Archival News Releases: October 2009
This is an outdated document posted here for archival purposes.
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. COC-NR.10-27-09 CraftfairJRM
October 27, 2009
 
Holiday Arts and Crafts Fair to be Held at College of the Canyons
College of the Canyons will hold its 20th Annual Holiday Arts and Crafts Fair Saturday and Sunday, December 5 and 6. As in past years, the event will be held in COC’s parking lot #8, near the Stadium off Valencia Boulevard.
 
The Fair will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, December 5 and in conjunction with the Farmer’s Market, from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Sunday, December 6, 2009.
 
Dozens of vendors, representing a wide variety of craft products, will be on hand offering their wares and providing attendees the opportunity to purchase some very unique holiday gifts. Typical items include watercolor paintings and limited edition prints; jewelry; clothing; holiday decorations and much, much more.
 
“This is a fantastic pre-holiday shopping experience,” said Seher Awan, the event’s coordinator, “and is well known locally for being the place to find that one-of-a-kind, surprise-your-family experience when gifts are opened.”
 
Parking is free and plentiful. This annual event is a fundraiser for COC’s Classified Senate and this year half of the proceeds will be donated to the SCV Domestic Violence Center.
For more information, or to book a vendor space, contact Seher Awan at 661-362-3015.
 
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. COC-10.26.09-OakieFilm-JMu
October 26, 2009
 
College of the Canyons Foundation Presents Jack Oakie Film Series
In November, the College of the Canyons Foundation will celebrate the legacy of beloved Hollywood performer Jack Oakie and his wife, Victoria, by presenting the second film in the College of the Canyons Oakie Film Series.
 
The Academy Award-nominated 1940 Jack Oakie film “The Great Dictator,” directed by Charlie Chaplin, will be screened at 4 p.m., Friday, November 13, in the College of the Canyons cinema room, located on the Valencia campus in Hasley Hall room 101.
 
Guests are also invited to a pre-screening reception beginning at 3:30 p.m. when they will have the opportunity to meet trustees from The Jack Oakie and Victoria Horne Oakie Charitable Foundation Trust, to discuss Oakie’s work and learn more about the couple’s Foundation. A brief question and answer period will follow the screening.
This marks the third year The Jack Oakie and Victoria Horne Oakie Charitable Foundation Trust have awarded $10,000 in scholarships to students studying the Fine and Performing Arts at College of the Canyons.
 
“The College of the Canyons Foundation is very grateful to the Jack Oakie and Victoria Horne Oakie Charitable Trust Foundation for its support of our students,” said Michele Edmonson, College of the Canyons Foundation Assistant Director of Development. “We are extremely happy to have an opportunity to meet the trustees who have made these gifts available and to celebrate the Oakie legacy through this fun film series.”
 
The primary criterion for the Oakie scholarship awards is for students to watch a Jack Oakie or Victoria Horne Oakie film and critique the film from the perspective of a scriptwriter, a director, an actor, a comedian, a singer, and/or a dancer.  
 
Hosted in partnership with the college’s Division of Fine and Performing Arts and the COC cinema department, the College of the Canyons Oakie Film Series has been designed to expand awareness of who Jack Oakie was and the contributions he made to the performing arts.
 
About the Oakies
Jack Oakie’s film career was remarkably prolific during a turbulent time in American history. He worked steadily in the film industry from 1927 through the 1940s, and was on contract at Paramount Studios from 1929 to 1934. His career spanned many decades and encompassed stage, film, radio and later, television.
 
Oakie appeared in 87 films and was nominated for an Academy Award as Best Supporting Actor for his role as Il Duce of Bacteria in the 1940 Charlie Chaplin film “The Great Dictator.”
 
Both Jack and Victoria were actors and long-time residents of the San Fernando Valley -- known for being philanthropists and humanitarians throughout their lives. Continuing their legacy of giving, The Oakie Charitable Foundation trustees remain dedicated to the couple’s wishes; “Give the money to the kids!”
 
For more information about the College of the Canyons Oakie Film Series please contact the COC Foundation at (661) 362-3737.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
City of Santa Clarita / College of the Canyons Joint News Release
No. NR-10-02-09-FluJMc
October 26, 2009

Urgent Note to Editors: We request your assistance in disseminating the information outlined below to help clear up misinformation and misunderstandings about Friday’s drive-through flu shot clinic at College of the Canyons.

 
Oct. 30 Drive-Through Clinic to Dispense Seasonal Flu Vaccine Only
The City of Santa Clarita, the L.A. Department of Public Health and College of the Canyons along with the L.A. County Sheriff and Fire Departments, are reminding residents that the Friday, October 30 drive-thru flu shot clinic will dispense SEASONAL flu vaccine only.
 
The flu-shot production line will be conducted in the College of the Canyons Valencia campus parking lots off Rockwell Canyon Road, with shots being dispensed from 10 a.m. until 12:30 p.m., or as long as the vaccine lasts. Entry to the parking lots and the clinic will be via one entrance on Rockwell Canyon Road only in order to facilitate patient screening activities.
 
People will generally stay in their cars to help minimize the potential spread of infection. As a result, no walk-up shots will be administered.
 
Despite some erroneous postings to the contrary on a couple of Websites, the organizers stress that only inoculations against the seasonal flu will be dispensed at this event.
This is the fourth consecutive year that local agencies have partnered to provide flu shots to the community. College of the Canyons is once again the location because the college’s Valencia campus is conveniently located and has a number of large parking lots that make the logistics of this type of event manageable.
 
College of the Canyons nursing students administer most of the shots and students from the college’s EMT program are an important part of the screening process prior to shots being administered.
 
Organizers are prepared to administer more than a thousand shots during the two-and-one-half-hour event.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. COC-10.22.09-SBDC-YEP-JMu
October 22, 2009
 
Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour Stops at Performing Arts Center
The power of the entrepreneurial spirit will take Santa Clarita by storm Tuesday, October 27, when The Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour lands at the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center (PAC) at College of the Canyons.
 
The Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour is being presented by the California Community Colleges Economic Workforce Development Program (EWD) and hosted by the College of the Canyons Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and the SBDC Young Entrepreneurs Program (YEP).
 
The event begins at 2:30 p.m., and is free and open to community members aged 14 to 27 and adults who teach, advise or otherwise work with young entrepreneurs.
“The state’s community colleges and Small Business Development Centers are looking for new ways to generate innovative businesses that create jobs and face down the recession,” said Mike Roessler, EWD's program director. “Bringing the Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour to our college campuses is an out-of-the-box strategy that taps a largely overlooked resource: the creativity and energy of our young people.” 
 
The Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour works to help students take the initial steps needed to start a small business by offering inspiration and practical advice about how to get started.
 
Created in 2006 by young entrepreneurs Sheena Lindahl, 26, and Michael Simmons, 27, the Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour features a collection of fellow young entrepreneurs from California who have made significant impacts in the business community before reaching the age of 30.
 
“More than half the companies on the 2009 Fortune 500 list were launched during a recession or bear market,” said Simmons. “Technology and globalization have made it very inexpensive to start a business. Now is the best time that there has ever been to become your own boss.”
 
The SBDC’s Young Entrepreneurs Program (YEP) implements business training programs and free business counseling aimed at young people between the ages of 14 and 27. The goal of YEP is to have young people become more interested in self-employment as a career-option.
 
Through the completion of YEP projects, students will garner transferable business skills, gain an understanding about the relevance of education and develop life management and problem solving skills.
 
For more information about the SBDC Young Entrepreneurs Program please call (661) 294-9375 or emailsbdc@canyons.edu. For more information about the Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour please visitwww.extremetour.org/ca.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. COC-NR. 10-19-09 Mobile FilmJRM
October 19, 2009
 
K-12 Arts Education Program Rolls Out Mobile Film Classrooms
The Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center at College of the Canyons, the Mary Pickford Institute and the Found Penny Foundation are teaming up to bring a mobile, state-of-the-art, digital production studio to three local elementary schools during the next six weeks. This is part of an expanding K-12 Arts Education Outreach program designed to provide children hands-on opportunities in a broad spectrum of arts experiences.
 
Students at Stevenson Ranch, Bridgeport and Golden Valley elementary schools will, through the use of the high-tech equipment, participate in all aspects of the digital movie-making process.
 
The studio, or Mobile Film Classroom, comes with all of the necessary equipment -- iMac workstations, digital video cameras, microphone kits as well as professional video and audio editing software and DVD production equipment. The students, who first create and break into production teams, work on all aspects of the digital media creation process -- from conceptualizing, writing and filming their stories to final editing, which can include voiceover, narration and music.
 
The Mobile Film Classroom is provided by the Mary Pickford Institute for Film Education. Its revolutionary ‘education on wheels’ program also provides highly trained instructors who follow standards-based curriculum. They guide students from conception to final production on projects that, for example, help to facilitate dialogue on subjects that affect their school, peer groups or society; or perhaps asks them what they would do if they were put in charge of their school.
 
“We are delighted to be able to bring this special outreach opportunity to local students,” said Adam Philipson, Managing Director of the Performing Arts Center. “We can’t wait to see the final product of the students’ creative work. This extraordinary program,” stressed Philipson, “is part of the PAC’s continuing effort to bring unique and relevant arts-based educational opportunities to northern Los Angeles County and our school districts.”
 
The Mary Pickford Institute for Film Education, Mobile Film Classroom has, since its inception in early 2006, served more than 5,000 Los Angeles-area elementary, middle and high school students, as well as developmentally disabled adults, providing its services to schools and students, no matter their socio-economic status or available resources, so that they have access to state-of-the-art digital media equipment and professional media instruction.
 
“I’m glad to finally be able to bring our offering in such a strong way to the Santa Clarita Valley and its schools,” said Keith Lawrence, Mary Pickford Institute President and CEO. “Northern Los Angeles County has had limited opportunities and is primed for this type of Arts Education experience. Our curriculum and the Mobile Film Classrooms,” stressed Lawrence, “are the leading-edge and we are thrilled to provide Santa Clarita with our program.”
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. COC-10.19.09-OsherDonation
October 19, 2009
 
Western Filter Establishes Endowment at College of the Canyons
The College of the Canyons Foundation has received a donation of more than $13,000 from Western Filter, a division of Donaldson Company (NYSE:DCI), which when combined with matching funds from the Foundation for California Community Colleges (FCCC) will establish a permanent scholarship endowment for students pursuing careers in manufacturing technology at the college.
 
The donation from Donaldson is the college’s first gift to receive a 50 percent donation match from the FCCC Endowment, which was established in May 2008 with a $50 million commitment from The Bernard Osher Foundation.
 
With a matched commitment of more than $6,000, the newly formed $20,000 Donaldson Western Filter Joe Novotny Scholarship Endowment -- named in memory of Joe Novotny, former General Manager of Western Filter --will provide annual scholarships in the amount of $1,000 to students enrolled in manufacturing technology courses and programs at College of the Canyons.
 
Located in Valencia, Western Filter was considered to be the nation’s largest independent manufacturer of liquid filters for the aerospace and defense industries when it was acquired by Minneapolis based Donaldson Company, Inc., itself a leading worldwide provider of air and liquid filtration systems, in October 2008.
 
By establishing the Donaldson Western Filter Joe Novotny Scholarship Endowment the Company hopes to promote careers in the manufacturing technologies industries, while providing financial support to students showing both academic promise and demonstrated financial need.
 
“We anticipate that these funds will help students receive the necessary training to prepare them for manufacturing careers in the local community,” said Sheila Peyraud, General Manager, Aerospace and Defense at Donaldson Company.
 
The FCCC endowment is a permanent fund that provides scholarships of up to $1,000 annually to students who have already completed 24 units of study, are enrolled in at least six units for the current semester and who qualify for a Board of Governors fee waiver.
 
The endowment combines the historic $50 million commitment from the Osher Foundation -- including an upfront gift of $25 million -- with a three-year match fundraising campaign involving all 110 California Community Colleges.
 
Each year only the endowment’s investment earnings will be used to provide student scholarships, leaving the principal in the account to remain earning interest. Through this campaign, the endowment will ultimately grow to $100 million and provide scholarships for thousands of students on an annual basis.
 
“Normally scholarship money is raised, awarded and expended in the same year. But with an endowment, your contributions will be here helping to make a difference in students lives for many years to come,” said Murray Wood, COC Chief Development Officer. “Endowments are the gifts that keep on giving.”
 
For more information about the California Community College Endowment Fund or to find out how to make a donation please contact Murray Wood at (661) 362-3433.
 
About Donaldson Company:
Donaldson is a leading worldwide provider of filtration systems committed to satisfying its customers’ needs for filtration solutions through innovative research and development, application expertise and global presence. Donaldson employees contribute to the company's success by supporting customers at our more than 100 sales, manufacturing, and distribution locations around the world.
 
Donaldson is a member of the S&P MidCap 400 and Russell 1000 indices, with shares trading on the NYSE under the symbol DCI.
Additional information is available at www.donaldson.com.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. COC-NR.10-15-09 Univ.Ctr.RibbonAdvisoryJM
October 15, 2009
 
Ribbon-Cutting Event for Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center
Subject: Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
 
Time: 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 17, 2009  
 
Place: Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center, located at College of the Canyons, 24655 Rockwell Canyon Road, Santa Clarita, CA 91355
 
Contact: John McElwain, (661) 362-5604; Eric Harnish (661) 362-3400
 
Event: A ribbon-cutting ceremony for the 110,000-square-foot Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center.
 
Cited as the college’s solution to the lack of upper division, graduate school and continuing educations programs in the area, the University Center was created with a goal to increase student access to advanced degrees by forging partnerships with surrounding four-year colleges and universities which then make their academic programs available to students offered at College of the Canyons.
 
In all, the University Center will house up to 10 partner institutions and offer more than 50 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees and credential programs.
 
The facility is also the location of the Wm. S. Hart Union High School District’s Academy of the Canyons as well as the college’s Foundation, Human Resources office, Professional Development program, Teaching and Learning Institute, Employee Training Institute and the Small Business Development Center.
 
Speaking at the ceremony will be Mrs. Joan MacGregor, president of the College of the Canyons Board of Trustees; Congressman Howard P. “Buck” McKeon; Mr. Tom Lee and Mr. Lou Garasi (capital campaign chairs); Assemblyman Cameron Smyth; Mr. Fred Harris (Community College System Chancellor’s Office); Mr. Mike Berger, Mr. Joe Klocko, Mr. Kevin Holmes (COC Foundation); Mr. John Quam (student); and Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook, Chancellor, Santa Clarita Community College District/College of the Canyons.
 
The ceremony will include the unveiling of a special “donor monument” waterfall feature and ribbon cutting.
 
After the ceremony, visitors will have the opportunity to tour the state-of-the-art facility while learning more about the University Center’s partner institutions and lineup of academic programs.
 
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. COC-NR.10.12-09 ForumJRM
October 12, 2009
 
Candidate Forum Scheduled for College of the Canyons Hopefuls
The College of the Canyons Associated Student Government (ASG) has scheduled a candidate forum from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 14 for the candidates vying to fill two seats on the Santa Clarita Community College District Board of Trustees. The event will be held on the College of the Canyons Valencia campus, in Hasley Hall, Room 137 (the Board of Trustees meeting room).
 
All of the candidates who are running for the two open seats have been invited to attend.
 
Seat No. 1 is currently held by Ernie Tichenor, who is not running for re-election. The four candidates hoping to fill that position are Michael D. Berger, Robin L. Bryce, John L. Dortch and Brian E. Koegle.  
 
Seat No. 3 is currently held by Joan W. MacGregor. She is running for re-election against challenger Randy R. Moberg.
 
Forum moderators will be Nicolas Cardenas, student trustee, and Allison Korse-Devlin, director of studentdevelopment for the college.
 
“We are hoping the event will clarify the positions of the candidates on issues that affect students and student life here at COC,” said Cardenas. “We really think that it is important to hear directly from the candidates, rather than through the filter of others.”
 
Each candidate will be provided an opportunity to make a two-minute opening statement. Questions for the candidates will come from those prepared by the ASG leadership as well as from audience members who will have the opportunity to submit questions to the moderators before and during the forum. Each candidate will be allowed to make a brief summation statement at the conclusion of the event.
 
For additional information, contact Allison.Korse-Devlin@canyons.edu or the Office of Student Development at (661) 362-3238.
 
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. CCOC-10.08.09-CareerFair09
October 8, 2009
 
College's Job & Career Fair Provides Opportunities for Employment
Providing job seekers with employment opportunities in an array of industries, College of the Canyons will hold its bi-annual Job & Career Fair this weekend in conjunction with the Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce Home and Business Expo.
 
The college’s Job & Career Fair will take place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 10, at the Santa Clarita Sports Complex located at 20880 Centre Pointe Parkway in Santa Clarita.
 
"Although job fairs have changed over the years, they are still a great way to make direct contact with company representatives, to ask questions about their company and to find out what it takes to be successful with their establishment," Michaelides said.  “Be sure to dress professionally and have a well-crafted introduction statement prepared and copies of your resume ready to offer to potential employers.”
 
Featuring representatives from businesses and companies in the healthcare, sales, law enforcement, military, technology and entertainment industries, this year’s event will also include the presence of a number of federal governmental agencies — thanks to the support of U.S. Rep. Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R-Santa Clarita) who was instrumental in securing their participation in the event.
 
“As California continues to face record levels of unemployment, community-led efforts such as this have become more important to the economic well being of the Santa Clarita Valley. I am thrilled to be part of this job fair, because we need to get Californians back to work,” said McKeon. “This event will allow participants the opportunity to meet face-to-face with prospective employers and partake in a number of educational workshops.  I hope the job fair proves to be a benefit to the community and an overall great success.”
 
The event is expected to include more than 35 employers seeking to fill positions, as well as a lineup of helpful workshops in subjects including resume writing, interviewing and employer expectations, beginning at 10 a.m.
 
In addition, several of the businesses and companies taking part in the Home and Business Expo -- being held next door to the Job & Career Fair -- will also be hiring.
To view a full list of participating employers or a schedule of workshops please visitwww.canyons.edu/careercenter and click on the ‘Job & Career Fairs’ icon.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. COC-10.06.09-Physics-JMu
October 6, 2009
 
Free Physics Presentation to Address Natural Phenomena
The College of the Canyons Mathematics, Sciences and Engineering Technologies (MSET) division will host a special physics presentation designed to shed scientific light on natural phenomena including rainbows, thunder and lightning.
 
The basic aim of physics is the study of nature at its most fundamental level in order to discover and apply the general laws that govern force and motion, matter and energy and space and time -- while satisfying the irrepressible human desire to explore and understand the natural world around us.
 
It is with that principle in mind that physicist Dr. Antonio Nassar will present ‘Light, Electricity and Sound: Understanding Recent Discoveries About Lightning, Thunder and Rainbows,’ from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 16 in Aliso Lab 104, located on the college’s Valencia campus.
 
Featuring visual demonstrations using the college’s audio/visual equipment, this presentation is intended to both inform and entertain general audiences and will be appropriate for all ages.
 
“Only a handful of physicists are really good and enthusiastic about explaining their discipline and presenting difficult concepts in simple language -- and in an exciting manner,” said Dr. Ram Manvi, dean of the MSET division at the college. “Dr. Nassar definitely belongs to that select group.”
 
Dr. Nassar holds a PhD, a master’s degree in Physics and a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering and has been published in several top peer-reviewed Physics journals. In addition, Nassar received the Harvard-Westlake School Justin Rascoff Teaching Award for recognition of teaching excellence in 1998, the UCLA Extension Dean's Distinguished Instructor Award in 2006, and most recently an MIT nomination and recognition for excellent teaching in 2008.
 
Admission to this event is free. However, a limited number of seats are available.
 
For more information about the MSET Division’s presentation of ‘Light, Electricity and Sound: Understanding Recent Discoveries About Lightning, Thunder and Rainbows,’ please contact Dr. Ram Manvi at (661) 362-3135.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. COC-10.06.09-BeautyMark-JMu
October 6, 2009
 
College's SNAC Group to Host Body Image Program
This month, the Student Nutrition and Wellness Advocates at College of the Canyons (SNAC) group will host its first annual campus-wide Eating Disorder and Body Image Prevention Program during national ‘Fat Talk Free Week’ October 19-28, 2009.
 
With major partners including Seventeen Magazine, the National Organization for Women (NOW), the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) and the Academy for Eating Disorders (AED), Fat Talk Free Week is a five-day public awareness campaign that is designed to draw attention to and halt the damaging impact of the ‘thin ideal’ for woman in today’s society -- including negative body talk, unhealthy dieting and unrealistic beauty ideals.
 
At College of the Canyons the week’s events will include a ‘Real Beauty Is…’ art display and silent auction and the ‘EveryBODY is Beautiful’ Fashion Show featuring COC student models, in the Honor Grove from 12:30 to 1 p.m., Wednesday, October 21. In addition, SNAC members will be distributing Fat Talk Free Week pledge cards around campus.
The week’s activities will conclude with a free public viewing of the film “Beauty Mark” from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, October 28 in the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center (PAC) at College of the Canyons.
 
Examining popular culture’s toxic emphasis on weight and body image, “Beauty Mark” shows viewers the world through the eyes of Boulder, Colorado based psychotherapist and former world-class tri-athlete Diane Israel, also the film’s director. Throughout the film, Israel shares her personal story and experiences while interviewing other champion athletes, bodybuilders, fashion models and inner-city teens about their experiences relating to self-image.
 
Following the film screening, SNAC will host an hour-long panel discussion featuring Israel and special guests Kirsten Haglund, Miss America 2008, Michele Tamarkin, eating-disorder therapist and Sheri Barke, sports and wellness dietitian at the college.
 
“It’s our hope to use this program to stimulate thought about how we as a society inadvertently help create disordered eating with our unhealthy focus on weight, dieting, body sculpting and the almost constant engagement in negative food and body talk,” said Barke, who also serves as SNAC advisor. “Men, women, students, athletes, coaches, teachers, parents and health and fitness professionals alike will all benefit from attending this unique event.”
 
SNAC is a student group committed to promoting health and wellness on campus and in the community — with a particular focus on promoting healthy eating, physical activity, stress management, and body image — while providing training and supervised work experience to students interested in nutrition, health and fitness careers.
 
Through education, outreach, and environmental action, SNAC aims to:
 Help students eat well, be active and feel good.
 Empower students to cope with stress in healthy ways.
 Encourage students to set boundaries with food, exercise, rest, school, work and play in order to maintain a healthy balance.
 Promote health and fitness at every shape and size, rather than being thin or muscular at any cost.
 Create an environment that supports and encourages positive attitudes and healthy lifestyle behaviors.
 
“Sadly, a lot of people become obsessed with food, exercise and body image in what is a sometimes desperate attempt to be accepted and feel happy, secure and in control of their lives. But they rarely realize what they’re really hungry for,” Barke said. “Real happiness, like real health and beauty, starts from the inside out.”
 
The “Beauty Mark” screening and panel presentation are being presented by SNAC and the College of the Canyons student health and wellness center -- with support from the college’s Associated Student Government.
 
Those planning on attending the event do not need to RSVP, however early seating is recommended.
 
For more information about SNAC or the schedule of activities for the college’s Eating Disorder and Body Image Prevention Program please contact Sheri Barke at (661) 362-3244 or visit www.canyons.edu/health/nutritioncoach/SNAC
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
City of Santa Clarita / College of the Canyons Joint Press Release
No. COC-NR-10-02-09-FluJMc
October 2, 2009
 
Drive-Through Flu Shot Clinic Planned at College on Oct. 30
The City of Santa Clarita, the L.A. Department of Public Health and College of the Canyons along with the L.A. County Sheriff and Fire Departments, will be conducting a drive-through flu shot clinic on Friday, October 30, 2009. This is the fourth consecutive year for this activity, which features the dispensing of flu shots without people generally having to leave the comfort of their cars.
 
The flu-shot production line will be conducted in the College of the Canyons Valencia campus parking lots off Rockwell Canyon Road, with shots being dispensed from 10 a.m. until 12:30 p.m., or as long as the vaccine lasts.
 
Only inoculations against the seasonal flu will be dispensed at this event.
 
Flu shots are often provided to the public in anticipation of an active flu season but the event also serves a secondary purpose. This drive thru clinic will once again test the Cities Readiness Initiative (CRI) response during a bioterrorism attack and help prepare for our community’s response to a potential pandemic. The purpose of the CRI plan is to treat an impacted, mass population with medications within a short time period. Under the plan, the drive thru clinic is called a rapid point of dispensing or POD. College of the Canyons is a designated POD site for the bioterrorism plan. People stay in their cars to help minimize the potential spread of infection. As a result, no walk-up shots are administered.
 
"This collaborative training opportunity demonstrates how the City of Santa Clarita and its partners continually work to enhance response efforts for all types of emergencies and also the importance of practicing for emergencies," said Mayor Frank Ferry.
 
Each year, additional volunteers are brought into the organizational structure of the POD to learn the responsibilities of various key positions. As a result, more people are trained each year to assume the various responsibilities within the emergency structure. The hope is to develop a pool of people within the community who can step in and run multiple PODs if a future situation were to warrant that.
 
“There are always things to learn and always ways to improve our procedures,” said Dr. Michael Wilding, assistant superintendent/vice president of the college as well as the POD manager for the past two years. “In fact,” said Wilding, “we learned last year that we needed to reorient the traffic flow so that more cars are accommodated in the relative safety of the college’s parking lots rather than on busy streets, so this year we will have cars enter the dispensing area from Rockwell Canyon Road instead of Valencia Boulevard.”
 
“The planning and implementing of the clinic fosters cooperation and communication between agencies that otherwise don’t often work together, who need to be able to coordinate their responses in the event of a national emergency,” added Wilding.
 
The college’s Valencia campus is conveniently located near freeways and major arteries so that, in a real world bioterrorism event, large numbers of people could be inoculated very efficiently. College of the Canyons nursing students administer most of the shots and students from the EMT program are an important part of the screening process prior to shots being administered. Both groups gain valuable, real world experience from the clinic.
 
In the event of a large outbreak of disease or a regional terrorist attack, many sites similar to this one in Santa Clarita would be needed to serve the needs of California communities.
 
According to public health officials, the Santa Clarita flu clinics over the last three years have ranked among the best in all of California. More than 120 volunteers from the participating agencies help coordinate the event each year.
 
The number of flu shots administered each year depends on the availability of seasonal flu vaccine. It is anticipated that more than a thousand shots will be available this year.