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Clubs open doors to community

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Written by: Brooke Cary
Carol Wohlke (far left) and Whitney Ortega represent Cal Works, Foster Kinship and Care and Guardian Scholars. Members welcomed RCC visitors, handed out fliers and celebrated past years of service to foster youth at RCC’s Centennial Celebration.

Riverside City College hosted an open house for the Centennial Celebration, where various clubs and programs spread out over campus to celebrate the history of RCC and inform students of current programs.

Near the planetarium at RCC, Astronomy professor Scott Blair stood by a solar telescope. Despite the axiom to avoid direct staring into the sun; students, alumni and passers-by were invited to (safely) look through the telescope and see the sun’s flames.

The H-Alpha filter telescope which viewers used blocks all radiation coming off the sun other than a particular wavelength of radiation, safely allowing it’s viewers to stare into the sun without risking damage to their eyesight.

Blair has been teaching astronomy at RCC for 22 years and looks forward to the future. “I came here in the mid-80s and I haven’t left since,” he said. He took astronomy from Robert Dixon, a former professor of astronomy, who taught for 26 years and whose name marks the Dixon building.

“As long as RCC’s been here, we’ve been teaching astronomy. I’m just carrying the torch,” Blair said.

In the RCC’s Athletic Hall of Fame were several student athletes representing one of RCC’s more recently developed clubs, the Student Advisory Athletic Council. The club aims to “bridge the gap between lower campus and upper campus,” according to Andrew Coupe, acting president of the club.

“It’s been a slow progress,” Coupe said. “But personally I’ve started to know more of upper campus. I never knew about senate stuff and ASRCC, let alone who represented them.” Two representatives from each of RCC’s 19 sports act as leaders for the teams. The goal is to encourage RCC’s sports teams to collaborate with other clubs and get more involved in upper campus life.

RCC was not the only school represented by clubs on campus. Eric Salinas, an RCC Alumnus also invited members of the Emotion Regulation Lab from UC Riverside to the centennial event.

RCC Astronomy professor Scott Blair helps students and centennial event guests use a solar telescope to safely look into the sun.

Carmen Telles, the recruitment manager for UCR’s Emotion Regulation Lab along with other members of the club were passing out fliers and inviting families to come visit the lab.

The open house part of RCC’s centennial celebration was spread through all of campus, but a concentration of RCC clubs and tables were set up in the quadrangle.

RCC’s culinary academy showed off their skill by making fresh crepes by order, serving them sprinkled in powered sugar and selling baked goods to support their program.

RCC’s Supplemental Instruction, the Math Learning Center, Financial Aid, RCC’s School of Nursing, the Honors Society, Foster Kinship and Care and one of RCC’s newer clubs, La Casa, are just a few of the other groups which were represented on campus.

Hundreds of hands contributed to putting the event together.

In fact, there seems to have been more helping hands than attending hands. Some participants had learned about the celebration just two days prior, but were still able to help out and attend the event.

“The history of RCC is so long, it has a good educational foundation,” said Hank Huang, a Chinese international exchange student studying Computer Science in his second year at RCC. “Everyone is kind. This college is like a big family.”

Although there were mixed reviews and expectations of student body and community turnout for the earlier parts of the day, hundreds of members at the school showed dedication and investment in the RCC community. That is something worth celebrating.

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