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This week: Join the Santa Monica League of Women Voters for a forum on higher education. Next week: Join Santa Monica Next for a happy hour mixer with Gehl Architects on Wednesday, then celebrate “A Pathless Land” with Beautify Earth on Saturday.

The Future of Higher Education in California

Public higher education in California is at a crossroads,” said Eleanor Yick, League of Women Voters Education Fund State Committee Chair. “Almost daily, there are news articles about public higher education and the need for reform in terms of accessibility.”

These are the issues that will be in the spotlight on March 7 at Santa Monica College during the League of Women Voters of Santa Monica’s forum on higher education, which will feature a panel of students discussing their experience in public higher education.

The event also marks the start of a year-long study by LWVSM and other California branches of the organization.

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The purpose of this study is to examine access to higher education in California. In shaping the scope of our study, (the LWVEF Study Committee has) expanded the concept of access to include funding, affordability, preparedness, equity, and barriers and opportunities,” said forum moderator Louise Jaffe, a member of the State Study Committee and a Santa Monica College Trustee.

Santa Monica College recently grabbed headlines when it announced it would be one of a handful of community colleges in California to participate in a bachelor degree pilot program.

The forum will be held at the Santa Monica College Main Campus, Business Building Room B111 at 11 a.m. on Saturday, March 7. A light lunch will be provided. Please R.S.V.P. to Pr[email protected]. The Main Campus is accessible by public transportation on Big Blue Bus Lines 7, Rapid 7, and 8.

Urbanism + Placemaking Happy Hour with Gehl

Join Santa Monica Next for an urbanism + placemaking happy hour on Wednesday, March 11, with Gehl Architects from 6 to 8 p.m.

Gehl Architects will be in town for the West Coast Urban District Forum, hosted this year in Downtown Santa Monica. Santa Monica Next’s happy hour will follow a panel, featuring Gehl Architects, titled, “Place and Spaces: How to Properly Activate and Manage Public Spaces.”

We’ll get together to continue the conversation at 1640 5th St., Santa Monica, 90401. Join us for some drinks and snacks.

A Pathless LandBeautify Earth: A Pathless Land

Beautify Earth presents “A Pathless Land,” a fine art exhibition by Irish-born artist Eoin Colgan, on Saturday, March 14. Tickets are available here.

“A Pathless Land” starts at 7 p.m. at Cross Campus in Santa Monica (929 Colorado Ave, Santa Monica, Ca 90401) and includes an open bar, live music, live dance and poetry performances. The event also includes a chance to vote on Beautify Earth’s next mural.

The event description reads, “Come celebrate our cherished home, the sacred Earth beneath our feet! Come rejoice in universal ratios shared throughout space and time. Let us dive into the wonder of timeless truths – into the mystery of our nature, to a sentiment from which we proceed.”

“Ticket sales go to Beautify Earth to cover the event cost. Art exhibition sales will go to the artist, with a percentage of the proceeds going to support future Beautify Earth local murals,” according to the event description.