Santa Monica, a Lifelong Learning Community

Lifelong Learning Community News - JULY 2008...

UCLA Chancellor Dr. Gene Block was the commencement speaker on June 10th at the graduation ceremony for the Santa Monica College Class of 2008. Dr. Block spoke to the graduates about the long history and strong relationship between SMC and UCLA, both founded in 1929. According to Dr. Block, 10,000 SMC students have transferred to UCLA in the past 25 years! About 40% of UCLA graduates are transfer students and 1 in 6 of them come from SMC. This year, 500 students are transferring from SMC to UCLA.

The SMC Commencement also honored two distinguished alumni:

The Distinguished Alumni Winner for Professional Achievement was awarded to Dr. Jeremy Pal. Dr. Pal grew up in Venice and attended Samohi where, by his own admission, he was not a very good student. His GPA was slightly over 2.0. His beginning studies at SMC were also inauspicious until he took a Human Ecology class. His mother reported he came home one day and said: “I’ve found it.” Dr. Pal’s grades improved. He went on to receive his AA from SMC, transfer to Loyola Marymount, and obtain his Masters and Ph.D. from MIT. Last year, for his work on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Changes, Dr. Pal won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize along with former Vice President Al Gore.

Local businessman Eddie Guerboian was the recipient of this year’s Distinguished Alumni Winner for Community Service. An Armenian born in Egypt, Eddie immigrated to the US by himself at the age of 17. He studied at SMC until 1970, taking ESL and other classes along with another distinguished SMC alumni, Arnold Schwarzenegger. In 1978 he started his own business, Readers Fine Jewelers. He has been very active in Santa Monica, serving as President and/or Executive Board member for many local organizations including Kiwanis, the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce, the Boys and Girls Club, and the Lions Club.

Jeremy Pal and Eddie Guerboian both spoke movingly to the SMC Class of 2008 about their experiences at SMC and the transformational impact SMC had on their lives. Even more convincing than their words, were their actions: Dr. Pal interrupted a family trip in Italy to speak at Commencement, and Mr. Guerboian gave up his tickets to attend game 3 of the Lakers/Celtics Finals!!
Special Events and Important Dates in July

Friday, July 4, begins at 9:30am
Santa Monica Fourth of July Parade

Main Street, south of Pico to Marine
Free. Spectators are welcome!!!

Sponsored by the Ocean Park Association, the second annual Santa Monica Fourth of July Parade begins at 9:30 in front of the Santa Monica Civic Center. The parade route goes south on Main Street from Pico, turns right on Marine heads north on Barnard Way to the southernmost beach parking lot to disperse. Spectators are welcome!!! For more information on this small town fun event, please go to
Monday, July 7, 3-5pm
PTA Council Special Education Committee

SMMUSD District Board Room
1651 16th St. 2nd Floor

The Santa Monica Malibu Council of PTAs has formed a Special Education Committee to help develop a supportive culture of inclusion for all students in our school district.

PTA President Rebecca Kennerly writes: “Please join us for our summer meetings. ...Priority agenda items for our first meeting will be selecting a chair and developing a mission statement. ...PTA Council is in the process of creating a special section on its website for this Committee’s work. In the meantime, all of the documents created by this committee will be archived at: ...Please feel free to invite others you believe would be interested. Outreach to others in our communities is an important part of our work. I look forward to welcoming new members to our summer meetings.” Additional summer meetings are scheduled at the same address for Monday, July 28, 6-8 pm, and Monday, August 11, 12:30-3pm.
Tuesday, July 8, 6:45pm
City Council discussion of LUCE Strategy Framework

City Hall, Council Chambers
1685 Main Street

After many, many public meetings, the Planning & Community Development department has developed a Strategy Framework for LUCE, the Land Use and Circulation Element that, if approved, will guide land use and transportation development in Santa Monica for the next twenty years. I am happy to report that the proposed framework acknowledges the importance of education and lifelong learning to our community and to our future. The city council will be continuing discussions on the framework at this meeting and again on July 15. For more information about meetings, how to provide input, and to read the Strategy Framework, please go to
Saturday, July 19, 7pm-7am

Santa Monica Beach, Pier, and Palisades Park

See the Santa Monica beach, Pier and Palisades Park through the eyes and minds of artists. A project of the City of Santa Monica and the Santa Monica Arts Foundation, Glow will fill the night, from dusk to dawn, with “compelling, enchanting and effervescent sights and sounds situated in spaces and times that expand the possibilities for where, how and when the public participates in contemporary art.” Experience Glow! For more information, please go to
Deadline: Thursday, July 31
Applications for Senior Exemptions for SMMUSD Parcel Tax

Santa Monica and Malibu voters approved the Measure R parcel tax which allows senior citizens who qualify to be exempted from the entire amount of $346.00 per parcel if they:
  • Are 65 years old by June 30
  • Own and occupy their property as their primary residence
  • Annually apply for exemption

Seniors who applied for & received the exemption last year were sent a 2008-09 renewal form in May which needs to be completed, signed & returned by July 31, 2008.

First-time applicants may call (310) 450-8338, ext. 269 to request an application or print the application from the district website at

Completed & signed applications must be returned, along with required proofs of age and property ownership, to:
Santa Monica-Malibu USD
1651 16th Street
Santa Monica, CA 90404-3891
ATTN: Dawn

Applications must be received and/or postmarked by Thursday, July 31, 2008.

Speaking of Thursdays, the summer Thursday night Twilight Dance Series is back in action on the Santa Monica Pier. For the list of scheduled performers, please go to, or check out the lifelong learning community calendar at

And speaking of music, Santa Monica College has two new musical productions this month: Miss Saigon and The Wizard of Oz. For more information and to purchase tickets, please go to

Please also use the links at to keep up with different organizations’ and theaters’ regular special events.

Thank you for forwarding this email to others who may be interested.

Enjoy July!

Cheers and Onward,
Louise Jaffe
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