Ensemble Theatre Company’s Jonathan Fox, David Studwell Speak at AUSB

Antioch in Conversation with the Ensemble Theatre Company of Santa BarbaraAntioch University Santa Barbara presented an interactive conversation with Jonathan Fox and David Studwell of the Ensemble Theatre Company of Santa Barbara on Monday, September 28.

Jonathan has been the Executive Artistic Director of the Ensemble Theatre since 2006 and is also directing its upcoming production of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street in October. David will play the lead role of Sweeney Todd in the production. AUSB’s Barbara Greenleaf served as interviewer for the event and President Dr. Nancy Leffert opened with a few remarks.

Part of the Antioch in Conversation series that has previously included television pioneer Norman Lear, Santa Barbara Symphony Music Director Nir Kabaretti, and Harvard Law School professor Laurence Tribe, Jonathan and David spoke about the inner workings of a professional theater company and answered questions from the audience. David also slipped into his Sweeney Todd character and treated the audience by singing a few lines from the show.

Antioch in Conversation with the Ensemble Theatre Company of Santa Barbara“The Ensemble is all about bringing adventuresome, thought-provoking, professional theater to Santa Barbara,” Jonathan said. “The more we get the message out, the better we’ll be able to fulfill our mission. Antioch University Santa Barbara presents a perfect downtown venue to discuss our own regional theater and others around the country.”

Click here for more photos from the Antioch in Conversation event

Jonathan has directed almost 20 productions for Ensemble, including the recent WoyzeckAmadeus, and A Little Night Music. He directed Opera Santa Barbara’s 2014 production of The Consul at the Granada Theatre. Recent European productions include Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, A Streetcar Named Desire, Visiting Mr. Green, and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof at the English Theatre of Frankfurt, and Old Wicked Songs, Crimes of the Heart, and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof at the Vienna English Theatre. His upcoming production of Bad Jews will transfer to Frankfurt, where it will be the play’s German premiere.

Previously, Jonathan spent 12 years with Two River Theater Company in New Jersey, which he helped establish in 1994. He served as managing director of the company from 1994-99, and subsequently became its artistic director. His directing work has been seen in New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Cologne, and Jonathan has received critical acclaim in The New York Times, Variety, The Los Angeles Times, and other publications. Jonathan received his MFA from Columbia University and is a recipient of the prestigious Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Fellowship. He has served as an adjunct faculty member in theatre departments at UCSB, Columbia University, University of Utah, and Monmouth University.

Antioch In ConversationAntioch in Conversation is a series designed to foster public engagement  about the issues and inspirations that shape our community, society, and world.

Carol Tisson Named Women & Leadership Interim Program Director

Carol TissonCarol Tisson has been appointed Interim Program Director for the Women & Leadership Certificate program at Antioch University Santa Barbara.

Carol is an instructor for the program, teaching the Gender and Leadership course. She has been with the Women & Leadership program since its launch in January 2014.

“I am delighted to announce that Carol Tisson, our wonderful faculty member, has agreed to serve as our Interim Director of the Program,” outgoing Program Director Judy Bruton said. “Carol is an outstanding leader who is ready to serve the Program. We are delighted and quite lucky to have her step into this role.”

Carol is a management consultant and executive coach with nearly 30 years of experience in organizational effectiveness, leadership development, and culture change.

“As an Antioch graduate and one of the founding instructors in this program, I’m so proud of Women & Leadership,” Carol said. “Over the past two years, we’ve put together an outstanding ten-month process that awakens and develops conscious leadership, builds a sense of community and support, and generates results in the lives and careers of our students and for their sponsoring organizations.”

Carol enjoyed a 20-year career at Intel Corporation, during which she was a two-time recipient of the Intel Achievement Award for her groundbreaking work in executive development, and has since supported clients across technology, healthcare, financial services, and non-profit sectors.

Carol’s personal passion is empowering women’s leadership, and she is proud to count many executive women from across sectors as her clients, in addition to having this as the focus of her community and philanthropic work.

“I’ve been so inspired by the women who participate in this program, as students, as faculty and staff, as speakers, mentors, sponsors, and advocates,” Carol said. “We’re a living demonstration that ‘it takes a community to develop a leader.'”

Antioch University Santa Barbara President Dr. Nancy Leffert to Retire

Dr. Nancy LeffertDr. Nancy Leffert, president of Antioch University Santa Barbara, announced to the AUSB Board of Trustees that she would retire as president on June 30, 2016.

The seven years that Dr. Leffert has been at AUSB’s helm have been marked by notable accomplishments, most visibly the renovation and repurposing of the building at Anacapa and Cota Streets into a stunning modern facility that became AUSB’s new campus. She also was responsible for the development of two important new programs, the MBA in Social Business & Non-Profit Management, and the Women & Leadership certificate program. Thanks to her stewardship, the university also will roll out its new MFA in Writing & Contemporary Media next fall. During Dr. Leffert’s tenure, AUSB was named a Hispanic Serving Institution and was awarded a federal Title III grant, $1.6 million to launch AUSB’s College-to-Career initiative. The program is intended to increase Latino students’ access to higher education. It focuses on undergraduate degree completion and career success of Latino students.

“Nancy Leffert was the right person at the right time for AUSB,” said board chair Victoria Riskin. “She infused the institution with excitement, direction, purpose, and academic integrity. She increased enrollment and the endowment, and raised significant scholarship funds. She made good on her promise to make higher education available for students who would otherwise miss out. Not only has Nancy been a highly effective president, she has been wonderful to work with. She will be sorely missed.”

Dr. Nancy Leffert has had a long and distinguished career in higher education and social service administration, and as a scholar, author, and speaker. An internationally recognized expert in the field of child and adolescent psychology, she created the Developmental Assets Framework that reshaped the dialogue around the development of healthy children and youth that is in use in over 500 communities across the country. After obtaining her BA and Master’s degrees from San Diego State University, she was awarded a PhD in Child Psychology from the renowned Institute of Child Development at the University of Minnesota.

“My years at Antioch University Santa Barbara have been the most significant and fulfilling of my professional life,” Dr. Leffert said. “I am honored to have had the opportunity to lead the campus during a challenging period for all colleges and universities, and yet despite those challenges, AUSB has experienced enormous growth in enrollment. That growth means that our focus on increasing access to higher education has been successful, and the collaborations and partnerships we have developed has resulted in new programs that are both relevant and responsive to the needs of students in our community. There is more I want to accomplish in the next nine months, but I will leave knowing that AUSB is thriving.”

‘Remote Area Medical’ Up Next in Environment in Focus Film Series

Antioch University Santa BarbaraRemote Area Medical film presents Executive Producer Ilene Kahn Power and Stan Brock and the film Remote Area Medical on Friday, October 16 from 7:00-9:00 p.m.

Brock, renowned former television star of Wild Kingdom and humanitarian, founded Remote Area Medical, a relief organization that is featured in Jeff Reichert’s and Farihah Zaman’s exceptional documentary, “to bring free medical care to inaccessible regions of the Amazon rainforest.” Today the majority of their work is concentrated somewhere less secluded because the need is so great in the United States. The film makes clear why.

In April 2012, RAM volunteers, doctors, dentists, nurses, and general volunteers descended upon Bristol, Tennessee, in the heart of Appalachia to orchestrate an elaborate three-day clinic at the Bristol Motor Speedway, the city’s gargantuan NASCAR stadium. Thousands of Bristol’s ill and injured attended, eager to receive the urgent treatment they’d been unable to receive or afford.

Presented by the AUSB Bachelor of Arts program as part of the Environment in Focus series, the film will screen in the Community Hall and is free and open to the public.

For more information on the event, please contact Susan Gentile at sgentile2[at]antioch.edu or 805-962-8179 ext 5178. Visit www.remoteareamedicalmovie.com for more information on the film and filmmakers.

The Environment in Focus series is part of Antioch in Conversation, an event series designed for public engagement and dialogue about environmental and social issues that affect us on a local, national, and global basis.

‘Sweeney Todd’ Actor David Studwell Added to Antioch In Conversation

David StudwellDavid Studwell – who has been cast in the lead role in the Ensemble Theatre of Santa Barbara’s production of Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street – will be joining Executive Artistic Director Jonathan Fox in appearing in the next Antioch in Conversation event on Monday, September 28 from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m.

Fox is also directing the Theatre’s production of Sweeney Todd, which runs from October 8-25 at the New Vic Theatre in Santa Barbara.

Part of the Antioch in Conversation series that has previously included television pioneer Norman Lear, Santa Barbara Symphony Music Director Nir Kabaretti, and Harvard Law School professor Laurence Tribe, Studwell and Fox will speak and answer questions from the audience in Community Hall at AUSB’s downtown campus at 602 Anacapa Street (map). The event is free and open to the public.

“We are thrilled that David Studwell — the Sweeney in Sweeney Todd — will be joining the conversation on September 28,” said Barbara Greenleaf, AUSB’s Director of Institutional Advancement. “He’s won both an Indy Award and an Irene Ryan national acting award for a previous performance as the ‘Demon Barber of Fleet Street.’ How lucky are we to go behind the scenes with this accomplished actor and singer to learn how he’s getting in character to become a monster?”

Studwell has been a professional actor for over 30 years, working first at major theaters around Chicago then moving west to appear as a resident artist at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival as well as at PCPA Theatrefest with locations in Solvang and Santa Maria. He has won two Indy Awards in Santa Barbara.

In 2007, Studwell moved to New York where he has performed in productions of Applause, Fiddler on the Roof, Falsettos, As You Like It, Romeo and Juliet, South Pacific, and Chess. He has previously starred as Sweeney Todd in a production by TheatreWorks.

Studwell appeared in the movie Dave Berry’s Complete Guide to Guys and made a guest appearance on the TV series Crime Story.

Antioch in Conversation is a series designed to foster public engagement  about the issues and inspirations that shape our community, society, and world.

Anna Kwong to Step In as Interim Director of MBA Program

Anna Kwong and Judy Bruton
Anna Kwong and Judy Bruton

Anna Kwong, who has been an adjunct faculty with the Antioch University Santa Barbara MBA program since its inception in 2014, has been named interim program director as the second cohort begins this Fall.

Outgoing program director Judy Bruton announced Anna’s appointment during the program’s residency last weekend that brought together for the first time the first MBA cohort, which will graduate in December, and the second cohort just starting. After a round of applause, Anna addressed both cohorts and praised Judy’s role in the creation of the MBA program.

“Judy was a wonderful person to work with and work for. For the MBA program to come to this stage, I give Judy 99% of the credit,” Anna said. “We’ll continue to take care of our current students and make sure our incoming second cohort gets off to a great start.”

“You still have to do all your homework,” she added, drawing laughs from the students.

Judy said Anna would be part of the committee to hire a permanent chair for the MBA department, and that Anna will continue teaching in the program while serving as interim program director.

“Anna Kwong is an extraordinary teacher who is passionate about our unique MBA program, with its focus on social businesses and strategic leadership,” Judy said. “She has been an invaluable partner in the launch and first year of the program, and I could not feel any more comfortable with our leadership transition. I know that our students and faculty will be in excellent hands, with Anna serving as our interim chair, and Lindsay Crissman, who does an amazing job, remaining as our MBA department’s program coordinator.”

Anna was born and raised in Hong Kong during the time it was a British Colony and has lived in the UK and in Canada before becoming an American citizen in 2002. Her professional expertise includes international business management, leadership and trade. She also has taught at Santa Barbara City College for over 16 years.

PsyD Program’s Dr. Salvador Treviño to Speak at Lyceum Conference

Salvadore TrevinoDr. Salvador Treviño, Core Faculty and Director of Practicum in the Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology (PsyD) program at Antioch University Santa Barbara, has been chosen as the keynote speaker at The Lyceum: Mental Health Awards and Education Luncheon presented by the Community Counseling Center.

The event will be Friday, October 9 from 9 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. at the Ventana Grill at 2575 Price Street in Pismo Beach (click for map).

Dr. Treviño’s keynote speech will be “Ancestral Knowledge in Dreams,” and he also will lead a bonus Continuing Education Workshop from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. on “Latino Immigration, Cultural Trauma, and Cultural Complex.” LMFTs, LCSWs, and LPCCs can earn 3 CEUs by attending Dr. Treviño’s morning presentation.

“Dreams not only have a personal domain but a transpersonal realm that moves away from the private world of the dreamer and into the larger encompassing field of culture and history,” Dr. Treviño said. “Knowledge of these realms is constructed by talking, listening, and reflecting on dream images that have captured the social, cultural, and historical experiences of a community of people.”

Tickets are $50 for general admission and $65 for the bonus Continuing Education Workshop portion and includes lunch, dessert, and beverages. Click here to buy tickets.

The event also includes the presentation of the 2015 Arlene Chandler Award to Biz Steinberg, CEO of Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo County. The event is sponsored by Compass Health, Inc. and the Ventana Grill, and all proceeds benefit Community Counseling Center training and education programs.

AUSB’s PsyD program prepares students for multiple roles in the field of psychology while promoting self reflection, clinical and research skills, and the development of theoretical knowledge required for a successful career. Learn more at www.antiochsb.edu/psyd.

Community Counseling Center is a non-profit mental provider staffed by qualified, state-licensed volunteer therapists or graduate level, supervised interns that has been serving San Luis Obispo County since 1968. The primary purpose is to assist individuals and families to develop the ability to find solutions, makes choices, learn healthy coping skills, and initiate changes when life becomes difficult during times of transition, depression, anxiety, trauma, and uncertainty.

PsyD Faculty Don Fineberg Sings Praises of ‘Cold Mountain’ at Santa Fe Opera

Don FinebergDr. Don Fineberg, an adjunct faculty in the PsyD in Clinical Psychology program at Antioch University Santa Barbara, recently led a continuing education workshop in conjunction with the Santa Fe Opera in New Mexico.

Dr. Fineberg’s workshop was on August 1 and was entitled “From the Novel through the Opera: Narrative Continuity and Ethical Dilemmas in Jennifer Higdon’s Cold Mountain,” was part of Santa Fe’s Opera and Psychology series, which he has been involved in for almost 20 years.

Dr. Fineberg also conducted a conversation with the source novel’s author, Charles Frazier. The news program PBS News Hour was on hand to film a behind-the-scenes segment on the production, although Dr. Fineberg does not appear in the finished piece.

Dr. Fineberg wrote a piece examining the psychological aspects of Cold Mountain, and it is reprinted below.

The Psychology of Cold Mountain’s Narrative: From Novel to Libretto, by Don Fineberg, MD

Lessons learned from teaching for 20 years (mostly psychology, oft times English) converged in the year’s Opera and Psychology seminar. The seminar focused on Charles Frazer’s best-selling novel, Cold Mountain, as interpreted in the world-premier opera of the same name and capped off a whirlwind week with the author, including a discussion with students at the opera and an hour-long “conversation” at Collected Works bookstore. This presentation before a SRO crowd also included Gene Sheer, who converted the novel into the brilliant libretto. A PBS News Hour crew videotaped the event. The Opera and Psychology seminar investigated the powerful narrative at the core of both the novel and the opera.

When asked about the story of your life, what crosses your mind? Most people reflect on biographical highlights: when you were born, where you grew up, what school you attended, who you married, or how you make a living. That’s one kind of story. Yet, each one of us lives a second, even more important story – the “narrative” of our life.

Narrative informs our every thought, feeling and action. It remembers our past and anticipates our future. Consider this: if Hollywood made a movie of your life, starring YOU, the director would proclaim you the greatest acting talent ever to appear on screen. In every scene, the way you talk, act, express emotion is a perfect you! Put in an unexpected situation, you respond completely as you. Surely, you would be a favorite for the academy award. How do you do it? How does anyone do it? Simply put, our brains reinforce our personal narratives 24/7. It is our personality. It is how we live our lives.

The opera, Cold Mountain, sheds light on this process. The music, through-sung text (without spoken dialogue), acting and direction translated the lush, descriptive novel into a powerful evening’s performance. It narrated the same story: a tale with archetypal power, about a Confederate soldier’s longing for and travels towards home after he deserts in the closing months of the Civil War. The story detailed his trek, as well as the challenges experienced by Ada, his love at home awaiting his return. Reminiscent of Homer’s Odyssey, but not exactly parallel in content, this core human longing vibrates in each of us as we chart the course of our life, emancipating from mother, parents, family and community and carve a life uniquely ours.

Unlike the real world, opera must make clear the motives and feelings of the characters that inform their actions. Opera has the unique capacity to express all of these for characters as individuals, in duets, trios, quartets, quintets and of course moving chorus pieces. Sometimes, the music itself reveals the character’s inner life. Sometimes, the music weaves together the thoughts sung aloud simultaneously by several characters. In Cold Mountain, for example, one dramatic passage uses the symbol of “fences” – literal and psychological. The barriers we construct as well as those erected around us. The “fences” clearly represent something different to each character, even when they sing the exact same text. As with every great work of art, we find that the opera reflects, informs and sometimes inspires our quest to fulfill our personal longings for love and achievement.

Psychology brings a perceptive lens to opera narrative. With a variety of psychological approaches, we can deepen our appreciation of the narrative that unfolds before our eyes. WP Inman, the protagonist, has suffered terribly with physical and psychological wounds. How do the symptoms of his post-traumatic stress inform his actions, his character and ultimately his fate? Ada, his love, has chosen to survive the hardship of subsistence farming rather than return to the genteel life of the city where she was educated and raised. Through the opera’s story, we can better understand the motivations that lead to these decisions. As psychotherapists we ask, how do people’s experiences determine their life choices? What shapes their narratives into adaptive and functional lives? Or, what parts of their own stories undermine their striving for health and personal growth? The Opera and Psychology seminar had the advantage of asking these questions of fictional characters without conflicts of confidentiality.

Cold Mountain’s narrative invites us to explore relevant personal and social issues: Security – too much is confinement and too little is fearful chaos; Crisis – step up as a hero or shrink back as a coward; Setbacks – respond with resiliency or get mired in misfortune. Do we live in a world that makes sense or remains mysterious as we tell ourselves the story of our lives? As psychotherapists, we help others through these dilemmas. We seek ethical ways to guide people on these journeys. However, as this compelling opera reminds us, we all traverse the uncertain challenges of life. And, we all can embrace a narrative that meets these challenges.

Former Antioch Chancellor Al Guskin Announces Retirement

Al GuskinAlan (Al) E. Guskin, a leading voice in higher education leadership and innovation, will retire at the end of August after a 30-year career with Antioch University and timeless legacy of helping others. A distinguished university professor at Antioch University’s PhD Program in Leadership and Change, as well as the university’s President Emeritus, Guskin has held many leadership positions in higher education. He is also credited with leading the University of Michigan student group widely recognized for persuading John F. Kennedy to establish the Peace Corps in 1960.

“Whether on a global scale or through efforts of the university community, Al understands the components of inspiring change from within,” said Antioch University Chancellor Felice Nudelman. “His contributions have made a difference in the lives of many, many people not only directly, but exponentially, by sharing his knowledge with others who carry forth his tradition of stimulating meaningful social change.”

Guiskin was President of Antioch University and Antioch College simultaneously from 1985 to 1994 and after a university reorganization, Chancellor of Antioch University from 1994 to 1997. Among his accomplishments, Guskin who has worked for more than four decades as a teacher, leader, administrator, and tireless advocate for social justice, was a driving force in the creation of the PhD in Leadership and Change program at Antioch University.

Guskin’s prior work in higher education leadership includes serving as Chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in 1975 to 1985, Acting President at Clark University from 1973 to 1974, and Provost of Clark University from 1971 to 1973. He has held faculty positions at the University of Michigan as well as Clark University, University of Wisconsin-Parkside and Antioch University, where he shares his extensive life of service mentoring others to do the same.

After graduating from Brooklyn College in 1958, Guskin attended the University of Michigan to earn a PhD in social psychology. While a graduate student in 1960, he was initiator and a leader of the student group on the Ann Arbor campus that is widely credited with persuading John F. Kennedy to establish the Peace Corps.

Guskin interrupted his graduate education in 1961 to serve as a Peace Corps volunteer in the first group to go to Thailand as a university faculty member at the Faculty of Education at Chulalongkorn University. From 1964 to 1965 he served as a senior administrator in the creation of the domestic Peace Corps, VISTA. The following year, he directed the Florida Farm Worker Program, a poverty initiative serving 14 counties in southern Florida.

Guskin has presented to countless professional organizations, consulted with prestigious groups on the topics of change in higher education, and shared his expertise through serving on many educational and humanitarian boards and leadership councils. As noted in remarks he recently shared at an Antioch University event to celebrate his career, in retirement he hopes to continue working with and supporting others who are committed to higher educational change while also spending more time with his wife, Dr. Lois LaShell, and his daughters and grandchildren. Guskin and his wife live in Edmonds, WA, and spend part of the year in Walnut Creek, CA, near two of their three daughters and two grandsons.

AUSB Faculty Gary Delanoeye, Ann Hutchins Publish Books

Gary DelanoeyeGary Delanoeye and Ann Hutchins, both faculty members at Antioch University Santa Barbara, have recently published books available on Amazon.com.

Gary, an affiliate faculty with the Graduate Education and Credentialing program, published a humorous novel entitled Checking in at the Crowbar HotelBased on his own experiences with at-risk youth, the novel gets its name from a slang term for juvenile hall.

“I really liked the challenging adolescents who were a part of my career,” Gary said. “Never a dull moment, and … I learned new things about their lives, their cunning, and even the humanity that motivated them, even while they were locked up.”

Gary believes there is much to learn from delinquent students who enter facilities like the one depicted in Crowbar Hotel and explores these themes in the book. His experiences working with troubled kids has shaped his career.

“Whatever I know about teaching has been informed tremendously by a bunch of kids who were seldom ever in school,” Gary said.  “The irony of this continues to intrigue me!”

Finance Is PersonalCrowbar Hotel is available in print and electronically at Amazon.com.

Ann, who teaches as an adjunct in the Master’s in Business Administration program, co-authored her work with British author Kim Stephenson. Their work is the informative Finance Is Personal: Making Your Money Work for You in College and Beyond, a personal finance resource that helps people get what they want out of their money.

In addition to her passion for writing and teaching, Ann currently serves as Treasurer and Board member of The Eleos Foundation in Santa Barbara and volunteers in the financial literacy program with Partners in Education, also in Santa Barbara.

Finance Is Personal is also available in hardcover and for Kindle at Amazon.com.


PsyD Faculty Lisa Firestone Offers Seminar on Suicide and Therapy

Lisa FirestoneLisa Firestone, PhD, an adjunct faculty with Antioch University Santa Barbara’s PsyD in Clinical Psychology program, will lead a free seminar entitled “Suicide: What Therapists Need to Know” at Westmont College on Saturday, September 5 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

In this half-day workshop, Dr. Firestone will provide an in-depth understanding of the dynamics in suicide and of the legal, ethical, and case management issues when dealing with suicidal clients. She will outline the most up-to-date and effective treatment methods and provide training that can help save a life.

The workshop will:

  • Provide the latest findings on warning signs and risk factors for suicide.
  • Offer a conceptual model and a developmental perspective on the dynamics underlying suicide.
  • Explore the internal struggle the ambivalence of suicide through expert interviews and insight provided by three survivors of very lethal suicide attempts.
  • Address both objective assessment and the formation of clinical judgment.
  • Inform participants about recent research on empirically validated treatment approaches.
  • Provide participants with state of the art crisis management strategies and opportunities to practice them.

In addition to teaching at AUSB, Dr. Firestone has been a practicing clinical psychologist in Santa Barbara and Los Angeles for the last 20 years and works as the Director of Research and Education at The Glendon Association.

As a community service for National Suicide Prevention Month, there is no fee for this workshop. Attendees may earn four Continuing Education (CE) Units with a $25 fee. For more information and to register, visit glendon.org.

CE’s for this workshop are being provided by AUSB, who are approved by the California Psychological Association (CPA) to provide continuing professional education for psychologists. The California Board of Behavioral Sciences now recognizes CPA continuing education credit for license renewal for LCSWs and MFTs. AUSB maintains responsibility for this program and its contents.

AUSB Partners to Present “In Bloom in Santa Barbara”

Antioch University Santa Barbara (AUSB) is excited to be partnering with Antioch University New England (AUNE), the Academy of Forest Kindergarten Teachers, and the Wilderness Youth Project to offer “In Bloom in Santa Barbara: Promising Practices in Nature-based Urban Early Childhood Education.”

In Bloom Santa Barbara“In Bloom in Santa Barbara” takes place on Saturday, September 19, at the Open Alternative School (OAS) in Santa Barbara at 4025 Foothill Road (map). The seminar will spend time indoors and outdoors exploring the school grounds and nearby urban gardens as well as visiting accessible green spaces in the nearby neighborhood. All early childhood and early elementary parents, teachers, outdoor educators, and administrators with an interest in connecting children to the nearby natural and built environments are invited. Cost is $75, and registration is at www.antiochsb.edu/ibsb.

Walt Whitman poemThe event features two keynote presentations followed by workshops. The morning keynote is entitled “Nature Preschools and Forest Kindergartens: Why 21st Century Children Need Nature” by David Sobel, senior faculty at AUNE and author of Nature Preschools and Forest Kindergartens: The Handbook for Outdoor Learning. In the afternoon, Elaine Gibson will speak on “Child-Centered Nature Play: The Museum Backyard.” Gibson is a credentialed elementary school teacher and parenting coach and was Interim Director of Education at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History in 2006 when she created the outdoor education program.

AUSB and OAS have maintained a professional partnership since 2013 for the purpose of forwarding a common vision of experiential, learner-centered education that promotes the values of social justice, ecological literacy, and advocacy.

For more information about this event, please contact Kelly Peña at AUSB at 805-962-8179 x5315 or kpena@antioch.edu.

‘Samsara’ Is Next Environment in Focus Film at Antioch

samsara film stillAntioch University Santa Barbara instructor Manuel Raya transports us to the varied worlds of sacred grounds, disaster zones, industrial complexes, and natural wonders, void of dialogue and descriptive text with a screening of Samsara on campus on Thursday, August 13 from 7-9 p.m.

Samsara, filmed over a period of almost five years and in 25 countries, is a Sanskrit word that means “the ever turning wheel of life” and is the point of departure for the filmmakers as they search for the elusive current of interconnection that runs through our lives.

Presented by the AUSB Bachelor of Arts program as part of the Environment in Focus series, the film will screen in the Community Hall and is free and open to the public.

Having graduated from UCSB, Mr. Raya yearned to learn more about the world and himself through philosophic contemplation. This drive led him to attain a Masters of Philosophy at San Francisco State University. Today, he is an adjunct faculty member here at Antioch University Santa Barbara, an instructor of Philosophy at Santa Barbara City College, a coach of the award-winning SBCC debate team, and director of the Philosophy club.

For more information on the event, please contact Susan Gentile at sgentile2[at]antioch.edu or 805-962-8179 ext 5178. Visit www.barakasamsara.com for more information on the film and filmmakers.

View the Samsara trailer:

The Environment in Focus series is part of Antioch in Conversation, an event series designed for public engagement and dialogue about environmental and social issues that affect us on a local, national, and global basis.

Summer Poetry Workshop To Take Place at AUSB in August

Perie Longo
Perie Longo at the “Love, Longing, Lust” poetry reading at AUSB in February 2015.

Joined by her colleagues David Starkey and Chryss Yost, local poet Perie Longo hosted the 15th annual Santa Barbara Summer Poetry Workshop at Antioch University Santa Barbara on August 22-23.

Together these distinguished poetry leaders guided participants through the many aspects of poetry writing by means of writing exercises, poetry discussions, reading poetry, and publication advice. Participants gained a greater understanding of the art of poetry and how to develop a unique writing voice.

This is the first time that Perie has held her annual workshop at AUSB. “I welcomed the invitation to move the workshop to Antioch’s beautiful downtown campus with its spacious classrooms, convenience, affiliation with the university, and most importantly, the helpfulness of President Dr. Nancy Leffert and staff,” Perie said.

The workshop was at its full capacity of 20 people and included two AUSB students – Cristina Marquez and Erin Ingalls – who were awarded scholarships to attend.

About the Poets:

Perie LongoPerie Longo, Poet Laureate of Santa Barbara (2007-2009), has published four poetry collections, most recently Baggage Claim (2014), and has frequently appeared in many literary journals and anthologies. For many years, she has led poetry workshops for the annual Santa Barbara Writers Conference, California-Poets-in-the-Schools, and privately. She has been a textbook contributor of chapters titled “The Magic of Metaphor,” “Turning the Darkness Down: Poetry as Therapy,” and “Poetry and Emotional Intelligence.” In 2005, she was invited to the University of Kuwait to speak on Writing Poetry as a Way to Peace. In 2012 she was awarded the Woman of Achievement Award from the Association of Women in Communication, Santa Barbara Chapter. She is a psychotherapist in private practice and on the staff of the UCLA Arts and Healing program. Perie also read a selection of her poems in February 2015 at AUSB at the “Love, Longing, Lust” poetry reading.

David StarkeyDavid Starkey, Poet Laureate of Santa Barbara (2009-2011) and recipient of two Fulbright Scholar Awards, is Director of the Creative Writing Program at Santa Barbara City College; hosts “The Creative Community,” an arts-oriented television program; and is the author of textbooks Keywords in Creative Writing and Creative Writing: Four Genres in Brief, 2nd edition, as well as several books of poetry, most recently Like a Soprano. Other titles include: Circus Maximus. It Must Be Like the World, A Few Things You Should Know about the Weasel, Ways of Being Dead: New and Selected Poems, Adventures of the Minor Poet, and Starkey’s Book of States. He is the editor and publisher of Gunpowder Press. David also serves as the Coordinating Consultant for the MFA program in Writing and Contemporary Media currently being developed at AUSB, and in December 2014, he hosted “Like A Soprano,” a poetry reading celebrating The Sopranos television series, on the AUSB campus.

Chryss YostChryss Yost served as Poet Laureate of Santa Barbara from 2013-15. Her book of poems, Mouth & Fruit, was published in 2014 by Gunpowder Press. She was selected by Patricia Smith for the Patricia Dobler Prize in poetry and has published two fine press chapbooks. Chryss has co-edited several poetry anthologies, including California Poetry: From the Gold Rush to the Present , and most recently Buzz: Poets Respond to Swarm. She teaches poetry to gifted teens through the Santa Barbara Music and Arts Conservatory and is a frequent collaborator on poetry projects with local museums and galleries.


Antioch University Hosts Math Workshop for Teachers

UCSB math workshop at Antioch University Santa Barbara Antioch University Santa Barbara’s Graduate Education and Credentialing program hosted Bill Jacob and Monica Mendoza from UCSB’s Center from Mathematical Inquiry for a three-day math workshop in July for teachers and administrators.

Participants studied the developmental trajectory of measurement and geometry in Pre-K through the 6th grade and addressed the big idea of the Common Core State Standards. The workshop focused on problem solving that develops facility with special operations such as decomposing and composing geometric shapes to students are ready for geometry beyond the 6th grade. All participants collaborated with their grade level peers and take with them a curricular unit to use in their classrooms.

The workshop was attended by 18 educators, some former AUSB students, and Cooperating Teachers. Thanks to Gary Delanoeye, a faculty member for AUSB’s Education program, for snapping some photos and providing background on the workshop.

UCSB math workshop at Antioch University Santa Barbara

‘Guitars in the Classroom’ Take Over Antioch Campus

Guitars in the ClassroomThose on campus over the past week likely noticed a much higher than normal number of guitars and other stringed instruments at Antioch University Santa Barbara.

That’s because the Graduate Education and Credentialing Program offered a free Guitars in the Classroom (GITC) workshop from July 13-17 for AUSB students and working teachers to learn how to bring music into their classrooms.

Participating teachers and students, some of whom had no previous music experience, learned to play the guitar and ukulele, sing, and write songs in order to bring these skills back to their classrooms and studies.

Guitars in the ClassroomGITC’s Executive Director Jessica Baron was on hand to teach the workshop at AUSB. “They (the Antioch students) were hands-down brilliant. Their openness to learning and trying new things was way beyond my expectations,” Jessica said. “They passed through a full year of training in just one week.”

GITC is a national non-profit organization headquartered in San Diego, and it has conducted programs in 32 states and in parts of Canada. GITC’s mission is to provide free music classes for teachers to deepen students’ learning area in all subject areas.

“We were a real good fit because we share the Antioch philosophy,” Jessica said.

See more photos from the workshop on the AUSB Facebook page. And for more information, visit www.guitarsintheclassroom.org.