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Marching for Higher Education

On March 7, 2024, hundreds of faculty, students, and community members marched through Sacramento to demand a more just and equitable education system in California's Community Colleges.  In preparation for the march, dozens of dedicated employees worked tirelessly to obtain approval and coordinate its organization. I collaborated with AFT 1521 student-interns to speak in several sociology classes to engage students and encourage their participation. For me, this event began in the early hours of the 7th, when I met with over one hundred students and faculty at Burbank Airport before traveling to Sacramento. I was thoroughly impressed by the AFT 1521 student-interns who took charge right away in the morning, handing out boarding passes and shirts to everyone before we went through security.

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Pivoting in a Storm

It’s the first day of school. Your bag is packed, your syllabi printed, and you are ready to return to campus, perhaps for the first time since COVID-19. But wait, an atmospheric river and climate chaos have hindered your plans to return as they caused some of the worst weather-related damage in state history. You open your email expecting to learn your campus is closed, pivoting from in-person instruction to online for the safety of students, staff, and faculty. Instead, you receive a notification informing you its business as usual and cancelling classes will result in a loss of a sick day.

This was a reality for Foothill and De Anza College faculty heading back to campus for the start of the new quarter. To be candid, Foothill College ended up closing due to power outage, but De Anza College faculty were left wondering whether campuses have learned nothing about pivoting in a crisis. 

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