Instructor Spotlight: Tatiana Gill

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Tatiana Gill - Comics & Illustration Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Tatiana Gill - Comics & Illustration Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Tatiana Gill - Comics & Illustration Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Draw Your Story

Artist Tatiana Gill has been sharing her experiences through the medium of comics since the 90s, and is well-versed in both self-publishing her art and working with small publishers to produce her books.

Much of her work focuses on her own personal journey of self-discovery, and has taken the form of collected stories, short graphic novels, and even a compendium of nearly 500 daily diary drawings — all of which demonstrate how uniquely cathartic drawing comics can be as an art form.

In addition to her books, Tatiana has drawn comics for the Seattle Weekly, Capitol Hill Seattle, and more. While she just recently joined the faculty of Seattle Central’s Continuing Education program, she has been teaching classes to adults and children alike around the community for several years.

We asked Tatiana to share more about herself; read on to learn more — and then join her in one of her upcoming classes.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

I currently teach 2 classes: The Business of Comics and Illustrating for Children.

How long have you been teaching?

I’ve been teaching classes on comics around the community for the past 6 years.

What's your educational & professional background?

I have a B.A. from The Evergreen State College focusing on Art and English Literature.

I have been creating self-published comic books since the 1990s, and have books published by Alternative Comics and Éditions çà et là.

In addition to my work in comics, I’ve freelanced in illustration, graphic design, and marketing since the early 2000s.

What other kind of life experience do you have that influences what and how you teach?

Every time I’ve been taught a rule about what one needs to do to succeed in art, I’ve seen someone come along and succeed doing the opposite.

I’ve also noticed that I do my best and most prolific work when I am enjoying myself and not self-criticizing too much.

So when I teach, I try to encourage students to realize their own vision and favorite techniques, and to provide a more optimistic view than what their inner-critic is saying.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

I love to discuss the subjects I am so passionate about with other people who are excited to discuss it.

I also love it when the resources I have found over the years can be shared with others.

Tell us about an inspirational learning moment.

I took a class at Evergreen called “Where No One Has Gone Before” — we studied physics, social studies, art and literature all through the lens of classic Star Trek episodes.

I discovered that learning didn’t have to be a grind — it could be exciting, fun, uplifting and invigorating.

Would you rather have a tiger tail or tiger stripes?

A tiger tail, so I could swish it as I walk down the street! 

Tatiana's Favorites



  • Drawing


  • Crazy on You – Heart

Seattle Restaurant


  • Brussels, Belgium: They have a Tintin museum, lots of waffles, and many lovely and funny sights.

Summer 2017 Registration is Open!

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Share Your Passion

Summer is a wonderful time to explore how creativity can transform both your personal and professional lives.

From delving into an existing passion to learning how to share it with others, our classes this summer will help you find your purpose, innovate in your profession, and give you the tools to build new relationships within your network and community.

Featured Programs

Lifelong Learning

Drawing & Sketching
Hone your fundamental drawing skills through an exploration of both contemporary and traditional artistic styles.

Intuitive Art: Paint for Your Life
New! Discover your unique self-expression using an inspiring blend of dance, writing, movement, painting, and music.

Purpose, Passion & Vision: The Art of Vision Boarding
New! Gain creative insight through the art of vision boarding, writing exercises, brainstorming sessions, 3D goggles, and more.

Watercolor Painting
Pick up foundational watercolor techniques, including analyzing color and infusing your art with ink and graphite.

Professional Development

Build Your Website Quickly with WordPress
Find out why nearly 20% of all websites are built using WordPress in this introductory class. No programming experience required!

Introduction to Data Science Certificate
New! Delve into the field of data science, and learn how its principles, tools, algorithms, and resources can guide your business.

Introduction to Graphic Design
Transform your business materials into professional and eye-catching pieces by using the Adobe suite of design software.

Self Publishing eBooks
Learn how to develop eBooks for your organization, an excellent new method for marketing your products, services, and ideas.

Let’s Start a Conversation

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French Language Classes in Seattle WA
Japanese Conversation & Culture - Level 1 | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Spanish Language Classes in Seattle WA

Language is About More Than Survival

When you’re planning to visit a new part of the world where another language is spoken, it’s essential that you learn at least a few phrases. Some call it a basic survival skill, but we know that it’s much more than that: It gives you the tools you need to start a conversation.

Even if you’re armed with only a few simple phrases, making the effort to learn the native language demonstrates your interest in a particular place and its people. Sure, you may not be able to engage in long discussions about life, the universe, and everything, but you will be able to take the first step in establishing a cross-cultural understanding.

To that end, we currently teach a variety of languages, including French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Spanish. We asked our language instructors to provide us with some translations for a few helpful phrases, which will hopefully guide you in discovering a new language. Check them out below, or download the PDF guide.

And if you’re curious about learning more, begin your journey by checking out all of our available language classes.

French Phrases

  • Hello — Salut
  • Goodbye — Au revoir
  • Please — S’il vous plaît
  • Thank You — Merci
  • Excuse Me — Excusez-moi
  • Where is the restroom? — Où sont les toilettes?
  • Do you speak English? — Parlez vous anglais?
  • How much does this cost? — Combien cela coûte?
  • My name is … — Je m’appelle …
  • I would like … — J’aimerais …

German Phrases

  • Hello — Hallo
  • Goodbye — Auf Wiedersehen
  • Please — Bitte
  • Thank You — Danke
  • Excuse Me — Entschuldigen Sie
  • Where is the restroom? — Wo ist die Toilette?
  • Do you speak English? — Sprichst du Englisch?
  • How much does this cost? — Wieviel kostet das?
  • My name is … — Ich heiße …
  • I would like … — Ich möchte …

Italian Phrases

  • Hello — Ciao
  • Goodbye — Ciao
  • Please — Per favore
  • Thank You — Grazie
  • Excuse Me — Scusami
  • Where is the restroom? — Dov’è il bagno?
  • Do you speak English? — Parli inglese?
  • How much does this cost? — Quanto costa questo?
  • My name is … — Il mio nome è …
  • I would like … — Mi piacerebbe …

Japanese Phrases

  • Hello — こんにちは — Kon’nichiwa
  • Goodbye — さようなら — Sayōnara
  • Please — お願いします — Onegaishimasu
  • Thank You — ありがとう — Arigatō
  • Excuse Me — すみません — Sumimasen
  • Where is the restroom? — お手洗いはどこですか? — O tearai wa dokodesu ka?
  • Do you speak English? — 英語を話せますか? — Eigo o hanasemasu ka?
  • How much is this? — これはいくらですか? — Kore wa ikuradesu ka?
  • My name is … — 私の名前は — Watashinonamaeha …
  • I would like … — をお願いします。– O onegaishimasu …

Spanish Phrases

  • Hello — Hola
  • Goodbye — Adiós
  • Please — Por favor
  • Thank You — Gracias
  • Excuse Me — Disculpe
  • Where is the restroom? — ¿Dónde está el baño?
  • Do you speak English? — ¿Habla usted Inglés?
  • How much does this cost? — ¿Cuánto cuesta esto?
  • My name is … — Me llamo …
  • I would like … — Me gustaría …

Instructor Spotlight: Anthony Ogilvie

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Anthony Ogilvie - Grant Writing Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Anthony Ogilvie - Grant Writing Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Anthony Ogilvie - Grant Writing Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Your Guide to Changing the World

Big ideas and big changes are often accompanied by the need for big financing, and if you’re in the non-profit sector — or want to be — the best way to get that financing is through the world of grants.

But there are a lot of worthy causes competing for the available cash, so how can you ensure that your fabulous idea stands apart?

That’s where an expert like instructor Anthony Ogilvie can help you out. With nearly 40 years of experience in the education and community development worlds, he’s uniquely skilled in guiding students in writing persuasive and effective grant requests, as well as providing insight into how to successfully compete for funding.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

I teach the Certificate in Grantwriting Fundamentals — both the regular series of classes and the intensive workshop.

How long have you been teaching this class?

I’ve been teaching it for about 5 years now.

What's your educational & professional background?

I have a B.A. in Political Science from the UW, and an M.Ed and Ed.D from Seattle University.

My professional experience includes:

  • 2 years teaching high school
  • 9 years as a program administrator at the State Education Education Office
  • 4 – 5 years as a program administrator at Seattle University
  • I’ve taught college/university courses at Seattle Central College, Heritage University, and Antioch University
  • I’ve worked in the private sector as a senior manager of several companies
  • I’ve written scores of proposals and requests for funds generating millions of dollars in grants for education institutions, non-profit organizations, and businesses

What other kind of life experience do you have that influences what and how you teach?

I was fortunate enough to have teachers who were down-to-earth, practical, and engaged in a lot of humor, which has influenced my own teaching and advising style.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

I love being around young people full of energy, hope and wanting to change things for themselves and the community in which they are active.

I also really enjoy the supportive staff and student diversity at the college overall.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

I taught a leadership seminar class for about 7 students and 4 or 5 of the seven went on to earn their doctorates in education and medicine.

Anthony's Favorites


  • I enjoy international intrigue stories by numerous authors


  • Reading
  • Entrepreneurial activities


  • The Shooter, starring Mark Wahlberg, about the US government setting up a veteran to take the fall for the assassination of the president


  • James Brown
  • Doo-wop songs from the 50s and 60s
  • Favorite song: Song for my Father, How Insensitive (Jobim)

Seattle Restaurant


  • Philippines — because I am from there, love the culture, and I speak the language

Knowing the Law is Key to Success in the Cannabis Industry

posted in: Cannabis Institute | 0

To Keep it Legal, Keep it Ethical

Marijuana is enjoying an increase in popularity as states throughout the U.S. decriminalize and legalize its use and possession. Regardless of the fact that 57% of Americans now “think the use of marijuana should be legal,” it is still against federal law and remains listed by the DEA as Schedule I, placing it among drugs considered the most dangerous and without any therapeutic value.

The legal cannabis industry is currently underpinned by a simple written statement from the former Obama Administration, known as the Cole Memo, which outlines the requirements to avoid federal actions — such as keeping it out of the hands of children and organized crime.

However, recent statements from the Trump Administration and Attorney General Jeff Sessions seem to disregard both popular opinion and the democratic process by which legalization has occurred across many states. These reversals have had an understandably chilling effect on the industry as a whole.

So how can you best navigate this uncertain environment? Here are a few tips:

  • Continue to operate in compliance with the Cole Memo
  • Ensure you have a thorough understanding of all state and local laws and regulations
  • Get to know your regulators
  • Participate in all available public hearings as laws and rules are developed & re-assessed in your community
  • Know which of your elected officials support legal cannabis, share your story with them, and support them with your vote
  • Find a credible legal expert who can guide you as local, state, and federal regulations change

To that end, Cannabis Institute instructor and attorney Nicole Li is an exceptional resource. Her Li Law Firm specializes in cannabis law and compliance, and she’s dedicated to helping people become more comfortable and knowledgeable about cannabis law and professional ethics. Nicole also lends her expertise to highlight the racial inequities that have been exacerbated by prohibition-era laws.

“Our country’s marijuana policy is not evidence-based, it is out of step with medical research, and it worsens social disparity through racist enforcement,” Nicole states. “When US Attorney General Jeff Sessions says, ‘Good people don’t smoke marijuana,’ he spreads stigma that reinforces those problems. I have the privilege to be an attorney with degrees in both medical ethics and philosophy to challenge those prejudices. I feel that it’s a moral duty to do so.”

In addition to her law practice, Nicole is the legal advisor for Seattle Central Cannabis Institute’s Medical Marijuana Consultant Certificate Program, as well as the instructor for one of our online CEU classes, Law and Ethics for Medical Marijuana Consultants. If you’re currently a Medical Marijuana Consultant, working in the cannabis industry in another capacity, or are simply interested in gaining more insight into the legal and ethical considerations of this developing industry, Nicole’s 5-hour online course is an excellent resource and highly recommended — especially in the context of these uncertain times.

Travel Like a Native: Djibouti

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Travel Like a Native: Djibouti | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Travel Like a Native: Djibouti | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Travel Like a Native: Djibouti | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Welcomed with a Kiss

A bit larger than the US state of New Jersey and with a population just shy of 1 million, Djibouti is nestled on the Horn of Africa between Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Somalia.

But don’t let its diminutive size fool you: Its location on the Red Sea has made it a transnational shipping powerhouse since basically the invention of shipping lanes.

French instructor Ali Houssein hails from this multi-ethnic country, so we asked him to share his insights into Djiboutian culture and communication styles. If traveling to Africa is on your to-do list, make sure you swing through Djibouti, and travel like a native armed with Ali’s tips.

What is the primary language spoken in Djibouti, and how important is it that a traveler be familiar with it before they visit?

French is important because it’s spoken by everyone and all administrative documents are in French.

Arabic can help you with business and Somali with interacting with the natives.

Knowing basic phrases are enough if you are a tourist.

What are some of the differences in communication style between Djibouti and the US?

  1. Handshakes are replaced with a hand kiss
  2. As a sign of respect, you don’t make eye contact when speaking with your elders

What are some similarities between Djiboutian and American cultures?

  1. Family values, particularly the number of children families generally have
  2. Freedom of religion

What should a traveler keep in mind when they're interacting with Djiboutians?

  • Don’t engage in public displays of affection if you’re with your romantic partner; this kind of interaction is limited to private locations, at home, etc.
  • Don’t talk about politics, as Djibouti doesn’t have freedom of speech protections
  • Take off your shoes before entering anyone’s house, as it’s both a show of respect and also considered hygienic
Travel Like a Native: Djibouti | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

A group of Djiboutian children.

Travel Like a Native: Djibouti | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Ali's must-try cuisine recommendation, Lahoh with Muqmad

What are some common practices around eating food or sharing meals?

Djiboutians often eat with their hands directly, so make sure your hands are clean before your meal!

What is one dish in Djiboutian cuisine that everyone must try?

Lahoh, which is a sourdough flatbread, with Muqmad — camel meat marinated in natural spiced butter.

You eat it for breakfast with a cup of sweet tea. It’s tasty, and it’s a signature dish of my native country.

What are some common misconceptions about Djibouti?

Because of their shared histories, many European countries saw Djiboutians as being proud and independent, even aggressive and hostile.

We’re actually quite welcoming!

When you first traveled to America, what surprised you the most about American culture or traditions? Why?

Hollywood is not America!

Movies and shows on TV project a very different image of the real American people: Not all Americans are tall and violent.

Also, I don’t know if it’s only in Seattle, but Americans drive slow — very slow. It can be a good thing, though.

What should no traveler to Djibouti miss?

  • The Red Sea for scuba diving because of the diverse colorful marine animals (for corals to fish)
  • The desert of Grand Barra for land sailing for the adrenaline of speed
Travel Like a Native: Djibouti | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

When visiting Djibouti, Ali recommends that you make time to dive in the Red Sea

Delve Into Performance Art as Social Practice

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Express Yourself

How can you use art to explore your own identity and social issues?

That’s what instructor Alex Berry focuses on in her Performance Art and Social Practice class. We asked her to share more about what inspired her to teach it and what you’ll learn when you join her.

How long have you been teaching Performance Art and Social Practice?

This is my first time teaching this class for Seattle Central College.

I previously taught this course for the Experimental College at UW in 2015.

What inspired you to teach it?

After finishing my MFA, I had a desire to continue practicing performance art but I also wanted to expose its relatively unknown platform to the general public.

Performance art, as a multidisciplinary medium, allows artists and students to focus on social issues and concepts as the driving force of the work, and present these ideas through the use of the human body.

Who would benefit from taking this class?

Performance art can benefit anyone, whether they are artists or medical practitioners or engineers.

This class is about taking risks outside of your ordinary practice or daily life in order to examine personal interests and pressing social issues.

What has been an inspirational moment that has occurred during this class?

Collaboration between students is always dependent on the individual students of each class.

It’s interesting to see how ideas, communication, and bodies differ, interact, affect and — at times — challenge one another.

Key Takeaways

  1. Gain knowledge of a generally unknown way of communicating ideas and creative pursuits
  2. Learn to collaborate with others using various disciplines such as writing, video art, and installation
  3. Gain an opportunity to explore their own body as a medium for expressing their ideas, without limiting it to strictly dance, movement, or acting

How to Find Your Audience on Social Media

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How to Find Your Audience on Social Media | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Let Your Purpose Guide Your Plan

Guest post by instructor Allison Durazzi

Social media is a fast-changing area of our digital lives, both personally and professionally.

Leaping into new channels can be fun and interesting — those Snapchat filters #amirite? But before you jump into a new channel for your company’s online presence, it’s smart to first determine why you want to communicate, and then do a little research on who’s using which apps.

Here’s how to determine which social media channels are the best places for your limited time and resources.

Why Social Media?

Having a Facebook page just to have one is like building a website just because.

“Just because” may work for personal projects with little to no stakes. Your business, however, needs a reason for claiming digital real estate and asking users to participate.

Social media is a marketing tool, like a website or a brochure. There’s an implied agreement that you will interact with people on social media.

Before you get started, ask yourself, “what is the goal of being on social media?” Understanding your goals will help you determine who you want to reach.

For example, are you trying to position your company as a best-place-to-work employer? Or do you want to expand into retail? These are two very different purposes with distinct audiences, so understanding your priorities is a key element in communicating with the right people.

Who Are You Talking With?

Along with why you’re engaging in social media, you need to be clear on who you are talking to. This is your target audience.

Using the example goals above, your potential employees may be 20-something engineers just out of college. They have no kids, are single, and have a high household income. The people who shop for your product at the supermarket, however, may be 35-year old parents who never graduated from college and have a middle-income household.

Research shows that these two groups use social media differently. Your potential employees are more likely to be on Facebook, while your potential customers will be on Instagram. So knowing which group is your target audience will help you determine the right channel for your social media effort.

Developing a profile for your target audience is easy, but it will take some time. Start by listing what you already know about them. Answer as many of the following as possible for your target audience:

  • Gender
  • Age
  • Income
  • Education level
  • Are they primarily on mobile devices or desktops?
  • Where do they get their news?
  • What websites do they like to visit?
  • Where do they live (city, suburb, rural)?
  • What do they do for a living?
  • Ethnicity

If you don’t know all the above, that’s okay. You can fill in the blanks with free online surveys using tools like Survey Monkey or Google Forms.

Another technique you can try is to search for people on social media. The success of this technique will vary depending on a person’s privacy settings.

If you know a specific customer, look her up on Facebook. Or, you can find people who are fans of a competitor’s Facebook page. Look for what Facebook pages she likes, her ratings and reviews of restaurants and retail stores, and maybe even other info like her college, employer, and interests, to complete your audience profile.

Next Steps

Once you’ve got a good picture of who your audience is and which channels to focus on, you can start putting together your social media plan.

One of our recent students was looking for help with a personal project about offbeat food and drink places in the Pacific Northwest. Some of her additional considerations were the time she could devote to the project (evenings and weekends) and the content she wanted to share (photos and videos). As she developed her social media plan, she eliminated plans to share on Facebook and Snapchat. Instead, she’s focused her primary efforts on Instagram. Over the last year, engagement on her posts has doubled and she continues to build a community of enthusiasts for offbeat dining in the area.

If you’d like to learn more about how you can use social media to promote your personal or professional goals, please join us for our Introduction to Social Media Marketing class.

How Does Your Cannabis Garden Grow?

posted in: Cannabis Institute | 1
How Does Your Cannabis Garden Grow? | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Is it Sticky and Green?

If you’re a medical marijuana patient in Washington state, it should be!

As a patient with a valid recommendation, you can legally grow up to four cannabis plants; but if you’re registered in the state database, you may grow at least six plants and up to a maximum of fifteen plants — based on approval from your healthcare professional.

That’s a lot of green — which can save you a lot of green! — but that’s not the only reason you should consider cultivating your own plants.

For all of the strain varieties available on the recreational marijuana market, it doesn’t come close in scope when compared with the great diversity of genetics available.

Also, being your own gardener means you can better control the end product; not only can you regulate the types of chemicals used to fertilize your cannabis, you can learn to grow without traditional fertilizers by building a good, living substrate.

Even in a small space, such as a closet or in a small grow tent, amateur gardeners can harvest several ounces from each plant after a few weeks. But between planting your first seeds and harvesting your plant, there are a number of steps that you must take to ensure a healthy and bountiful return.

For the patient depending on safe, reliable marijuana, getting it right is key. That’s why the Cannabis Institute at Seattle Central College is busy preparing a ‘Growing Cannabis at Home’ course. This 10-hour online course includes the following, plus a whole lot more:

  • The physiology of the plant
  • How to create an indoor growing space
  • Substrate tips
  • Circulation and light requirements
  • Nutrient options
  • Harvesting and curing 

If you’re interested in learning how to grow your own cannabis, consider signing up for our course! You can join our email list and we’ll let you know when it’s ready.

Learn the Language of the Web in Coding Dojo Bootcamps

posted in: Featured Classes | 0

The New Language of Business

Coding may seem like a little bit of science and a little bit of magic, but it’s actually more similar to learning how to write a recipe in a foreign language. And, instead of you or someone you know making that recipe, your robot friend comes along and does all the work for you.

While the demand for developers is currently outpacing supply and getting into the field is a great career move, even having a basic understanding of different programming languages is fast becoming an essential skill for a wide array of jobs. The more you know about how software is created, the better you’ll be at requesting — and getting! — what you need from your tech team. Even small business owners will be better prepared to consult with tech consultants, and be confident that they’re communicating their ideas effectively,

Coding Dojo has been offering bootcamps in a variety of popular languages since 2012, and they recently partnered with Seattle Central’s Continuing Education program to offer a part-time format for their LAMP and Python bootcamps. These classes are offered at nights and on weekends in order to provide an avenue for professionals to gain these important skills while also working full time.

We asked Coding Dojo’s Kevin Saito to provide us with more insight into the program, who would benefit from taking it, and what kind of experiences other students have had.

How long have you been teaching these classes?

Coding Dojo has been teaching these classes in a full time format for a few years.

LAMP was first taught in 2013 and Python was introduced in 2015.

What inspired you to teach these bootcamps?

LAMP is essentially the language that most of the early web was built on, so its a great foundational language for students.

Python, on the other hand, has been embraced by a number of very prominent tech companies which makes it a compelling addition to our curriculum.

How are these bootcamps different from others that you teach?

The main difference will be the format of the classes.

We normally teach these in a full time program and this will be the first time we offer both of these courses in a part time format.

Who would benefit from taking this class?

Anyone who is interested in getting into web development or works with developers and would benefit from an increased understanding of web development or web technologies.

As many companies require their program and project managers to be more technically fluent, this is a great tool to have.

What has been an inspirational moment that has occurred during this class?

The biggest thing we see is once the light goes on for students they really become a different person.

They talk differently, they carry themselves different, and they tend to be a lot more confident with themselves because they can now do something that they previously couldn’t and, in many cases, actually wondered if they would be able to ever do.

Key Takeaways

  1. A solid understanding of full stack web development
  2. A very solid understanding of web development
  3. The ability to build some pretty compelling web apps by the end of the course

Recommended Resources

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