Mountie MakerSpace Finds More Support In Academic Senate

A larger group came out to advocate for the space before the senate

Art+History+Professor+Emeritus+Thomas+Edson+tells+the+senate+about+his+concerns+regarding+the+EEO+plan.+Photo+credit%3A+Joshua+Sanchez%2FSAC.Media.

Art History Professor Emeritus Thomas Edson tells the senate about his concerns regarding the EEO plan. Photo credit: Joshua Sanchez/SAC.Media.

Comments in favor of the Mountie MakerSpace continued from the May 8 Board of Trustees meeting into the Academic Senate meeting the following day.

Representatives from the space told Academic Senate that they will run out of state grant operating funds starting on May 31.

Like a community center, the facility is for people gather to share knowledge, work on projects and create new things using the tools the space, as the website states.

Mala Arthur, project manager from MakerSpace, spoke before the senate explaining why the facility is important and why the Senate should contribute support to them.

“We are desperately in need of finding at least some temporary funding, if not, permanent funding so that we can stay open,” she said.

She was joined by a group of students who benefit from MakerSpace.

English major Russell Savage explained how the space allows him to create things he imagines.

“For me, it has been a valuable tool just for creative expression. I can go in there and have access to tools that I normally wouldn’t,” Savage said.

This club is also open to 67 community members and offers over 3,200 hours devoted to using the space.

Another student, Amy Moore, spoke in favor of the MakerSpace.

“I was able to learn so many things from this. I feel so accomplished with all of the skills I’ve learned,” Moore said. “It’s so welcoming. It’s a huge community of students and faculty and people that are so willing to teach you what they know.”

The MakerSpace is often utilized by students that might not be able to have access to such a space, such as students in the Extended Opportunity Programs and Services program.

EOPS is a state-funded program that provides support services to eligible students coming from historically disadvantaged backgrounds.

EOPS counselor Hector Sanchez informed the senate that students and staff will be going to the Sacramento Board of Governors meeting on May 20 to oppose the chancellor office’s proposal to end EOPS.

“They want to eliminate the minimum qualifications for an EOPS director,” Sanchez said. “They want to eliminate the requirement for programs over five hundred students to have a full time director.”

Sanchez also asked for support from the Senate in the near future.

“We just wanted to let the Senate know that we may come to you for support.” Sanchez added.

Other announcements followed.

These included telling the senate that Lavender Graduation, a ceremony celebrating graduating students who are part of the Mt. SAC Pride Center and LGBTQ, will be held on May 29 at 5 p.m. in Founders Hall.

Sohair Zaki, professor in the computer information systems department, told the senate about the new big data analytics certificate. Zaki talked about how essential computer information systems is for the career field, and how the degree considers all the data a company can collect to make business decisions. Students can earn this new degree in three semesters.

“Every field and every career includes and have business analytics and big data,” she said. “Its high demand, its high in pay,” Zaki added.

The Senate then moved to discuss subjects in their agenda.

The Academic Senate will meet again May 23.

Updated: May 21 2:16 p.m.:

The MakerSpace was granted temporary immediate needs funding until June.