Thursday, March 3, 2011

We are sorry to interrupt regularly scheduled programming...but

A few weeks ago I was sitting in class anxiously waiting for the five-day Death Valley trip to come. I was also feeling somewhat optimistic about spending another 3 semesters at MJC to get my calculus, chemistry and physics classes done so I could leave the college with an A.S. in Geology Studies. This week the trip is a wonderful memory and my college future is unknown.

Well...just as obnoxious as the monthly emergency broadcast airing  over your "one" show you get to watch each week - the budget cuts came to our campus. The old adage when the "$%^* hits the fan" is true! The first professor I hear that is being cut is the man who inspired me to attend MJC and later became a close friend. I enjoyed guest teaching in his Anthropology class regarding world religion and loved supporting his bands at local gathering places.I immediately did a "reality check" to see if I was maybe just dreaming and tried to wake up, but I was fully awake wishing I was dreaming.

After the initial shock wore off I felt the old union shop steward creeping out of me...memories of being arrested for sitting down in front of South African Airlines office on Union Square in San Francisco many moons ago came to my mind. So the fingers and the mouth were loosened up and meetings, talks, planning sessions, emails, letters, texts messages, and phone calls started to become the majority of my daily life. Wait...I think I am forgetting something, oh yeah going to class and reading my notes for a test. I became frantic on Tuesday when I realized I had to go to a local high school to monitor a math teacher, and then had a test in Historical Geology that evening. So I did what every student does...I panicked!

Thankfully the test felt good and it was on topics I felt very comfortable with, however I had not completed the review questions for extra credit. I had 75% of the questions done but ran out of time to complete it prior to class. Oh well-let's hope I aced that test. At this point I am not sure if I will be around for next semester to take tests as our fairly new college president wants a "smaller, great college as opposed to a large, mediocre college"...and in addition to this statement he has said on a prior occasion that he wants to close the doors on students with over 100 units.

Ain't that some schist? I have 104 units - not because I took P.E. thirteen times, but because I was there 26 years ago to get a certification in law enforcement. After getting my certification I left and worked (paying taxes and voting, you know being a responsible adult and all) until I was medically retired from an injury I got in the line of duty. Okay, not a problem. I am not going to curl up and die over losing a great paying job and my future in that career...I will go back to school to get a degree and find some other place I can occupy. I need only 5 classes to graduate with my A.S. in Geology and this (insert happy thoughts here) man wants to close the door on "people like me".

Thanks for voting for education measures, paying enormous property taxes to pay for a new high school and two new elementary schools ($4200/year), state taxes and putting your life on the line for your community for 10 years but sorry the "community college" is now off limits to you, and oh, that really awesome professor who has rock star status on campus, yeah, he is out of here too. Have a happy (insert more happy thoughts here) life! Wow, this is AWESOME! Oh, President Loewenstein  I love your luxury car, and the chancellor's too - how do you pronounce those Mer-say-dees (thank God I had a chance to complete elementary school...sounding it out always helps)!

If you too would like to be depressed and pissed off at the same time - please follow this link!

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