Sound Bites - Issue #23 - July 2015
Community Education's Premiere Online Magazine
In This Month's Issue:
- Feature Story:Online Learning Reaches the World of Bartending
- Don't Fall Back, Register Now!
- What's New: Photo Contest Winner an Inspiration
- Au Pairs Just Love 'Basketball for the Rest of Us'
Feature Story: Online Learning Reaches the World
Colleges today offer many courses online, allowing even the busiest people to attain a degree, study areas of particular interest or just brush up on their business skills. This new trend in education has changed the lives of working mothers, those in remote areas and youth who are exploring their career options. Even nontraditional career classes are now offered via the Internet. Many of these courses can lead to certification for employment in technical positions.
Use of various resources and training methods has expanded the options for conducting lessons. Convenience and variation of delivery yield greater comprehensive results. With these advantages, it is no wonder that the novelty is quickly becoming a preference in choice of study.
Students are learning in the fields of nursing, accounting, real estate, paralegal, bartending, cooking and nutrition from online courses. Nursing? Bartending? How is it possible to learn these professions from lessons taught online? In the case of bartending, one would think that students must be in a classroom or behind a bar to learn to make cocktails.
Not so says Kellie Nicholson, instructor for Bar Professional online bartending courses. Though students learn how to make all of the most popular libations, she states that bartending entails so much more than making alcoholic beverages. In her online courses, Nicholson prepares students to be great salespersons, customer service experts and honest and valuable employees, skills that can lead to success throughout life. The lessons taught are also extremely beneficial to managers, servers and even experienced bartenders.
In addition, she is training students in a growing field. According to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook, 551,100 U.S. citizens were employed as bartenders in 2012. Employment of bartenders is projected to grow 12 percent from 2012 to 2022, about as fast as the average for all occupations. High turnover is expected to result in good job opportunities. With those statistics, it is no wonder that these classes are so popular.
Nicholson has had great success teaching her classes on campus at community colleges throughout the Los Angeles area for the past 15 years. Partnered with colleague, Kyle Branche, expansion into the online system of courses has presented the opportunity for bartending students nationwide to benefit from her training with the bonus of Branche’s expertise. Their branded method of instruction, The Master Code of Mixology, is designed to prepare students for the real world of bartending, which includes lessons beyond just preparing cocktails.
With a combined 65-year history and resumes that span from coast to coast, including swanky hotel bars, posh music venues, upscale restaurants, Playboy Clubs, Hollywood celebrity nightclubs, landmark sports bars, chic dive bars, New York City bistros, historic event halls, and private underground clubs, they have also held court behind the bar of over 1,600 private parties.
Masters of the business, the duo has served in positions of management for VIP events, small neighborhood bars, high-volume/high-capacity establishments and everything in between, giving them a perspective that most bartending schools can’t offer. Their pairing presents a rare opportunity to learn from real pros who thrive on excellence. They can help anyone master the science of the bar business, molding cocktail preparers into highly employable and sought-after professionals.
Join Kellie in her online class, Bartending The Easy Way--Online, and if you prefer the ground experience she will teach her popular, The Business of Bartending, beginning September 21.
Don't Fall Back, Register Now!
Career & Contract Ed.
We’re proud of our vibrant lineup this fall of more than 190 classes, workshops and tours, and you can register for classes now. And the fall session – which begins August 31 – will include several new exciting offerings.
As an added bonus, an Early Bird Discount of 10 percent is being offered on most Arts and Photography courses through Sept. 7.
We’ve included a theme of career training and professional development because we’re strongly committed to providing a wide range of courses designed to help students advance their careers.
We’re particularly excited about our Paralegal Academy, which offers professional paralegal certification that opens the doors to high paying careers in as little as 11 months.” We launched the Paralegal Academy in June to great success.
We’re also pleased to launch a brand new Customer Service Academy, which encompasses 10 modules that are guaranteed to improve skills in a field in which job opportunities are projected to grow 13 percent from 2012 to 2022. You can register for the series or individual modules.
Of course, we also offer a wide range of wonderful enrichment classes that will guide our students to creative expression, healthy minds and bodies, language skills and much more.
Many of these new courses are a result of student demand. Similarly, because of the great response to our tours, we have doubled the number of tours we are offering compared to last fall.
Specifically, the new tours this fall are Go Ahead, Bake My Day! L.A. Bakery Tour; Cereal Baron’s Estate Tour & Arabian Horse Show with Japanese & Rose Gardens & Buffet Lunch; Huntington Library; and Adamson House & Serra Retreat in Malibu.
Director of Career & Contract Education
Community & Contract Education
What's New: Photo Contest Winner an Inspiration
Last month, we introduced you to Dean Reyes, winner of our first-ever Student Photo Contest with his beautiful image of the iconic Griffith Observatory. At that time, we gave you some information about Dean but promised more in this issue of Sound Bites.
I’m glad we did – not only because we’ve been able to view more of his beautiful photography, but also to learn about his inspiring volunteer work and worldwide travels.
Dean’s photo, which will be the cover of the Fall 2015 Schedule of Classes, was one of 63 images submitted by SMC Community Ed students.
Dean’s photo places the observatory against a backdrop of a ghostly Downtown Los Angeles. Shot on a Nikon D700 with a 28-300mm lens, it was taken as part of an assignment for the "Beyond Basics" photography class.
Photo Contest Winner
Dean, of Del Rey, who is in his 30s, told us that he started taking photos on his many trips, teaching himself through trial and error. Then, a former coworker suggested he take Larry Jones’ “Basic Photography” class.
He bought his first digital (point-and-shoot) camera in 2004 for a fall trip to Oregon, where he captured beautiful landscapes, including brilliant autumn tree-changing colors. In 2008 he upgraded to a Digital DSLR before heading on an unforgettable trip to Israel. Planning one international and several domestic trips a year, Dean has captured landscapes and people in a wide range of cities and countries, from New York to New Zealand.
He’s also taken hundreds of pictures on his volunteer gigs – three times at Camp Ronald McDonald for Good Times in Idyllwild and twice on a medical mission in remote areas of The Philippines, his native country.
As a cabin counselor at Camp Ronald McDonald, which is for young people ages 8 to 18 who have been impacted by cancer, he works practically round the clock, completely unplugged from technology, for 10 days.
His two-week volunteer work as a translator on the island of Palawan as part of a medical mission team took him to remote areas where the local residents have virtually no access to medical care and medicine – even for some things as simple as aspirin to soothe aching backs and joints from hard work in the fields or other manual labor.
“We also do some surgeries on site and typically deworm the kids and treat them for malaria, dengue, asthma and other ailments which are common in these rural areas,” Dean said. “In fact, last year I was with a team that was doing field work for developing a chewing gum that could be used to detect if a person is infected with malaria.”
He has also done volunteer work through the ACE mentoring program (mentoring high school kids who want to go into the field of architecture, construction or engineering) and the CANstruction to help raise money for the L.A. Food Bank.
“My volunteer work puts things in perspective,” he says. “There are bigger problems than what I have.”
Born in The Philippines, Dean moved with his family to Los Angeles in 1999, right after completing high school. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degree in structural engineering from UCLA, and is currently taking a leave of absence from his position with John A. Martin Associates in downtown L.A., which has done the structural design of buildings that include the Walt Disney Concert Hall.
Although he enjoys his engineering career, he finds more reward in his volunteer work and photography – particularly when he blends the two.
“By shooting pictures during my volunteer work,” he says, “I can look back and see I made a difference in someone’s life.”
Au Pairs Just Love 'Basketball for the Rest of Us'
By Jasmin Quambusch and Philipp Wiedmann
The class 'Basketball for the Rest of Us' has been a great experience for us, two young Germans spending time in the United States between high school and college!
We joined last year for the winter semester and our primary intentions were only to get credits as part of our visa requirements and have fun.
As au pairs, who live with a host family and take care of their children, we are involved in a cultural exchange that also requires us to attend college classes. That is why we started looking into possible courses we could attend.
Living close to SMC we also studied its schedule and we found 'Basketball for the Rest of Us.’ We thought that would be the perfect opportunity to get credits while being active and getting to know people thanks to an awesome team sport. It turned out to be definitely the right decision! We had so much fun that we agreed to come back for a second semester even though we did not need any more credits.
The title 'Basketball for the Rest of Us' already implies that everyone can join which makes it even more enjoyable. No matter how old, talented or active you are, you will fit perfectly in this class. The friendly, tolerant and non-competitive environment makes it such a unique class, and even wishes and ideas are always welcomed and taken into consideration by the instructor, Richard Hoffman.
This great setting even prompted all of us to tell our friends about the class so that there is a great mix of students, employed people and pensioners now.
So if you are looking for a class where you can work out, meet people with similar interests and also have a say in the lesson's structure - you just found it!
We are more than glad that we could be a part of this course for a year and we wish all the members best of luck!