Good morning Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, July 28, 2018, a special day for me…….usually a day of reflection and today I reflect on the amazing summer we have had so far, and looking forward to the upcoming fall semester. Definitely a good day to be a Renegade
I’m also thinking again this morning about Summer Bridge…., the amazing faculty and staff who participate and the amazing Kimberly Bligh who leads and organizes the entire effort.
Summer Bridge Taking Media by Storm
The Summer Bridge program was on fire this week in local media coverage. The Bakersfield Californian featured an article talking about how the program helps to minimize the intimidation that many high school students feel when moving to higher education. ABC23 also highlighted the program, talking to students and their drive to continue their education. On Wednesday, Karen Hua at KGET also created a video package showcasing the good work of this program. #WeareBC!
You MUST SEE the video of incoming freshman, Daryl Maiden speaking to Tori Cooper of 23 ABC.
Thank you to Joseph Luiz at the Bakersfield Californian and Tori Cooper at ABC23 for helping to keep our community informed on BC’s commitment to student success.
This amazing program is changing lives and helping students succeed from day one! Special thanks to two incredible women who care about students and their success – Dr. Kimberly Bligh and Isabel Castaneda!
Process Technology Degree Coming to BC
It was highlighted in the “Worth Noting” section of the Bakersfield Californian that BC has a Process Technology degree and certificate coming soon! This new degree will provide the skills and knowledge needed for jobs such as chemical system operators, water and gas system operators, and petroleum pump operators.
According to recent 2018 Labor Market Analysis, there were 1,359 job postings for the four industrial-systems-technology-and-maintenance occupations in the seven counties within the South Central Valley region over the past year. “Bakersfield College is committed to providing our students with an educational foundation for a successful career, one which will provide employment that directly aligns with their course of study” said Director of Career and Technical Education, Tony Cordova.
L.U.P.E. Hosts 2nd Annual Dreamer Open House
On Friday July 20th, L.U.P.E. (Latinos Unidos Por Educación) hosted the 2nd Annual Dreamer Open House on campus. This impactful event was geared towards incoming freshmen who met the classification of AB540, DACA, DREAMer, and undocumented. This event was a great way to provide students with a supportive environment and reassurance that our campus community is a “safe space.” Students were shown our various campus resources as well as community resources, such as the United Farmworkers Foundation (UFW) and Youth 2 Leaders (Y2L).
Our fearless Student Government Officers, including BCSGA President James Tompkins, provided a warm welcome and words of encouragement to our Dreamer attendees, which was clearly taken to heart as newfound friendships were formed as the day progressed. Thank you to the 16 L.U.P.E. students who volunteered to set up, served as group facilitators and presenters, and participated in the college panel discussion. Also, a very special thanks to the Office of Student Success and Equity, EOP&S, CalSOAP, Outreach Department, and Hodels Restaurant for their support and involvement. I love showing others what a dedicated staff we have here at BC, and how it is our campus culture to invest in our students.
Legislative Field Representatives Visit BC
Field representatives Perry Finzel (Congressman David Valadao’s office), Aaron Falk and Cole Karr (Congressman Kevin McCarthy’s office), and Clayton Fowler (Assemblyman Vince Fong’s office) visited the BC campus on Wednesday where they were shown what it truly means to be a Renegade! Dr. Michele Bresso welcomed the representatives, and helped them to get to know BC and the innovative and impactful programs that we offer.
On the tour they were introduced to our Bachelor of Science in Industrial Technology program, met with student veterans who shared information about the services that BC offers and the new veterans center that will be starting construction soon, and they got to engage first-hand with the amazing robotics technology that our students learn with.
This tour was an opportunity for our representatives to see the BC staff dedication to student success that we consistently strive for, as well as our commitment to workforce development in our community. #WeareBC!
Renegade Athletics Student Success Seminar
Over 82 incoming freshman student athletes attended the 1st annual Student Success Seminar on Monday, July 23rd to help orient them to resources on campus. Athletics program manager Darrell Ballard coordinated speakers from all across campus including:
The Renegade Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) student leaders
David Seymore from Student Health who spoke on the mental challenges of being an athlete today
Danyel Owens from Student Life who discussed never being hungry at BC and the importance of nutrition
Stephanie Baltazar from Career and Technical Education who discussed finding a career, working on campus, and building a resume
Eileen Pierce and her Academic Support Staff who discussed the locations and importance of tutoring, work study, math hub, writing center and supplemental instruction
Vanesa De La Madrid Hernandez and Amanda Stone from Financial Aid who discussed financial aid in detail, important dates, how to check your program status, and much more
Stig Jantz, Athletics Academic Advisor, who talked about what it takes to be a successful student at BC, the importance of GPA, graduation plans, matriculation, and BC Math and English Initiatives.
Be sure to stay connected with Renegade Athletics throughout the year via social media to know the latest on our sports teams:
Jon Mettus highlights BC Volleyball Coach Ferreira
The interview covers topics such as how Coach Carl Ferreira found himself in Bakersfield, how he found himself coaching Volleyball, and what he calls the ‘secret sauce’ in coaching.
Within the piece, coach says “My primary job is just to impact people. Not to coach volleyball. To coach volleyball is easy. Impacting people is really hard.”
And love this photo by Felix Adamo in The Bakersfield Californian
Chamber Singers in Australia
For the past three years, the Chamber Singers worked hard to make the Australia Tour a reality. They fundraised, rehearsed, fundraised some more, gave performances, and devoted so much heart to this adventure. They are now safely home and this talented group is already dreaming up where they’ll bring the Renegade spirit to next!
Here are a few highlights from the 2018 Chamber Singers trip to Australia:
This group of talented men and women are forever changed and so grateful for everyone who supported them on this journey. Thank you to all who helped make this possible and to all of the Chamber Singers and guests who made this the most incredible tour!
Special Commissions by Ron Kean
BC is lucky to have such talented and dedicated faculty and staff. I’m thinking this morning about the “Journey of Harriet Tubman,” a specially commissioned work by Ron Kean that premiered on March 24, 2017, performed by the Bakersfield College Choirs with Dr. Jennifer Garrett as Conductor. Written in the style of African/American spirituals that she would have sung, the work chronicles Harriet Tubman’s early life, escape from slavery, and bravery and leadership in helping others escape. These spirituals are set in a pre-Civil-War, west African style that helps evoke the life and mind of the enslaved Africans. Harriet Tubman escaped from enslavement and returned to Maryland 13 times, helping rescue over 300 fellow enslaved Africans.
Since its premiere, this work has been performed by a professional women’s choir, VOX Femina Los Angeles, at CSU Long Beach, San Jose State University, and by the San Luis Obispo Master Chorale. Performances this year include the Idyllwild School of the Arts at Walt Disney Hall on Aug. 5, College of the Canyons, Santa Barbara Choral Society, the Sacramento Master Chorale and CSU Fresno.
The BC Chamber Singers will premiere its latest commission by Ron Kean, “The Star Spangled Banner” on October 26, 2018. I’m told this new arrangement focuses musically on the “spangles” of our flag and the wonder at the survival of the United States from the Battle of Fort McHenry in 1812.
Ron says, “The purpose of composing both compositions is to honor and celebrate all Americans who have contributed to our great nation. An African Proverb says: ‘If you wish to travel fast, go alone: But if you wish to travel far, go together.’ I HOPE that we can all learn to walk together by honoring the unique cultures that formed America.”
Testing and Placement Center Move
As we prepare for the construction of the new Veteran’s Center, a crucial next step was to create the new Testing and Placement Center on the 1st floor of the CSS building (where the Graphics and Print Shop used to be, on the north side of the building, room 14). This critical move allows work to proceed on the old Finlinson building which will become the new Veterans Center. Regular testing and placement student support services have resumed.
Thanks to Kalina Hill who worked to verify that we have everything in the correct place. Thanks to M&O for helping us get a few pieces of temporary furniture to make things work while we wait for new furniture to arrive (primarily in the office space). And thank you IT Crew!
Drum Corps International Competition Resounds Through BC
Drumroll, please! The fourth annual “Resound: Drum and Bugle Corps Competition” was held at BC last Friday. To say that it was a success is to put it lightly. This event brought together some of the best drum and bugle corps to our campus, from as far as Salt Lake City. The competition , which had over 1,100 people in attendance, is supported by an Arts in the Community Grant from the Arts Council of Kern. We are very proud to have hosted this great event!
BC’s Performing Arts presents “Parade”
Bakersfield College Performing Arts Department proudly presents the 2nd Annual Summer Musical, the Tony Award-winning Parade. Performances are scheduled for August 3, 4, 10, and 11 at 7:30PM at BC’s beautiful Indoor Theater. Tickets available at Vallitix.com and at the door!
Parade is a moving and hopeful examination of a challenging part of the American experience that includes religious intolerance, political injustice and racial tension. This stirring musical explores the endurance of love and hope against all odds, with a book by acclaimed playwright Alfred Uhry, and a rousing, colorful and haunting score by Jason Robert Brown,
In 1913, Leo Frank, a Brooklyn-raised Jew living in Georgia, is put on trial for the murder of thirteen-year-old Mary Phagan, a factory worker under his employ. Already guilty in the eyes of everyone around him, the actions of a sensationalist publisher and a janitor’s false testimony seal Leo’s fate. His only defenders are a Governor with a conscience, and, eventually, his assimilated Southern wife who finds the necessary strength and love to become his greatest champion.
Daring, innovative and bold, Parade is filled with soaring music and a heart-wrenching story, offering a moral lesson about the dangers of prejudice and ignorance — one that still rings true in our modern political landscape.
State Water Resource Control Board placement while at BC
Zechariah Maynard is a former MESA student. He transferred to Cal Poly Pomona as a mechanical engineering major starting only this Fall, but, as we know, MESA students are eager to “pay it forward” and help their fellow students. Zechariah came back and helped set up a presentation to summer students in the AERA STEM Center on July 26. Zechariah spoke about how jobs like his placement with the State Water Resource Control Board are great opportunities for engineering students. He described how gained a wealth of knowledge, and encouraged more BC students to pursue experiences like this one that the MESA program made possible for him. Thank you Connie Gonzales and the MESA faculty for your focus on dedication to our students.
Walkin’ After Sunrise
Rhondi Bradford is a proud alumna and former BC employee who loves BC! Even though she retired in 2007, she and her husband Bob, visit campus each morning for their morning walks.
While at BC as an employee, Rhondi was active and social with many groups and she worked with recently retired Vice President Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg for a number of years back when Nan was Dean. Rhondi is a proud graduate of the class of 1964 with a degree in Business and in her spare time, she has volunteered to chronicle the unfolding of the construction work related to Measure J during her morning walks on campus. #WeAreBC!
Local Contractor Outreach Seminar
On Tuesday night, BC hosted a local contractor outreach seminar along with AECOM/Parsons and Casamar Group in an effort to inform the community about upcoming Measure J projects, and make visible that KCCD and BC are dedicated to hiring a local workforce, and want to maximize opportunity for small and local contractors interested in participating in these projects. At the seminar, attendees were given details about Measure J projects and how to become a part of the program to build A Better BC
A special thank you to Trustee Bill Thomas for his attendance and introduction about the importance of Measure J and what it means for the community. We are working to keep local dollars local, and want our community to be given every opportunity to be a part of this adventure.
Also thank you Trustee Romeo Agbalog and Trustee Kyle Carter for attending this event.
Latina Leaders of Kern County: Latinas Leading the Way Annual Fundraiser
The 19th Annual Latinas Leading the Way dinner was held last weekend, where BC was represented in full force! The annual fundraiser highlights women making an impact in the community through education. Norma Rojas-Mora, Corny Rodriguez, andAbel Guzman were just a few BC employees in attendance, as was Mayor Goh, who is always enthusiastic in sharing the Renegade spirit at community events. Congratulations to honorees Beatris Espericueta Sanders, Sonia Rodriguez, and Lillian Tafoya on their well-deserved recognition and for encouraging Latina leadership and education in our community!
I spent several days this past week at my daughter’s house by the beach. My favorite vacations are full of long walks and this one was no different — walks on the beach, walks at the marina…….
Life Is Not Measured By the Number of Breaths We Take,
But By the Moments That Take Our Breath Away
And then there was my daughter spoiling Neo and teaching him bad habits. You just need to check out the photo below to know what I mean.
That’s all for now.
Until next time.
With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.
the luckiest and happiest college president ever