Archive for the ‘Russell Lindquist’ Category

Tech Mall provides free tutoring in English, Math and miscellaneous subject matter

The Grossmont tutoring center, on the second floor of the tech-mall (Photo--Russ Lindquist)

The Grossmont tutoring center, on the second floor of the tech-mall (Photo: Russ Lindquist)

By Issac Jeitler

GROSSMONT COLLEGE- Is the subject matter in your class overwhelming you?  Are you afraid you’re falling behind? Inside the tech mall, there are three tutoring centers: English Writing Center, Math Tutoring Center and the Grossmont College Tutoring Center.  Each area has numerous tutors available for students of any skill level and educational aim.

The English Writing Center is available for students needing help with writing in any subject. The center offers 20-30 minute sessions, with students able to take lessons up to twice a day.  The center is open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Mondays through Thursdays and 9 a.m. to noon on Fridays.

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Muslims seek an area on campus for prayer

Mohammad Sabir Abbassi stands in front of a hallway of the tech-mall where Muslims have been asked not to pray for the sake of public safety

Mohammad Sabir Abbassi stands in front of a hallway of the tech-mall where Muslims have been asked not to pray for the sake of public safety. (Photo: Russ Lindquist)

By Brenda Arce

GROSSMONT COLLEGE–Mohammad Sabir Abbassi, a Grossmont student aimed at a career in public health and social work, is advocating for his fellow Muslim students on campus to have a comfortable place to pray throughout the day.  Abbassi is petitioning with flyers, promoting the cause.

Previously, complaints had arisen about Muslims praying in the corridors of the tech-mall. To be clear, no one, including Abbassi, finds the complaints to be directed towards Muslims for their being Muslims but rather the issue was one of public safety.  The area in which they currently pray leads to an emergency fire exit, the blocking of which is considered a “fire hazard,” according to school officials who received the complaint.

Arabic Instructor Dr.Sonia Ghattas-Soliman suggested that Muslims consider finding many separate areas as option for their daily prayer.  Agustin Albarran, associate dean of Student Affairs, suggested that Muslims perhaps hold a fundraiser to build a (non-denominational, religiously open) peace garden for the Muslims to pray in.

Muslims pray five times a day; typically each prayer lasts from five to ten minutes.  Dyari Qadir  said she feels it is unfair for Muslims not to be allowed to pray in that hallway.

Qadir,  a member of the Muslim Student Association at Grossmont, stated that if an emergency were to arise that she would stop praying and vacate the building.

In response to a suggestion that Muslims simply pray outside, Abbassi responded that some Muslims report having been harassed when they prayed outdoors.  Specifically, Abbassi told of a time when a Muslim woman was praying and approached by a woman who presumably was not Muslim, and the non-Muslim woman insisted, “you cannot pray here.”

When told of this incident, Dean Albarran assured: “students–Muslim and otherwise–can pray anywhere on the campus that they want,” as long as it does not directly and adversely affect the learning of other students.  Students who feel they are being treated unfairly–in religious matters or otherwise–may call Dean Albarran at Grossmont’s Office Student Affairs at 619-644-7600, email the Dean at agustin.albarran@gcccd.edu.

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Arce is a student in MediaComm 132; contact her at brendaA@gcsummit.com

Student collapses in GC library

(From left) Karen McCoy, Campus Officer Kenneth Coleman and Christian Jimenez circle an unknown student who collapsed in Grossmont's library (Photo: Russ Lindquist))

(From left) Karen McCoy, Campus Officer Kenneth Coleman and Christian Jimenez circle an unknown student who collapsed in Grossmont's library.

Story and photo by Russ Lindquist

GROSSMONT COLLEGE–An unidentified student collapsed on the second floor of the library, Monday August 29 at 330pm.

Campus Officer Kenneth Coleman arrived within five minutes of  the call.

Among the witnesses of the collapse was tech-mall tutor Mojdeh Badiei who saw the fall from a distance and told Coleman that the student “just fell out of her chair.” Roxane BenVau, a media librarian and assistant professor said, “I heard her yelling, from my office, before she fell.”

Many on the scene speculated that the student had an epileptic seizure, including Karen McCoy, a multi-media technician.  She and Christian Jimenez were first to come to the student’s aid.  “I just made sure she was on her side and that she was not biting her tongue or choking,” said Jimenez.

After firefighters and paramedics were on the scene, the student was conscious and seemed coherent; still, the health and safety officials took the student to the hospital for evaluation.

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Lindquist is editor-in-chief of the GCSummit; email him at russL@gcsummit.com

Hurdling obstacles the theme of Grossmont’s 2011 graduation ceremonies

Grossmont College commencement, Spring 2011 (Rick Deharo, Grossmont College Photo Major)

Story and Following Photos by Russ Lindquist

GROSSMONT COLLEGE–Thousands cheered as newly graduated Grossmont Griffins received long-awaited acknowledgement of their achievements.  An estimated 1,500 students received degrees, certificates or in some cases both, at a ceremony June 1 in the Main Quad.

Student speaker Timothy Snowball shared his imperfect educational journey, with a crowd estimated at 4,000–a journey that now brings him to being graduated from Grossmont–with honors–with Associate’s Degrees in Political Science and University Studies.  Snowball indeed had a chance in hell, having weathered Depression and Anxiety Disorder and having dropped out of high school; thereafter, whenever he spoke to friends and co-workers about returning to school, they scoffed at him.

Undeterred, he spent three years at Grossmont, along the way having joined Phi Theta Kappa, an international academic honors society.  He said that his eventual aim is a degree in law.  Between then and now, he said that he plans to gain a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science.  For this leg of his life’s race, Snowball has won acceptance to UCSD, UCLA and UC Berkeley.  Now, he can take his pick.

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The calm before commencement

Maintenance puts the finishes touches on their commencement setup.

Dennis Sigler takes a break from setting up for commencement

Story and photos by Russ Lindquist

GROSSMONT COLLEGE–Commencement will jump off today, starting at 5:30 p.m. As previously reported, attendance will be around 4,000, including an estimated 1,500 student who will receive either or both an Associate’s Degree and a Certificate of Achievement.

While wandering through campus, I came upon faculty and staff putting finishing touches on the main quad which, by virtue of today’s good weather, shall be the site of Grossmont College’s 50th Annual Commencement Ceremony.  (Otherwise, the ceremonies would have been staged in the main parking structure.)

Among those helping to make ready were Dennis Sigler of Maintenance;  Dean of Student Affairs Augustin Albarran, his administrative assistant Maria Baeza; and Grossmont’s Director of Printing Holly Phan.

(from left) Maria Baeza, Holly Phan and Augustin Albarran

Staff profile: Holly Phan, printing supervisor

Holly Phan (Photo by Russ Lindquist)

By Russell Lindquist 

GROSSMONT COLLEGE–Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) is a long way from Grossmont’s printing department.  Yet Holly Phan’s life-journey has taken her from one to the other.

Born in Saigon as Holly Doan, Phan immigrated  to the United States as a 17-year-old with her father, mother and brother in 1992, graduated from Hoover High School in San Diego, then went to Grossmont and thereafter to SDSU.

Her  father, a former captain in the Army of the Republic of Vietnam, was among many Vietnamese allies who accepted an offer from the U.S. government to come live in the United States.

In 2000, Phan received her B.S. in Computer Science and then, in 2001, accepted a job in Grossmont’s printing department.  She was promoted in 2006, and then was made acting supervisor in 2007. This year, she was officially named supervisor of the printing department.

She married her husband, Isaiah Phan, in 2001, and they have two daughters, 7-year-old Desiree and 17-month-old Daisey.

Among the challenges that Phan sees in her role as printing supervisor is to navigate the budget-cuts. “With current and potential future budget cuts, this will be the biggest challenge for me [and] I believe that, together as a team, we can manage to work with the college, faculty and staff to maintain excellent services and keep in sync with the vision of the college.”

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Lindquist is Managing Editor of the GC Summit; email him at russL@gcsummit.com

Arabic Club hosts end-of-semester food and fun

Dr. Sonia Ghattas-Soliman (right), Grossmont instructor of Arabic, Arabic club advisor and Arabic, French and Italian Coordinator, serves Arabic food to event-goers.

Story and photo by Russ Lindquist

GROSSMONT COLLEGE–The Arabic Club hosted an event focused on food, fun and education, in the main quad, May 18.

Of the event, Deana Hourani, the club’s chef and marketer–and one of the coordinators of the event–said the following: “Every semester the Arabic club of Grossmont College organizes and plans an event to increase student knowledge about Arab and Middle Eastern culture. This semester we decided to bring food from a couple Arab countries.

“We had a table for Iraq, Egypt, Morocco, and Lebanon. Every table incorporated… certain food from that country. We also had Arabic music and [an educational game show] that asked students to

questions about [Arabic culture,] ranging from geography, to history, to famous cities.

“The Arabic club continues to be a bridge between the Arab culture and western culture. The overall goal is to educate the non-Arab students about Arab culture and traditions. We feel this is an enriching experience for all people.”

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Lindquist is Managing Editor of the GC Summit; email him at russL@gcsummit.com