Santa Cruz Good Times

Sunday
Jan 25th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

A Voice Renewed

Cabrillo journalism department avoids possible elimination

Room 407 may look like an ordinary classroom at first glance, but a wooden sign swinging above the glass door sets it apart from any other room on the Cabrillo College campus. “The Cabrillo Voice,” the sign reads, signifying the room as the home of the school’s student-run newspaper.

Inside, students bustle about, craning at computer screens and making suggestions as they periodically stop to pet Riley, the standard poodle that is just as much a fixture of the room as the newspapers strewn about.

As recently as last week, students and faculty feared that this place—and the journalistic efforts it represents—would be lost in the school’s upcoming round of budget cuts. But thanks to a donation from Cabrillo’s English department, the program’s future looks promising.

Journalism had been identified as potential collateral for meeting a $2.5 million target reduction for the 2012-13 academic year. But when the English department got wind of the story, they gave the program eight units to avoid it being cut from 24 to 16 units. Journalism has been reduced from 48 units since 2009.

Journalism program chair and the Cabrillo Voice advisor Brad Kava says he was thrilled to hear the news.

“It’s going to save journalism,” Kava says. “The faculty, English department and Jim Weckler have really stuck with us, and that’s good to know they really care about the department and students’ education.”

Journalism was recently deemed one of Cabrillo’s three least valuable programs, along with real estate and welding. The program’s worth was determined by a ranking system that was created to help inform budgetary decisions, says faculty senate president and history professor Michael Mangin.

“About a year ago some folks put forth the idea to have a subcommittee of administrators and faculty come up with objective criteria that could tell us about efficient savings,” he says.

By the end of the process, they had developed a numerical matrix with five weighted categories, the most significant of which was efficiency, or the cost to run the program. Other categories include the program mission, student success, accessibility and community support. Journalism ranked 16th out of 20 departments in the efficiency category and appeared no higher than 14th in any category.

The results surprised department head Kava, who believes the program should not be ranked so low.

“I don’t really understand the formula,” Kava says. “My classes are full and my students are in the community and getting jobs, so I don’t know what’s better than that.”

Cabrillo student and The Voice photo editor Juan Reyes was equally dismayed by the results, given what the journalism program has done for him. Reyes, who was born and raised in Watsonville, used to work in a bakery from 3 to 10 a.m. before heading to class. He recently quit this job to better accommodate his schoolwork and an internship with Patch.com.

“The journalism program has built up my confidence, and without it I think I’d still be lost,” Reyes says.

Although journalism course units will likely not be diminished for the upcoming academic year, the same cannot be said for many other programs. The number of welding classes offered will decrease and real estate “is cutting back pretty close to the bone, if not down to zero classes next year,” says Mangin.

“Right now, it looks like the college is moving forward with plans to cut a lot of classes from the 2012-13 schedule … impacting many of the programs offered at the college,” he says.

Meanwhile, Kava knows that nothing is guaranteed with the current economic instability. But he feels confident that the English department’s donation will solidify journalism’s place at Cabrillo for years to come.

“We’re all taking it day by day, year by year,” Kava says. “We’ve survived through 2013, but as long as we have those units we can stay forever.”

Comments (1)Add Comment
...
written by Daddy O, April 25, 2012
WOW! THIS CHICK CAN WRITE! RIGHT?

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Force of Nature

Santa Cruz’s Carlie Statsky brings her love of the natural world to the hyper-personal art of wedding photography

 

Mercury Retrograde in Aquarius

The magical time of Mercury’s retrograde cycle is here once again, until Feb. 11, and then some. The Mercury retro cycle actually lasts eight weeks when we consider its retrograde shadow, giving us six months a year for review. We know the rules of Mercury retro: Be careful with everything; cars, driving, money, resources, friends, friendships, groups, interactions, thinking, talking, communications. Avoid big purchases, important meetings and important repairs. Mercury retrograde times are for review, reassessment and rest. Our minds are overloaded from the last Mercury retro. Our minds need to assess what we’ve done since October—eliminating what is not needed, keeping what’s important, preparing for new information in the next three months (till mid-May). Mercury in Aquarius retrograde … we reinvent ourselves, seek the unusual, we don’t hide, we’re just careful. We live in two worlds; outer appearances and inner reckonings, with both sides of our brain activated. Yet, like the light of the Gemini twins, one light waxes (inner world), the other (outer realities) wanes. Like Virgo, we see what’s been overlooked—assessing, ordering and organizing information. It’s an entirely inner process. When speaking we may utter only half of the sentence. We’re in the underworld, closer to Spirit, eyes unseeing, senses alerted, re-doing things over and over till we sometimes collapse. Because we’re in other realms, we’re wobbly, make mistakes, and don’t really know what we want. It’s not a time for decisions. Not yet. It’s a time of review. And completing things. Mercury retro: integration, slowing down, resolution, rapprochement.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of January 23

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Bye Bye Benten!

Benten closing, plus Award-winning gin, a massive burrito and chocolate review

 

Trout Gulch Vineyards

Scanning the shelves of Deluxe Foods of Aptos, which carries an impressive selection of local and imported wines, I picked up a bottle of Trout Gulch Vineyards Chardonnay 2012, described as “a local favorite” by the busy market.

 

Cremer House

What’s old is cutting-edge again in Felton

 

How are you going to make a tangible difference in your community this year?

Spread more kindness and compassion.