Illustrating a Fear of School Shootings

Students in Yenni Tawahade’s Spring 2019 Drawing I class at Arapahoe Community College were asked to express an idea or feeling – in one word – through an illustration for their final project. Yesenia Alba chose the word “fear”, portraying her perception of how gun violence and school shootings are affecting students.

Alba's drawing of "Fear"“It was my goal to portray the fear experienced by students when schools are forced into precautionary measures,” said Alba. “When I started the assignment, it was based on how the actions of the Columbine-obsessed Florida teen prompted trepidation throughout local school systems.  Shortly thereafter, the STEM School shooting occurred.”

Alba indicates her drawing is solely black and white because she wanted to emphasize the emotion of fear without distracting viewers with additional color or objects.

“My goal is for those who see my drawing to put themselves in the shoes of a young child, and feel what they may feel,” Alba says. “We, as a society, hear about school shootings so often that perhaps we stopped talking about it. Yet, this is an issue that needs to be addressed and we need to speak up and do something.”

Alba hopes her drawing paves the way for continued conversation about the safety of students and schools. She was thankful to Tawahade for motivating her to create artwork with a message.

“Perspective, proportion and gesture are some of the central elements of our entry-level instruction,” Tawahade explained. “Telling a story, creating an expression by composition, that was the basis of the assignment. I challenged students to use these techniques to develop their single-word illustration. Yesenia’s work is outstanding. Her talent as a first-time drawing student is impressive, and I have encouraged her to continue developing her talent for visual storytelling.”

Alba, who graduated with her associate degree in Criminal Justice in May, currently works as a veterinary assistant at Wheat RidgeAnimal Hospital and plans to attend MSU Denver this fall. She hopes to earn her bachelor’s degree and become a probation officer.

by Jeff Duggan, ACC Communications Coordinator

Earth Day Service Project 2019

On April 22, 1970, U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson founded Earth Day. And on April 27, 2019, eight dedicated environmentalists from Arapahoe Community College—some seeking Service Learning credit—joined Denver Audubon’s Master Birders, Naturalists, and other volunteers to learn more about various species sharing our planet.

ACC’s Earth Day Service Project began at 7:30 a.m. when Cristina Duke (an ACC student from Joan Anderssen’s ECON class) arrived with her young daughter Kaelyn, then Juliet Hubbell (ACC’s Humanities faculty member) joined us with her daughter Rachelle. Dylan Goodman (from Diana Hornick’s online Interpersonal Communication class) and Lisa Asbill (from Karen Browning’s online Interpersonal Communication class) also attended early that Saturday to help pull weeds, cut back some Rabbitbrush, and rake leaves and branches from the Garden Circle just past the entrance to Denver Audubon’s Nature Center, south of Chatfield State Park in Littleton.

Left to right: Dylan Goodman, Audubon Master Birder Mary Keithler, Trina Wilson, Rachelle Hubbell, Juliet Hubbell, Lisa Asbill, Diana Hornick

At 9 a.m. Trina Wilson (an ACC student from one of our science classes taught by Celia Norman) met up with Team ACC to begin the Denver Metro Nature Challenge BioBlitz. What’s a BioBlitz? It’s an event that brings together natural resource experts, community volunteers, and members of the public to inventory all species in a specific area over a specific time period.

A lone grasshopper rests in dried and fallen Cottonwood leaves. (Photo courtesy of Trina Wilson)

Pycnoporellus, a genus of fungi, grows on the trunk of a tree near Audubon’s Nature Center. (Photo courtesy of Trina Wilson)

Poison Ivy berries can contain oxalates, needle-like crystals that cause pain and swelling in the lips, face, tongue, and skin. (Photo courtesy of Trina Wilson)

Vertebrae of a mammal found during our BioBlitz hike. (Photo courtesy of Trina Wilson)

Our Naturalist guide, Dave Erickson, alongside Master Birder Mary Keithler, pointed out native plants and called our attention to many birds, including a flock of six American White Pelicans soaring overhead and some Hummingbirds whirring by us at ground level. We hiked the trails adjacent to the beaver ponds, majestic Cottonwoods, and Audubon’s ever-popular springtime bird banding station.

Audubon Master Naturalist Dave Erickson (in the middle with hat) talks about Rabbitbrush and various other native plants at Denver Audubon’s Nature Center in Littleton. Note the ACC backpacks that were filled with goodies and provided to all volunteers, complements of ACC’s Student Life Office.

Between 9 and 11 a.m., and after the morning turned from cloudy to partly sunny, Team ACC helped create a snapshot of 50 different local species of plants, mammals, birds, insects, and fungi, better understanding our beautiful natural world.

Red-Winged Blackbird perched and observing BioBlitz participants. (Photo courtesy of Trina Wilson)

Wild Plum blooms in late April on nature trails at Audubon. (Photo courtesy of Trina Wilson)

Since 1970, National Earth Day has not been considered a national “holiday.” But if we want to continue breathing fresh air, drinking clean water, observing mammals, enjoying bird songs, and appreciating every plant we see and smell and eat, then Earth Day needs to become a national holiday in order to bring even more awareness to all of the species we share this planet with. Join us right now by signing the petition….and see you next April to celebrate our wondrous planet!

by Diana Hornick, ACC Communication Department Faculty
 & Service Learning Center Coordinator

Picking The Degree That’s Right for You

At ACC, our goal is to help you to move mountains. Everyone’s mountain is as unique as the peaks of the Rockies, and our degree and certificate programs are designed to reflect that. But with so many options to choose from, picking the one that lets you move your mountain can be a daunting task. To help you decide which path is right for you, here’s a look at the degrees that we offer here at ACC.

Associate of Arts (AA)

An Associate of Arts degree is a first step towards earning your Bachelor of Arts degree. This transfer degree will help you satisfy the core requirements needed for your intended 4-year major, as well as allow you to pick elective courses that can diversify your knowledge and skill sets. If you already know what liberal arts program you want to major in, your course work will allow you to get started on that path. If you are unsure which subject you want to pursue, or wish to try out a wide range of subjects, our AA General degree will give you the chance to explore your interests while earning you credit for when you transfer.

Areas of focus: Arts, Business, Communication, Criminal Justice, Education, Languages, Social Sciences

Associate of Science (AS)

The Associate of Science degree is your portal into the sciences. Like the AA, the AS will help you satisfy your core degree requirements when you transfer, with a stronger emphasis on STEM-related coursework that will prepare you for laboratory work and research. Whether you have decided on your intended major or not, there is an AS degree that will satisfy your curiosity and interests.

Areas of focus: Mathematics, Natural Sciences, Psychology

Associate of Applied Science (AAS)

With an Associate of Applied Science degree, you can get started in the field that you pick as soon as you graduate. These specialized professional degree programs are designed to teach you the skills that you need for a wide range of fields that include business, computers, emergency services, healthcare, management, media, and technology. If your goal is to get out into the world and make a difference in your community, the AAS will give you the training that you need to help you accomplish that goal.

Associate of General Studies (AGS)

If the Associate of Applied Science is the degree for the specialist, then the Associate of General Studies is the degree for the generalist: it allows you to build up the technical skills that you want without constraining you to a particular field. With the widest range of elective coursework available, the AGS will allow you to combine course work from multiple Associate programs into a new program that you envision. Whether you want to combine courses from multiple specialties in the same field, or combine courses from multiple fields to build a foundation for a specialty of your creation, your imagination is the only limit to what you can do with this degree option.

Certificates

Certificates prove that you’ve got the proficiency to do a job and do it well. With a certificate from ACC, you can bolster up your resume to new heights, improve your prospects on the job, and prove to your employer that you have the particular set of skills that they’re looking for. Combined with your degree, you won’t just move your mountain: you’ll smash right through it.

ACC now offers two Bachelor’s degree programs for Emergency Service Administration and Nursing.

Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS): Emergency Service Administration

If you’re looking to advance your career in emergency services, our newest degree option will prepare you for leadership roles in both the public and private sector. The training that this degree provides will teach you how to formulate solutions to ethical and legal issues, collect and analyze data for decision-making, and employ the appropriate course of action for all phases of the cycle of emergencies. This degree is an option for students who have already earned their AAS in Criminal Justice, Emergency Management & Planning, Emergency Medical Services, Fire Science Technology, Homeland Security/Emergency Management, Law Enforcement, Paramedicine, Public Safety, Wildland Safety, or a closely related degree, from a regionally accredited institution. You will also be able to earn college credit for industry certifications through the National Fire Protection Association, Peace Officer Standards and Training board, and the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing Completion Program (RN-BSN)

If you’re interested in furthering your nursing career, our BSN program is available to RNs with an associate degree or diploma, and students currently in an Associate-level nursing program. You’ll be able to build on your nursing skills and increase your perspective of current clinical practice while enhancing your leadership abilities, and because the program is online, you can fit your education around your own schedule. Dual enrollment is available for students applying to or already enrolled in ACC’s Nursing AAS program, and there are transfer options for Colorado Universities with a BSN track of their own. This program is approved by the State Board of Colorado Community College Occupational and Education Programs, so you know that you’ll be receiving a quality education that will let you move mountains in the nursing field.

Learn more about ACC’s degrees and programs.

by Martin Strom, ACC Copywriter