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Sound Bites - Issue #31 - March 2016

On the Cover 
SMC Extension Wins Statewide Award!

Michelle King Michelle King, Director Career & Contract Ed.

SMC Extension CatalogSMC Extension has won a statewide award

SMC Extension Classes

I'm excited to inform you that our newly launched SMC Extension program has won the 2016 "Excellence in Community Education" award from the statewide Association of Community and Continuing Education (ACCE). The award recognizes programs that have demonstrated a "profound effect" on the field of community and continuing education.

We're honored to have received this award. This demonstrates that we're going in the right direction and this brings new energy to our entire Community Education program.

SMC Community Ed recently expanded its career-oriented courses with the launch of SMC Extension to provide classes and workshops for professional development and continuing education. As part of its expansion effort, the department released a catalog with full in-depth program descriptions of professional development and short-term, not-for-credit career training programs.

Programs include Property Management, Import/Export, Computer, Entrepreneurial, Paralegal, Real Estate, Internet, Social Media, Customer Service, and more. It also includes the BankWork$ program – offered in partnership with JVS, the Jewish Vocational Services – that will launch a cohort of the program at SMC's Bundy Campus in May.

We believe this catalog is an excellent tool to reach deep into our community to let them know of the breadth and depth of career training programs we offer. The catalog is being mailed and distributed widely to reach students and prospective students, industry partners, workforce training organizations and more.

This allows the catalog to function in a very unique space as it is one of few college marketing tools that offer outreach to a wide cross-section of the local community.

Feel free to contact us for more information about SMC Extension and SMC Community Ed. You can go to or call (310) 434-3400 or email

Warm regards,

Michelle King
Director of Career & Contract Education

What's New
Photo Contest Deadline May 1!

Alice Meyering

Richard Avedon photo of Judy Garland – 1963A Richard Avedon photo of Judy Garland – 1963

Celebrating the end of World War II-1945Celebrating the end of World War II-1945

The Headwaters of the San Joaquin River-jcookfisher (Wikimedia)The Headwaters of the San Joaquin River-jcookfisher (Wikimedia)

from the desk of Alice Meyering

I've always admired photographers for their ability to express their feelings through the language of images. From  portraits that reveal a person's unique personality to fashion pictures  to history-changing images captured by photojournalists to  stunning landscapes and much more, photography is an important part of our global zeitgeist.

Growing up in an environment where resources were not plentiful, my parents took lots of pictures because photos were "memory keepers," and cameras were a portable luxury for working families to create and relive hard-earned trips and outings. 

But photography is so much more than simply snapping pictures, and we have come a long way since the days of film cameras.

The onset of digital photography has been a huge game changer, allowing new kinds of images and perspectives – as well, of course, to mass access that has led to the "selfies" phenomenon, including horrific assaults of the selfie sticks I encountered when I was last at Versailles and the Louvre.
But I digress.  As we progress steadily into the spring semester, I have our Second Annual Photography Contest on my mind.  The contest is open to all current and former SMC Community Ed students.

We launched the contest earlier this year, and already we are receiving submissions that are truly stunning. Just as I felt last year with our first contest, I'm pleasantly surprised by the high quality of these images, and some of the stories behind the making of the photograph!

I urge you to go to this link for details on what and how to submit, and what the contest winner and finalists will receive. Share with people you think would be interested and spread the word – if I know anything about our readers, it is that you are our best ally in disseminating the information, so I'm counting on your help! 

Like our Open House earlier this year, we want to make this yet another event that will bring our community and our program closer together. Remember, the deadline is May 1!

I look forward to seeing your submissions – more than you know. If you have questions, please email or call (310) 434-3400.

Behind the Scenes
Photo Instructor Ed Mangus Has Big Plans for Students

Ed Mangus - photo one of his studentsEd Mangus - photo by one of his students

Ed Mangus - photo one of his students

A younger Ed Mangus with his motherMangus says this photo he took of his mother is one of the most meaningful images to him

Ed Mangus has big plans for his photography students.

Mangus – a Los Angeles native who has taught a wide variety of photography courses at SMC Community Ed since 2006 – is currently working with program administrators on two major proposals. The first is to create a 2017 Community Ed calendar featuring student images. The second is to do a book featuring photos taken by intermediate and advanced students in his "On the Street with Your Camera" class. To do this, each student would be assigned to a six-month project to create a broad portfolio of images.

And he has no doubt the resulting publications will be top-notch. "I tell my students there is no reason why you cannot produce images that are as good or better than my images," he says. "And you know what? They do. They produce beautiful images."

Mangus, an award-winning photographer and instructor, has more than 35 years of professional experience working in all aspects of photography and in college-level photography and laboratory instruction.

His freelance work specializes in ad campaign photography, documentaries, environmental portraiture, and production still photography. His personal work is photographing people in their environment.

"One of my key skills is to communicate well with people, individually and as a group," he says. "It has always been gratifying to me to provide instruction to students to enhance their technical and artistic development in photography.

Over the years he has taught, or co-taught with Craig Mohr, a wide variety of Community Ed classes, including Basic and Beyond Basic Photography, Photo Walking Malibu, After Dark: Shooting Like the Pros, Digital Monochrome, Outdoor Lighting Techniques, and Flash Photography. His next class, "On the Street With Your Camera," begins April 23. (He has also been an adjunct photography professor in SMC's academic program since 2007.)

Tell us a little about your students.

I've had an amazing diversity of students, of all ethnic backgrounds and ranging in age from 14 to 75, including actors, entertainment industry executives, doctors, attorneys, retired professors and more. At least three students that I know of went from Community Ed to our academic program, graduated and were placed in outstanding corporate photography jobs.

Which photographers do you admire and/or draw inspiration from?

Keith Carter (who has probably had the most significant influence on my work), Richard Avedon, Irving Penn, Henri Cartier-Bresson, W. Eugene Smith and Gordon Parks.

What is your idea of a perfect day?

Beautiful lighting.

What book do you currently have on your nightstand?

The books that are within arm's reach that I am currently reading or using for visual reference are Art & Fear by David Bayles & Ted Orlan, Steal Like an Artist by Austin Kleon, The Sixties by Richard Avedon, Portraits by Irving Penn, and Fireflies by Keith Carter.

What is the most meaningful image you've created?

A picture of my Calabrese mother with a rolling pin. She was making ravioli and I wanted to capture that. The image said everything about my mom, and it's the only photo of mine I have on the walls of my house.

What do you like most about teaching at SMC Community Ed?

The diversity of the students, not only their ages and professions, but particularly the rich mix of cultural backgrounds. Our common bond is a love for photography. The beauty of photography is you can go anywhere in the world and you don't need to speak the language because we all speak the language of what it takes to create an image.

Ed Mangus' next class, "On the Street With Your Camera," begins April 23.

Assertive Communication Skills for Women

Dr. Louise-Diana Dr. Louise-Diana

Dr. Louise-Diana offers Dr. Louise-Diana offers "Assertive Communication Skills for Women"

By Rev. Dr. Louise-Diana

Do you want to be seen as a highly credible, authoritative communicator who commands attention and get things done?

Communication is vital in creating and maintaining a relationship, whether it is an intimate relationship—such as with a partner, child, or friend—or a professional relationship—such as with a co-worker, supervisor, or client.

Your communication skills affect how you solve problems, how you resolve conflict, and the level of trust you generate in your relationships. A lack of communication may result in confusion, misunderstandings, and the development of poor communication patterns.

Communication experts agree the clearest, most productive and most effective way to communicate is honestly and openly, which is assertive communication. This type of communication allows for the potential of people to also communicate openly and honestly with you.

Assertive communication is defined as clear, direct, honest statement of feelings; use of "l" messages; speaking up appropriately for oneself while considering the needs, wants, and rights of others. 

There is a new study from Stanford Graduate School of Business that shows in the business world, women who are aggressive, assertive, and confident but who can turn these traits on and off, depending on the social circumstances, get more promotions than either men or other women.

This is certainly encouraging, yet I find that learning to assert oneself appropriately in the workplace still remains an issue for many women. One of the most effective ways to communicate confidence is to use assertive communication, and many women find this challenging. Part of the problem is the lack of confidence to use "I" statements in assertive communication, (that goes against some of the lessons we have learned about always putting others first).

Here are some tips and guidelines to build your assertive communication skills:

  1. Visualize the person you want to be. How would that person behave and communicate? Do you currently exhibit this behavior and what do you have to change?
  2. Ask for feedback from trusted colleagues about the way you are coming across. This would be a great discussion with a mentor as well.
  3. Practice using "I" statements. Stay true to your feelings without blaming others.
  4. State your opinions clearly.
  5. Accept compliments with grace. Say "thank you." It's simple but somehow we always find the need to give credit to others or discredit the compliment. An example is someone saying you did a good job and you say the team did it. Well, what was your part in the team effort? What was your contribution? Acknowledge. Don't downplay the compliment. Take credit.
  6. Practice giving your opinion at least once during every meeting.
  7. Make it a goal to speak during every meeting
  8. Practice saying "No!" Especially when people (your boss or direct reports) delegate inappropriately to you. Don't fall into the trap of taking on the work when it's not appropriate.

For more tips and in-depth instruction on this topic, please register for Rev. Dr. Louise-Diana's two-part "Assertive Communication Skills for Women" workshop March 31 and April 7 at SMC Community Education.