Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

Gonzales fills in

Taking over the Journalism (JOUR) 120 Communications Reporting and Writing class for senior professor John Francis, who is currently on leave for medical reasons and is much anticipated to return in May, is the charismatic and youthful Adam Gonzales.

Although this will be Gonzales’ first year instructing at Rio Hondo, it is not his first either teaching or even stepping onto the Roadrunner campus. Gonzales has been a coach for the Forensics Speech and Debate team since 2005, working with students in winning championships and developing their public speaking and debate skills. As a coach, Gonzales boasts an impressive wealth of experience in speech and debate since his community college days, during which he received a scholarship because of his astounding performance on his college team.

That scholarship was offered to him by Illinois State, where he earned his B.A. in science and mass communications, and began a subsequent landslide that lead Gonzales to eventually attend college in Iowa to hunt down his M.A. in arts in communications. Over the course of the past decade, Gonzales has embellished his impressive record with a multitude of awards with his public speaking abilities, as well as earned the scarce opportunity of working with various high-ranking national forensic programs throughout the U.S.

His first chance to work as a professor came as a job offer from Mt. Sac under a one-year contract. From there he juggled eloquently teaching and competing, all the while increasing his already vast knowledge in the art and science of rhetoric.

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In the classroom, Gonzales is relaxed and composed. Interacting with students in a way very few professors know how—because of his age, the 31-year-old is able to treat students with the maturity expected of their age. He instills in them a desire and determination to truly write and speak to improve their skills in both areas.

Which is fittingly a lesson Gonzales was taught by an instructor he had in his college days; his Principle used to give him rides home, and during one of these rides he gave Gonzales a keychain with the words, “Whatever it takes” engraved on it.

Since then he has lived up to that motto. On his description page on the Rio Hondo and Forensic Speech and Debate website, Gonzales states humorously, “With a bit of Mid-West charm and a friendly Southern Californian disregard for modesty, Adam serves as a living example of community college success.” It is that success that Gonzales strives to give each and every one of his students the opportunity to achieve.

To him, the most rewarding and enriching perks of working with students, both those in his new class and the ones on his speech ad debate teams, is “seeing students win tournaments and getting them to transfer, just creating and developing long lasting relationships with students over the years.” Gonzales attributes much of his success to his past coaches and professors, men and woman who not only honed his abilities inside the classroom, but also worked with him to find job opportunities that have put him in the position he now finds himself.

His goal has remained over the years to help students with the rest of their career, in aiding them in whatever way he can the same way it was done for him.

As stated in the final sentences of his self-typed, third person point of view, extremely humble description of him, Gonzales writes simply, “Adam’s higher education started in community college. Now he is back. Repaying the system that has changed his life for the better.”

Gonzales will no doubt bring to the students of the class he is covering a remarkably in-depth and singularly valuable experience, offering more than just knowledge but real-life opportunities to apply their learning in the field.

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