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The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

Prayer and meditation room set to move to Learning Resource Center

Vice President of Business Services Brian Fahnestock presents parking permit price raises
Claire Geriak

On Friday, March 1, the student senate gathered to discuss the process of reinstituting the campus prayer room and heard proposals for two new clubs, both of which were officially chartered.

Ida Joergensen, the chair of the prayer and meditation room committee, elaborated on the status of the prayer room and the efforts she had taken to provide it with space on campus.

Ida Joergensen (Claire Geriak)

“My hope is before spring break,” Joergensen stated when asked when the prayer room will be ready for student use. “We’re trying to have the stuff moved by next week– the second that it’s moved we’re going to start setting it up.” 

 The “stuff” Joergensen is referring to is the pile of prayer books, sitting pillows, candles and other decor, which had been kept in the corner of the student senate meeting room while the group tried to find the prayer room a new home.

The new prayer room will be located in the Cartwright Learning Resources Center (LRC) on West Campus, in its own specific room.

Friday’s meeting included the chartering of two new clubs: the Global and Perspective Forums Club and the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA) Club.

The Global and Perspective Forums Club, represented at the meeting by Club President Francis Jacobs, intends to create a space for students to openly discuss and debate global issues and other pertinent topics in a setting free of judgment.

“We want to build a collective group here, who are interested in learning about the different issues that plague the world,” Jacobs explained. “We’re not looking for a right or wrong answer– we just want students to respectfully debate each other on issues.”

The club is looking for students who are interested in geopolitical issues, political science enthusiasts and those who are willing to have a dialogue concerning controversial topics.

The ALPFA club, represented in the meeting by Sergio Lagunas, the club advisor, aims to empower Latino, Latina and Latinx individuals towards positions of power in all sectors of the workforce.

“Bringing this organization to SBCC would be very helpful in supplementing support for students who are figuring out what they want to do career-wise,” Lagunas said. 

One of many outreach programs that ALPFA provides is career panels, such as “Latinas in Law,” and “Latinas in Social Work.”

The City College ALPFA chapter is the first of its kind out of all the California community colleges, according to Lagunas.

The chapter has no required dues for membership students, although there is an option to become a “premium member” for $30 annually, which provides students with extra leadership opportunities and events.

More general and contact information for both clubs will soon be available on the City College website, under “Spring 2024 Clubs.”

In other news, Vice President of Business Services Brian Fahnestock outlined the official proposal for a campus-wide parking permit price raise. Semester parking permits would hike up by $10 for all day, and $5 for evening and summer passes. 

According to Fahnestock, the price of permits hasn’t been adjusted since 2009, and parking lots are deteriorating from a lack of maintenance funding.

“The parking program has lost money over the past several years,” Fahnestock said, presenting a graph with a downward trending line representing program profits. “Normally, we would collect the fees, and we would spend it to maintain the parking lots.”

The student senate plans to revisit and discuss Fahnestock’s proposal in their next meeting.

Additionally, the board is planning several upcoming events for the spring semester, including the “international vs. domestic students olympics.”

As of now, the planned date for the event is Saturday, April 13, although this date has not yet been approved, and changes may occur.

The student senate’s next meeting will be held at 9 a.m. on Friday, March 8.

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