The Summer Heat is Here! Stay Cool!

 

Good morning Bakersfield…. it is Sunday June 25, 2017 …I enjoyed waking up in my bed at home this morning, taking Neo out and feeling the 72 degree temperatures at 3:30 a.m., loving life.  This week has been exhausting with a lot of travel…time on the road and time in planes.  Bakersfield – LAX – Portland, OR – Eugene, OR – back to Portland – then a red-eye to Ft. Lauderdale, FL – back to LAX – finally home sweet home.   During all my travels, I wore my Renegade t-shirts and sweatshirts.  Proud to be a Renegade!

Weather_WidgetAre you keeping track of our weather this past week? It’s undeniably hot in Bakersfield and the LA Times posted an article on Wednesday, “California sees some of the highest temperatures ever recorded amid heat wave.”

Did you know you can beat the heat at the BC pool? It’s open for public swim, water aerobics, swimming lessons, and family swim. For hours, details, and lesson schedules, visit the BC website! What are your favorite ways to escape the heat or stay cool?

Firefighter Graduation

Speaking of the heat… it’s fire season, so I’m proud to celebrate the recent Firefighter graduates!!

On June 14th, we celebrated the Olive Drive Fire Training Facility Graduation inside our indoor theater. The Olive Drive Fire Training Facility and its staff are dedicated to train the men and women in the Bakersfield community who have chosen the fire service as a career or voluntary service. The people graduating this year have made a commitment to protect the citizens of Bakersfield and Kern County from the ravages of fire and other life or property threatening emergencies.

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Firefighting is both an art and a science; to be successful requires education, experience, and motivation. This graduation marks the end of a twenty-five week basic fire academy and the beginning of a challenging and rewarding career; one which will require many more days of training in the field and in the classroom. Congratulations to all the graduates.

I can always count on BC’s Mary Jo Pasek to have great photos on her Facebook. The theater was packed!

https://www.facebook.com/mary.pasek/posts/10209594653483294

 Chancellor’s Cabinet

On Monday and Tuesday the senior level administrators across the Kern Community College District met at the Padre in retreat, to come together as a team and plan for the next year.  There are many new faces in senior leadership including the Chancellor, Tom Burke.

Tom Burke, Arlitha , Rosa Carlson

Tom Burke, Arlitha Harmon, Rosa Carlson

Nan and Bill Henry

Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, Bill Henry

It was a great opportunity to connect with our counterparts and colleagues from across this huge district. It was clear from the first day that we have a lot in common. Regardless of the role, from Vice President to Vice Chancellor, General Counsel, President and Chancellor, everyone is committed to serving students and to supporting them reaching their educational goals.

Chris Hine and Gary Moser

Chris Hine and Gary Moser

John Means, Jill Board, Eric Middkested

John Means, Jill Board, Eric Middlestead

Kern Community College District (KCCD) serves communities over a region of 24,800 square miles in parts of Kern, Tulare, Inyo, Mono, and San Bernardino counties through the programs of Bakersfield College, Cerro Coso College and Porterville College. Governed by a locally elected Board of Trustees, the district’s colleges offer programs and services that develop student potential and create opportunities for our citizens.

Cory Marvin and Don Chrusciel

Cory Marvin and Don Chrusciel

Lisa Couch Heather Ostrach

Lisa Couch, Heather Ostrach

KCCD is geographically one of the largest community college districts in the United States. Our students represent a diversity of religions, economic backgrounds, sexual orientations, abilities, and ethnicities.

While the Kern Community College District was established as a separate entity in 1968 to respond to the changing needs of our communities, educational services have been provided to residents for many years: at Bakersfield College since 1913; at Porterville College since 1927; and in the Ridgecrest area since 1951 by what is now Cerro Coso College. All three colleges are proud members of the California Community College System and are accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Val Garcia and Debbie Martin

Val Garcia and Debbie Martin

 

Tonya and Zav

Tonya Davis, Zav Dadabhoy

Today, education centers and sites in Delano, downtown Bakersfield, the Mammoth/ Bishop area, Edwards Air Force, and the Kern River Valley offer additional convenient, localized instruction for thousands of residents. KCCD’s commitment to distance learning and other technological advances is creating increasing opportunities for education through the internet, satellite, and cable television to individuals across our broad service area and beyond.

Annual BCSGA President Brunch

I blogged about the SGA leadership in my last blog.  Here it is again.  I just love the photos.

Collage

And I saw on Instagram that the leaders of BCSGA are settling in to their offices. I love how Dezi says, “yes Renegades, BCSGA is in office, need something? Let us know!”

Instagram

It’s Possible!

The Office of Outreach & School Relations hosted its first summer It’s Possible registration event on Tuesday. This is a reoccurring event for students to come to our campus and complete all enrollment steps in just one day. From application to registration, BC’s incredible staff from various departments on campus collaborated in making this event happen for our community. The summer heat was no barrier for students pursuing their educational goals as 116 students participated in the event, with approximately 75% of those being new students.

Its Possible3A special thanks to the Events Scheduling team, Maintenance and Operations, Food Services, The Office Student Success & Equity, Counseling staff, Admissions & Records, EOPS/Cal SOAP, and Office of Student Life!

The week of travels

The most interesting part of my travels this week was the changing temperatures and the time of sunrise and sunset.  Check it out–

Portland at 45 degrees latitude North (sunrise 5:24 a.m.; sunset 9:04 p.m.; low temp 59 degrees; high temp 75 degrees)

Bakersfield at 35 degrees latitude North (sunrise 5:43 a.m.; sunset 8:43 p.m; low temp 72 degrees; high temp 105 degrees)

Fort Lauderdale at 26 degrees latitude North (sunrise 6:30 a.m.; sunset 8:16 p.m.; low temp 80 degrees; high temp 84 degrees)

Oregon

Given the temperatures in Oregon, you can see why I needed my sweatshirt for part of the day.

During my one day in Eugene, I connected with my buddy Ken Murdoff and his chocolate-colored Lab Woody.

Check out Woody swimming last year in my July 3, 2016 blog at
https://sonyachristianblog.com/2016/07/03/daily-inspiration-from-all-things-bc/

Woody is the best natured dog ever.  Talking about Woody — my inspiration for getting Neo — let me give you my weekly Neo update.

I felt like I left a puppy to start my travels and got back to find a dog.  At 10 weeks he was 19 lbs; now at about 13 weeks he weighs in at 30 lbs.

June 25 2017 Sonya and Neo

June 25 2017 Neo.JPG

Neo on June 25, 2017 at 30 lbs

Neo discovering stairs

 

Florida

The AACC Pathways Institute #5 was in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  Hard to imagine we have just one more institute to go and then we are done with the program.  BC was one of the 30 colleges selected to be part of the 3-year Guided Pathways cohort.  Great work with great colleagues.  We had a 6-member BC team attend: Lesley Bonds, Director of Student Success and Equity; Cindy Collier, Dean of CTE and Allied Health; Grace Commiso, Dean of Counseling and Student Success; Craig Hayward, Institutional Researcher; Mark Osea, Faculty Chair of Counseling; and Steve Watkin, Director of Outreach.  Here are some photos from Florida.

BC Team at Ft. Lauderdale June 23 2017.JPG

Mark Osea, Grace Commiso, Cindy Collier, Sonya Christian, Lesley Bonds, Craig Hayward, Steve Watkin

 

Team at dinner on June 22, 2017

BC gang dinner june 22 2017.jpeg

Grace Commiso and Lesley Bonds are two of the leads for our Guided Pathways work at Bakersfield College.  Talented, smart, dedicated, and beautiful.  I am the luckiest and happiest college president ever.

Grace Commiso Lesley Bonds June 23 2017

Grace Commiso, Lesley Bonds

Sonya Christian, Grace Commiso, Craig Hayward, Lesley Bonds at dinner right by the Ocean.  Fun conversation that ranged from work and data (what do you get when you have Craig Hayward at dinner with you) to dogs and movies.

BC Team at dinner June 23 2017

Sonya Christian, Grace Commiso, Craig Hayward, Lesley Bonds

Here is Bilbo the 5-lb yorkie who apparently makes the move shown in the picture when he wants Craig to scratch his belly.

Bilbo the Yorkie 5 lbs

Here is Rocky at 3 months with Joey Commiso

Rocky at 3 months with Joey Commiso

And here is Blue, the only Australian Shepherd that I know with an instagram account

Blue

 

 

We also talked about movies and so here is Misty Mountain Cold from the Hobbit.

Wish I had snapped a picture of the group with the Atlantic behind us.  Oh well….  Instead, here is a picture from Cindy Collier’s room on Facebook.

Sunrise from Cindy Collier's Facebook

 

An interesting tidbit:

When landing in LAX from Portland the captain announced that the largest passenger aircraft ever made was on the runway about to take off.  So the passengers were all peering out of their windows in awe as they watched.

Here is a youtube clip of this double-decker taking off

and landing

From wikipedia:

The Airbus A380 is a double-deck, wide-body, four-engine jet airliner manufactured by European manufacturer AirbusIt is the world’s largest passenger airliner, and the airports at which it operates have upgraded facilities to accommodate it. It was initially named Airbus A3XX and designed to challenge Boeing‘s monopoly in the large-aircraft market. The A380 made its first flight on 27 April 2005 and entered commercial service on 25 October 2007 with Singapore Airlines. An improved version, the A380plus, is under development.

Ken Burdick

My friend Arlene Braganza texted me photos of Ken Burdick as Jesus Christ in Jesus Christ Superstar last night at Ovation Theatre. It looks like a brilliant show and I’m always proud to see the talent of BC’s chamber singers. For show photos and to see the cast, visit https://theovationtheatre.com/jesus-christ-superstar/

Griffith Field

Have you seen that Bakersfield High School’s historic Griffith Field is set to finish its renovations shortly? After seeing this news on Kern Radio, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the BC’s tradition of excellence at Griffith, where it all started and where we hosted all of our home football games from the stadium’s opening in 1923 until moving to our campus on the hill in the 1950s.

The Renegade football team had been dominant even before the campus moved to Panorama, winning a national championship in 1953 and selling out Griffith Field. Because of this, the development of Memorial Stadium and the Panorama campus was needed to meet the needs of the community. This story can be seen in an article in the April 2006 Bakersfield College Archives Newsletter.

District Superintendent Ralph Prator even appointed BHS Athletic Director J.B. “Cap” Haralson to coordinate the construction of Memorial Stadium, which hosted 16,500 people for the Renegades’ first home game against Pasadena City College, the largest crowd to ever watch a junior college game at that time. Griffith Field was part of the legacies of legends like NFL Hall of Famer Frank Gifford, who played for BC and BHS in the 1940s, and “Jack” Frost, BC head football coach from 1934 to 1952 whose name lives on in the Jack Frost Football League for young athletes in Kern County.

As this stadium remodeling turns the page to a new chapter in Drillers’ history, Griffith Field will always remain at the heart of Renegade history.

 BCFootball1949

Student Services at BC!

In last weeks blog, I highlighted various academic support services available during the summer semester and it was great to hear from

lawrence-salcido_-pic5Lawrence Salcido, Jr in the comments. Lawrence is an active member of BC’s Student Government, peer tutor, and he mentioned that in addition to the services I mentioned, the library is a great source of help for students with knowledgeable staff and workshops too! It’s true. BC is an incredible place of learning, support, hope, and education.

Speaking of support and hope, have you heard of BC’s EOP&S Department? The Extended Opportunity Programs and Services is a state-funded support program designed to provide academic support, financial assistance and encouragement for eligible, financially disadvantaged, and academically underprepared students. The goal is to help eligible students meet their educational objectives, whether they seek occupational certificates, associate degrees, or transfer to four-year institutions.

Students that participate in EOP&S receive the personalized support from registration to tutoring, and counseling and services, such as book vouchers, grants, and university campus tours. The EOP&S Office is located in the Student Services Building, Second Floor (Adjacent to the Financial Aid Office). To contact them by phone, call (661) 395-4351 or visit the website at www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/student/eops/eops It’s important that students are aware and take full advantage of all the services that BC has to offer.

And students, it’s vital that you allow BC’s team to work for you and enable you to put your mind towards the things that matter most, your education!

BC at the Online Teaching Conference with Eloy Oakley

I loved this picture of Chancellor Eloy Oakley with BC’s Bill Moseley and Matt Jones at the 2017 Online Teaching Conference in Anaheim, CA. The official website explains, “The Online Teaching Conference, which began over 15 years ago, is an event for faculty, staff and administrators who are engaged or interested in online education, including delivery of online services, emerging technologies, student success, library and technical support. In addition to learning, this conference is a great opportunity for educators to spend two or three days with colleagues, share knowledge, impart and receive best practices, and learn from other’s experiences.”

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Matt JOnes, Eloy Oakley, Bill Moseley

Summer Bridge video by Theresa McAllister

Sonya Christian 2 cropped June 21 2017

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Week One of the Summer Semester!

Lily June 16 2017

Calla Lily. June 17 2017

Good morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, June 17, 2017 and a wonderful day to be a Renegade.

Here’s this year’s garden Calla Lily for you.

You can see last year’s on my June 4, 2016 blog post: https://sonyachristianblog.com/2016/06/04/a-community-together/ .

A typical summer week at Bakersfield College — several department retreats where employees get to evaluate last year and then plan for 2017-2018, BC’s incredible Summer Bridge program, and then an underground line from our chiller tanks broke causing the air conditioning to go out.

We had several events planned on campus including Summer Bridge for High School students entering as freshman in Fall 2017 and a high school basketball camp that is hosted by Coach Rich Hughes.  Imaging 200 high school students playing basketball in our gym with no air conditioning and the  temperature forecast to spike to 100 degrees.  Our BC facilities and maintenance group went into action immediately, with alternate plans getting large coolers in the gym so that the event could continue without disruption.

Here is a picture Kimberly Bligh snapped of the Summer Bridge event as they dealt with changes in their plans with the air conditioning down and the high expected to be 96 degrees.

June 16 2017 Summer Bridge

And then our Athletics Director Sandi Taylor, who was worried about the heat in the gym sent me this photo

2017 Summer High School Showcase June 16 2017

This is the email I received from Bill Potter.  BC’s M&O staff rock!  Do you see why I am the luckiest and happiest college president ever…

BillPotter_Sonya

Bill Potter

We have been able to isolate the broken water line to only 4 buildings on campus. We are still working to uncover the lines and see the extent of the damage before we can determine how long the repair will take.  Until the repairs can be made these buildings will not have Air Conditioning.

  1. Business Services/Bookstore
  2. LA Building
  3. Forums
  4. Gymnasium
  • Air Conditioning is being restored to the remainder of the campus and all scheduled activities will not be affected.
  • We rented 4 portable swamp coolers and paced them in the Gym for the Basketball Tournament. Coach Hughes has been informed throughout the entire process.
  • I will send another update when we have a timeline for repairs. Our plumbing contractor has assured us they can stay onsite until repairs can be made.  We will do our best to get it restored over the weekend so we can resume Monday morning as normal.

The following team members played an important role in keeping us going today:

Bill Garrett, Landon Webb, Tim Hernandez, Aaron Kidwell, Martin Ramirez, Dennis Spencer, Frank Tinoco, Gilbert Merjil, Jason Brown, David Branson, Dalia Garcia

The rest of the M&O team picked up the slack and kept the campus functioning and other project going.

It was a great team effort.

I love this picture with Charlie, Bill Potter’s son (see below).  This is how we roll at BC.  I remember for Measure J, employees brought out their families to 1675 Chester, our campaign headquarters, to help with phone banking, precinct walking and all other campaign chores. A whole family endeavor.  #WeAreBC!

Thank you to the plumbers from J Noble Binns to helping us fix this major issue that resulted in us shutting down the air conditioning system

So thank you for passing Measure J.  
BC absolutely needs to upgrade its 60-year-old facilities and infrastructure.

sonya-christian-measure-j-oct-1-2016

Neo

Neo June 15 2017 at 8 30 pm

Sonya Christian and Neo June 10 2017

 

I continue to be distracted by Neo’s new mannerisms and pranks. He is sweet, smart and learning fast, but he can be fierce with toys and petunias… In three weeks, he has gone from 10 lbs to 24 lbs.  You see him here being sweet while he plays with me and then his stubborn streak sets in when I am attempting to get his attention at 8:30 p.m. to come in and he just sits by the pool and calmly looks at me without budging an inch.  But I must confess that the Golden Retriever sweetness emerges again and he relents and comes in.

The only reason friends now ping me is to discuss the latest and greatest with Neo.  Here is a sample.

Set 1:

Friend: Were you up at 5:00 a.m. to let Neo out for a potty break.

Me: Lol. That was at 3:20 a.m.

Friend: You need a doggy door.

Set 2:

Friend: Is it true that you have to chase Neo around in the wee hours of the morning in damp grass to get back inside the house after he goes potty outside?

Me: emoji of laughter with tears

Friend: And isn’t it true that he will sit and wait for you to get near him, and after  you give chase, just to get up and run away again….and he will do this repeatedly?

 

Enough about Neo.

BC produces leaders

What a powerful picture of leadership!

BCSGA Presidents with Nicky Damania June 16 2017

President Matthew Frazer, President Dezi Von Manos, President Alex Dominguez, President Clayton Fowler, Dr. Nicky Damania

Loved receiving this photo from Dr. Nicky Damania who hosts an annual dinner which he cooks at his house with all the previous presidents of the Bakersfield College Student Government Association (BCSGA).

 

The group met and reminisced about their years while giving advice to the incoming president.

President Alex Dominguez, 2014-15, is going to the University of Mississippi for law school.

President Clayton Fowler, 2015-2016, will finish his Political Science and Public Service degrees is at UC Davis.

President Matthew Frazer, 2016-17 will be starting at CSUB in Political Science.

President Dezi Von Manos, 2017-18, is working on a double degree in Criminal Justice and Communication.

And Dr. Nicky Damania, Director of Student Life, is starting his fourth year at Bakersfield College and is excited for the next year of student leaders

Start of Summer School

On Monday morning, campus felt alive with energy. Students filled the halls in preparation for the first day of summer class and the Welcome Center was full of student activities. The first day of class is always exciting because it marks another new step in the educational journey towards completion. The week, however, was just as exciting for faculty who welcomed new students into their classes and for BC’s Administration, who came together to plan, strategize, and work on the future of BC and student success.

It’s always great to see students on campus and I loved this photo on Instagram!

Instagram

Admin Council Retreat

The Admin Council at BC is BC’s entire management team. Administrative Council is a forum for communication on issues and trends affecting Bakersfield College, and communicates directly with the president. Each summer, we gather for retreats which help us recap our accomplishments so far, but more importantly work on our plans for moving the college forward.

17admincouncil02_resized

Earl Parsons and Manny De Los Santos took the group photos and luckily the weather on Tuesday was not too hot to be outside. Group photography always presents a unique set of challenges, but I think the photo turned out great. Earl later said in an email, “it’s an honor that I am trusted to capture all kinds of important moments for such a historic and life-changing institution as Bakersfield College.”  What a great team of people we have at BC! Can you see why I’m the happiest and luckiest college president ever?

AdminRetreat-(9)

Sonya Christian addressing the management team

When I walked in the second day of the retreat, there was our new manager Zach Quiroz tapping the ivories on the piano.  Just beautiful!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There was great panel discussion that left the group with practical take-aways and tools they can use to manage their roles while also creating urgency to implement and improve strategies that work.

Lesley Bonds moderated a fantastic panel which included Tom Gelder on strategic thinking and clarity on priorities, Jennifer Aachan on action orientated communication, Shanell Tyus on clarity in decision making, and Alyse Braaten on starting on the right path and communication.

Team 2

Alyse Braaten, Shanell Tyus, Tom Gelder, Lesley Bonds

They shared “8 Things Really Efficient People Do” which is an article by @KevinJDaum. The author points out that focus is vital in his first point that suggests we should stop multitasking. The article goes on to discuss proper planning, appropriate communication, and delegating items that others can do better than we can, especially given our workload. It was a beneficial discussion as we all have the goal to be able to achieve our objectives in record time at BC.

Jennifer Marden, Liz Rozell, and Eric Sabella led a session on recognizing stressors in our lives in order to cope with them,  staying well.  Both Liz Rozell and Eric Sabella did a deep dive when they presented their personal stories, the stressors in their lives and how they cope.  They were open in their descriptions, smart in their thinking and sensitive in their delivery.  Have I told you recently that I am the luckiest and happiest college president…..I get to work with these amazing individuals every day.

Team 1.JPG

Here is an excerpt from Jennfier Marden’s opening comments:

As the spring semester came to a close, Sonya and I started talking about the various retreats.  Of course at that time there was a lot of energy at BC centered around the Leadership Matters Summit: Reimagining Leadership to Sustain Transformative Change to Advance Student Success & Equity.  The website describes the summit as “three sessions immersed in the theory and practice of change, how to navigate change, how to lead change, how to deal with the friction points, conflicts that arise due to change and above all how to sustain change.”

Sonya and I talked about the amount of change the college is undergoing—from Curriculum to Facilities.  In particular, those of us in this room, the 65 people that comprise the management team of BC, have experienced a substantial amount of change this past academic year.

This seems like a good time to pause and to celebrate the resiliency of the Bakersfield College management team in accomplishing so many things 2016-17!!

From this conversation, and true to form, Sonya asked me to get a team together to facilitate this discussion.  The Holmes-Rahe Stress Inventory that we all completed will frame this session, “Wellness Strategies by Being Aware of Stressors in Our Lives”

Change is inevitable and change isn’t always negative.  Often change is a positive experience… buying a new house, welcoming a new baby to the family, a promotion—all examples of positive change.  But regardless of this, change causes stress… increased responsibility, sleepless nights, and unfamiliar territory.

It is how we manage the stress of change in our lives that is important as this has a direct impact to our overall well-being. If our wellness is compromised, will are not able to give our best to our work or our loved ones.

So in the next 28 minutes, Liz, Eric and I will each share thoughts about our personal results from the stress inventory, and Liz will give us a 50,000ft level look at our group scores.  Be thinking about…  How you navigate change, lead others through change, deal with the friction points and conflicts that arise due to change, and above all… how do you sustain change?  Eric will be asking five of you to share your personal reflections. (373 words)

Bill Moseley, Ramon Puga and Imelda Valdez led a session focused on how to stay organized in moving large quantities of work with quality. Ramon shared with the management team that in his line was work, his goal every morning is to come to work and expect the unexpected.  He also talked about how he has been attempting to delegate more.  Imelda, one of our new managers talked about the power of planning.  She is the Director of our EOP&S program and is right now planning the retreat with her team.  I was really impressed with her clarity and focus.  Bill discussed the tech tools he uses to maximize productivity and keep the work moving.  He reviewed his own strategy, which involves dividing his time into three areas; triage, light work, and deep work.  In triage, the work is focused on guiding input, responding to emails, and completing tasks that can be done in under two minutes.  Triage can be done almost anywhere, and isn’t vulnerable to distraction.  Light work consists of planning, reviewing, researching, and organizing.  This can be done in a mildly distracting environment and is perfect for “open door” times in the office.  Deep work takes uninterrupted time and deep concentration.  Bill described creating his environment for deep work as, “door closed, email turned off, and music with no words playing in the background.  By using these three phases of work, anyone can take control of their inputs and outputs, and increase their productivity.

Janet Fulks and Craig Hayward did a great presentation about BC’s students.  Through data, video and story telling the two of them grounded the discussions on the “why” our work matters…..Our students.  and how education transforms lives.

Here are a few highlights from the powerpoint that Janet and Craig used for their presentation.

Pie Chart Student Demographics June 14 2017

When you think about the “needs” of the BC students think about their background

  • Proportion on Financial Aid 69.6%   (that’s 19,228 students)
  • Proportion First Gen 53.9% (that’s 14,891 students)

This picture captures the need being right now!

Need circle

Here is a powerful bar graph that shows increase in wages with specific skill building cluster classes.  Check out Automotive Technology.

Wage Growth related to Skills Builder

Grace Commiso did brief presentations on both days about how BC is developing 18 completion coaching communities among faculty and staff to coach students through their 15-credits in their first semester and successfully completing their English and math requirements in the first year.  The 18 completion coaching communities are comprised of 10 metamajors and 8 affinity groups.

On Wednesday morning, the team was back at it and Dena Rhoades snapped photos of the beautiful breakfast that fueled us through the morning. Thank you chef Eric Sabella and BC Food Services.

AdminCouncil_Breakfast

I loved this tweet from Nicky Damania:

Executive Office Photo

Executive Office - Getting Set-1

The Executive Office is comprised of the President, the three Vice Presidents and the staff.  Here is the team.  and thank you John Farrand for this fun photo.  We retreated for half a day on Thursday.  Thank you Chris Glaser, Somaly Boles, June Charles, Tracy Hall and Jennifer Marden for organizing the different sessions for the retreat.

 

Saluting Keith Wolaridge

Keith WoolaridgeOn Monday, Tom Gelder met with Keith Wolaridge to present him his plaque from Sterling Silver at Uricchio’s Trattoria. Passing a bond initiative is like raising a child…it takes a village. Keith is one of those people who did whatever was needed to get the word out, to ask for the right endorsements, to write the opinion pieces, to make the phone calls, to bolster people’s spirits. Thank you Keith!

To check out all the recipients of awards at Sterling Silver, check out my blog post: Moments that make up Life.

IT’S POSSIBLE

The Outreach team at BC is gearing up for one of the best express enrollment events yet. Coming up on June 20th, anyone and everyone is invited to attend IT’S POSSIBLE – a one-day express event starting at 8:00AM that will help future and current students, no matter where they are in the enrollment or registration process so they can leave with their class schedule in hand, knowing exactly what classes they’ll be attending in Fall. Thank you to everyone on campus who is preparing for this fantastic day!

Check out the event on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/events/1941376366135105  or RSVP on the website at: https://www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/itspossible

Its Possible

Come out for the Air Force Band

Exciting things are coming to the campus on the hill. On June 28th, at 7:00PM, the United States Air Force Band of the Golden West will perform a free concert at the Simonsen Outdoor Theater at our beautiful campus. This is FREE to the public so I hope you’ll gather your friends and family and visit the campus to enjoy the music.

The United States Air Force Band of the Golden West is stationed in the San Francisco Bay area at Travis Air Force Base and their goal is to foster positive, long lasting impressions of the Air Force and the United States of America using the power of music. They are headed to the Hollywood Bowl and will perform the entire set for everyone at BC. Let’s show them the warmest Bakersfield welcome by packing the theater. See you there!

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Recycling Event at BC

Bakersfield College is partnering with Happy Recyclers to help our community dispose of any unwanted electronics the right way.

Last year, over 500 people participated, giving away over one million pounds of electronics to be efficiently recycled instead of ending up in a landfill. This year, our event will even accept those heavy outdated televisions, which many recyclers aren’t able to process.

BC cares for our surrounding neighborhoods and the ecological well-being of our planet, so come out for an opportunity to clear out your electronic clutter and help the environment on June 24th and 25th from 8:00AM to 5:00PM.

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Student Success During the Summer

Along with eager-to-learn students on campus, our student services have also reopened their doors for the summer! Staff and faculty at BC encourage all students to take advantage of the everything BC has to offer to ensure that all students will succeed with the tools and help they need!

 

This Summer, there is an array of services provided that can help all students achieve their academic goals. Located in the Student Services Center Building, there is an abundance of free academic help. I’d like to spotlight a few:

  • ItsPOSSIBLE_3Dec16-12There is the Math lab where students are able to work on online math classes, get math help for on-campus classes, and even the Extend The Classroom for Math B72.
  • The Writing Center is a gem, where students can make an appointment and speak to an extremely knowledgeable and supportive coach who will guide students through the entire process of writing a solid paper. Amber Smithson, a BC student, offered a great tip. She said, “make sure to take in your assignment sheet, so you can go through each step for you to obtain the best grade!”
  • The Tutoring center is also located upstairs overlooking the math and writing labs. That’s where students can obtain free peer tutoring in 50-minute sessions for most courses and 15-minute drop-in sessions for English and Math only. These peer tutors are amazing because they’re students who have taken these classes and they’re knowledgeable on the material, but they can also relate to the student needing help.  The tutors not only have a passion for learning, but also for teaching and sharing that knowledge with their fellow students. All of these services are offered throughout the Summer and start right away. During the Fall session, they start a week into the semester.

The staff and faculty care so much about student success…

writingcentermain_0

Superheroes behind the Scenes

David WhalenLike I mentioned earlier, the faculty at BC ALWAYS have student success in their heart and on their mind. When a physics class was left without a professor due to an emergency, Dr. David Whalen stepped in to save the semester. It’s incredible that he has volunteered to change his summer and vacation plans to put BC students first.  Can you see why I’m the luckiest and happiest college president?

Jonathan Schultz introduces us to Prof. Joe Saldivar

Sonya Christian Manhatten Beach day before CA Guided Pathways Advisory Committee

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Hello Summer and Summer Bridge Students!

Neo June 3 2017Good morning Bakersfield…. It is Saturday, June 10th and a great day to be a Renegade.

I spent a significant part of this week at the accreditation commission meeting in San Jose.  The accreditation peer review process for quality assurance is truly remarkable and I am so glad the United States still upholds this process.

I missed Neo who seemed much bigger when I got back home.  In the three weeks I’ve had him he went from being 10 lbs to 19 lbs.  Growing up fast and you can see it in his paws.

The drive back from San Jose was a bear with accidents on both 101 south as well as on the Pacheco pass….. It was quite the drive and my phone died and I did not have a charger handy, and I was tired….. It was a good thing that I got a book on tape, something I don’t usually do.  I got it from amazon.com, and no it was not a drone delivery three hours after I placed the order.

The book titled “The Life We Bury” was listed as a bestseller in the New York Times list.  I started listening to the book on my drive to and from Mammoth last week.  But the numerous conf calls resulted in me not making much progress.  But coming back from San Jose, without my phone, I got through much more, though not quite all yet.

Kimberly Bligh has been busy this summer, scaling up summer bridge for our incoming students and engaging faculty across campus to come spend a day with the incoming freshman during their orientation.

Dr. Matt Garrett’s post on Facebook and his response to Olivia Garcia says it all

Matt Garrett Summer Bridge June 2017.png

Summer Bridge is a one-day seminar for new students. It increases success and retention for all new freshmen by giving them the tools and resources they need to succeed. Each morning begins with faculty on hand to greet the eager students and share with them their wealth of knowledge to help acclimate them on their new academic path.

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The students break out into smaller groups joining faculty members sprinkled throughout the room for networking and chatting. It’s here where their first friendships on campus are formed… together, they are on this journey, and it’s a time to ask questions and get  information for their classes, their major’s and also their first day concerns.

Students share their dreams, goals, and aspirations for their future, encouraged and cheered on by those faculty members brought together by Dr. Kimberly Bligh.

The students are also given a guided tour by faculty and student leaders who show them first-hand all of the various buildings located throughout campus. This is an amazing way for students to feel even more comfortable when they arrive on the first day of class, it enables them to focus more on their academics rather than worrying and searching aimlessly for their needed classes. Students are able to obtain their schedules and throughout the tour faculty and staff able answer any questions they may have. Students also learn a little background on BC, when it was founded and when the campus was moved up on the hill.But one of the greatest benefits for students who participate is what they learn about all of the wonderful services that BC has to offer.

The students were shown where the Veteran’s Lounge, Renegade Pantry, Renegade RIP, Student Health Services, Counseling Center, Writing Center, Math Center, Tutoring Center, Financial Aid, and Supplementary instruction centers were all located on campus.

IMG_5832All of these services and much more are there to help the students be as successful as they can be – providing them the tools they need to achieve their goals.

 

Eileen Pierce, Manager of Academic Support — Supplemental Instruction, shared how SI works and how it  benefits all the students who attend at least five to six sessions per semester.

We are a family. We thrive and flourish together with the help of each other, because… We are BC!

Summer Bridge June 7 2017

 

 

See more photos and stay up to date with Summer Bridge on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/summerbridgeBC/

BC’s Inmate Scholars Program

The Inmate Scholars Program was nominated for the 2017 Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce, Beautiful Bakersfield Awards.  Each year, the Chamber holds an annual gala to honor those connected to the community and to recognize the efforts to improve the quality of life in Bakersfield.

Aera won an award

Aera winning an award at Beautiful BAkersfield June 3 2017.png

Thank you Nick Ortiz and all at the Greater Bakersfield Chamber for bringing to us Beautiful Bakersfield

Nick Ortiz, Hillary Haenes Beautiful Bakersfield

Bakersfield College is honored to be recognized as a community leader.

Inmate Scholars, Bryan Hirayama, Chelsea Esquibias, Rich McCrow, Letty Garza, Doug Grimsley, Gerald Cantu, Kaitlin Hulsy, Isaias Hernandez

(from front, clockwise) Bryan Hirayama, Chelsea Esquibias, Rich McCrow, Letty Garza, Doug Grimsley, Gerald Cantu (behind placard), his wife,  Kaitlin Hulsy, Isaias Hernandez

The Central Valley has more than ten prisons and correctional facilities. Recidivism is high — of the incarcerated who are released, over 76% return to prison.  The Inmate Scholars Program provides college courses inside of the local prisons to educate those before release.  Associate Degrees earned in prison have been shown to reduce recidivism to below 5% thus saving taxpayers over $70,000 per year per inmate as well as creating a safer and more thriving community.

Inmate Scholars, Rich McCrow, Doug Grimsley, Gerald Cantu

Rich McCrow, Doug Grimsley, Gerald Cantu

Education is the key for our incarcerated population.  Thank you to all of those Bakersfield College employees that serve students in the program, and thank you to those who attended the dinner; Rich McCrow, Chelsea Esquibias, Bryan Hirayama, Doug Grimsley, Isaias Hernandez, Gerald Cantu, Kaitlin Hulsy, Isaias Hernandez and many more great Renegades!  We are BC!

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And then I saw this great post by Supervisor Leticia Perez on Facebook:

Leticia Perez June 7 2017.png

Retreats and reflections during the summer

President’s Cabinet had two retreats this summer, the first one at the Delano Campus on June 1st and the 2nd on the Panorama Campus here in Bakersfield on June 5th.

2017 President's Cabinet June 5 2017

 

President's Cabinet Retreat June 5 2017

 

 

At Delano the focus was on BC’s Rural Initiatives, Dual Enrollment, and Inmate Education.  After presentations and discussions, we headed for a tour of the Randolf Campus in Delano.

Cabinet Retreat in Delano June 1 2017.JPG

 

Bakersfield College originally offered courses in Delano at the Randolf campus.  This is where I was first involved as a faculty member — I taught math via interactive TV but would often drive up to the Randolf campus to meet with students.  During that time, a group of us in the math department wrote an Eisenhower grant to improve STEM education in Delano with a focus on parent education.  I then went away to work in Oregon for 10 years and when I returned as President, the Delano campus had moved to Timmons Ave, and the Randolf campus was leased to the Wonderful Academy.  Wonderful was and is a great partner of Bakersfield College.  Wonderful now has built their own campus for their Charter School and the Randolf campus has reverted back to BC.  I do want to thank Wonderful for donating all the classroom spaces they had built and improvements they made during their stay at the campus.  Lynda Resnick thank you.  Noemi, thank you.

Here are pictures of the Cabinet tour of Randolf campus.

Randolf Campus June 1 2017.JPG

Cabinet at Randolf Campus June 1 2017.JPG

Nicky Damania and Grace Commiso planning for Student Services

Nicky Damania and Grace Commiso Randolf Campus June 1 2017

Alex Dominguez

Alex Dominguez was the President of BC’s Student Government in 2014-2015, going on to be the Student Body President at CSUB.  Alex had a wonderful graduation and it seemed that everyone from Bakersfield was there to celebrate this young man’s future and presence in our lives!

Alex Dominguez

Alex Dominguez, Sonya Christian

Terri Goldstein Alex Dominguez Nicky Damania June 3 2017

Terri Goldstein, Alex Dominguez, Nicky Damania

 

Here are some links to blog posts that spotlighted Alex:

This one is a long blog but scroll until you see the picture with Alex Dominquez (2014-2015), Calyton Fowler (2015-2016), Matthew Frazer (2016-2017)

https://sonyachristianblog.com/2016/09/18/on-remembrance-and-making-memories/

Some fun photos:

Ramon Puga and his son

Ramon Puga at his son's graduation.png

So I was at the ACCJC commission meeting and this is what happens to my office when I was not there — Mission Occupy!

Lunchtime

Jennifer Marden, Tracy Hall, Tarina Perry, Somaly Boles

 

Sonya Christian at Randolph Campus June 1 2017That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

(at the Randolf campus in Delano)

California comes to Bakersfield

Good morning Bakersfield….it is Saturday, June 3, 2017. A great day to be a Renegade.

With Monday, May 29th, being Memorial Day, the college was closed. Facebook was active with messages honoring those who gave up their lives for the country.  And later in the evening, BC’s faculty lead for student veterans sent a Memorial Day message that reverberated across the CA Community Colleges.

AdminPaulBeckworthChancellor Dr. Eloy Oakley, California Community College Veteran Counselors and Veteran Services Personnel,

Today is Memorial Day.

Today is the day we honor our fallen brothers and sisters.

What we do everyday is not a sacrifice.  What we do is a honor.  We are honored to help those who survived the fight. We get to go help those who are here with us, now.  As we go back to work tomorrow, let us remember TODAY, those who gave all.  Those who gave all will never be California Community College students.  They will never study MLA format or do a CSEP.  They will never fill out Post 9/11 GI Bill paperwork.  They will not stroll into your veteran center and ask about voc rehab.  They will not ask for hot coffee, or why they cant take more than 7 credits in summer school.  Although we cannot help them, we can help their brothers and sisters who survived the fight.

PaulBeckworthOur bbqs are done for the day.  It is late Monday night.  Tomorrow is a new day.  As we go back to work, let us strive to honor those who will never enter our hallowed halls by honoring the student-veterans who do.  Honor them and their dependents.  Our task is not easy.  Some of us suffer from “Compassion fatigue.”  What is demanded of us is not expected of anyone else on our campuses.  Veterans suffer 22 suicides a day and we feel each one.  I am proud of all of you and the work you do for our student-veterans.  Let’s face it, we love all our students, but, there is something about those veterans with big bushy beards, tattoos and bad language.  They tug at our hearts and they make us want to try a little bit harder.  Considering what they did for us, what we do is a small price to pay.

To those of you on this list serv who lost friends or family, please know our hearts and prayers are with you tonight.  From Bunker Hill to Fallujah, from Iwo Jima to the Triangle of Death, let us remember Abraham Lincoln’s words at Gettysburg, “We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting place to those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. IT IS ALTOGETHER FITTING AND PROPER THAT WE SHOULD DO THIS.”

Paul Beckworth Cynthia QuintanillaTonight we remember.  Tomorrow we do the work: It is all together fitting and proper that we should do this.

Let us remember.

Respectfully,

Paul Beckworth
History Professor
Veterans Faculty Lead
Bakersfield College


Leadership Matters Summit

Eloy Oakley keynoting at the Leadership SummitIt’s another great week to be a Renegade, especially in light of our recent “Leadership Matters: Re-Imagining Leadership to Sustain Transformative Change to Advance Student Success & Equity” summit that took place on campus last week on Wednesday May 24th. It was an absolute pleasure and privilege to be able to host this remarkable and motivating day focused on leadership. Colleges from all over California met to discuss the Guided Pathways Initiative and how we can better accommodate and serve our community and our 2.1 million students across California.

With one year of work completed in developing the project, $150 million of one-time funding in the Governor’s budget for implementing Guided Pathways at all of the California community colleges, and an excellent slate of speakers and panelists, we knew the summit was going to be well-attended!

shawn-whalen-oct-11-2016Before I go any further, I must recognize Shawn Whalen of College Futures who has been committed to the equity and transfer agenda to community college students.

I’m so thankful that Chancellor Eloy Oakley agreed to come to Bakersfield and launch the summit. With great passion he made it very clear why Guided Pathways is critical to the future of California Community College System in the eyes of the state legislature and how there is no other institution better positioned to help California move forward than our 113 colleges.

Sonya Christian Leadership Matters SummitHere is my introduction of Chancellor Eloy Oakley

I have good news. At the head of the California Community College system, the largest higher educational system in the nation, that serves populations that are most in-need, we have a leader.

We have someone who is moving the dial on student success; someone who builds coalitions to make the impossible possible; someone who sets agendas that have national and statewide impact.

Back when it was first announced that Eloy Ortiz Oakley was our new Chancellor, I heard excitement and anticipation; that community colleges are in good hands, and to expect a lot to happen, – a lot to happen quickly, well, and sustainably, as it did at Long Beach City College under President Eloy Oakley.

We have a leader – I remember being in the audience at the senate budget committee, with the senators asking tough questions, of the $850M that has been invested in community colleges, and why we were back asking for an additional $150M for Guided Pathways. And he explained calmly, clearly and confidently that that the prior investments had laid the foundation, and that the $150M was what was needed to bring it together, to bring it to its tipping point and that the results would be exponentially better.

When he was done speaking, those legislators who were only able to see a block of marble, were able to see that angel in the marble that Eloy Oakley was attempting to free.

We have a leader – Chancellor Oakley brings incredible clarity on how to make local empowerment and systems development work together to maximize talent…to maximize resources.  His college promise initiative is all about empowering colleges to create local coalitions with their high school, industry and university partners to clear pathways for students. And then with the Guided Pathways investment to develop technical assistance and systems to meet each community college where they are and to move them to greater levels of performance.  Because remember, over 2 million students are counting on us.

This clarity in bringing together many worlds is exciting and promising. I will tell you dear friends that there has never, ever been a better time to be in the community college system, in California. There has never been a better time for vision, and hope, while keeping a steady eye on the realities and challenges we face.

We have a leader who with us will say with confidence, “Si se puede”.

Friends, I give you that leader, our Chancellor, Eloy Oakley.

Watch Chancellor Oakley’s Keynote Address here:

LeadershipMatters-JoshWyner-1

Josh Wyner of The Aspen Institute

The first session of the summit explained how leaders build urgency and college-wide ownership for change. Moderated by Josh Wyner, Executive Director of the College Excellence Program at the Aspen Institute, three leaders from three different constituencies described their communication strategies to establish urgency and share a vision for long-term and scalable change: from the trustee perspective, Bill McGinnis (trustee, Butte-Glenn Community College District); from the faculty perspective, Julie Bruno (Professor of Communication Studies at Sierra College and President of the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges); and from the administration perspective, Wolde-Ab Isaac (President of Riverside City College).

Panel 1 Leadership Matters

Session1-Panel

Bill McGinnis, Julie Bruno, and Wolde-Ab Isaac

LeadershipMatters-Angelica Garcia-1

Angelica Garcia

The second session “Psychology of Change” moderated by Angelica Garcia, Vice President of Student Services at Skyline College, focused on the deeper level at which change leadership must be cultivated and exercised. Cleavon Smith (Professor of English at Berkeley City College), Irene Malmgren (Vice President of Instruction at Mt. SAC), and Andrea Neptune (Professor of English and Academic Senate President at Sierra College) shared how they were able to get authentic engagement and establish trust among faculty and trust that led to co-ownership for the systems change occurring at their colleges. While Guided Pathways is the integrating framework, the panelists showed how the details of creating the change depend on the particular history and culture of the college.

Panel 2 Leadership Matters

Panel 2 at Leadership Matters

Session2-Panel

Irene Malmgren, Cleavon Smith, and Andrea Neptune

I was thrilled that Chancellor Tom Burke stopped by to welcome the participants to the Kern Community College District and to Bakersfield College.  Gregory Stoup who currently chairs the RP Group gave a fabulous, quick paced, MTV style presentation on Guided Pathways.

The third session was titled “Aligning Resource to Support and Sustain Change”. Three leaders focused on how their institutions are realigning and repurposing existing resources to ensure organizational capacity for transformational student success work: Glenn Roquemore (President of Irvine Valley College), Ann Ransford (Trustee from Glendale Community College District and President of the California Community College Trustees), and our own Jennifer Johnson.

Panel 3 Leadership Matters

Panel 3 — Leadership Matters

Session3-Panel

Glenn Roquemore, Ann Ransford, and Jennifer Johnson

LeadershipMatters-Hope-1

Laura Hope

Laura Hope, co-director of the RP Group’s “Leading from the Middle”, gave us the wrap-up by having us share with the person next to us and then the whole gathering, the why—why guided pathways right now, why are we going on this difficult journey to move this framework forward?

Three hundred twenty attendees registered in person from over 60 different colleges and organizations, as well as a livestream audience of almost 500. BC staff and students helped ensure the summit ran smoothly.

Check out some of the photos and videos taken at the event on the Bakersfield College Instagram page and at the full BC Gallery here:
https://bakersfieldcollege.smugmug.com/2017-Leadership-Matters-Summit/
.  

Don’t forget the BC Twitter feed, where you can find more photos, questions, and comments with the #CAGuidedPathways.

There were many hands that worked together to make this happen.  Here are a few who look care of the logistics: Tarina Perry,  Christopher Glaser, John Farrand, Monika Scott, Dylan Wang,  Kristin Rabe,  Reese Weltman, Earl Parsons,  Kristina Whitmore, Somaly Boles, Kevin Ganger,  June Charles, Jennifer Marden, Tracy Hall, Mary Jo Pasek, Maria Diaz, Anita Karr, Bernadette Martinez, Arisve Pimentel, Danyel Owens,  Yolanda Aguilera, Eric Sabella, Ramon Puga, Marissa Jeffers.  

A special thank you to Tarina Perry for being the lead on the summit.

Thank you Laura Hope and Keren Stashower for emceeing the event.

Also a special thank you to Janet Fulks and Lesley Bonds who worked closely with me on the programming of the summit and the work with shaping the content with the speakers.

Additional photos related to the Leadership Summit

Southwestern College

Marie Vicario-Fisher, Sonya Christian, Angelica Suarez

Keren Stashower Leadership Matters May 24 2017

Keren Stashower at Leadership Matters

The night before:

Shawn Whalen Sonya Christian Eloy Oakley May 24 2017

Shawn Whalen, Sonya Christian, Eloy Oakley

Craig Hayward and John Wyner May 23 2017

Criag Hayward, Josh Wyner

Cabrillo May 23 2017

Gang from Cabrillo

Tarina Perry did a “thank you” pizza party at her house to all those who helped with the logistics.  I popped in for a few minutes at the front end of the party.

Tarina Perry's Thank You Party June 2 2017

Tarina sent me this cool picture of Marissa Jeffries at the Leadership Summit.  Marissa was in charge of food.

Marissa Jeffries


All things Cerro Coso

Deanna Ing CampbellThis last week the Student Success and Equity Office organized their retreat at the Mammoth Center of Cerro Coso Community College.  The idea to hold one of our critical summer retreats at one of KCCD’s sister campuses came up when we heard the Director of Mammoth and Bishop campuses, Deanna Campbell, of Cerro Coso present at the KCCD Leadership Academy.  I covered this in my March 4, 2017 blog.

Check it out
https://sonyachristianblog.com/2017/03/04/inspiration-all-around-us/

Mammoth View.JPG

When I asked Lesley Bonds if she would like to take her team to Mammoth she promptly said yes.  This office of eight touches the entire campus — both the instructional side of the house as well as the Student Affairs side.

SS and Equity Retreat at Mammoth May 31 2017.JPG

Kristina Whitmore, Sonya Christian, Julian West, Lisa Kent, Shauna Turner, Pedro Ramirez, Keri Kennedy, Lesley Bonds, Shanell Tyus

BC’s Student Success and Equity team is remarkable.  This small office is tasked with “moving the dial” on student completion.  At BC we measure student completion through 4 momentum points — (1) completing college level English and Math in the first year (2) completing 12-15 credits in their program pathways in the first semester (3) completing 30 credits in their program pathway in the first year (summer-fall-spring) (4) completing an associates degree or transfer in two-years.  With over 30,000 students and few staff, the challenge is always about the ratio of students to staff. The task at hand requires each individual to move large quantities in a quality way.  But given that the majority of our students fall in the “at risk” category the only way to get them to be successful is through case management.  Normally when we think case-management we think managing individual student cases.  However, with BC does not have that luxury.  So we need to “case manage” through “groups”.  This require both a high touch and high tech approach.

Group at Cerro Coso Mammoth May 31 2017

Shauna Turner, Kristina Whitmore, Lesley Bonds, Sonya Christian, Pedro Ramirez (hidden), Julian West, Lisa Kent, Keri Kennedy, Shanell Tyus

I was so proud of this team when I hung out with them during their discussions.  Talented, smart and so committed to student success.  Do you understand now why I am the luckiest and happiest college president ever

SS and Equity Team Painting May 30 2017.JPG

I learned that BC has a dual enrollment program in Culinary at Mammoth High School.  Thanks to Deanna and Trish for connecting with Chef Pat Coyle and making this happen.  The students at the high school prepared lunch for the BC team.

Mammoth Lakes students in BC's Culinary Class

Deanna asked Trish what she would like her to tell the BC team and this is what Trish wrote back:

My culinary students are taking their state test this week and I expect a high passing rate.  There are many restaurants in Mammoth that appreciate my students having their Food Handlers certificate.  They hire my graduates before others, partly because of the hands-on training they receive and also the certificate in itself.  Many of the students plan to continue in the trade by furthering their education in addition to the units they receive at MHS.

I attached a note from one of my recent graduates that I felt expressed the importance of the certificate and how it helped him.

Faculty member Trish Qualls with her culinary students

Trish Quall with her students

Here is the email from Connor Craig to Trish:

In taking the Food Handler Training Program, not only was I able to learn proper food handling and safety regulations for food, I was able to use this certificate for my new job.  Since becoming certified, I was able to skip food training programs at The Looney Bean because of the knowledge acquired through the Safety Program that I learned in Foods Class.  It would also be more than likely that I will work in food services in the future, so this program will also most definitely help for jobs and careers later in life.  This is a must program for all of those who wish to skip a tedious step in any kind of food handling business as well as those who wish to look professional when applying for a job in this field.

We got to meet the Cerro Coso team that is responsible for the Mammoth and Bishop campuses and were really impressed by all that they do for these remote communities that are at great distances from each other.

Cerro Coso Team at Mammoth May 31 2017

Kim Blackwell, James Markam, Yvonne Martin, Caroline Sanderson, Deanna Campbell

I learned from Deanna that:

  • Cerro Coso partners with University of Nevada in Reno since that is the closest university to the Mammoth and Bishop.
  • Demographics shift: Whites decreased from 80% to 45% from 2002-2003 to 2016-2017; Latino increase from 17% to 38%
  • 14 high schools in Inyo and Mono County
  • Bishop campus opened in 2003 and Mammoth in 2008

Thank you Lesley for making this happen.  And thank you for all that you do for BC.  We are fortunate to have you.

Lesley Bonds May 31 2017


Board meeting at Cerro Coso

Since I am on a roll bragging about our sister campus, let me briefly spotlight them through pictures the KCCD Board meeting at Cerro Coso  which was on May 4, 2017.

President Jill Board receives the Shirley B. Gordon Award.  This is a prestigious national award and to have one of KCCD presidents receive it is pretty cool.  Congratulations Jill!

Jill Board winning the award

Retiree Carol Hewer and Congressman Bill Thomas were talking about the good old days when I snapped this picture.

Carol Hewer and Bill Thomas May 4 2017

Cerro Coso traditionally has their Scholarship Awards ceremony during lunch prior to the Board meeting.  It is always a treat hearing about the lives of these amazing students.

Students at Cerro Coso being honored


Oliver Rosales speaking at University of Washington

dgd6leyfjrsqyajlbuinjsnnIt was exciting to hear that our own Oliver Rosales from the History Department was going to be speaking at the University of Washington, Walter Chapin Simpson Center for the Humanities.  Rosales addressed connections between two-year colleges and PHD programs.

I always feel proud to hear of our own being recognized for their leadership in their fields.
https://tinyurl.com/y76yzwcj


BC Foundation Honors Celebration

Every year before spring graduation, The Bakersfield College Foundation and the Bakersfield College Financial Aid Office host the Honors Celebration. It is the time when scholarships for the upcoming academic year are announced and academic and athletic awards are handed out for accomplishments for the year just ending.

This year’s event had approximately 900 participants, including BC administration, faculty and staff, and donors whose generosity has funded the scholarship program at BC,  as well as over 200 scholarship and award recipients and their guests.  Over 500 scholarships are dispensed each year, totaling approximately $500,000 in scholarships and awards.

See nearly over 300 images from this year’s event: (https://bakersfieldcollege.smugmug.com/2017-Honors-Celebration/)


A Poem

Jack Hernandez will be published in the Anglican Theological Review.

zolbrod_4

Jack Hernandez

A Rule
My monkish soul
seeks a rule
in this familiar
place where windows
dazzle no longer,
the call of a full
order or stomach
receding like mother’s
admonition to clean
my dinner plate.

The days unfold
with limited promise,
my genes fulfilled
mind stuffed
with books
instructions not
to blink
before strong
ideas no matter
how strange their eyes.

A young woman
walks by
a baby in each arm
her days
ruled like mine
when flushed with time,
The rule of life
I seek now
is a grace to light
this cloistered dusk.


David Koeth’s “Thoughts on avoiding burnout in teaching”

koeth1-900x600

David Koeth

Our graphic design teacher and self-proclaimed “recovering department chair,” shared some insightful thoughts on the AIGA Design Educators website.  Among some of my favorite ideas: “Take care of your health,” “know the signs of burnout,” and my personal favorite, “find a ritual that relaxes you.”

David’s amusing personality is on display and he has some great ideas for all of us! You can read the article here: https://educators.aiga.org/thoughts-on-avoiding-burnout-in-teaching/.


Lisa Strobel and Nick StrobelNick Strobel — excited about an eclipse

Wouldn’t you get excited too if you read this opening paragraph of Nick Strobel’s column in today’s Californian?

Recently, at many gatherings where people know what I do or find out that I teach astronomy at Bakersfield College, the subject of the conversation quickly gets around to the August 2017 total solar eclipse. That was the case as well at the Bakersfield College Sterling Silver Dinner a couple of weeks back. It’s a sign that the education and public outreach campaign for this astronomical event has done a very good job. I have been looking forward to it for about 40 years since I first read about it in the World Book Encyclopedia in my boyhood home.

If you have ever been to a total solar eclipse or one where enough of the sun was covered to clearly notice a drop in the light level (say over 95% covered), you know it is a truly awesome thing to experience. That’s “awesome” in the true sense of the word—awe-inspiring, soul-stirring. If you have never been to a total solar eclipse, then a word of warning: be very careful because you can get addicted to eclipses and become one of those people who chase eclipses all over the globe. It is an excellent excuse to travel all over but it can get a bit expensive going to some remote places to witness at most a few minutes of totality.

I’ve exhibited great resistance to the lure of eclipse chasing, keeping myself to just two total solar eclipses in the past ten or so years: one in China in 2009 and another in Australia in 2012. Fortunately for us this eclipse won’t be expensive to travel to. Finding cheap lodging will be difficult, though, as hotels exercise their right under capitalism’s supply-and-demand.

The August 2017 eclipse is the first total solar eclipse visible only in the United States since 1776, yes 1776. It will also be the first since 1918 that crosses the United States from Pacific to Atlantic and the first since 1979 that is visible anywhere in the lower 48 states. Approximately 391 million people in the U.S. will be able to see the August 2017 eclipse (partial or total).

For the whole article:
https://www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/planetarium/bakersfield-night-sky/bakersfield-night-sky-june-3-2017


From Facebook

Jen Garrett

Last night part of the BC Chamber Singers had an opportunity to sing in St Francis Church in Bakersfield for their women’s bible study group called WOW (Women in Wisdom). We were honored to be asked and appreciate the generous support the Church showed towards our Australia tour next summer. I hope this is the beginning of many opportunities to perform and collaborate with them.

I am so grateful to have a choir that can meet and perform as they did last night after not seeing each other for weeks. I know I can rely on them for more than just their talents and I do grateful for that. Hearing them last night felt like healing for the soul. The pastor told us we gave a great gift to give. I believe that music itself is a very special gift and when given by this group of musicians it almost feels like magic.

And I get this text from my friend Arlene Braganza

The BC Chamber Singers did a phenomenal job at the WOW at St. Francis on Wednesday evening.

Here is a picture of Arlene Braganza and her family when they came out to BC for the Caroling and Culinary evening in December.

The Braganza Family

Lauro Braganza, Arlene Braganza, and Gemma Lauro’s sister

Here are photo’s from Jen’s post

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Chamber Singers May 31 2017.jpg


Who gets 448 “likes” on a Facebook post….. I know

Kris Tiner June 2017


Neo

Neo had his second set of shots today.  When I carried him in at 10 weeks the young woman at the front desk spontaneously blurted “what a ginormous cutie”

sonya christian at Rotary April 30 2015

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Moments that make up Life

Neo from Eisha's Facebook May 14 2017Good morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, May 27th….always a good day to be a Renegade.

A lot happened this week…A lot has happened to people around me.  Gains and losses. All interwoven in the fabric of life.  It gives us pause and the realization that it is the little moments that make up life.

Let me start by revisiting the 103rd commencement.

Commencement

I’m happy to still be covering parts of our incredible Commencement Day on May 12th.

Thank you Manny De Los Santos for this great video!

Last week I did not have the potos for the Delano pre-commencement celebration and the Veterans pre-commencement celebration.  So I decided to hold off and post it this week.  I did receive an email expressing disappointment that I did not have them last week.  My apologies.  Sit back and enjoy our students in Delano and our student Veterans.

Delano Pre-Commencement Celebration:

Students at the Bakersfield College-Delano Campus are part of a close-knit community — one really gets to know the faces around the center. This couldn’t have been made much clearer than by the remarks that followed.

 

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Trustee Romeo Agbalog

Trustee Romeo Agbalog gave words of encouragement to the graduates in attendance. He talked about his experience as a student at Bakersfield College. Mr. Agbalog specifically talked about the role that our longtime Admissions and Records Technician, Helen Calip, played in enrolling him in his first class at Bakersfield College-Delano. In recounting the experience, Mr. Agbalog, full of heart, looked at Helen sitting in the audience and thanked her for what she did for him. We feel very fortunate to have such a passionate representative on our Board of Trustees.  Thank you Trustee Agbalog for taking the time to be present at important events.  Our students really appreciate it.

 

DelanoCommencement (2)Our keynote speaker for the event was adjunct faculty member, Victor Krumdick. Mr. Krumdick is retiring after 26 years of service to the college. Raquel Lopez and Carolina Madrigal introduced him and shared stories about the amazing work he has done in Delano, in and out of the classroom. Mr. Krumdick is one of the friendliest people around campus. He brings a positive energy to the Delano Campus that not many can match. He shared some wise and poetic words with the students, in hopes that they live life to their fullest potential.

Then came the moment everybody was waiting for. Each student had the opportunity to stand in front of the group and share words of appreciation for their guests, as well as for the staff and faculty. The majority of the students made it a point to thank the faculty members who believed in them and supported them along the way. Each student received a medal to recognize their accomplishment.

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BC Delano Pre-Commencement Reception

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BC Delano Pre-Commencement Reception

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BC Delano Pre-Commencement Reception

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BC Delano Pre-Commencement Reception

The ceremony was followed by a reception at which students, staff, faculty, and guests enjoyed light refreshments. The joy and pride that the families had that day was very contagious. After some socializing, many of the students headed to main campus to participate in the 103rd commencement. 

Veterans Pre-Commencement

“Aim High …. Fly, Fight, Win!” , “Non sibi sed patriae, (Not for self but for country)”, “Semper Fidelis (Always Faithful)”and “This we’ll defend” all typically followed by a Hooray!

Veterans pre-commencement May 12 2017

These are the official mottoes for the four branches of military, Air Force, Navy, Marines, and the Army. A week ago Friday, six Bakersfield College students gathered for their pre-commencement ceremony and all of these branches were represented with pride and honor. These six students worked hard, diligently at their studies, juggled families, work, and outside responsibilities while still making time to study, write those papers and pass those exams. When Paul Beckworth addressed these BC Veterans, he recognized their service to this country and the service to this school, “Stay up late and write a paper, I’ve served 2 tours in Iraq, piece of cake.”

After Paul and Armando Trujillo  spoke to the Veteran students and their honored guests, they then invited the students to come up one at a time and be stolled by a member of their family and then speak of their appreciation for those who helped them on this journey.

The resonating theme throughout everyone’s comments was that of the genuine camaraderie that can be found within the walls of the Veteran’s lounge. When soldiers get together, there is an instant bond that is irrefutable and instantaneous, they all share a trait that will connect them forever, a love and duty to this country… and now, alumni of BC.  #WeAreBC

The graduates all thanked their loved ones present for their patience, love and support, first while they were enlisted, then now with them completing their education at Bakersfield College. It is absolutely amazing to know that by 2018 there will be a new Veterans lounge thanks to the passing of Measure J. The new veterans facility will provide these soldiers with a place to meet together, work on their studies, get tutoring help, speak with counselors, and just find solace within the confines of a place where like-minded individuals can meet and empower one another to keep working hard to achieve their academic dreams. I hope all of our alumni Vets will come back to see, share, and visit this upcoming wonderful advancement for the Veteran’s at BC.

veterans

From Left: Jeff Patterson, Fernando Bocanegra (standing), David Dullum Jr. (squatting), Robert Lira, Professor Paul Beckworth, Stephanie Short, Armando Trujillo, Bernadette Martinez and Reigine Tovar


For more photos check out
https://bakersfieldcollege.smugmug.com/Veterans-Pre-Commencement-2017/

 

KEDC and the STEMposium

On May 19, 2017 was the ‘STEMposium’ event organized by the Kern Economic Development Corporation (KEDC), and held on the Bakersfield College campus. This event raises awareness of the amazing technology-related fields in and around Kern County. The KEDC works with high schools to foster awareness and excitement for the Stem disciplines so that young students can move on to become leaders in tech-driven fields.

Here is a list of some of the organizations represented:
Chevron, PG&E, Wells Fargo, S Power, California Resources Corporation, Bakersfield College, Taft College, BHE Renewables, Kern Schools Federal Credit Union, Ikea, GTEDC, Ordiz Melby, and Texas Instruments. (Click here for the full gallery of images)

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2017 STEMposium at Bakersfield College

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Vince Fong at the 2017 STEMposium

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2017 STEMposium at Bakersfield College

2017-STEMposium at BC-135

2017 STEMposium at Bakersfield College

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2017 STEMposium at Bakersfield College

I enjoyed Christina Sistrunk’s talk at the Stemposium about women in the Stem area.  We are fortunate to have such a great CEO for Aera.  I have blogged about Aera being a great patron of education in general and Bakersfield College in particular.  Aera gave a large donation to BC to the development of a Stem Success Center.

Check out my Sep 10, 2016 blog about the Aera Stem Success Center
https://sonyachristianblog.com/2016/09/10/transforming-environments-transforming-lives/

Also enjoyed seeing Michael Kane from Cerro Coso giving a ted-like talk.  He was fabulous.  Michael is an Aquatic Ecologist who has spent time teaching around the world including Brazil and Costa Rica.

Michael Kane from Cerro Coso May 19 2017

Michael Kane

Amber Smithson, the student blogger was out and about covering the Stemposium.  Here is a shot of her in action and one with me.  Amber, you are amazing!

Bob Meadows emceed the ted talks event.  I wish I had snapped a picture with him.  Bob Meadows, you are the best!

On Thursday evening, KEDC hosted a Pre-STEMposium event at Luigi’s.  It was a fun event and I enjoyed visiting with Mindy Wilmot and her husband who teaches Project Lead the Way at Bakersfield High School.  I ran into Lauren Skidmore and Chancellor Tom Burke attending and snapped this photo.

 

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Lauren Skidmore and Chancellor Tom Burke

Here I am with Director of MESA (Math, Engineering, Science Achievement) Connie Gonzales:

Stemposium-ConnieGonzales

Sonya Christian with Connie Gonzales


The visionary and the one who did the detailed work to pull all this together is Cheryl Scott.  Just an amazing person!

Cheryl Scott with Sandi and Scruffy Facebook picture

Cheryl Scott

Sterling Silver

I want so start my writing on this year’s Sterling Silver with Josh Ottum.  Josh was there with his students and they played Linda Ronstadt’s Blue Bayou.

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Josh Ottum and his family

I wish I had jumped up and rushed over and gotten a video for you to enjoy.  It was sooooo good.  But I was dressed in fancy clothes and high heels and thought I would embarrass BC in front of dignitaries if I made a mad dash to get a video clip.  Instead I waited patiently and completely immersed in the music.  Later when they were done, I calmly walked over and expressed how I loved the song and how Ronstadt’s Blue Bayou was my favorite.  To which Josh responded “yes of course” that they knew it was my favorite  because they had read my blog and that is precisely why they played it.   Now do you know why I am the luckiest and happiest college president ever.

 

Sterling Silver is the annual fundraising event for the Bakersfield College Foundation.  This year, Tom Gelder and I decided to convert the event from a fundraiser to a thank you to the community for passing Measure J on the November 8th ballot and to recognize individuals who put in a lot of effort to make all of this happen.

The main honorees of the evening were Mayor Harvey Hall who was the chair of the Blue Ribbon Committee and Congressman Bill Thomas who was the senior advisor to the campaign.

Mayor Harvey Hall:

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Tom Gelder, Harvey Hall, Sonya Christian

You don’t get to be Bakersfield’s longest serving mayor without doing things well, and Harvey Hall does a lot of things well.   Political campaign committees need strong leadership and Harvey provided that throughout the process.  From space at Hall Ambulance for committee meetings, running the meetings on a tight schedule, making financial contributions to the campaign, to inspirational speeches when we needed them, Harvey was always there for us.  I remember when I went to meet with Mayor Hall to ask him if he would chair the Bond effort.  I had documents and a file to talk him through the details and make a compelling case for why he should say yes to chairing the committee.  Harvey looked at me and only 10 seconds into my pitch, which I had rehearsed at length, he just said “yes”.

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President Sonya Christian, Mayor Harvey Hall

When it comes to Bakersfield and Bakersfield College I know Harvey is there for us.  And apparently Harvey had a clone which made it possible to be there for so many of us, often it felt like, at the same time.  On behalf of all at Bakersfield College I can say that we could not have asked for a better person to chair this effort and be the face for the Bond Measure. A true friend of Bakersfield College, Mayor Harvey Hall.

Congressman Bill Thomas:

BC Sterling Silver _004

As I’ve gotten to know Bill Thomas, I now realize that his middle initial “M” stands for “Make it Happen”…. Make it happen now…. Actually why did you not make it happen….

You don’t get to be chair of the House Ways and Means Committee without getting to the crux of every problem and forging brilliant solutions on a daily basis.  We’d like to think that he gained these skills as a professor at BC but I imagine he was a force of nature from an early age.

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Bill Thomas, Sharon Thomas, Peggy Goodwin, Greg Goodwin

In the realm of major capital campaigns, you won’t find many, if any, that raise $503 million in such a short time.   Bill Thomas played a major role in making it so.  Strategist, advocate, negotiator, mentor, inspiring leader all come to mind.  On a personal level, I could not have had a better mentor as I navigated this unknown territory of a bond campaign.  I remember the day when the congressman let the finance committee know in no uncertain terms when we failed to file a document in a timely way.  But it is that level of focus on detail and moving easily between vision, strategy and operational particulars that makes Bill Thomas the leader that he is.  And although he tries to hide it, he has a big teddy bear heart for this community and for Bakersfield College.  The combination of brilliant intellect and huge love for his community is what made the entire Measure J team fall in love with the congressman.  He was at 1675 Chester Avenue every day, multiple times a day.

BC and the BC Foundation tonight salute Bill Thomas.

Michael Turnipseed:

Mike was not able to attend Sterling Siver, so here is the picture Tom Gelder snapped when he came to his office to pick up with award.

Michael Turnipseed May 24 2017

JP Lake:

Here is JP picking up his award.

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Karen Thompson

Did not get the photo of Karen receiving the award yet.  Will update the blog when I get it. So tune back in.

Karen Thompson and Pat Thompson May 17 2017

When it became clear that we were going to go for the passage of Measure J, we felt the Foundation was in good hands with Karen Thompson as the Chair of the Board of Directors.  We were so right.  The Foundation stepped up to provide the majority of the monies needed to finance the campaign and Karen stepped up to steer the work of the Measure J Committee.  That’s leadership!  Her efforts are truly remarkable by the fact that Karen was changing jobs at the time.  I don’t think any of us realized how much work would be involved in getting Measure J passed, but Karen did whatever it took to get us through successfully.  Thank you, Karen!

Norma Rojas Mora:

Tom Gelder Norma Rojas Sonya Christian

Having someone on your committee who has their hand on the pulse of the community is vital to communicating the needs of the college in a way that resonates with voters.  Norma Rojas-Mora served that role and many other roles on the Committee as she has on behalf of the BC Foundation’s board.  Smart, strategic, trusted and hard-working are just a few of Norma’s attributes which she displayed early and often throughout the planning and implementation process of the Measure J campaign.  Friend and advocate for Bakersfield College is another title that fits.  Thank you, Norma!

Michael O’Doherty:

I got this picture from Karen Goh’s Facebook.

Tom Gelder Michael ODoherty Sonya Christian from Karen Goh's Facebook

Marines are famous for doing whatever it takes to make their mission a success.  Michael O’Doherty, past chair of the BC Foundation, demonstrated his Marine Corps roots as the Measure J Campaign Treasurer.  There were maybe three people in the room (e.g. Bill Thomas, Harvey Hall, and Karen Goh) who knew how complicated campaign committee reporting is.  After the Measure J Campaign, now there is a fourth — Michael!  And who volunteers for such a thankless task?  When the going gets tough, the tough get going!  Thanks, Michael, for another job well done!

Jay Rosenlieb

Nick Ellis.   www.aNickPhoto.com.   661.706.7999

 

What can I say.  Jay was there from the very beginning.  Since Jan 2016.  You co-chaired the community connections group with Norma Rojas during the educational campaign phase.  You co-presented to so many organizations.  You were our spokesperson to the Board of Trustees as you updated them on the work of the Blue Ribbon Committee.  You phone banked, you put up signs, you opened Klein Denatale for us to work.  Plz tell Kimmie that she was absolutely instrumental in the work.  When we ran out of food, you hopped in the car with Corny and came back laden with goodies.  You spent your evenings at 1675 Chester and helped carry trash out and shut down the campaign headquarters for the night.  We spent countless hours in Starbucks strategizing.  You partnered with Michael O’Doherty to submit the public disclosure forms.  On behalf of the present and future students of Bakersfield College; on behalf of the present and future faculty and staff of Bakersfield College, I thank you.

Sue Benham:

Sue Benham Sonya Christian.jpg

Sue Benham, Sonya Christian. From Karen Goh’s Facebook

Most of us don’t face the risk of waking up in the morning and having the details of your wedding appear in the local paper, but I suspect Sue is used to that.  Besides, it was a great picture.  She also is used to advocating for things that matter..things that benefit the community.  Like the old E.F. Hutton commercial, when Sue Benham talks, people listen.  She is eloquent. She is honest. She is direct. And she is beautiful. Sue speaking out on behalf of Measure J made a difference.  When Bill Thomas asked you to play a leadership role you unhesitatingly said yes.  You opened the doors for us at the Bakersfield Californian and you were consistently there willing to help out. Your email address always warmed my heart when I started typing your name and it popped up – sbenham4kids@aol.com

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Sue Benham (second from left), played a key leadership role in Measure J.

Mostly it was through Measure J that I got to know you and realize how fortunate our community is to have Sue Benham. There is a recurring theme this evening that cannot be overemphasized.  Measure J passed because many people care about Bakersfield College and what its future means to Bakersfield and Kern County.  Sue Benham is one of those people.  And when Sue Benham spoke about Measure J, people listened.

Thank you, Sue!

Remaining Honorees:

Passing a bond initiative is like raising a child…it takes a village.  Bakersfield College has benefited from those many members of the “village” that we recognized.  The previous honorees are those who played an especially pivotal roles in the workings of the actual Measure J Committee. It’s equally important to recognize those who did whatever was needed to get the word out, to secure the right endorsements, to write the opinion pieces, to make the phone calls, to bolster people’s spirits.  Probably my favorite vision is Rick Kreiser coming down to Campaign headquarters on a Sunday afternoon to fix a copy machine because we needed lists run off for phone banking that evening and didn’t have a back-up copier. When there was the need Rick answered the phone … as did so many others that we recognized. Thank You!

Group recognition

Michael Bowers – Senior District Representative for Senator Andy Vidak

Ken Byrum – BC Foundation Board member

Fran Florez – BC Foundation Board member

Rick Kreiser – BC Foundation Board member –

Fred Prince – Bakersfield Black Chamber of Commerce President

Cheryl Scott – BC Foundation Board member and KEDC VP

Jay Tamsi – Hispanic Chamber of Commerce President

Keith Wolaridge – Panama Lane/Buena Vista School Board President

Here I am recognizing Tom Gelder at the Foundation Board of Directors meeting.  We make a powerful team.  Gelder (Exec Director of BC Foundation) and Christian (President of BC)  🙂

Tom Gelder and Sonya Christian May 25 2017 cropped

Gelder and Christian

Thank you Trustees for attending:

A few more photos:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2017 Sterling Silver

See more of the images from “Sterling Silver” here! (https://bakersfieldcollege.smugmug.com/2017-Sterling-Silver/)

Here are some more images from Mayor Karen Gohhttps://tinyurl.com/yahu6j58

 

On May 22nd, after the May 17th event, this is what Herb Benham had to say about Congressman Bill Thomas and secondarily about BC.

`We should do half as much in our lifetimes: Saw Bill Thomas at a dinner at Bakersfield College last week honoring people who helped raise half a billion through the Measure J campaign.”

“Every time I see the man, he’s thinner, Sharon, his wife was there and she is a sweetheart, and I am reminded how much good Bill has done he’s done for Kern County. Almost a billion for the Thomas Road Improvement Program and then helping with the bond measure that will help modernize BC over the next 30 years.”

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2017 Sterling Silver

The dinner also made me feel good about BC all over again. Talk a force for good.

Here is the link to the piece in the paper: https://tinyurl.com/kr4t7w8

Manny de Los Santos put together this video with some of the Measure J faces.  We had the video playing during dinner at Sterling Silver.


Valley Public Radio

KVPR-ValleyEditionOn May 16th, I had the wonderful opportunity to speak with Joe Moore on Valley Public Radio. Together, we packed a lot of conversation into such a short time. We kicked off with The Kern Promise, covered Guided Pathways, and even Measure J. Valley Edition is dedicated to covering issues important to Central Valley residents, so I was very excited to cover things we’re working on in education and at BC!

Joe Moore is the Director of the Program Content for Valley Public Radio and he’s the host of Valley Edition. Joe’s bio on the website says in 2008 that he was named one of Fresno’s “40 under 40” by the publication Business Street.

Thank you Joe Moore and Ezra Romero

I really enjoyed my time talking with Joe.
http://kvpr.org/post/interview-bakersfield-college-president-sonya-christian-kern-promise#stream/0

Follow Valley Edition on Twitter @ValleyEdition.


Congratulations Lindsay Ono

Lindsay Ono PicI am so glad to announce that Environmental Horticulture Professor, Lindsay Ono has been awarded a grant through the ECMC Foundation and the Center for Occupational Research and Development (CORD). He has been working with other community colleges and CORD with the Mapping Upward Initiative on the state stackable Horticulture Certificates.  This 3-year grant will allow Professor Ono and other college professors to continue their work and complete the curriculum updates for the Horticulture program. Shasta College and Reedley College are also receiving this grant. Congratulations Lindsay!!


Remembering Earl Wallace Cory, Jr.

Earl Wallace Cory, Jr was known on campus as Wally Cory. Jerry Ludeke reminded me that in print, his name was shown as E. Wallace and in person it was Wally. He was a retired History Professor with 34 years of service and who passed away on May 18th. Wally had been in Payson, Utah Veteran’s Home for the past three and a half years and in the hospice program there since last fall.


Leadership Matters Summit at BC

It’s a great week to be a Renegade and a great time to be at BC. This past week Bakersfield College had the privilege of hosting the Leadership Matters: Re-Imagining Leadership to Sustain Transformative Change to Advance Student Success & Equity conference for various community college’s throughout California. We were so pleased to hear from the California Community College Chancellor, Eloy Oakley who discussed, “Advancing Educational Attainment & Equity in California. Leadership Matters.” It was a day of great knowledge and it set the stage for us to build urgency in the way we look and approach at the “Guided Pathways” initiative. I look forward to sharing with you all more about this day of encouragement, change, unity, and leadership within California’s 113 community colleges in next week’s blog. But for now enjoy this picture that I snapped the night before the big event.

Shawn Whalen Sonya Christian Eloy Oakley May 24 2017

Shawn Whalen, Sonya Christian, Eloy Oakley

 

 

Superheroes:

Jonathan Schultz, faculty at BC, has been doing brief videos of BC staff for his students and all students at the college.  Check out his interview with Dr. Oliver Rosales, History faculty.

A few fun photos from this week:

From twitter Jose Cortez leading Region 5 in California for Student Government Associations.  Congratulations Jose! #WeAreBC!

Jose Cortez May 27 2017 Chair of Regon 5

Our Chief of Public Safety at an event with Grace Commiso’s baby

Chris Counts May 21 2017

 

Risky moves right after…..here is Bill Moseley

Bill Moseley May 25 2017

Two of my favorites people.  I remember them when they were little girls.

Erin and Kristin Tarjan May 28 2017

Erin Tarjan and Kristin Tarjan

Check out our faculty Prof. Jason Stratton, Prof. Bernadette Towns, and Prof. Lily Pimental-Stratton on the Great Wall of China. #WeAreBC

Sonya Christian May 19 2017

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever