Officially becoming the president

Riverside City College held the inauguration of Dr. Cynthia Azari at the Landis Performing Arts Center on Oct. 6.

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By Javier Cabrera / Editor in Chief, Araceli Diaz / Staff Writer

Welcome home (Jacob Willson / Asst. Photo Editor)

By Javier Cabrera / Editor in Chief, Araceli Diaz / Staff Writer

Riverside City College held the inauguration of Dr. Cynthia Azari at the Landis Performing Arts Center on Oct. 6.

The ceremony featured many speeches including a student welcoming by Associated Student of Riverside City College President Jonathan Flike and salutations from Dr. Dariush Haghighat, Dr. Mark Sellick, RCCD Chancellor Gregory Gray and many others.

Also RCC’s Wing Ensemble performed “A Whole New World,” and John Byun, instructor of music, led the performance for “Alma Mater Riverside.”

The ceremony welcoming Azari as the college’s president was a small distraction for the college from the lurking budget cuts that have been the talk on campus for the entire semester.

“The ceremony does help bring the community together especially in a time in budget cuts,” Laura Greathouse said, instructor of anthropology. “It gives us something to unify and stand together with instead of standing against.”

Another reason the attendees attended the event was because Dr. Azari has made an impression on them in her short time at RCC.

“I made a special effort to get here today because she has been a wonderful president and person in her first months here, and I thought it was very important that we show our appreciation that out of all the places she might have chosen to become president, she chose RCC,” said Ward Schinke, instructor of political science.”

“I’m very optimistic that she will bring together the RCC team and we’re going to survive this budget crisis in a fairly good order compared to what could have happen,” he said.

While being introduced as the new president, Azari was overcome with all the thoughtful comments people were speaking of her.

“I’m honored (and) I’m humbled,” said Azari.

“I was humbled, because I’m a person and for the average person some things are good some things are not so good, and to hear people say things that were complimentary was really an honor,” she said.

Greathouse said she is confident Azari is capable of dealing with the budget cuts.

“I think since the faculty, staff and administration support her, I think we can pull together and work together to get through the budget crisis or at least handle it with the best amount of skill we can,” Greathouse said. “I think she will lead quite well in that.”

Schinke said Azari has the right attitude to tackle the budget cuts situation.

“She truly cares about students and the teamwork here at RCC,” Ward Schinke said, instructor of political science. “She’s a true listener and she does try to create win-win situations, which not every leader does.”

“These two things alone I think are very important,” he said. “She does provide leadership in the traditional way but really is sincere about bringing people together it’s not just idle furbish.”

As she is now the official president of RCC, Azari knows what she has down the road for her.

“I’m challenged (with) mixed emotions because it’s a great school, (and) of course challenged by the budget constraints that we face,” she said. “But (I) know that we will get through this together and I’m honored to be here.”

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