By Jasmin Clardy
Harbor Tides Staff Writer
Andrea Cano isn’t your typical ESL professor. She’s a bundle of unwritten social contradictions: A compassionate educator, Fulbright Fellow, avid fencer and a roller derby daredevil. Don’t ask her to pick her favorite thing: she has a strong desire for all of them.
Born in Santa Monica and raised in Seal Beach, she always had a knack for sports. As a youth she participated in gymnastics. She wanted to expand her sportsmanship in a sport that would give her a more social and team-oriented workout.
“I always wanted to do exercise, but I hate the gym,” she said. “It’s so boring and there’s no goal.”
Later she started to participate in fencing under the foil category. Foil fencing is the original type of fencing where the goal is to target hit your opponent strictly in the torso area. The opponent who attacks first gets the point.
Cano did fencing for seven years at the Los Angeles Fencing Center with coach Derek Cotton, who was a fencing referee in the Olympics.
“Fencing is more of a solitary sport because it’s all on you, but I do get a lot of anger out on the strip,” Cano said.
After watching the Los Angeles Derby Dolls in action at the roller derby, she knew that this was something that she aspired to become.
She began her quest for roller derby greatness in 2012. By March of this year, she sustained her first injury during training. It has not deterred her. “I broke my leg, but I just can’t wait to get back on skates.”
Roller derby consists of five people from each team on a track, for a total of ten players in the rink traveling counter clockwise. Four of the members from each team are considered pack members, who move together slowly and create a block. Two jammers, one from each team, try to break through the packs as many times as they can while lapping the track as fast as possible before time runs out. It’s like a more strategic version of red rover on quad skates. The safety gear consists of wearing a helmet, knee pads, elbow pads, wrist guards, and a mouth piece for protection.
But sports aren’t Cano’s only passion. She also cares deeply about her field of work. She earned her undergraduate degree in Latin American Literature and city planning from U.C. Berkeley and was a Fulbright Fellow at the University of Northern Chile.
As a Fulbright Fellow, an exclusive scholar who is recognized all over the world, she speaks three different languages and has traveled to a several countries, including Argentina, Brazil and Chile. As part of her Fulbright Fellowship, she taught English composition at the University of Northern Chile for a year. She earned her master’s degree from Cal State Fullerton, where she was recognized as one of 50 outstanding Latino graduates.
Returning to California, Cano took on a plethora of part-time positions, teaching English composition and ESL at a variety of institutions such as Fullerton College, U.C. Irvine, Pasadena City College, MiraCosta College, Long Beach City College, Cerritos College, and Cal State Fullerton. All of which she did before starting roller derby.
Although she uses roller derby primarily as a fun way to stay fit—she does not have professional aspirations for the sport at this time—she is very devoted to it. In fact, in order to break into roller derby, Cano needed to have full health benefits. Even those who just want to train in the sport must have health insurance because it is so dangerous. So she sought a full-time teaching position. She applied to Harbor College last year and began teaching ESL in September.
“When I got hired here, the minute I signed the contract, I started skating,” she said.
She works with a coach three times per week, and hopes to join team in Long Beach soon. But that hasn’t stopped her from picking out her roller derby name, which she proudly displays on her helmet: San Andreas Assault.
By James Andrews
Tuesday night inside a small coffee shop, the atmosphere is a buzz with the sounds of poetry filling the air. Students from English 28 are crammed elbow to elbow wait patiently for their turn to stand in front of a microphone. Each one a mess of nerves as they frantically search the Internet for inspiration. In a moments time, they will walk on stage and do what many English professors consider a substantial part of the poetry experience.
Every April, at Sacred Grounds located in San Pedro, the poetry reading event is held for patrons to recite every from sonnets to original material. The event hosted by English Literature instructor, Jean Grooms was originally intended to be a simple exercise in poetry appreciation. Since then, Sacred Grounds cafe has been the sight of an annual poetry night. Several Harbor College students attend the event at Sacred Grounds.
“It’s fun. It’s a social aspect to school. Create somewhere the students can do something. Getting out in the real world.” Said English Instructor Hale Savard
While many of the students were eager to read their short paragraph or two and quickly leave to go home, others were less impatient and stayed around students would either choose selections of already established poets or take a chance and try out an original poem.
This annual poetry night marks its 12th year return as a semester requirement for its students attending English Literature course. The idea for such an evening was inspired after Pamela Watkins, a former Scholarship Adviser, attended a poetry slam. And from there on, English Literature students would spend the evening with their students listening to either well known poets such as Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost and Maya Angelou.
By Waylette Thomas
We all have our share of hidden talents, whether it’s being able to play a musical instrument or burp the alphabet. For David Krenz, who recently played center for Harbor College’s basketball team, God has equipped him with athletic talent and a wondrous passion for opera.
Krenz, 23, who grew up playing basketball, has decided to put to rest his ball playing skills and pursue perfecting his vocals as a singer. For him, the decision he has made to quit basketball gives him a peaceful feeling, although he continues to play for fun almost every day. Ultimately, however, being on a team was time consuming. Plus he has the added challenge of dealing with tourettes, a nervous system disorder that involves unusual repetitive movements or unwanted sounds that can’t be controlled. These are often called tics.
“I’ve thought more and more about it, yes and no, yes it was hard because I am pretty good and I am confident that I could have played basketball in a European Pro league,” said Krenz, who is 6’8”. “And no, it wasn’t hard, because I know that God is calling me to pursue music for his glory, and I can relate to people through music. Thus, I’m able to reach out and share the Gospel and tell people [about] Jesus through music.”
Krenz’ voice has a magical quality that travels across the school’s hallways; its impressive heaviness leaves you wanting more. Singing in a baritone range and being able to extend his vocals as far as falsetto, Krenz is self-taught. “I don’t want to say I taught myself, I just practiced,” Krenz said.
Favoring classical music and musical theater such as “Phantom of the Opera” and “Les Miserables,” he started singing as a teen. Back then, he limited his singing audience to his sickly grandmother. Other than that, he purely sang for his own amusement in the shower. It wasn’t until recent years that he took up classes both at LAHC and El Camino and began to take his musical gift seriously and follow through with it as a potential career. He also works with a private vocal coach and is now planning to expand his repertoire.
It’s not often that you meet people like Krenz. Many view tourettes as a powerful affliction. The involuntary muscle spasms and vocal tics can make life extraordinarily difficult for the person who suffers from the disorder. Despite the challenges of his condition, Krenz approaches life with an upbeat attitude and a great outlook. He is seeking help in the form of habit reversal training to slow his tourettes. Ideally this will make it easier for him to sing, but he doesn’t mind the struggle. He accepts it as a blessing and another opportunity to glorify God.
“God gave me a good voice. I feel his presence when I sing. I feel alive,” Krenz said.
By Kia Jackson
Harbor Tides Staff Writer
Are you struggling with the idea of going to college or not? Or are you a college student in debt because you weren’t informed about how to get money for your education?
Don’t give up. There are many ways to pay for school, from grants to scholarships, and if you don’t qualify for those, you can even take out a student loan. Although getting a loan is not the best route because you will have to pay it back plus interest. And if you don’t pay your loan back, it will negatively affect your credit. Poor credit can prevent you from doing many other things that are beneficial to your life such as buying a car or getting your first apartment.
There are also on campus programs such as Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS), a state funding support organization that helps students pay for books and provides other assistance for those who qualify. More information on this program can be found online at
All you have to do is research and ask questions. The majority of the time in order to qualify for these funds, you must be a full time student and pass all of your classes. Not hard at all, that’s why you’re going to school, right?
Go to your local financial aid office as well as the EOPS office and they will give you information on the services they offer. Help is also available many different places online, such as grants.gov and scholarships.com. These sites list many financial opportunities that are available for students. Most sites will direct you to a link where you can fill out the application, a simple step-by-step process that helps you pay for school.
There are grants for women, foster youth, minorities, athletes, people with disabilities and those who have performed well academically. There are even scholarships designated for being left-handed. Grants and scholarships do not have to be paid back as long as you meet the qualifications and keep up the terms and conditions of the financial award. Some will require that students maintain a certain GPA. Others may require students to take specific courses or declare certain majors.
However, loans must be repaid. You can find out further information in the financial aid office, and they will assist you in the process.
Don’t ever feel as though you’re limited. You can go as far as you push yourself if you‘re willing to do the work to get to where you want to be. Get your funds to further your education, for a brighter future. It’s up to you.
By Jasmin Clardy
Harbor Tides Staff Writer
The new and improved planetarium on the Los Angeles Harbor College campus is just about ready to educate our students in a more digital way than before.
About five years ago, a measure was passed to help community colleges revamp their campuses. This measure helped refurbish our planetarium at a cost of approximately $1.5 million. Everything on the inside is new.
When you walk into the dome-shaped building, you’ll find a room that seats a capacity of 34 people. Looking up, there is a projection screen that covers the whole half spherical ceiling, and below that is a large projector that gives off images by the computer, which is located at a desk near one of the exits in the building. The computer generates images from anywhere on earth and can zoom out to show any place in the universe.
The images aren’t actual images of the current sky. The computer has a program on it that generates images depicted from information collected by scientists about the sky and the planets. If an image was to be displayed from a different planet, the projector would show a fictitious panorama of what that planet looks like. These images are from the perception of artists who have seen pictures taken from the rover.
A cloudy/overcast sky can be shown on the projector, but the computer isn’t connected to the Internet to get info on cloud cover over the earth. So the images don’t show the live or current weather patterns but can generate something like it.
After interviewing Professor Steven Morris, a Physics teacher on campus, he provided a great deal of information. Morris, along with two other professors, is receiving training on how to work the new equipment that has been installed in the planetarium. Representatives from the Spitz Co., which provided the projector, are providing the training.
Prior to the renovation, the old projector malfunctioned so frequently that it became too big a hassle to fix and professors stopped using the facility. This new, improved projector can show images of the sky anywhere.
The Spitz Co. is producing full dome videos for Astronomy, Geology, and Biology classes. These videos are expensive, according to Morris, but they are hoping to acquire them as the planetarium gets more use and visitors.
“It’s a shame that because of light pollution that our young people have no idea of what the sky really looks like,” Morris said. “If I dim the lights you can see the image of a light polluted sky and when I turn off the lights, [people who have never seen a clean sky will say ‘ahh!’ in amazement.”]
Morris, along with the other two professors, plans to use the summer as their time to get savvy with the new equipment. Their goal is to have the planetarium ready for classes by the fall semester and to eventually be able to open the planetarium up to local grade school students for field trips.
By Layshon Dabbs
Harbor Tides Staff Writer
Attention Los Angles Harbor College students: So few of us are aware or know that we have power and our voices are strong enough to make a difference on campus. With severe budget cuts, it seems like students are weakened by the negativity and doubts of their expectations of moving forward toward a better future.
Three student interns of the American Federation of Teachers are representing LAHC in a fierce way and are getting involved in the political issues that affect all aspects of campus life.
“It’s time that we the students regain control over our voices, in order to recover the true meaning of education that we once lost.” Jorge Herrera said. Herrera, along with Jenny Brown and Omar Serrano, has started an organization called Where’s The Funding, even though students might recognize its WTF acronym from Internet slang.
Last semester, before California voters passed proposition 30, this group organized one of the most memorable protests in LAHC history. The WTF organization is looking forward to broadening into a bigger club that gives students the voice and motivation to exercise their rights and opinions about what goes on at LAHC.
”I love being an AFT intern,” said Brown, a neuroscience major. “The activism and the fight we fight for student rights have allowed me to see visible changes on a state level. As I sit back I can say it was our voice that did all this, and that makes all the difference.”
The main issues that WTF has been working on this semester include the oil tax reform, AB 955 and the 90 unit cap. To explain these issues: the proposed oil tax imposes a fee per barrel on oil companies that extract crude oil from resources in California and its shares. Ninety percent of the revenue from these taxes will go to higher education and 10 percent to state parks. WTF is hopeful that this reform will pass.
By contrast, WTF is opposed to AB 955, which in part aims to allow community colleges to offer summer and winter courses, but at a full price of about $200 per unit. The group is also against the 90-unit cap that would charge full price per unit for any students that enroll in more than 90 collective units, regardless if they are returning students or not.
These issues not only affect LAHC, but many other community colleges. WTF welcomes students who are interested in making a difference on campus. For more information, you can e-mail the WTF members at email@example.com.