as high a concern, but as the racks see little use, it did not seem a worthy cause. Lastly, Fritz advocated for lockers on campus. Many people keep their belongings in their cars during the day, so lockers would meet that storage need for those electing to use alternative methods of transportation. However, we “didn’t get very far with that,” said Fritz.
Although parking at SC4 is often perceived as challenging, many options are available to ease the burden of finding that needle in the haystack. There is the parking lot on the SC4 campus, the north McMorran lot (which is free to students entering the lot before 2 p.m.), and a mass of parking spaces on downtown streets. Alternative transportation is also a guaranteed means of avoiding the rush of traffic!
For a complete map of parking options in the vicinity of the SC4 campus, visit www.sc4.edu/maps-and-directions.

National Depression Screening Day

McLaren holds free screenings to raise awareness
Mel Buskirk
Copy Editor
depression2October 8 was National Depression Screening Day, and to celebrate the day McLaren health professionals partnered with St. Clair County Community Mental Health to offer free depression screenings at SC4.
Students gathered in an enclosed section in the back of the cafeteria to sip on coffee and nibble on cookies and other sweets while filling out a confidential questionnaire. The questionnaire listed off symptoms of not only depression, but of anxiety, bipolar disorder, and PTSD as well.
Students handed the completed questionnaire to one of the several counselors available. Then they were taken to a different room to talk about their symptoms and given resources to contact and receive professional help if the counselors and students agreed if it was necessary.
Several students took advantage of the free service including Kayla Flanagan, 22, Liberal Arts major. “Like many, I had an idea there might be a problem, but I wanted to make sure,” Flanagan stated. She was able to receive contact information and counseling through the screening.
Flanagan also remarked that the screening was very helpful to students since the event was free and it was open for a long period of time from 9 am to 5 pm, which allowed students more opportunities to attend between classes and work.
“You can’t have a healthy learning environment without having an opportunity to get help when they (the students) need it,” said Flanagan.
Amy Kandell, a supervisor and therapist from St. Clair County Community Mental Health, was one of the counselors present to assist the students. While she was there to screen students for potential mental ailments, Kandell also wanted to raise awareness of mental health disorders and reduce the negative attitudes surrounding them.
“I think it’s really important to reduce stigma around mental health disorders,” Kandell said. “A lot of people struggle to seek help because of the negative stigma.”
In order to reduce this stigma, Kandell believes that education is the key. “Education is really important. We should be starting at a young age and giving kids correct information about mental health disorders.” She continued to say that we should compare mental illnesses within the medical model in which we treat mental disorders like one would treat a broken limb.
According to the National Institute of Mental Health’s website, www.nimh.nih.gov, a study done in 2011 by the American College Health Association in students in both 2 and 4 year colleges concluded that 30% of students felt “so depressed it was difficult to function” within the past year of the study. Depression is a leading risk factor for suicide. The study also found that 6% of students contemplated suicide within the past year and almost 1% of students actually attempted suicide within that past year. Depression is not uncommon in college students.
College students aren’t the only ones that can suffer from depression or other mental health disorders. People of any age, race, gender or background can be afflicted by mental health disorders.
Symptoms of depression and other health disorders include (but are not limited to): confused thinking, prolonged sadness or irritability, feelings of extreme highs or lows, excessive fears or anxieties, social withdrawal, dramatic changes in eating or sleeping habits, strong feelings of anger, delusions or hallucinations, growing inability to cope with daily problems or activities, suicidal thoughts, denial of obvious problems, numerous unexplained physical ailments, or substance abuse.
If you or a loved one are experiencing any of the listed symptoms above, there is help available. The Thumb Access Mental Health Crisis Line is open 24/7 and can be reached at 1-(888)-225-4447. Professionals will be able to talk you through mental health crises such as suicidal thoughts, anxiety attacks, or substance abuse. They can also direct you to a proper health facility or professional near you to help you get the help you need.

Forget oil, education is where the real money is

Pearson leads the education industry, but that isn’t good
Nick “Chico” Hernandez
Managing Editor
pearson 2DSC_0519Nothing in this country is safe from monopolization and corporate greed, and the education industry is no exception. All over social media, students of every age are voicing their dislike for today’s education industry, and the rising obsession with standardized testing.
Walk into a school book store, and all over the shelves will be Pearson published books. Attend any number of classes, and it might use Pearson’s MyLab (MyMathLab, MyITLab, MyHistoryLab, etc.) website. Talk to a teacher, and many of them are certified by Pearson. Take an ADHD test, and Pearson probably made it. In addition, high school drop outs can take a GED test made by Pearson.
Pearson sits at the top of the American education industry, with bad publicity littering the ground below them.
According to prwatch.org (a watchdog site), “Apart from $8 million spent lobbying from 2009 to 2014, Pearson also underwrote untold sums on luxury trips for school officials. A crackdown by the New York attorney general led to a $7.7 million settlement in 2013, and the shuttering of the ‘charitable’ organization used for the scheme”.
With the lobbying from Pearson and other big name education corporations (ETS, Houghton Mifflin, McGraw-Hill) the “expanded testing has fueled a testing boom worth nearly $2 billion annually, giving the main corporations getting the testing contracts a huge return on investment for their lobbying” as stated in a report by prwatch.org. Lobbying is no new tactic for big corporations trying to get their way when it comes to Congress, the Senate, or any other high-ranking area of government. Keep in mind this is an education corporation.
On November 29, 2012 Pearson was trying to hire people to score the tests (tests that Pearson writes and administers as well) through many means, including Craigslist. The ad offered $12 and said “Bachelor degree required – any field welcome.” This was brought to light by a coalition of people in Texas that wanted to reform standardized testing in the state.
Jennifer White is an elementary school teacher with 15+ years of experience and she, curious about Pearson and PARCC exam, applied to Pearson as a test grader for the 2015 4th grade English Language Arts exam.
In an article White wrote for the Washington Post, “Pearson’s offer of employment came to me even though I never actually spoke to anybody at the company. The offer is conditional upon verification of my college degree, completed project training and signature on a confidentiality waiver. The company, valued at well over $10 billion, did not verify my information before its offer of employment, and seems interested only in verifying my college degree.”
White went on to mention that besides her 15+ year’s experience in teaching, she has “multiple advanced degrees in education”, and that Pearson was only interested in verifying her college degree. “I very well could have invented my resume,” she added. Pearson did not call her, they did not schedule an interview, they didn’t ask for references, and they couldn’t have performed a background check since White never gave Pearson her Social Security number.
Dan DiMaggio, a former test scorer for Pearson, wrote this in on monthlyreview.org, “Scorers often emerge from training more confused than when they started. Usually, within a day or two, when the scores we are giving are inevitably too low (as we attempt to follow the standards laid out in training), we are told to start giving higher scores, or, in the enigmatic language of scoring directors, to ‘learn to see more papers as a 4.’ For some mysterious reason, unbeknownst to test scorers, the scores we are giving are supposed to closely match those given in previous years. So if 40 percent of papers received 3s the previous year (on a scale of 1 to 6), then a similar percentage should receive 3s this year”.
Holding an untold number of children’s futures in your hand is as easy as having a college degree in anything. Shady company tactics are nothing new in America, but even the education industry isn’t safe anymore.
Pearson has also been involved in using Tracx — a website that calls themselves, “the first true social media management system” — to spy on students via social media, particularly Twitter. This has prompted a hashtag #PearsonIsWatching over social media. This all started with a teenager in New Jersey whom posted a tweet that, according to USA Today, “Referenced a question on the PARCC exam, one of two Common Core-aligned tests some states are using.”

Bob Braun is an anti-PARCC education blogger who got ahold of an email a New Jersey superintendent, Elizabeth Jewett, sent about the issue of Pearson monitoring students on the internet and explaining how her testing coordinator received a late call from the state education department.
According to Braun on his website, bobbraunsledger.com, “The unnamed state education department employee contended a student took a picture of a test item and tweeted it. That was not true. It turned out the student had posted–at 3:18 pm, well after testing was over–a tweet about one of the items with no picture. Jewett does not say the student revealed a question. There is no evidence of any attempt at cheating.”
Pearson has made it clear that they are “Absolutely not” spying and that “Only when it is confirmed that a test question has been exposed or compromised does Pearson work with states to address the breach.”
Pearson wants to expand K-12 testing, but have fought against legislation that is made to protect student privacy from commercial data mining including, but not limited to, not signing the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.
The position that Pearson has risen itself to is akin to Time Warner Cable, meaning they have a hold on their industry. 54% of their business comes from America. With the urge for more kids to attend school, and attend higher education schools, it looks like Pearson will continue to profit no matter what they do. Forget the oil companies, forget big pharma; Pearson holds a market you have no choice but to pay for.

Skippers OneCard

Jamie Koebke
Business Editor
The Skippers OneCard is not just students school ID. But it also the key to discounts to places around Port Huron.
The Skippers OneCard allows students access into SC4’s fitness center, along with use in the library and bookstore and provides easy access to financial aid refunds.
Students who do not have a Skippers card can easily get one by visiting the M-Tec building at One-Stop Student Services in room 105. At the time of application, students must have a photo ID. The card will be ready in about two weeks.
Business that take part in discounts for showing a Skippers ID are…
• Alexander’s Fine Jewelers- 15% off
• A Little Something- 20% off
• Casey’s Pizza and Subs- 15% off all food only purchases.
• Cavis Grill- 10% off
• Daybreak Café- 20% off entrees (excludes happy hour and kids eat free)
• Little Caesars Pizza on 24th Street- One free crazy bread with purchase of any deep dish pizza.
• Lynch’s Irish Tavern- 10% off on food and drink purchases.
• Mosher’s Jewelers- 20% off
• The Palace Sports and Entertainment- Pistons Pass – College Offer: Present your Skippers card at the Palace ticket store and receive a $10 upper-level game ticket. Offer applies on game nights only. Limit one (1) ticket per ID, while supplies last.
• Zebra Lounge and Bowl O’Drome- 10% discount (excludes alcohol and daily specials).
More Offers are available, for a full list of offers check out the Skippers OneCard link under Student Resources in the Portal.