Why Politics Matter


California delegates hold signs supporting Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama during the final day of Democrat National Convention at Invesco Field at Mile High in Denver, Colorado, Thursday, August 28, 2008. / McClatchy Tribune

California delegates hold signs supporting Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama during the final day of Democrat National Convention at Invesco Field at Mile High in Denver, Colorado, Thursday, August 28, 2008. (McClatchy – Tribune Media Services)

The annual “Why Politics Matter” forum took place on campus on April 25 and offered students the chance to get involved and learn from the professionals about their experiences in political processes.

 

The guest speakers present at the forum were Tim Shaw, District Coordinator for Senator Bob Huff (R-Diamond Bar), and Andi Lane, Legislative Aide for Senator Carol Liu, (D-Glendale). Dave Milbrandt, Political Science teacher at Citrus College, moderated the discussion and proposed questions for the speakers to discuss.

 

Milbrandt opened the forum by asking the speakers about how they got into politics and what they enjoyed most about working in their professions.

 

Tim Shaw explained how he earned his master’s in government from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and how he was elected as the mayor of La Habra. He is currently on the county board of supervisors and he also works as the District Coordinator for Bob Huff.

 

Andi Lane graduated from UCLA with a bachelors in psychology. She earned her Masters in Psychology from Pepperdine University while working as a trauma therapist. In 2008 she was selected as a Senate Fellow in California State Legislature. Upon completing her fellowship she began working as a Legislative Aide to Senator Carol Liu. She currently works on the Select Committee on Women and Children in the Criminal Justice System and is the project manager for the Pathways to Wellbeing and Economic Prosperity program.

 

Having speakers from such diverse political backgrounds created an inspiring and energetic dialogue. A topic of great interest for those present at the forum was the importance of different sides of politics working together for the good of the people.

 

Andi Lane spoke about how democrats now have a supermajority in both houses and how they will use that power to fix current issues in California. In contrast, Tim Shaw commented about the loss of Republican power in California and what needs to be done in order to make sure the party’s values continue to be a part of the legislative process.

 

Both speakers discussed the importance of representing the issues most valuable to constituents. Students present at the forum benefited from a short discussion on how to begin getting involved in the political process at the community college level.

 

The forum was a success, as the speakers were effective in encouraging the audience to enhance their professional skills and strive for excellence in their own political endeavors.

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