Peralta Community College District's Only Student-Run Publication
Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

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Inside our newsroom: Christy

I am 48 years old, I am a community college student, I am a staff writer and the photo editor of my college newspaper and I am not a plant.

This piece is part of a series that members of the Citizen staff wrote to share our stories and in response to comments that Trustee Linda Handy recently made about our newsroom.

~~~

I’ve lived a life filled with ups, downs and unfulfilled dreams. Time and again, just as I got up and on a roll in life, something inevitably would change my circumstance and I would have to forego my dreams in lieu of survival. Whether that was the abuses I suffered at home, becoming a teen mother or marrying an abusive man and divorcing him 13 years later, something always happened to get in the way of finishing school. In 2016, something finally happened that changed my life for the better: I got fired from my position in the federal government after nearly 14 years. 

This was for the better? 

Yes. It got me thinking about my dreams again. It got me passionate about things in ways that I couldn’t be while working for the federal government. I couldn’t hide behind a desk anymore. That year I traveled across the country from Oakland, CA to the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, PA in a caravan dubbed “Journey for Bernie.” I marched in the streets with a rag-tag group of “Revolutionaries” for a week in sweltering heat, holding on to the belief that fighting for good could change the world. A few months later I flew into Bismarck, ND to bear witness to the atrocities that mercenaries and local, state and federal governments were committing against United States citizens. I stood in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in the fight against what is now considered an illegally built pipeline. 

Both of these experiences sparked a few passions inside of me: Photography, activism and independent journalism. In the spring of 2019, I signed up for school because I could not afford to make payments on my predatory student loans and being enrolled would defer them. I began part-time as a photography major. My first semester was two photography courses and an anthropology course. The next semester I added photojournalism. For my final assignment in that class, I covered the Indigenous People’s Sunrise Ceremony on Alcatraz Island. Not only did I get an “A” on the assignment, but the piece was also picked up by an independent publication, the Panther Times

This led to my role as photo editor and staff writer on The Citizen. This is my second semester on staff. 

At the Peralta Board of Trustees meeting held via Zoom on October 13, 2020, Trustee Linda Handy had some disparaging words to say about the student journalists of The Citizen, namely that she was disappointed to see adults posturing questions — instead of students — to candidates vying for seats on the board. 

I am not sure what Ms. Handy deems the average college student’s age to be, but her comment disconnected her from the diverse student body she is supposed to represent. I am 48 years old, I am a community college student, I am a staff writer and the photo editor of my college newspaper and I am not a plant. Additionally, my opinions about board of trustees candidates have not been forced upon me by my advisor, Eleni Gastis, as Ms. Handy also implied. To be honest, I really had no interest in the Peralta board previously. But Trustee Handy has piqued my interest. I am going to be keeping a close eye on the board to ensure all members are held accountable for their words and actions.

~~~

Here are some photos that led me here:

Dr. Cornell West leads the “March For Our Lives” in Philadelphia, Penn. on July 25, 2016 during the Democratic National Convention. (Christy Price/The Citizen)
An interview of a panel of Elders and camp leaders takes place on “Facebook Hill” overlooking Oceti Sakowin camp on November 26, 2016. (Christy Price/The Citizen)
Snow covers the Oceti Sakowin camp after a storm passes through North Dakota on November 26, 2016. Many campers found shelter at the nearby casino. (Christy Price/The Citizen)

 

 

About the Contributor
Christy Price
Christy Price, Photo Editor
Christy Price is a Photographer and Activist who was born in the Central Valley of California, raised in New York and Texas. After giving birth to her first daughter at the age of 17 in Ft. Worth, TX she moved back to California where she attended Fresno City College and wrote for the school’s newspaper, The Rampage. She married at the age of 24 and had her second daughter a couple years later. After a 14-year career as a secretary at the Internal Revenue Service, Christy switched gears and began working in the growing Cannabis industry. In her down time, she traveled cross country to document the 2016 Democratic National Convention and later that year went to Standing Rock. Her thinking about the dynamics of the way this world works changed with her experiences at Standing Rock and she vowed to do what she could to be the change she wanted to see. Christy returned to school in Spring of 2019. She decided to major in something she already enjoyed and settled on Photography. Wanting to make an impact with her photographs she decided to try her hand at Photojournalism. During that class she covered the Indigenous People’s Sunrise Ceremony on Alcatraz. The coverage was published in the Panther Times. Being published sparked a fire inside of her that helped guide her to her new position as Photo Editor of The Citizen.
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