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The scholarship is designed to bring an outstanding California community college student to the annual Dickens Universe gathering at UC Santa Cruz. Sponsored by the Dickens Project, a multi-campus research unit of the University of California, the Universe brings together distinguished international scholars, graduate students from member institutions, community college and high school teachers, and members of the general public for a week of intensive study and cultural enrichment, centered each year around a single Dickens novel.
Dates for the 2015 Dickens Universe are August 2-8. The featured books for this summer are Dickens’s novel, Martin Chuzzlewit (1843-44), and his travel book, American Notes (1842). The scholarship covers registration, a week’s room and board on the Santa Cruz campus, and a travel stipend of $200.

To be eligible for the scholarship, applicants must have been enrolled at a California community college in both the fall and the spring semesters/quarters prior to the August conference (2014-15) for no fewer than twelve semester units total. Scholarship recipients must be at least 18 years old by July 31, 2015.
Application requirements are posted on the Dickens Project website:

The most important part of the application process is the submission of a critical essay on a work or works of British literature dating from 1789 to 1914. Further details are available on the website. The application deadline is May 15, 2015. The scholarship recipient is also eligible to receive 5 UC quarter units of credit through UCSC Summer Session (upon completion of course assignments).
The Dickens Universe is a unique event, combining aspects of a scholarly conference, a book club, a festival, and summer camp. It is also an excellent way for students interested in pursuing graduate study in literature to meet faculty and students from universities across the United States and to learn about the profession. It is also lots of fun. For more information about the Universe, consult the Dickens Project website.


Taft March 2015 Onsite Flyer



Gender Roles

Gender Roles

Icing Licking

Icing Licking

Ice-Breaker Gender Roles Icing Licking

By Brenda Magana

Funny and crazy amusement was brought to Taft’s College annual Valentine Rally. This year there were ten couples which participated in three main events: “ice-breaker,” “gender roles,” and “icing licking.”

The first game, “ice-breaker,” consisted of five rounds in which couples had to answer specific question about their mate. For instance, some of the crazy questions would be: “What kind of deodorant does your partner use?” or “What brand of razor does your partner use?”

The second game was about “gender roles” and each mate would vote on who the role applied to the most by using a pink heart and a blue heart while the couples where placed back to back. The pink heart would indicate the women in the relationship and the blue heart would indicate the men.

The last and final game involved the couples licking icing off a paper until both sides of the paper reveled a heart. Indeed, the games where pretty challenging, but the couple that took the gold were Mea and Nalani, and not far behind were Madilyn and Tray.

Without a doubt, the competitions provided Taft’s College spectators with a pretty interesting and entertaining afternoon.

1st Prize Winners Mea and Nalani

1st Prize Winners Mea and Nalani

2nd Prize Winners Madilyn and Tray

2nd Prize Winners Madilyn and Tray

Photo of eating disorder table

Arielle Stoyanow mans eating disorder table in cafeteria

By Brenda Magana

Beauty is a state of mind, not a state of body. There are millions of people affected with eating disorders, and sometimes they tend to overlook the situation. Therefore, the ASB at Taft College decided to put up a table informing students about eating disorders, their effects, and how to obtain help.

ASB Treasurer Arielle Stoyanow stated how eating disorders such as Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, or Binge Eating can cause weight gain, osteoporosis, fatigue, constipation or diarrhea, headaches, and muscle cramps. Not only that but they can also reduce the ability to cope with stressful situations and increase incidence of suicidal thoughts.

The committee provided helpful pamphlets which discussed ways to increase one self’s perception. Some of the titles were “20 Ways to Love Your Body” and “Ten Steps to Positive Body Image.”

Also there were pamphlets from the National Eating Disorders Collaboration that provides a website to reach out for help at Without a doubt, if you know of anyone that is suffering from an eating disorder or might be at risk, please step up and help them before it is too late.

photo of display

Information Display

Photo R. Williams handprints

At North and Sixth Streets in Taft

By Bruce Gray

On August 12th, 2014 bouquets of flowers were placed on a particular square of sidewalk near the corner of North and 6th Streets in Taft. Written in the cement next to two hand prints are the words, ” You are in good hands,” and it is signed Robin Williams.

The flowers were placed on the square in remembrance of Williams who took his own life on August 11th, 2014, after a long battle with depression and drug addiction. Williams was in Taft for the filming of the 1986 movie The Best of Times that also starred Kurt Russel. The comedy details the rivalry between Taft and Bakersfield high school football programs, and many scenes were filmed on Center Street in Taft.

Robin Williams left an impact on millions with his different movies and stand up comedy specials and will be missed by many.

If you or someone you know is suffering with depression, visit

photo of trophy

2014 Trophies

By Josiah Birkbeck
Taft College Men’s Soccer has had another amazing season, finishing first in state with the most power points out of seventy-two junior colleges. Taft went on to achieve third place statewide after losing a fairly balanced game to Cerritos. “At the end of the day soccer is one of those sports where you can dominate and still lose,” said head coach Angelo Cutrona. Cutrona went on to describe how the game played out, “The two teams seemed to cancel each other out, the difference was one incredible shot on their part.”
The Cougars have placed in the final four statewide, five out of the last nine years, which is impressive for a little town like Taft. Cutrona is proud to be a part of the tradition that has been created at Taft College. Players have gone on to play at higher levels, both division 1 and 2, and professionally. Cutrona mentioned some of those players, “Most recently we’ve had former Taft College players make impacts at higher levels such as Edgar Contreras playing in the final four NCAA Division 1 for UCLA and Miguel Ebarra is a regular on the U.S.A. men’s national team.”
When asked what the plans are for the future training of the team entailed Cutrona had these words to say, “We’re always looking for different ways to improve, and the idea is to get better every single day, and we’re always looking to perfect our game.” The coach’s approach seems to be working well because Taft has placed in the top 10 nationally seven years in a row.

Taste of Soul

Flyer for Best of F 2014

Are you thinking about doing some spring cleaning?





Don’t know where to take your unwanted items?




PTK will be having a Yard Sale Fundraiser on March 21, 2015 and we would gladly take any and all donations. You may bring the donations to the Financial Aid office or we can make arrangements for larger items for be picked up. 


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