Teenagers fire up thousands in City Plaza March for Our Lives speakers demand school safety

photo by Karen Laslo

At City Plaza

by Dave Waddell

Chico teenagers spoke out passionately Saturday against school gun violence to a crowd of thousands at City Plaza, leaving some of their older listeners not only admiring their steely resolve but in tears at their stirring words.

“Do you know how it feels to hear the ‘all clear’ in a Code Red and say ‘Thank god I’m alive’ when across the country parents are crying ‘God, why? God, why did my baby have to die, their lives stretching out before them, withering in opportunity and promise?” asked Bailey Christiansen, a 15-year-old Chico High School sophomore. read more

Hundreds of #Enough students pour into City Plaza Walkouts protest gun violence on school campuses

photo by Dave Waddell

Sharon DeMeyer participated in the march along with her daughter, Zoe Karch, a student walkout leader.

by Dave Waddell

Hundreds of students of assorted ages poured into Chico’s City Plaza this morning, joining in a loud chant that didn’t let up for several minutes: “No More Silence, End Gun Violence.”

The students came from different campuses, ranging from Chico State to junior highs and charter schools, to participate in #Enough National School Walkout. The protest was inspired by the shooting deaths of 17 staff members and students Feb. 14 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. Empower, the youth branch of Women’s March that helped in organizing events nationwide, had counted 3,136 walkouts at the time this story was posted. read more

Chico students plan walkout over gun violence #Enough National Student Walkout set for March 14

Chico High schoolers Makayla Sharkey and Lucinda Law make signs for the Wednesday march.

by Leslie Layton

Students from two Chico high schools and Chico State will participate in the #Enough National School Walkout Wednesday to protest gun violence and to call for congressional action.

The Chico students say they want school campuses to be gun-free zones, they want more background checks at the time of purchases and they want bans on the sale of assault rifles.

“We’re trying to create awareness about gun violence in America and how (gun violence here) compares to other countries,” said Lucinda Law, a 15-year-old Chico High School sophomore who is one of a half-dozen CHS students planning the school’s walkout. “Not much (legislation) has happened since Columbine and Sandy Hook.” read more

Intern wins Freedom of Information award In-depth stories for The Orion and ChicoSol recognized

photo by Jason Halley, CSUC photographer

Gabriel Sandoval

by Dave Waddell

ChicoSol intern Gabriel Sandoval is being honored by the Society of Professional Journalists of Northern California for his investigative reporting.

The SPJ chapter will present Sandoval with its 2018 James Madison Freedom of Information Award, Student Journalist category, at a banquet March 27 in San Francisco. The award is intended to honor freedom-of-information and First Amendment champions, according to SPJ NorCal.

The accolade recognizes Sandoval for two investigative stories about a deal that kept a former top administrator, Lori Hoffman, on Chico State’s payroll for 16 months and paid her hundreds of thousands of dollars after she left the university. First for a story for The Orion, Chico State’s student newspaper, and later in a second in-depth piece for ChicoSol, Sandoval used documents he obtained through public records requests to delve into Hoffman’s contractual and work arrangements. read more

Sexual misconduct reports on rise at CSUC Campus equity chief: More women coming forward

Dylan Saake

by Gabriel Sandoval

As the nation reckons with a steady stream of stories about high-profile men accused of sexual misconduct, women are sharing their own stories on social media using the hashtag #MeToo.

The movement toward reporting and confronting sexual misconduct has for years been gaining momentum on college campuses. Today, many students are comfortable reporting sexual violence, says Dylan Saake, Chico State’s coordinator for compliance with the federal gender-equity law known as Title IX. To be in compliance, colleges must provide students safe learning environments, free of gender-based discrimination, and respond promptly and equitably if sexual misconduct is reported. read more

Professor’s new book chronicles challenges Son’s autism transforms path to a dream teaching job

photo courtesy of Denise Minor

Denise Minor and son Max

by Dave Waddell and Leslie Layton

Denise Minor had a dream that wouldn’t go away, a dream to teach Spanish at a university. And while it ultimately became a dream achieved at Chico State, it was first a dream deferred by the extreme challenges of mothering an autistic son.

Minor, an associate professor in CSU, Chico’s department of international languages, literatures and cultures, chronicles her story in a new book, “No Screaming Jelly Beans: Trying to Pursue a Career While Raising a Son With Autism.

Minor’s new book includes essays published in different forms and at different times during son Max’s life. She believes she benefited from her work on “No Screaming Jelly Beans” — even beyond the therapeutic value that can come from writing narratives — after the notion of a book took hold in her mind. read more