Alisha Cooksey-El 20336 Caron Circle Carson, California Republic [Viz Pz 90746


Tel: 469 277 7401 E:

Ramon S. Castillo Vice President of Student Services Los Angeles Trade Technical College 400 West Washington Boulevard Los Angeles, Ca, 90015

March 9, 2013

Dear Mr. Castillo, For some time now I have been giving thought to my role with the Associated Student Organization. The A. S. O. has been a source of pride for me in many ways. It also, on occasion, has been a cause of frustration and sometimes plain irritation. As a student I have a uniquely special reason to want the organization to have an effective board. In reflecting on my recent participation as a Commissioner I realize that I have not been approaching the task with quite the same enthusiasm as I once did. I think it is time for me to step aside. It is with regret that I am writing to inform you of my decision to resign my position of Community Outreach Commissioner on the Board of the Associated Student Organization, to be effective immediately. Unfortunately, this means I am unable to continue my work with the A. S. O. I feel that the situation has become somewhat untenable and it is now time to move on. However, I leave feeling satisfied with the standards of my work and behavior. I have thoroughly enjoyed my tenure as a board member over the last school year and I'm thankful for the opportunity to serve. I learned a lot about student government while representing Los Angeles Trade Technical College and I hope that I have contributed successfully to the organization. In leaving the board I have a few thoughts that I would like to pass along to you. At this time I believe that my time and energy could be better directed elsewhere within the school and within Page |1

the community. Though I fully understand the reasons behind the new policies adopted by the executive board, I find them unsatisfactory, and in good conscience I must resign my position. Let me state that I hold no personal animosity toward individual members of the board. When I was asked to take my seat on the Board last semester I came open minded, of independent thought, respecting the need for transparency and accountability and mindful of a promise to place the needs of our students first. In the past several months I have become aware of several open records requests that, in my opinion, have not been dealt with in a diligent and legal manner. I do not understand why there should be such intransigence on the part of the board and administration. As a public entity our school has to be accountable to the representative fee payers of our campus. With that said, the board and administration are also, in my opinion, honor bound to make due on all promises. The public has a right to know how its money is being spent. This organization has had a significant and negative impact on the morale of our campus. To put the problem in the simplest terms, the interests of the students continue to be back-shelved in the way the board operates. Rather, I believe that they are complicit in their oppression. It is my opinion based on discussions with faculty, staff, and students that the board is not trying to protect the interests of students either. According to the student population, “An egotistical President and a school board that doesn’t have a clue are not very encouraging. Our school is going down hill fast! Some students who have lived in this district a long time are enrolling elsewhere. They’re fed up! I’ve never seen it this bad and to top it off the board seems content to sit back and let it happen.” Foremost among the criticism is the belief that the President and the board is not up to the challenge of leading L. A. T. T. C. In its effort to help educate our students L. A. T. T. C. is deserving of better leadership. However, I am extremely disappointed at the failure to have an inclusive Board. We have a two tier Board; an inner circle and the remainder of the Cabinet. One final note: The organization always has prided itself on its emphasis on funding the experimental kind of effort—the new way that might lead to a significant breakthrough. Yet we stick with some ideas for years and years. Are we an ongoing funding agency or are we courageous backers of innovation in the huge field of student problems? The “not invented here” attitude robs an organization of the benefits of new thinking and should be fought at every turn. We have a lot to learn from many sources. We shouldn’t tolerate a fortress mentality. In my opinion, our board is legally liable for the actions of its direct administration and is placed in a precarious position because of such. I believed, mistakenly, that our current president was up to the challenge of leading our Board in the effort to help educate our students in this challenging world. However, I continue to hold the highest regard for the organization’s goals. Page |2

I will be taking on the role of primary caregiver to my terminally ill uncle and I have started shadowing my new position as the Vice President of the Black Caucus of the California Community Colleges. If not for the opportunity with the Black Caucus, I would have enjoyed staying in the position I was offered. I believe that this will help advance my career in the long term. But since I feel my studies are more important than this position, because my future lies on that degree, I need to take leave. So by considering my future life, for attending the internships I resign my position. If I can be of any assistance during the time it will take to fill the position, please don't hesitate to ask. I am offering to aid in the transition, to help train my replacement. I am currently getting all my files up to date and my current projects completed before I leave. I am available to discuss any questions about the work I have been doing. I will be happy to accommodate administration with an exit interview. My decision to resign is a personal choice based on my professional beliefs and spiritual convictions. I have prayed about the decision for a period of time and I have a peace about it. I would ask that you respect my choice as I respect your choice to disagree with me on this issue. Thank you for your support and understanding. I regret any inconvenience my resignation may cause. I wish the best for our community and my alma mater and that of our students. Respectfully Yours,

Alisha Cooksey-El


Community Outreach Commissioner

Cc: Dr. Roland “Chip” Chapdelaine, President Luis Dorado, Assistant Dean of Student Activities/ A.S.O. Advisor

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