A Warm Welcome For SMC Students

Spring marks the end of the current term for Santa Monica College's Associated Students officers, and they decided to go out in style.

The event took place last Thursday during group activity hour, which takes place Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11:15 to 12:30. Before the large demand for more classes from an ever growing pool of students -see article "SMC Is Boiling Over"- group activity hour is a time for not only large events like this, invited speakers or different academic workshops, but also for student clubs to have their meetings or their events.

"We are starting this semester with a bang" said AS Vice President Jafet Santiago. "This is all part of the AS for all the student body, this is our last semester and this is our thank you for all your support."

Santiago's excitement was shared by large crowd sitting on the grass and eating the AS provided food while listening to The Elevaters. "It's cool, very festive" said International student from Morocco, Salah Eddine Fritti, about the band.
We don't have a genre...KCRW's Morning Becomes Eclectic's Garth Trinidad describes us as Urban Alternative." Said Elevater's lead singer Ben. "We play what moves our hearts, and stirs us to think, to feel, and to dance and our intention is to share that."

The response that the Elevaters received was very positive, SMC student Earl Wilson said "It brings energy to the place. It helps relieve stress." His friend Bradley Whitlock, who is about to graduate said "It's cool it's the best group they had since they started this [having live bands in the quad]."

But student and MC AJ Chiong, brought an interesting point, "I think they should have a rap battle, a conscious rap battle. That would allow the students to participate, instead of allowing outside artists they should get artist from Santa Monica College." Regarding the other events Chiong said "This may be a waste of money right here, I think there should be someone on top of the mountain." To be fair, this must have happened when people were changing harnesses while Chiong looked or the people working on the climbing rock were on a break at the time, since people were seen going up and down on a constant basis.

An event like AS's Welcome Day or other AS sponsored events are funded from the money students pay when they get enroll, AS Director of Activities Raphael Sisa explained "we really want to have people come out and support, that extra $19 for the ASB sticker funds the [Blue Bus] 'any line any time' program. I'm going to be honest, I won't be here next year but I would like that program to continue." For the event "We contacted a few companies to get quotes to make sure we get the best price" said Sisa, "It took us a few weeks to get this all together, I got a really great team working together under the activities, I really actually owe it most to them."

Elections are coming soon and AS had a booth for anyone interested in joining the student government for the next semester. If anyone is interested you can get more information at their beta site at www.votestick.org (full AS website coming soon) or visit the AS office at the Canton Center on top of the cafeteria.

AS President David Chun said "We plan on continuing these global citizenship events where we provide exposure to different cultures, and that's extremely important through the food and through the music and through just the people that are part of SMC. We are also planning on having an event on April 18 called Focus The Nation, where we bring attention to global climate change, and we try to find a solutions through engaging students."