Bakersfield College is one of ten community colleges participating in the Central California Community Colleges Committed to Change (C6) consortium. The C6 grant supports the education of students in key areas:
- Registered Nursing
- Vocational Nursing
- Licensed Vocational to Registered Nursing
- Nurse Assistant
- Home Health Aide
- Radiologic Technology
- Computerized Technology
Using a series of academic and student success strategies, Bakersfield College has transformed how we educate students in these programs, but more importantly, integrated our strategies across our campus for the benefit of all programs and disciplines.
Students come to the C6 project in a variety of ways:
- targeted recruitment in local high school CTE programs
- engagement with our advisory boards
- selective enrollment in high demand programs
- volunteering in general enrollment courses
Once enrolled, students take the WorkKeys Assessment, which is an industry-specific assessment tool that examines the student’s abilities in reading, mathematics, and locating information. When necessary, students are referred to the Student Success Lab for remediation. However, CTE programs are high content areas and many of the programs have been compressed into shorter timelines. As a result, CTE faculty have been taught how to embed remediation into the courses. To make this possible, Basic Skills faculty observed classroom instruction, reviewed syllabi, evaluated WorkKeys scores, discussed learning deficiencies, and designed specific instructional materials focusing on specific skills like contextualized math, reading apprenticeship, note taking, test taking strategies and much, much more. In addition to the in-class embedded remediation strategies, Basic Skills faculty offered workshops for students and professional development seminars for faculty.
To support the program, faculty have spent countless hours outside of the classroom collaborating with the other colleges involved in the consortium on curriculum development and revision, creation of online coursework, development of instructional material, redesign of instructional labs, and the sharing of best instructional practices. Through this effort, faculty have realigned curriculum to better meet industry standards. This required hours of telephone conferences and meetings with consortium colleges and industry partners, then the effort to usher courses through collegiate, state, and accrediting agency approval processes.
The faculty have also participated in “hack-a-thons” – intensive 2-3 day Open Educational Resources (OER) designing meetings. Bakersfield College is currently using OERs in the LVN to RN, Welding, Nurse Assistant, and RN programs. OERs are expected to support students through less expensive and more useful course supplements. Inspired by this ongoing effort, consortium faculty involved in Basic Skills are currently in the process of developing an OER for faculty use as a guide for embedding remediation strategies into any course.
But the work of C6 hasn’t just occurred in the classroom, the college is now in the process of redesigning our Early Alert system. Through the use of grant dollars, the college was able to purchase equipment, which will combine with our current student support software to enhance our ability to track “at-risk” students. Students engaged with the C6 program will pilot the redesigned Early Alert system. Supporting that effort is secondary student case management strategies focusing on best practices learned through STEM and MESA. These strategies incorporate student case management, supplemental instruction, and peer tutoring.
As the grant project enters the 3rd year, Bakersfield College continues to support and thrive to excel for change. C6 has allowed Bakersfield College to integrate our processes and through the continuing efforts of faculty, industry partners and administration, the college will continue to enhance student success through effective change.