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Santa Monica College|Administration & College Governance|Marketing|Events|SMC Public Policy Institute

SMC Public Policy Institute

Richard Tahvildaran-Jesswein 

Santa Monica College’s interdisciplinary, innovative Public Policy Institute provides nonpartisan community programs exploring key economic, social, and political issues. The Institute offers FREE, informative discussions on the policy issues that affect our daily lives.

Founded by LA County Supervisor and former California State Senator Sheila Kuehl and SMC political science professor Richard Tahvildaran-Jesswein (former Chair of Excellence, Philosophy & Social Science), the Institute is currently led by co-directors Tahvildaran-Jesswein and SMC political science instructor Shari Davis (who also chairs Community for Excellent Public Schools).

Several programs and topical discussions are planned for Fall 2016, including panels and community discussions. Details were not confirmed at press time. ​

Please visit the Public Policy Institute website for up-to-date information. To receive invitations to our events, please send an please send email to and request to be added to the Institute’s mailing list.

Annual Fall Arts & Cultural Affairs Symposium

November 17-December 4, 2016


Art—Advocacy—Activism: Hidden Hunger Amid Urban Struggles

Join us for a talk and performances that highlight the importance of the visual and performing arts in—and to—our society, how expression through the arts can influence ideas and change perceptions, and how community advocacy can contribute to public policies that support the arts. Details on our keynote address and speaker were not conformed at press time. Please visit the Public Policy Institute website for up-to-date symposium details.


Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker Ballet

The SMC Symphony and SMC student dancers partner once again with the Westside Ballet for its annual holiday Nutcracker extravaganza. Come see the Sugar Plum Fairy, the Prince, and all the other wonderful characters in Tchaikovsky’s classic come to life—with falling snow and a Christmas tree that grows—in a theater where every seat provides visual and audio delights for all ages. Produced with support from Santa Monica College, the SMC Public Policy Institute, Associated Students of SMC, and the City of Santa Monica. Please visit for information and to purchase tickets. Preview tickets, limited to members of the Associated Students of SMC and their families, are available in the AS Office (Cayton Center 202).

Preview for AS Members: Fri, November 25 | 7pm

Sat, November 26 | 1pm & 5pm

Sun, November 27 | 1pm & 5pm

Fri, December 2 | 7pm

Sat, December 3 | 1pm & 5pm

Sun, December 4 | 1pm & 5pm

See Westside School of Ballet for ticket details

The Broad Stage at SMC Performing Arts Center

See the Public Policy Institute website or call (310) 434-3541 for more information.

Sponsored by the SMC Associates.

Santa Monica College, 1900 Pico Boulevard, Santa Monica, CA 90405