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6th Annual NAC Graduation Celebration (6/7/2014)

Dr Henry T. Nicholas addresses the 2014 NAC graduate class.On Saturday, June 7, the NAC celebrated the graduation of 124 seniors at the Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina in Newport Beach! 2014 marks the 6th year that we have celebrated the accomplishments of the Nicholas Academic Centers' graduates, who maintain a 94 percent college-retention rate when attending four-year private institutions, compared with the national average of 77 percent. The national average retention rate for Hispanic college students is less than 50 percent. Over the last six years we have been incredibly lucky to work with hundreds of young women and men from the Santa Ana Unified School District and neighboring communities, and this celebration exists to honor them and their families.

<< Source: NAC Facebook >>


2014 Graduation Campaign: Seven Days Until Graduation Teaser (5/31/2014)

The NAC Media Club made this short, fun video to coincide with their countdown campaign on Facebook & Twitter in anticipation of the NAC's 6th Annual Graduation Celebration, which is happening on Saturday, June 7, 2014, in Newport Beach.

The NAC Media Club made this short, fun video to coincide with their countdown campaign on Facebook & Twitter in anticipation of the NAC's 6th Annual Graduation Celebration, which is happening on Saturday, June 7, 2014, in Newport Beach.
(source: NAC Youtube)

Chicago-Sun Times: "Senate puts victims-rights amendment on Nov. 4 ballot"


SPRINGFIELD—Following the House's lead, the Illinois Senate Thursday unanimously approved putting a proposed amendment to the Illinois Constitution before voters this fall that would increase crime victim rights.

The measure, which passed 59-0, would strengthen victims’ existing constitutional rights to be notified about court hearings, granted time to tell the court about the impact of the crime, obtain a hearing before their confidential court records are opened and be given standing to appeal court decisions that impact their rights.

The constitution now provides those rights but doesn’t give victims with any means to enforce them, which advocates say has resulted in victims’ rights often being ignored.

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Chicago Tribune News: "Voter protection, victim rights questions to appear on ballot"

April 10, 2014|By Maura Zurick | Clout Street

SPRINGFIELD --- Illinois voters this fall will get to decide a pair of constitutional amendments on ballot protections and crime victim rights.

The Senate voted today to put both questions on the Nov. 4 ballot.

House Speaker Michael Madigan’s proposed constitutional amendment to protect voter rights says no person should be denied registration and voting rights based on race, color, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, religion, language or income.

<< Source Article >> 


The Busiest Girl in School Biz: NAC Class of 2013 Alum Marilynda Bustamante Engages UCLA

When the sun rises over DeNeve Plaza at UCLA, NAC Class of 2013 alum Marilynda Bustamante is already off and running, sometimes literally, through a day comprised of classes, meetings, workshops, work, and – on occasion – hanging out with friends. It is not uncommon for days like these to slide into one another, when sleep waits until 3:00 AM and another busy day begins shortly after.

In the second quarter of her freshman year, Marilynda is learning to master the balancing act that is her schedule. She is currently taking three classes (Calculus, Poverty and Health in Latin America, and Mindful Learning: Exploring Your Own Perceptions, Emotions, and Thinking) and maintaining active memberships in no fewer than six campus clubs and organizations, including the Peer Health Exchange, where she teaches pregnancy prevention and sexual education to students in low-income charter schools across Los Angeles. With pride, Marilynda notes, “I taught the second-highest number of workshops last quarter, teaching 12 times in the classroom, and I only missed being first by one workshop!”
While Marilynda strives to be a leader in her extracurricular programs, the competitive culture on campus has also fueled her drive to succeed academically. “It’s extremely competitive here in the science department, so although students genuinely want to help each other succeed, there is an underlying pressure for everyone to feel the need to be the best.” Marilynda supplements her study schedule with tutoring sessions through UCLA’s Academic Advancement program. One of Marilynda’s most surprising discoveries at UCLA was finding that others, including students and faculty, value her contribution to the academic community. “What was surprising to me as I transitioned to college was the high level of respect and intrigue I received from the adults here, as well as my peers.” She adds, “I was shocked that they were concerned with hearing my voice.”


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Chapman Professors Explore the World of Pharmacy and Inspire NAC Students (2/1/2014)

Nearly 30 Nicholas Academic Centers' students gathered for the return of the Chapman Visiting Scholars Series on Saturday, February 1, with a presentation from Dr. Lawrence Brown and Dr. Nancy Alvarez. The presentation, entitled "How to Excel in a World of Pharmacy You Never Knew Existed," explored various roles that pharmacists play in the healthcare field, examined the academic requirements for earning a pharmacy degree, and considered the importance of preparation and the power of positive thinking.

(Source: NAC Youtube)


Janae Dimick, Former Director of Higher Ed Services, Takes NAC Experience Back to College Classrooms

When she moved to Santa Ana in September 2007, Janae Dimick divided her time between attending classes in her second year of graduate school at Cal State Fullerton, and working as a tutor in the University’s Writing Center. Drawn by the prospect of working in the community for a non-profit organization, Janae answered an ad in January 2008 in Craigslist for a tutoring job at the Nicholas Academic Centers (NAC). Janae remembers, “I felt that the NAC’s mission was vital, and I wanted to be a part of that.”
During the NAC’s first year of operation, with a senior class of 24 students, the Directors of Academic Services also handled the Higher Education Services, helping seniors with college applications, financial aid, and more. As the NAC’s student body grew, it soon became apparent that the demand for higher education tasks would require a full-time, dedicated position. On August 1, 2009, after earning an M.A. in English from Cal State Fullerton, Janae accepted the role and responsibility of becoming the NAC’s first Director of Higher Education Services. Charged with the task of developing the Higher Education department, Janae had her work cut out for her, especially considering she was also working as an adjunct professor, teaching writing classes at Chaffey College in Rancho Cucamonga.
Graduating seniors of the NAC Class of 2009 went on to attend schools like Denison University, UCLA, Morningside College, and Allegheny College, among others, but the NAC, in its newness, was relatively unknown. While Janae developed the Higher Education Services department, creating college knowledge and college transition workshops and reading books like Loren Pope’s Colleges That Change Lives and other research publications for both information and inspiration, she also focused on contacting schools and attending conferences like the National Association for College Admission Counselors (NACAC) annual conference. “I think the first time I knew we had ‘made it’ on the college scene,” Janae recalls, “was when Rosa Diaz (NAC Chief Officer of Operations & Programs), Clint Gasaway (of Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana), Gerry Oxx (of Godinez Fundamental High School in Santa Ana), Andre McWell (of Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa), and I presented at NACAC in Denver. Hundreds of people came to hear us speak about what the NAC does, which, for me, was a highlight of my time at the NAC.”


Fifth Annual NAC Thanksgiving Dinner Celebrates Santa Ana Student Revitalization 


(Excerpt from the official press release): SANTA ANA, CA. – NOV. 22– The Nicholas Academic Centers (NAC) held their fifth annual Thanksgiving dinner event last Friday with more than 450 inner-city high school students and their families, celebrating the impressive academic success achieved by NAC participants.
"We have top-ranked, major universities beating down our doors to court our students," said Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM) Co-Founder and former CEO Henry T. Nicholas, III, Ph.D., who founded the NAC in 2008 with retired Superior Court Judge Jack Mandel.  "For those of you who are first generation college students, I admire the bravery it takes to be that path-breaker."
Nicholas, who will match a portion of the funds, added, "You guys are on track to earn $2 million in scholarships, and I will be writing a check at the end of the year for an additional $1 million."