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Coos Bay, OR – Celebrating 53 years of Music at Southwestern, the Music Department is pleased to present its End of Year concert series on May 25 and 30, 2017 at the Hales Center for the Performing Arts on the Southwestern campus. Celebrating 53 years of music at Southwestern, these concerts are presented free to the public and will begin at 7:00 pm each night.

On Thursday  May 25 the Southwestern Symphonic Choir, under the direction of David Aakre, will perform a variety of works from the Renaissance and contemporary choir literature. Also included on the concert will be a performance by “The Accidentals” a local Barbershop Quartet.
On Tuesday  May 30 the Southwestern Community Orchestra, under the direction Don Walden, will perform their Spring Showcase with a variety of compositions for orchestra by Puccini, Smetana, Vivaldi, Bottesini, Dvorak and Johann Strauss.
In addition to the above concerts there will be two daytime concerts taking place at two different locations on the Southwestern campus.  On Thursday  June 1, the voice students of Ida Jo Gates will present a concert of vocal solos and duets at 2:00 pm in Sunset Hall (Music Building) – Room 2.
Finally, on Friday, June 2 at noon come join us for an afternoon of Jazz music as the Southwestern Vocal Jazz Ensemble, under the direction of Ida Jo Gates, and the Instrumental Jazz Ensemble, under the direction of Professor Mike Turner, will perform a variety of works for Jazz Choir and Jazz Band. This concert will take place OUTSIDE of Prosper Hall in the open area between the steps at the front of the Hall.  

While all of these concerts are free and open to the public, the music department will be accepting donations to help pay for our many department needs.

For more information please contact the Director of Music at Southwestern, Mike Turner at 541-888-7242.

Southwestern’s Fishing Club is heading to Nationals!

Coos Bay, OR –  Last school year the Southwestern Oregon Community College Fishing Club placed in the top ten at the California Delta Fishing League Worldwide tournament. By doing so, the club qualified to compete in the Fishing League Worldwide College National Bass Tournament in Rogersville Alabama, May 31st – June 2nd. This was a huge accomplishment for the club and the school is very excited to be represented at this year’s national tournament.

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Patrick Budden (left) and Christian Somerville (right) are students in the Welding program at Southwestern. They started this club last fall with the hopes of making it to the national tournament and are both very excited to be representing Southwestern in Alabama. Both students have put in a lot of work to get this point and are confident that they can compete amongst some of the largest schools in the nation at the tournament such as the University of Wisconsin, Penn State, Louisiana State University and Virginia Tech. The club is led by the Fishing Club advisor Tom Nicholls. These students have fundraised all monies for this trip and are still taking donations. For more information on the tournament or to donate, please visit the following websites:



Walk a Mile in Her Shoes  –  May 24, 2017

Event starts at 11:30 am – Southwestern Oregon Community College Campus

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Coos Bay, OR – On Wednesday, May 24, 2017, Southwestern Oregon Community College will host “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes: The International Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault and Gender Violence”.  Co-sponsored by The Zonta Club of the Coos Bay Area, the march benefits the Women’s Safety & Resource Center and raises awareness of rape, sexual assault, and gender violence.

Inspired by the saying that you can’t understand someone else’s experience until you’ve walked a mile in his (or her) shoes, men will literally walk one mile in women’s high heeled shoes!

All men (young and old) in the community are invited to join the march! Bring a pair of ladies heels, preferably RED (a limited amount of shoes will be available) and come to the Southwestern campus, gathering in Henry Hanson Union Square.  Costumes and teams are encouraged!  Registration begins at 11:30. Speakers will speak at 12 pm and the walk will begin at 12:15 pm.  Southwestern’s Associated Student Government will be providing a free lunch to the first 50 (non-Southwestern students) registered to walk. Bottled water will be provided and lunch will be available for purchase from Southwestern’s Dining Services.  If you’re not able to walk, please come support and cheer on the walkers! Women and children are encouraged to attend as well.

Cash donations for this event are greatly appreciated and will go to help survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault at the Women’s Safety & Resource Center.  You can mail donations to the Women’s Safety & Resource Center at 1681 Newmark Ave., Coos Bay, OR 97420 or bring your donation to the event.

For more information about the walk please call Cellila at the Women’s Safety & Resource Center 541-888-1048.

If you would like to purchase a pair of Red Shoes for the walk ($45/pair), or donate money towards the shoe fund, please contact Margaret Melvin at

More information about the national “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes: The International Men’s March to Stop Rape, Sexual Assault and Gender Violence” can be found at

Walk-A-Mile Flyer

View From Iapetus

Coos Bay, OR – Southwestern Oregon Community College’s popular Geology Lecture Series goes out of this world with Dr. Carolyn Porco, speaking about "Cassini to Saturn: The Journey and the Legacy" at 7 p.m., Saturday, May 20, 2017 at the Hales Center for Performing Arts.

 Carolyn Porco

Dr. Porco is the lead imaging scientist of the Cassini Project to Saturn. She earned a bachelor’s of science degree from Stony Brook University in New York and a Ph.D. from California Institute of Technology. Dr. Porco has co-authored more than 120 papers in leading scientific journals. Her popular science writings have appeared in such distinguished publications as the London Sunday Times, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Guardian, Astronomy magazine, the PBS and BBC websites, the Arizona Daily Star, Sky and Telescope, Scientific American, and American Scientist. She has presented at such renowned cross-disciplinary conferences as TED (2009, 2007) and PopTech (2006, 2005).

The American Astronomical Society for Excellence in the Communication of Science honored Dr. Porco with the Carl Sagan Medal in 2010. In 2012, she was named one the 25 most influential people in space by TIME magazine. She was a consultant on the 1997 Robert Zemeckis movie Contact, based on a novel by Carl Sagan. Lead actress Jodie Foster was reportedly advised by Sagan to base her performance in the film on Porco.  In 2008, she was invited by J.J. Abrams, the director/producer of the 2009 release, Star Trek, to join the film's production crew as a consultant on planetary imagery.  Since 2015, Dr. Porco has been a visiting distinguished scholar at UC Berkeley and a fellow of the California Academy of Sciences.  Additionally, she is the namesake of Asteroid (7231) Porco, which was named to honor her work in planetary science.

Porco's impressive accomplishments include work as an imaging scientist for the Voyager program, which sent two probes to the outer solar system in 1977. She also served as an associate member of the New Horizons mission to Pluto and leads the imaging science team for the Cassini mission currently in orbit around Saturn.

In this Geology Lecture Series presentation, Porco will discuss her role as the leader of the imaging science team on Cassini with a retrospective look at what has been learned from this profoundly successful mission and what its final legacy will be.
Her work in the Saturnian system is extensive. She is an expert on Saturn's rings, as well as its icy moon Enceladus, whose geysers supply much of the material for one of the planet's many rings. In 2013 a prediction made by Porco two decades earlier was confirmed when Cassini data showed that acoustic oscillations within the planet create features in its rings.

The international mission to explore the Saturnian system – the planet and its magnetosphere, glorious rings, and many moons -- began more than 26 years ago.  After seven years of development, the U.S. launched the Cassini spacecraft in 1997. Following a seven-year trek to Saturn, it finally entered Saturn orbit and has since returned more than a dozen years’ worth of insights on the solar system’s most splendid and scientifically rich planetary system.  In less than a year, its mission will be over and Cassini will be sent plunging into Saturn.

Join us in the lobby before and after Dr. Porco’s talk with representatives from the following groups starting at 6:30 pm:  The Stallknecht Rock Museum; The Charleston Marine Life Center; Coos Watershed Association and South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve.

All geology talks are free and are held in the Hales Center for the Performing Arts on Southwestern’s Coos Campus, 1988 Newmark Ave., Coos Bay.  For those not able to attend in person, all lectures are Livestreamed and archived, (except this May 20th lecture which will only be Livestreamed and not archived) with access from the College's website at Sponsors of this lecture include The Mill Casino Hotel & RV Park, DB Western, the Southwestern Foundation and the College.

For additional information please contact Ron Metzger at 541-888-7216.