#CYProud: Madeline Garcia

Commencement is a celebratory time on campus. To capture this year-end spirit, we asked our faculty to tell us which students they are most proud of. Some of those profiled in this year’s #CYProud 2016 feature have overcome significant personal and financial hurdles to reach their educational goals; others have distinguished themselves as exemplars of academic achievement and/or student leadership.

As part of this year’s series, we are pleased to introduce Madeline Garcia who will transfer to the University of California, Los Angeles in the fall. Madeline is a sociology major who benefited greatly from our Puente Program. #CYProud 2016

Madeline Garcia, #CYProud 2016 Graduate, Cypress to UCLA
Madeline Garcia, #CYProud 2016 Graduate, Cypress to UCLA

#CYProud: Madeline Garcia, Cypress to UCLA

  1. Origin — what is your back story (hometown, high school, personal story…)

Growing up my mother instilled in me that it was essential to excel in school. Once my parents spilt up my mom went back to school to receive her bachelors and eventually received her Masters from Cal State LA. I still remember waking up in the middle of the night and seeing my mom studying. I will always strive to be half the woman she is. I want to make sure that I make my mother proud.

For me, school had always come easy. I did well – had a 3.7 GPA in high school – and was involved in my extracurriculars. All of my friends and I assumed we would graduate and move on to a four-year college or university. I thought I would be accepted into UC Santa Barbara, my dream school

But come second semester senior year I found out that I wasn’t. Not only was I rejected from UCSB, I was rejected from every school to which I applied except CSUF and CSULA. I was crushed. I felt like a loser. I felt stuck. As a result, I lost motivation and hope. I didn’t know what I was going to do.

The only choice I had was to attend community college. After accepting the fact that I had to delay my four-year aspirations, I began summer session here at Cypress a week after my high school graduation. In no time, I found renewed motivation. I told myself that I had a second chance to get into any school that I wanted, and felt confident that I would eventually wind up at UCSB. I just had to take a slightly different path, and that’s okay.

Now, looking back, I can say that attending Cypress College is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Without attending Cypress I wouldn’t have networked and been offered all the opportunities that I have today.

  1. Why Cypress?

I chose Cypress because I wanted to meet a new group of people. I knew that if I attended Cerritos College or Rio Hondo College I would see people that I already knew. I wanted to be in a new environment. When I first visited Cypress, I loved its feel and size. The campus is not too big or too small. When I attended the orientation it just confirmed that I really wanted to attend Cypress. Everyone was so welcoming and the campus was easy to navigate. I expected community college to be boring. I thought that I would simply go to class, do my homework in the library and go back home. I was, however, completely wrong and I’m glad I was. My goal going into Cypress was to get in and get out as quickly as possible. Now that I’m done I realized that I’ve done so much more than that. My goals have definitely changed. I now want to leave a mark in this world. Before attending Cypress, I just wanted to get my degree so that I could maintain a living. Now, I want to make a change. I want to help empower individuals by helping them find and follow their own unique paths. I want to create an example for underrepresented students to show that anything is possible.

  1. @Cypress — what have you been involved with? How has your path unfolded?

At Cypress I was involved in the Puente Program. The Puente Program gave us the necessary tools to transfer to a four-year university. Before Puente, I had no idea how to navigate my way to my goals. Through Puente, I acquired a solid understanding of what classes I had to take, and became aware of the many different opportunities that the campus had to offer. I loved being at school because of Puente. It was my second home. I had no idea what I wanted to do before going into Puente. After networking with various guest speakers, exploring different universities, and speaking with old Puentistas, it gave me many really good ideas of what I wanted to do career-wise. If it weren’t for Puente, I would probably be a little bit lost. I now know that I want to empower Latino students, and set an example for them. Just how Dr. P (Puente Director Dr. Therese Mosqueda-Ponce) and Mr. Silva (Obed Silva, Puente English instructor) have been to me.

  1. Faculty or staff that have helped you get where you are today.

Professor Obed Silva and Dr. Therese Mosqueda-Ponce are the two influential individuals that have helped me get where I am today. Their motivation and assistance has been so important to my growth. They unlocked many opportunities for me that I wasn’t aware were available. They have shared their struggles with us; they have showed us that our dreams are attainable.

Before attending Mr. Silva’s English class I did not enjoy writing. It was the subject I disliked most. Mr. Silva made English so interesting and easy to grasp. No matter how bad my writing was, he was patient and explained everything to me. Mr. Silva connected all the topics that we reviewed in class to things that we have experienced in our own personal lives. That is when I started to love English. By the end of the year, I had earned the most improved writer award. That was all because of Mr. Silva.

In Counseling 160, I learned so many useful things that I wouldn’t learn in any other class. Dr. Therese-Mosqueda-Ponce made sure that we were aware of what to do when it came to transferring. Dr. Ponce relayed so many impactful life lessons. She made sure that we were always connected with our roots, and to be proud of who we are as individuals. No matter what kind of crazy ideas we had she was always in full support of them. When I felt hopeless, and lost Dr. Ponce was always there to reassure me that everything was going to be okay. She always pushed me to do better than I did yesterday, to strive for the best.

Without, Dr. Ponce and Mr. Silva I would not have the motivation that I do today.

  1. Post Cypress — what do you hope to do in the near term? What are your plans at UC Sand Diego?

After I graduate Cypress I will continue to work towards my bachelors degree in Sociology at UCLA.

  1. Advice to Future Students?

I am most proud of staying true to myself. Life is very crazy and it is very easy to lose yourself. I am proud that I have stuck to my word and goals. I have worked hard to transfer to my dream school. I am proud to say that I will be the first in my family to attend a university.

  1. Longer-Term Vision — what do you aspire to?

I plan to continue my studies and complete a Ph.D. at either UC San Diego Scripps Institution of Oceanography or Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts. I have a strong interest in marine mammal acoustics and would love to become a principal investigator conducting research about the anthropogenic effects on social and behavioral patterns of cetaceans in noise-polluted areas. I’ve also considered a dual DVM/PhD, and plan to open a non-profit research and rehabilitation center with an emphasis on acoustic-related strandings.

  1. What are you most proud of?

I’ve accomplished a lot thanks to the wonderful resources at Cypress College, especially the STEM(2) program. I re-established the college’s Marine Biology Club and fulfilled the presidential role for two years. I volunteered in a research lab at CSU Long Beach with my mentor, Jesus Reyes, who provided me hands-on experience and the confidence to apply for summer internships. I did what I thought was the impossible and was one of ten students selected from across the United States to participate in a National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) with the Sarasota Dolphin Research Program in Florida. I was then selected to present this research at the 2015 SACNAS National Conference in Washington, D.C. This year, I was selected to participate in the Summer Training Academy for Research Success (STARS) at UC San Diego Scripps Institution of Oceanography conducting marine mammal acoustics research. So far, I have accomplished everything I’ve ever wanted to do in major, and have yet to graduate with my bachelor’s degree, so it’s really exciting to see what happens next!

  1. Anything else you’d like to add…

I will be forever grateful for the opportunities and memories that Cypress College has given me. Attending Cypress College has been one of the best decisions that I have ever made. I cannot wait to see what UCLA has in-store for me.

Madeline Garcia with fellow #CYProud 2016 Graduate, Puente student, and future UCLA Bruin Michael Gonzalez.
Madeline Garcia with fellow #CYProud 2016 Graduate, Puente student, and future UCLA Bruin Michael Gonzalez.

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Cypress College is recognized as one of California’s top community colleges. Recent accolades include:

– #1 in the U.S. | Top Toyota T-TEN Auto-Tech Program in the Nation.

– #2 in C.A. | Top Two ESL & Basic Skills English Programs in California.

– #3 in C.A. | Ranked as a Top Three California Community College (Schools.com)

– #3 in the Region | Ranked Top Three in Greater Los Angeles & Orange County for Student Transfer and Graduation Rates (EdSmart.org)

– 15 of 113 | California Community Colleges piloting a Bachelor’s Degree (Mortuary Science)

– #17 in the U.S. | National Ranking on MTV-U’s website “Rate-My-Professor”

– Top National Licensure Exam Pass Rates | Perfect state licensure pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Abdomen; Diagnostic Medical Sonography (OB/Gyn); Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Physics; and Mortuary Science: Sciences. 90+% state licensure exam pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Assisting; Mortuary Science (Arts); Radiology Technology. And 85%+ state licensure rates for students in: Health Information Technology; Nursing; and Psychiatric Technology.

– 2/3ds of the Class of 2015 qualified for transfer to a UC or CSU institution.

– 76 Orange Empire Athletics Conference Titles

– 25 California Community College Athletic Association State Championship Titles

#CYProud: Mallory Roa (Artist Profile)

As part of our ongoing student profile series (#CYProud), we’re pleased to highlight the extraordinary work of Mallory Roa, a Cypress College Class of 2016 graduate who will continue her art and photography studies on full merit scholarship at the prestigious San Francisco Art Institute, School of Photography (founded by Ansel Adams and home to legends such as Annie Leibovitz, Lewis Baltz, and our very own Cypress College alumna Carly Cram).

Mallory is a brilliant talent – an artist in all respects. Her photos are vivid and real; not just beautiful images in and of themselves, but narratively compelling. In some sort of magical way, she is able to convey a sense of history and essence through imagery… a significance of place, past and person.

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Compelling narratives; frank exposures; implied complicity. 

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Original views of geometry, texture, light and skyscapes. 

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Visual tapestries; evocative captures of color and elements. 

Scrolling her beautiful Instagram feed, it’s clear that she puts much thought and time into composition and design, the use of color and shape, and the progression of images on a page. She has a great and rare instinct for both curating and creating.

We’re proud that she’ll continue to cultivate and showcase her artistry at one of the world’s very best institutes for creative talents.

Congratulations, Mallory, and best wishes!

#CypressCollege #Photography #Art

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Mallory Roa. Photo Credit: David Dugoncevic
Talented photographer-artist, Mallory Roa. Photo Credit: David Dugoncevic (who will also attend SFAI on merit scholarship)

Mallory Roa | Artist Statement:

I am a photographer from Southern California. I have also lived in Rome, Italy for a semester. Traveling has brought awareness into my life. I work primarily in the studio and extremely manipulated and controlled environments. I find comfort in control, predictability, and symmetry. My portraits are printed in large scale to aid in creating an intimate, intense, and overwhelming experience. The broad themes in my work are identity, intimacy, and socio-etc commentary. I am also interested in the body image, gender identity, sexuality, virginity, finality of death, introversion, depression and anxiety, HSP tendencies, aphasia, and interpersonal connections. I look forward to living in a place where I am free to pose questions like “How can I be a feminist if I am rejecting my gender?”

My practice is centered on interpersonal relationships and how we view, interact, and stereotype those around us. Social justice is a major theme in my work. “The Generations” are sets of portraits of generational gaps in a family’s lineage. It comments on the physical aspects we pass along and genetics, as well as formality and honor. “Smokin’ Lesbians” is a light-hearted project with a play on words focusing on a group of people who can feel extremely objectified in public. Inspired by Richard Avedon, “Private Moment. Public Space.” is a street portrait exploration of first impressions and the image I impose on a subject. One of my older works, ”Match The Couples” was a survey and study conducted in my local art program that asked survey-takers to blindly match portraits of people into coupled pairs. Given no information, the intent was to discover how prevalent heterosexism, a system of attitudes and biases in favor of the opposite-sex sexuality and relationships, is in a small part of our society. Conducted in the art department, I expect that the results are still generous at 17.9% of participants choosing two heterosexual and two homosexual couples.

I am drawn to artists that explore the human condition. I am drawn to someone oppressed by societal standards in Catherine Opie’s “Self-Portrait,” people designated different at birth in Martin Schoeller’s “Identical,” or those governed by life choices in Rineke Dijkstra’s “Mothers” and “Bull Fighters”. Richard Avedon’s “In the American West” and Diane Arbus’ practices have given me the appreciation of people, their diversity, and rituals of portraiture. Other influences stem from artist’s genuine and pure curiosity of the seemingly mundane, such as John Divola’s “As Far As I Could Get” and Bernd and Hilla Becher’s “Water Towers”.

We plan to profile Mallory’s extraordinary portfolio (and other standout student artists, alums and faculty) with a rolling video narrative come summer. Stay tuned.
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Cypress College is recognized as one of California’s top community colleges. Recent accolades include:

– #1 in the U.S. | Top Toyota T-TEN Auto-Tech Program in the Nation.

– #2 in C.A. | Top Two ESL & Basic Skills English Programs in California.

– #3 in C.A. | Ranked as a Top Three California Community College (Schools.com)

– #3 in the Region | Ranked Top Three in Greater Los Angeles & Orange County for Student Transfer and Graduation Rates (EdSmart.org)

– 15 of 113 | California Community Colleges piloting a Bachelor’s Degree (Mortuary Science)

– #17 in the U.S. | National Ranking on MTV-U’s website “Rate-My-Professor”

– Top National Licensure Exam Pass Rates | Perfect state licensure pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Abdomen; Diagnostic Medical Sonography (OB/Gyn); Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Physics; and Mortuary Science: Sciences. 90+% state licensure exam pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Assisting; Mortuary Science (Arts); Radiology Technology. And85%+ state licensure rates for students in: Health Information Technology; Nursing; and Psychiatric Technology.

– 2/3ds of the Class of 2015 qualified for transfer to a UC or CSU institution.

– 76 Orange Empire Athletics Conference Titles

– 25 California Community College Athletic Association State Championship Titles

 

#CYProud: Mike Alcoran (Artist Profile)

Mike Alcoran
Mike Alcoran, Cypress College Class of 2016, Cal State University, Fullerton transfer.

As part of our ongoing student profile series, we are pleased to highlight Class of 2016 graduate Mike Alcoran, a prolific, award-winning filmmaker, photographer, and graphic artist, who will continue his digital cinema studies at Cal State University, Fullerton in the fall.

Mike is a tremendous talent. Through his art, he is able to make even the simplest of subjects wondrous. His signature style is infused with a flair and technique that brings surprising sensibility – beauty and intimacy – to the ordinary. Working primarily with a handheld camera, he details elements, people and places in their natural, often overlooked states. His films, mostly mood documentaries and travel logs, are beautiful, imaginative captures of the world in which we live. It’s a pleasure to view life through his perceptive lens.

A native of our local community (Cypress/Buena Park), Alcoran comes from a family of artistic talent – both his brother and cousins are skilled in the graphic arts and have a love of architecture. Mike began to explore his interest in design and photography as a student at John F. Kennedy High School. After graduation, the proximity and affordability of Cypress made college a possibility for him. Under the mentorship of several professors here at Cypress, Mike fine-tuned his natural gifts and found his true calling: film. He singles out Ian Holmes for help in the development of his craft, and Ed Giardiana for artistic inspiration and transfer direction.

In his relatively short span of cinema production, Mike has produced an impressive body of quality work. He has been a videographer for LA area hip-hop artist Transcendent, for Cypress College (beautifully covering two Student Art Exhibitions – 2013 & 2014, STEM, and other areas), and has done a number of short films for local businesses. Exploring his primary interests, he has completed several travel documentaries, including Through the Rocky Southwest (shown at the Cypress College film festival this year), Through the Pacific Northwest, and Oceanside Dreams. His first narrative feature, Strawberry Lemonade (an experimental horror film) premiered at the Emerging Artist Society’s First Annual Film Festival at Cal State Fullerton

Talent aside, Mike is just a really nice guy. Humble. It took a bit of Internet searching to uncover that he is extremely well prized, not only in film but in several other artistic areas as well. His photograph Five More Minutes, Please won a national award from the Canon Imagination Project, and several others have been picked up by Getty Images.

Five More Minutes, Please:

Five More Minutes, Please.

Through the Rocky Southwest

At some point in the future, after finishing at Cal State Fullerton, he plans to venture into the world of narrative filmmaking. Long-term, he aspires to join one of the major film studios like Disney or Dreamworks.

For more from one of our very favorite students, check out Mike’s talent via his website, Twitter , Instagram, and Vimeo page.

Congratulations, Mike, on all your success! We look forward to seeing more of your talent in years to come.

#CypressCollege #DigitalCinema #Photography #Arts

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Cypress College is recognized as one of California’s top community colleges. Recent accolades include:

– #1 in the U.S. | Top Toyota T-TEN Auto-Tech Program in the Nation.

– #2 in C.A. | Top Two ESL & Basic Skills English Programs in California.

– #3 in C.A. | Ranked as a Top Three California Community College (Schools.com)

– #3 in the Region | Ranked Top Three in Greater Los Angeles & Orange County for Student Transfer and Graduation Rates (EdSmart.org)

– 15 of 113 | California Community Colleges piloting a Bachelor’s Degree (Mortuary Science)

– #17 in the U.S. | National Ranking on MTV-U’s website “Rate-My-Professor”

– Top National Licensure Exam Pass Rates | Perfect state licensure pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Abdomen; Diagnostic Medical Sonography (OB/Gyn); Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Physics; and Mortuary Science: Sciences. 90+% state licensure exam pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Assisting; Mortuary Science (Arts); Radiology Technology. And85%+ state licensure rates for students in: Health Information Technology; Nursing; and Psychiatric Technology.

– 2/3ds of the Class of 2015 qualified for transfer to a UC or CSU institution.

– 76 Orange Empire Athletics Conference Titles

– 25 California Community College Athletic Association State Championship Titles

 

From Cypress to Stanford

Danial Shakeri with fellow Cypress College alum, Jennifer Franco - now a USC graduate, Class of 2016.
Danial Shakeri with fellow Cypress College alum, Jennifer Franco – now a USC graduate, Class of 2016.

While we often hear of students who transfer from Cypress to the UC’s and CSU’s, we don’t tell as much as we should the many stories of those who move on to top private institutions like Stanford, the Ivies, select liberal arts colleges, and top art institutes.

Danial Shakeri’s story is one worth telling. Since he was a kid, he had his sights set on Stanford University. He pursued admission the traditional route: graduating at the top of his class at Los Alamitos High, he applied….

But – as is the case for many high-achievers – didn’t get in.

Though he had offers at other great schools, Danial was all about Stanford. A smart guy, he knew that Cypress provided another way to get that admissions offer he so desired. With a brother that went from Cypress to UC Irvine and who spoke highly of the quality of education and transfer opportunities available, Danial decided to follow an alternative educational path by foregoing on the immediate four-year options and enrolling at Cypress instead.

From the get-go, he laid out a two year plan: get heavily involved in campus life – serve as an Associated Students Senator and then as A.S. President, get involved in the Honors Program, tutor in the Library Learning Resource Center – and do well academically (of course).

So he did all of those things, sent off his transfer application… and this time around was accepted. He graduated from Stanford in 2014 with a degree in Computer Science (he was accepted as a Psychology major and then switched while at Stanford his first year). He now works at Microsoft’s headquarters in Washington State.

Cypress has many stories of success similar to that of Danial’s – those who didn’t want to “settle” for any one school, and instead enroll at Cypress with the goal of transferring to their dream college or university. There are many others who move on from Cypress first to the UC’s and CSU’s, and to then to institutions like Harvard, Princeton, Yale, and MIT for graduate degrees.

If you’re interested in transferring from Cypress to Stanford – or similarly select schools – the key is to do well academically and to score high on the required SAT. Make sure that you also get involved in campus opportunities, and that you are able to clearly articulate in your transfer application how your personal narrative is unique. What obstacles have you overcome? How will you contribute to the university’s active community life and rigorous academic environment? Be specific by linking your interests to research areas or institutes of study at Stanford. Also, seek out professors and mentors who can write you strong letters of recommendation.

Those were a few pieces of advice offered to our Puente and Honors students on a recent visit to Stanford. Each of the speakers on our “Community College to Stanford” panel had a very compelling narrative. They had all overcome significant personal and financial struggles to find their distinct intellectual passions.

From left to right in the below photo, a brief overview of their stories:

Community College to Stanford panel.
Community College to Stanford panel.

Far Left, Electrical Engineering  – Grew-up without a father, much financial hardship; moved around a lot as a kid; has a story similar to that of Daniel’s in that knew he wanted to go to Stanford and knew community college could get him there; checked-off all the right boxes by getting involved; scored high on the SAT; sought out mentors.

His advice: “Have mentors for everything. There are people you’ll admire because they have strong families, others for professional reasons, etc…. maintain contact with those who inspire you and don’t hesitate to reach out to them for advice throughout your life.

Second to Left, Theoretical Math – Also grew-up with an absent father (who moved back to Brazil when he was a child); very poor background; from the Mid-West; didn’t pursue college after high school, instead worked a variety of service jobs for many years – at Jamba Juice, at a movie theater, in retail, etc. … until finally, he decided that he needed to make change so he enrolled at his local community college. He had always had an interest in math, and really found his passion through self-learning and while at community college.

Advice – “There are plenty of really great schools. While I do love Stanford, I’m sure that I would have been just as happy at Berkeley or UCSD…. or many other places for that matter.”

Third to Left: History + Education – Was a foster child who moved through multiple homes in the San Fernando Valley here in Southern CA. In her twenties, she enrolled at East LA College; did very well and won the prestigious Jack Kent Cooke scholarship, which awards some of the nation’s brightest and most promising students with up to $40,000 per year for four years of university study.

Right, Political Science  – Had to take care of sick mother and siblings early in high school… dropped out to do so and worked a variety of retail jobs for a number of years. Eventually, she got involved with GreenPeace (she had always had an interest in politics and environmental issues). She advanced professionally through the years and did well… so well in fact that political campaigns began to seek her advisory input. In her late twenties, she was told that she absolutely needed a degree to advance. At 30 years of age she enrolled at Santa Monica College. Though she felt out of place she focused and did well. She took her GED exam to finish high school. After completing her undergraduate Associates for Transfer (AS-T) courses at Santa Monica College she took the SAT in order to apply to the best of the best four-year institutions… and was accepted into Stanford.

Worried about the financial burden of attending a top private institution like Stanford? In addition to a needs-blind admissions policy, Stanford just announced earlier this year that it will waive all fees for students from families earning less than $125,000 a year.

If Stanford is your dream school, know that others from community colleges – including Cypress – have transferred.

#CypressCollege #Stanford #Honors #Puente #Transfers

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Cypress College is recognized as one of California’s top community colleges. Recent accolades include:

– #1 in the U.S. | Top Toyota T-TEN Auto-Tech Program in the Nation.

– #2 in C.A. | Top Two ESL & Basic Skills English Programs in California.

– #3 in C.A. | Ranked as a Top Three California Community College (Schools.com)

– #3 in the Region | Ranked Top Three in Greater Los Angeles & Orange County for Student Transfer and Graduation Rates (EdSmart.org)

– 15 of 113 | California Community Colleges piloting a Bachelor’s Degree (Mortuary Science)

– #17 in the U.S. | National Ranking on MTV-U’s website “Rate-My-Professor”

– Top National Licensure Exam Pass Rates | Perfect state licensure pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Abdomen; Diagnostic Medical Sonography (OB/Gyn); Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Physics; and Mortuary Science: Sciences. 90+% state licensure exam pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Assisting; Mortuary Science (Arts); Radiology Technology. And85%+ state licensure rates for students in: Health Information Technology; Nursing; and Psychiatric Technology.

– 2/3ds of the Class of 2015 qualified for transfer to a UC or CSU institution.

– 76 Orange Empire Athletics Conference Titles

– 25 California Community College Athletic Association State Championship Titles

 

 

(STEM)2 Scholars to do Summer Research at Cal State Fullerton

Preparing a workforce proficient in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math has been identified as a critical national priority. To help meet this challenge, Cypress College, in partnership with Cal State Fullerton, created the (STEM)2 Program with the goal of increasing student participation, persistence and success in these fields.

The program now offers educational, scholarship, transfer, and career opportunities for Cypress College students. Features include workshops, guest speakers, one-on-one counseling, peer mentoring, paid summer research opportunities, and a host of other benefits.This summer, thirteen STEM Scholars have been accepted for the Summer Research Experience at Cal State Fullerton.


Sophia Plaza

STEM2 SRE 2016 Sophia Plaza

Major: Environmental Engineering

Sofia will be doing working with Dr. Joseph Carlin, whose research interests include marine geology. She and other students will investigate sedimentation in coastal environments (e.g. estuaries, marshes, near-shore marine waters), and what we learn about environmental changes from this sediment.

Sophia is looking forward to exploring aspects of the engineering field through her summer research.

 

 


Miguel Ruiz

STEM2 SRE 2016 Miguel Ruiz

Major: Biochemistry

Miguel will be working in the lab of Dr. Amanda Evans, whose research includes asymmetry, medicinal chemistry and materials synthesis. Her current research is investigating new, safer and more efficient ways to make the chemical structures — such as ‘cyclopropane rings’ containing only three carbon atoms — that are commonly found in many pharmaceutical drugs and in the organic materials that are used for alternative energy applications.

Miguel’s future career interests include bio-tech (such as bio-renewables or energy) and molecular pathology.

 


Khoa Nguyen

STEM2 SRE 2016 Khoa Nguyen

Major: Civil Engineering

Khoa will be doing research with Dr. Beena Ajmera on two projects. In the first, students will prepare a database of landslides before an earthquake event and right after the post-earthquake rainy season to evaluate if the post-earthquake rainfall triggered any landslides. The second will focus on evaluating the possibility of using scrap tires and construction waste in civil engineering applications, including backfill of retaining walls, pavements for sidewalks and walkways, and embankment, as well as ground improvement to increase the load bearing capacity of weak foundation soils.

 

 


Andrew Bankson

STEM2 SRE 2016 Andrew Bankson

Major: Mechanical Engineering

Andrew will be working for Dr. Chin Chean Ngo, whose research projects include measurement of thermal conductivity and permeability of porous media, which is related to the design of in-floor heating for industrial, commercial, and residential applications; and the design of an electrohydrodynamics (EHD) pump, which is a technique that has been actively applied to heat and mass transport processes in various industries including energy, food, and aerospace.

Andrew’s future career interests include the medical and energy fields.

 

 


Selina Jaimes Davila

STEM2 SRE 2016 Selina Jaimes Davila

Major: Mechanical Engineering

Selina will be working with Dr. Gina Passante, whose research interests include physics education.

Selina enjoys the mechanical engineering field, as the profession is a way to combine her love of math with a keen interest in building things.

 

 

 

 

 


Stephany Angarita

STEM2 SRE 2016 Stephanie

Major: Biochemistry

Stephany will be doing research in the lab of Dr. Nilay Patel, whose interests include the gene regulation of apolipoportein E (apoE) and the role of apoE in Alzheimer’s disease.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Samuel Rodriguez

STEM2 Sam Rodriguez and Dr Lovelace

Major: Physics

Sam (pictured at left with STEM2 Director Yanet Garcia, Dr. Geoffrey Lovelace, and Dean Richard Fee) will be working again with Dr. Lovelace,whose research interests include gravitational physics, numerical relativity, and simulations of merging compact objects. Dr. Lovelace’s current research focuses on using numerical relativity to model sources of gravitational waves, such as merging black hole-black hole and black hole-neutron star binaries.

 


Brittany Cortez

STEM2 SRE 2016 Brittany Cortez

Major: Mechanical Engineering

Brittany will be doing research for Dr. Binod Tiwari, whose projects include reducing the impact of earthquake ground shaking on infrastructure, the effect of post-earthquake rainfall on stability of slopes, and the use of recycled materials in civil engineering infrastructure.

Brittany’s career interests include civil engineering research related to geographic issues in Southern California.

 

 

 


Jazleen Barbosa

STEM2 SRE 2016 Jazleen Barbosa

Major: Geology

Jazleen will be working for Dr. Adam Woods, whose research interests include sedimentology and stratigraphy, paleo-environmental analysis of pre-Cenozoic sedimentary rocks, life in stressed environments; mass extinctions and their aftermaths, gas hydrates and their sedimentologic record, and modern and ancient carbonate reefs and platforms.

Jazleen is interested in working in the petroleum industry after college.

 

 

 


Yvonne Garcia

STEM2 SRE 2016 Yvonne Garcia

Major: Computer Science

Yvonne will be doing research with Dr. Abhishek Verma on the classification and mining of multimedia data. This research aims at images and videos as a starting point and gradually broadens its scope to cover some of the other facets of multimedia data. More specifically, it looks at novel color models for image feature extraction and statistical machine learning techniques for classification.

Yvonne would like to be a software engineer. Her dream gig is with NASA, and she hopes to start her own company someday.

 

 


Ana Avila

Major: Biomedical Engineering

Ana will be working in the lab of Dr. Leigh Hargreaves, whose research interests include electron scattering from atomic and molecular targets. Dr. Hargreaves uses state of the art electron spectrometers to measure scattering probabilities for electrons colliding with targets such as water, alcohols, and furan derivates. This enables a better understanding of  damage caused during radiation therapy, helping improve the safety of such treatments for cancer patients.


Adriana Marin Vasquez

Major: Microbiology

Adriana will be doing research in the lab of Dr. Garrett Struckhoff, where her research projects will include the conversion of brewery waste to biofuel using algae.


Chidi Ewenike

Major: Mechanical Engineering


Congratulations to each of the students who have been selected. We look forward to seeing the results of your research!

Gravitational Waves – Cypress students involved in groundbreaking research

STEM(2) students with CSUF Physics Professor Dr. Geoffrey Lovelace (center).
STEM(2) students with CSUF Physics Professor Dr. Geoffrey Lovelace (center).

The impacts of stars colliding into one another in the far depths of space, collapsing into black holes billions of years back can now be detected (and Cypress students played a part in the discovery!). This is a momentous breakthrough for physics; one that confirms Albert Einstein’s abstract, 100 year old intuition that gravity is impacted – though on an exceptionally small scale – by galactic events.

Like ripples on a pond, these cosmic excitations pool into our universe and traverse the cosmos as gravitational waves, bending both space and time in their travels. The impact had on our so-called reality is imperceptible… so extraordinarily small and subtle that Einstein himself couldn’t imagine we would ever have the capacity to detect their existence.

As of this year we do. Decades of research, billions of dollars in funding, tens of thousands of scientists from around the globe have developed two Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatories (LIGO) located here in the U.S. (Livingston, LA and Hanford, WA), equipped with an instrument sensitive enough to measure gravitational waves.

Cypress alum and current CSUF Physics student Eric Muniz (center) creating a simple demonstration of gravitational waves. Photograph via the OC Register, Michael Golding.
Cypress alum and current CSUF Physics student Eric Muniz (center) creating a simple demonstration of gravitational waves. Photograph via Michael Golding of the OC Register for the article “CSUF physics students explain their passion for astrophysics,” March 16, 2016.

Taking part in the cutting-edge research are two Cypress College scholars: recent graduate Eric Muniz and current Physics student Sam Rodriguez (Cypress College, Class of 2016). Through our STEM^2 Program’s summer research partnership with Cal State University, Fullerton, both Eric and Sam participated in theoretical modeling at CSUF’s Institute of Gravitational Wave Physics and Astronomy. Eric, for example, joined a team working in optics experimentation and scattered light characterization. In follow-up, both have chosen to continue their undergraduate studies at the Institute, working alongside renowned faculty like Assistant professor of physics Geoffrey Lovelace, a Ph.D. graduate of Caltech (and former student of legendary Nobel prizewinner Richard Feynman!) who has dedicated his career to studying the extreme space-time around black holes using supercomputers.

We are pleased and proud of Eric and Sam and wish them the very best in their future scientific pursuits. For us, it’s pretty awesome that in some small way our institution – via their contributions – is tied to this tremendous scientific discovery.

Dr. Lovelace’s incredible presentation to our Cypress College STEM^2 Program this past April will be posted within the week. He makes the science of gravitational waves – their formation and detection – understandable (lots of cool space visuals ;), and thus all the more mind-bendingly amazing.  To view a gallery of photos from the event, please access the STEM(2) FB album.

Gravitational Waves – a fascinating presentation by CSUF Professor Dr. Geoffrey Lovelace 

#STEM #Physics #GravitationalWaves #Discovery #CSUF
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Cypress College is recognized as one of California’s top community colleges. Recent accolades include:

– #1 in the U.S. | Top Toyota T-TEN Auto-Tech Program in the Nation.

– #2 in C.A. | Top Two ESL & Basic Skills English Programs in California.

– #3 in C.A. | Ranked as a Top Three California Community College (Schools.com)

– #3 in the Region | Ranked Top Three in Greater Los Angeles & Orange County for Student Transfer and Graduation Rates (EdSmart.org)

– 15 of 113 | California Community Colleges piloting a Bachelor’s Degree (Mortuary Science)

– #17 in the U.S. | National Ranking on MTV-U’s website “Rate-My-Professor”

– Top National Licensure Exam Pass Rates | Perfect state licensure pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Abdomen; Diagnostic Medical Sonography (OB/Gyn); Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Physics; and Mortuary Science: Sciences. 90+% state licensure exam pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Assisting; Mortuary Science (Arts); Radiology Technology. And85%+ state licensure rates for students in: Health Information Technology; Nursing; and Psychiatric Technology.

– 2/3ds of the Class of 2015 qualified for transfer to a UC or CSU institution.

– 76 Orange Empire Athletics Conference Titles

– 25 California Community College Athletic Association State Championship Titles

Cypress STEM Students Tour SpaceX

STEM (2) students tour SpaceX, March 2016.
Cypress College STEM (2) students tour SpaceX facilities in Hawthorne, CA. March 2016.

Space X designs, manufactures and launches advanced rockets and spacecraft. The company was founded in 2002 to revolutionize space travel, with the ultimate goal of enabling people to live on other planets.

Hard to beat that mission statement.

For engineers, adventurists, and brand enthusiasts alike, Space X is one of the most glamorous companies to follow.

Imagine working there.

If you have the right background, you can (and Cypress can launch you towards that end… ;)

Our STEM(2) students got a first look at how. In a special Saturday, March 19th event exclusive to family and friends of SpaceX personnel, 16 of our CC students toured the facilities, met with employees and had lunch at the company’s Hawthorne headquarters (where the rockets are manufactured).

STEM(2) Lunch at SpaceX facilities in Hawthorne, CA. March 2016.
Cypress College STEM(2) Lunch at SpaceX facilities in Hawthorne, CA. March 2016.

SpaceX is arguably one of the most innovative companies in the world today.

Achievements include:

  • The first privately funded, liquid-fueled rocket (Falcon 1) to reach orbit (28 September 2008)
  • The first privately funded company to successfully launch (by Falcon 9) orbit and recover a spacecraft (Dragon) (9 December 2010)
  • The first private company to send a spacecraft (Dragon) to the International Space Station (25 May 2012)
  • The first private company to send a satellite into geosynchronous orbit (SES-8, 3 December 2013)
  • The first landing of a first stage orbital capable rocket (Falcon 9) (22 December 2015 1:40 UTC)

For those who haven’t had the privilege of attending in-person, here’s an online tour via CEO Elon Musk.

For more information on the day or to be involved in future STEM events, please contact our Cypress College STEM(2) Program Director Yanet Garcia.

#CypressCollege #STEM #SpaceX

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Cypress College is recognized as one of California’s top community colleges. Recent accolades include:

– #1 in the U.S. | Top Toyota T-TEN Auto-Tech Program in the Nation.

– #2 in C.A. | Top Two ESL & Basic Skills English Programs in California.

– #3 in C.A. | Ranked as a Top Three California Community College (Schools.com)

– #3 in the Region | Ranked Top Three in Greater Los Angeles & Orange County for Student Transfer and Graduation Rates (EdSmart.org)

– 15 of 113 | California Community Colleges piloting a Bachelor’s Degree (Mortuary Science)

– #17 in the U.S. | National Ranking on MTV-U’s website “Rate-My-Professor”

– Top National Licensure Exam Pass Rates | Perfect state licensure pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Abdomen; Diagnostic Medical Sonography (OB/Gyn); Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Physics; and Mortuary Science: Sciences. 90+% state licensure exam pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Assisting; Mortuary Science (Arts); Radiology Technology. And85%+ state licensure rates for students in: Health Information Technology; Nursing; and Psychiatric Technology.

– 2/3ds of the Class of 2015 qualified for transfer to a UC or CSU institution.

– 76 Orange Empire Athletics Conference Titles

– 25 California Community College Athletic Association State Championship Titles

 

STEM Director Yanet Garcia Honored by Cal State Fullerton

Yanet Garcia (center) honored by Cal State Fullerton
Above: Yanet Garcia (center) with her STEM 2015-16 cohort, and Dean Richard Fee (center, right).

Preparing a workforce proficient in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math has been identified as a critical national priority. To help meet this challenge, Cypress College, in partnership with Cal State Fullerton, created the (STEM)2 Program with the goal of increasing student participation, persistence and success in these fields.

Director & Counselor Yanet Garcia came to the program in 2012 from Cal Poly Pomona. Under her leadership, student participation in (STEM)2 has more than doubled, with the program now offering wonderful educational, scholarship, transfer, and career opportunities for Cypress College students. Features include workshops, guest speakers, one-on-one counseling, peer mentoring, paid summer research opportunities, and a host of other benefits. This summer, thirteen STEM Scholars have been accepted for the Summer Research Experience at CSUF, and an additional three at other institutions, including the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. The program has become a well-recognized pathway for students to go on to success in STEM fields at great four-year institutions.

In recognition of her achievement, Yanet was recently honored by the Cal State Fullerton College of Education, at their Honor an Educator Luncheon and Ceremony. Cypress College President Bob Simpson and Richard Fee, Dean of Science, Engineering, and Math, were among those on hand to honor her.

Yanet Dr Simpson Dr Fee and Dr Bowman

Above: Yanet with Dr. David Bowman, Interim Dean of CSUF College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Dr. Richard Fee, and Dr. Bob Simpson

At the ceremony, Yanet was presented with commendations from California State Senator Bob Huff,  Assembly Member Young Kim, and the Dean of the CSUF College of Education. A big congratulations to Yanet, as well as our deep gratitude for everything she does for the College and our students!

For more on the STEM(2) program, visit their site online.

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Our faculty and staff make Cypress College one of California’s top community colleges. Recent 2015-16 accolades include:

– #1 in the U.S. | Top Toyota T-TEN Auto-Tech Program in the Nation.

– #2 in C.A. | Top Two ESL & Basic Skills English Programs in California.

– #3 in C.A. | Ranked as a Top Three California Community College (Schools.com)

– #3 in the Region | Ranked Top Three in Greater Los Angeles & Orange County for Student Transfer and Graduation Rates (EdSmart.org)

– 15 of 113 | California Community Colleges piloting a Bachelor’s Degree (Mortuary Science)

– #17 in the U.S. | National Ranking on MTV-U’s website “Rate-My-Professor”

– Top National Licensure Exam Pass Rates | Perfect state licensure pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Abdomen; Diagnostic Medical Sonography (OB/Gyn); Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Physics; and Mortuary Science: Sciences. 90+% state licensure exam pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Assisting; Mortuary Science (Arts); Radiology Technology. And85%+ state licensure rates for students in: Health Information Technology; Nursing; and Psychiatric Technology.

– 2/3ds of the Class of 2015 qualified for transfer to a UC or CSU institution.

– 76 Orange Empire Athletics Conference Titles

– 25 California Community College Athletic Association State Championship Titles

Puente in Pasadena – “Fly” – Kay & Mal Bruce – We Heart

Some of the most meaningful gifts are not those wrapped in pretty bows and packaging, but are instead experiences to be shared together. These are impactful gifts – ones that leave us with memories and new insights.

Thanks to the selflessly spirited generosity of one extraordinary couple, Kay and Mal Bruce, our Cypress Puente students were gifted an intangible – an experiential escape out on the town, a sophisticated night of dinner and historical theater in Downtown Pasadena.

IMG_1927
Puente Co-Director Dr. Therese Mosqueda Ponce with husband (left); Puente Co-Director Kathryn Sonne (Center); Kay and Mal Bruce (right).

The evening began indulgently at Bucca di Beppo, with multiple entrees, hors d’oeuvres, and desserts – all on the house courtesy of Kay and Mal.

Finished, our happy, yet overly satiated familia of 50+ students and staff made way to the Pasadena Playhouse for a special viewing of the theater hit “Fly.” This was a cultural experience to remember, one that allowed our primarily Latino students to better understand and connect with the African American experience in the US at the mid-point of the twentieth century – collective minority struggles for civil rights and basic human dignities.

Puente students at "Fly" - Pasadena Playhouse, February 2016.
Puente students at “Fly” – Pasadena Playhouse, February 2016.

Fly is a beautifully rendered artistic representation of one story in this period of time, that of the Tuskegee airmen, the first African-American aviators in the United States military. The play is set in 1943, a moment in dead-heat of world war, and also a time at which the U.S. military is segregated. A small cadre of brave pioneering pilots, the Tuskegee airmen, must fight two battles – with fascists abroad and bigots at home. Using just eight actors on one small stage the three-hour performance was impactful in its telling – incorporating interpretive dance and plays on light, song and sound to detail the pilots’ struggles, sacrifices and heroism. This was a gift to our students that will keep giving, an enriching experience of new knowledge gained and a compassion for struggle and respect shared.

Following the performance, students participated in an intimate Q&A with Fly’s cast and crew – all quite young, dynamic and inspirational.

Thank you again to our generous Cypress College Puente and Foundation benefactors Kay and Mal Bruce for such an impactful, extraordinary, intangible gift (and for the many years of laptops, supplies, donations and other quite tangible ones made to our deserving programs and students!). We <3 you ; )

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Cypress College is recognized as one of California’s top community colleges. Recent accolades include:

– #1 in the U.S. | Top Toyota T-TEN Auto-Tech Program in the Nation.

– #2 in C.A. | Top Two ESL & Basic Skills English Programs in California.

– #3 in C.A. | Ranked as a Top Three California Community College (Schools.com)

– #3 in the Region | Ranked Top Three in Greater Los Angeles & Orange County for Student Transfer and Graduation Rates (EdSmart.org)

– 15 of 113 | California Community Colleges piloting a Bachelor’s Degree (Mortuary Science)

#17 in the U.S. | National Ranking on MTV-U’s website “Rate-My-Professor”

– Top National Licensure Exam Pass Rates | Perfect state licensure pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Abdomen; Diagnostic Medical Sonography (OB/Gyn); Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Physics; and Mortuary Science: Sciences. 90+% state licensure exam pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Assisting; Mortuary Science (Arts); Radiology Technology. And85%+ state licensure rates for students in: Health Information Technology; Nursing; and Psychiatric Technology.

– 2/3ds of the Class of 2015 qualified for transfer to a UC or CSU institution.

– 76 Orange Empire Athletics Conference Titles

– 25 California Community College Athletic Association State Championship Titles

#CypressCollege #Puente #PasadenaPlayhouse #Fly

Puente + Honors at SLO

IMG_3535
Performing Arts Center, Cal Poly SLO

Our Cypress College Puente and Honors Programs recently toured Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s beautiful Central Coast campus. Nestled in the region’s impressively lush, verdant hills and equipped with stunning facilities, SLO left its mark on our group.

First stop on our tour was the newly constructed Waren J. Baker Center for Science and Mathematics. If you’re in a STEM field of study, this seems to be a very interesting, up-and-coming place to be. Aside from its gleam of sheer “newness” – always appealing – every student and faculty member we came across was full of pride for the institution and its focus on the undergraduate experience.

IMG_3566
Cal Poly SLO Center for Science and Mathematics

Cal Poly lives in accord with its “Learn by Doing” philosophy, which means that students are expected to take part in experiential learning opportunities. They work directly with senior faculty (not T.A.’s) on compelling research and final year projects: finding antidotes to malaria, creating a company acquired by Google (Punchd), founding Jamba Juice… exceptional examples of Cal Poly students at their best. They take part in summer internships. They build relationships with professors who, given small class sizes and an institutional emphasis on teaching, prioritize mentorship.

Our guide selected Cal Poly over Berkeley because of this undergraduate focus, which she felt would provide her with a stronger educational base. We heard similar stories and sentiments from other STEM students we met.

Following our tour of the new science and mathematics building, we also viewed the similarly new gym. Incredible. Students have access to top-notch equipment, indoor and outdoor basketball, tennis, and track facilities, pools, sand volleyball courts, professional classes in spinning and yoga, and so much more. It’s no wonder that most people on campus seem exceptionally fit.

Capping off the day, we went into the very college town of San Luis Obispo and found food at the earthy, hip, lively evening Farmers Market.

A gallery of our half-day tour can be found online here.

IMG_3564
Cypress Puente & Honors Programs, Cal Poly SLO visit, Spring 2016.

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Cypress College is recognized as one of California’s top community colleges. Recent accolades include:

#1 in the U.S. | Top Toyota T-TEN Auto-Tech Program in the Nation.

#2 in C.A. | Top Two ESL & Basic Skills English Programs in California.

#3 in C.A. | Ranked as a Top Three California Community College (Schools.com)

#3 in the Region | Ranked Top Three in Greater Los Angeles & Orange County for Student Transfer and Graduation Rates (EdSmart.org)

15 of 113 | California Community Colleges piloting a Bachelor’s Degree (Mortuary Science)

#17 in the U.S. | National Ranking on MTV-U’s website “Rate-My-Professor”

Top National Licensure Exam Pass Rates | Perfect state licensure pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Hygiene, Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Abdomen; Diagnostic Medical Sonography (OB/Gyn); Diagnostic Medical Sonography: Physics; and Mortuary Science: Sciences. 90+% state licensure exam pass rates for students in the following programs: Dental Assisting; Mortuary Science (Arts); Radiology Technology. And85%+ state licensure rates for students in: Health Information Technology; Nursing; and Psychiatric Technology.

2/3ds of the Class of 2015 qualified for transfer to a UC or CSU institution.

75 Orange Empire Athletics Conference Titles

25 California Community College Athletic Association State Championship Titles

#CypressCollege #CalPolySLO