November to Remember

Good morning, Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, December 1, 2018… A great day to be a Renegade.

Let’s pause and honor the passing of the 41st President of the United States, George Bush.  Take a moment to check out this in-depth article in the New York Times

Business Pathway Industry Summit

On Tuesday morning, students in BC’s Business pathway gathered in the Indoor Theater for the first ever Business Pathway Industry Summit. As students filled the front rows of the Indoor Theater, Dean Manny Mourtzanos was preparing to go on stage to welcome students and industry partners to the first annual event. Manny opened by telling students we are so happy that they’re here and we’ll be even happier when they graduate, because we care about our students and want them to efficiently complete their degrees and certificates.

Manny Mourtzanos speaking at the podium

The moderator for the afternoon, Mary Jo Pasek introduced the first panel of guests to the stage. The first panel connected students with local industry leaders including Leo Bautista, Senior Recruiter of Talent Acquisition for The Wonderful Company, Bob Bell, CEO of Cita Development, Inc, Morgan Clayton, President and Founder of Tel-Tec Security, Clayton Montgomery, Information Systems Security for Aera Energy, and Shontay Sweeney, VP at Chase Bank. The members of the panel shared a little about their background, how they got to where they are today, and where they see future business careers going. 

Mary Jo at the podium with panels on either side

The second panel featured Business faculty including Dr. Michael Harvath, Michael Ivy, Jeff la Force, Rudy Menjivar, Creighton Magers, Richard Miles, Valerie Robinson, Jonathan Ward, Eddie Rangel, and Dr. Murad Zikri. The panelists shared how they became interested in Business, what they did before they became professors, and  words of advice for students.

Mary Jo Pasek, with Beth Harrison and Valerie Robinson planned the event on a short timelineAs students left the theater they were served lunch provided by Student Success and Equity, and guided towards tables in the courtyard where they could gather and carry on conversations with industry leaders and fellow classmates. Events like these help our students connect with one another and connect with their community.

Emails Worth Sharing

Manny Mourtzanos emailed me midweek to share a student success story that was an outcome of the Business Pathways Industry Summit:

“At the Business Summit yesterday, one of our Business Administration students did the right thing by bringing her resume with her. She submitted it to one of the representatives from the Social Security Administration and has since been invited to interview for a summer internship.”

Stories like this are exactly why I’m the happiest and luckiest college president ever!

Roadmap to OSRM Degrees

On Wednesday, BC’s Occupational Safety and Risk Management (OSRM) program hosted an informational booth in the courtyard of the Science and Engineering building to inform students about course options leading to a degree in OSRM. Occupational safety professor Catherine Jones organized the booth providing handouts about the myriad career opportunities available to students in the OSRM program.

Experts in safety and risk management strive to protect workers, property and the environment in various occupational workplaces. Safety professionals can be found in a broad range of industries, from construction, petroleum and agriculture to insurance and regulatory government agencies such as the EPA and OSHA.

To reflect this broad range, the OSRM program at BC offers four different associate degrees of science – agriculture, business, industrial technology, and health science. Each of these programs teaches students the scientific foundations and knowledge of the regulatory framework needed to pursue a degree as a safety professional.

Clarifying the path is one of the four pillars of Guided Pathways. Events like this help do just that, clarifying for our students what they need to take to achieve their goal and start a career. I’d like to thank Catherine Jones and the OSRM program for organizing this informational event for our students.

Catherine Jones handing out information to a student while explaining about OSRM.

De-Stress Fest

As we head into Finals Week, many of our students are feeling the pressure to finish projects and study for the upcoming final exams. The week before finals every semester, the staff and faculty of the Grace Van Dyke Library provide games and events for students to decompress from their stressful study sessions.

For this semester’s De-Stress Fest, the library arranged for therapy dogs from Marley’s Mutts Dog Rescue to stop by the library on Monday for a little pet therapy for student relaxation.

Throughout the week, the library provided “De-Stress Zone” stations on the second floor with coloring pages, puzzles, word games and origami to give students a temporary respite from their studies.

Along with activities, the library also created a flyer with six stress-free research tips, which include developing search terms, doing some introductory background research on your subject, and narrowing your paper’s topic. Librarian Faith Bradham, who coordinated many of the activities for this semester’s De-Stress Fest, also recommended taking advantage of the free mental health screenings and therapy sessions available through the Student Health Center.

I’d like to thank Kirk Russell, Faith Bradham, and all of the faculty and staff at the Grace Van Dyke Byrd Library for organizing this semester’s De-Stress Fest, as well as Marley’s Mutts for providing therapy dogs on Monday morning. Don’t worry Delano, you haven’t been forgotten! Emotional support dogs will be visiting the Lobby at the Delano Campus on December 3rd to assist Delano students with de-stressing for finals. This is a great example of our core value of Wellness, and our holistic approach to education including the mind, body and spirit. I wish our students the best of luck on their finals next week.

Renegade Minute

Students in Dr. Josh Ottum’s Commercial Music Certificate program have completed Season 2 of The Renegade Minute Podcast. “In our Sound Design and Synthesis course (MUSC B32), we aim to give students practical experience in recording, editing, and doing sound design for a podcast,” says Ottum. Featuring interviews with librarians, professors, security guards, and more, the podcast aims to shed light on the BC community and people that make it work.

A few weeks ago, student and Renegade Francis Benevente interviewed me for the podcast, The Renegade Minute,posted right before Thanksgiving break. Listen in at Soundcloud.

See our talented Commercial Music students perform at December’s First Friday Art Walk. Students from the Commercial Music program will perform original and cover material.

The unique creativity of our students was on full display throughout the sale, from ornately crafted cups, bowls and vases to sculptures displayed on tables and shelves.

Early Holiday Shopping at BC

Did you get an opportunity to peruse the beautiful ceramic offering of the ceramics sale? It was a great opportunity to procure a unique gift for that someone special. On Wednesday and Thursday, the students in BC’s ceramics classes had the opportunity to display their projects and potentially sell them during the ceramics sale held in the Fine Arts building.

The ceramics sale was a tradition for many years on main campus, but one that dwindled out for a few years. When ceramics professor Darrin Ekern was hired three years ago, he brought the ceramics sale at BC back and has hosted it every semester since. The revenue generated from the sale go directly to supporting student through scholarships.

Thank you Darrin Ekern and the Ceramics Department for providing an opportunity for students to display their work. 

Power Lunch – Chain, Cohn, Styles

The Student Government Association hosted its last Power Lunch of the semester in Levinson Hall 40 on Wednesday, inviting attorney Beatriz Trejo from local law firm Chain, Cohn, Styles to talk about her experiences as a Latina woman in the legal field.

Trejo earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Cal State Bakersfield and a master’s in political science from Cal State Northridge before moving to Ohio to obtain her law degree from the University of Akron in 2011. She describes her time in Ohio, as well as her first few years as a practicing attorney in California, as a culture shock, as there are few young women of color in the legal field. She has since found that her differences are a strength, as she can speak directly to her Latino and Latina clients without an interpreter.

Trejo speaking in front of the SGA sign.

Trejo is a workers’ compensation attorney, representing injured workers at Chain, Cohn, Styles. In 2017, she was selected by the State Bar of California as the “Workers’ Compensation Young Lawyer of the Year”. She prides herself on her drive and professional work ethic to fight for labor rights in the community. “Someone else may have more experience, education or other advantages than me, but one thing they will never be able to control is how hard I work,” Trejo said.

Trejo is an active member of several local organizations, including the Immigration Justice Collaborative, which seeks to educate immigrants on their constitutional rights. She is also a part of the Cal State Bakersfield Pre-Law Advisory Committee, Latina Leaders of Kern County, Kern County Small Business Academies, and the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Some advice that Trejo gave to students interested in the legal field included: developing verbal and written communication skills, abiding by deadlines, and effectively prioritizing your caseload. She also recommended reaching out to some local attorneys for job shadowing opportunities before committing to the time and financial investment required to attend law school.

I’d like to thank the Legislative Affairs Department of BC’s Student Government Association for organizing this important networking opportunity for our pre-law students, as well as Beatriz Trejo and the staff at Chain, Cohn, Styles for taking time out of their busy schedules to speak with our students.

Ethics Bowl BC vs CSUB Scrimmage

Students from the Bakersfield College and Cal State Bakersfield Ethics Bowl teams scrimmaged in the Levan Center on Tuesday to prepare for the regional competition at Cabrillo College later today, Saturday, December 1. This is BC’s first year competing in the Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl, which gives college and university students practical experience in developing a coherent ethical argument.

BC philosophy professor Bryan Russel giving direction.

Before the competition, the two teams researched several potential questions about contemporary ethical issues from a range of topics, including business and professional ethics, political and cultural issues, and personal relationships. The moderator, BC philosophy professor Bryan Russell, selected one of the issues for each team to debate. Each team had 10 minutes to present an initial argument about how to address the issue, while demonstrating a deep understanding of the case and describing the ethical framework they used to arrive at their conclusion. After the main argument, the opposing team presented a rebuttal, asking for the team to clarify elements of their argument or demonstrating ways that the argument may be inconsistent. After the main team responded to the rebuttal, the panel of judges – BC professors Reggie Williams and Michael Korcok, and Cal State Bakersfield professor Deborah Jackson – had a few minutes to ask questions about the initial argument.

Teams facing each other with the panel of judges in between
Left to right: CSUB Team, panel of judges, moderator, BC Team

The BC team answered the question, “should victims have more say in sentencing than currently afforded them in the American Justice System?” Cal State Bakersfield’s team answered the question, “should we recognize Rachel Dolezal’s claim that she is black, even though neither of her parents have any African-American heritage?”

BC’s Team

The Ethics Bowl differs from Lincoln-Douglas or other traditional debate formats in that the primary goal is not about using rhetoric to persuade judges on one of two arbitrarily assigned positions, but instead emphasizes intellectual honesty and civic discussion by evaluating how well the team was able to defend and articulate their belief.

Left to right: BC professor Reggie Williams, BC professor Michael Korcok, and CSUB professor Deborah Jackson 

I’d like to thank the Levan Center and the Philosophy departments of both BC and CSUB for organizing this Ethics Bowl scrimmage, and I wish both teams the best of luck in their competitions.

Renegade Round Table

Another event in BC’s Norman Levan Center for the Humanities took place Wednesday Evening, November 28th, where approximately 90 people gathered for an engaging Renegade Round Table. This month’s topic was: Racial Injustice and the US Justice System. BC professors Erin Miller (History), Michael Harvath (Economics), Steven Holmes (Political Science), and Neal Stanifer (English) engaged with the issue in a number of interesting ways.

Panel in front of the screen that says "The Injustice System? Do we have a system of injustice rather than a Justice system?"
From left to right: Erin Miller, Michael Harvath, Steven Holmes, Neal Stanifer

Stanifer lead off, drawing the audience’s attention to the disproportionate rate at which US minorities are charged with petty crimes, such as jaywalking. Harvath focused on the role that media play in drawing attention to some alleged injustices over others. Miller asked the audience whether they feel we have a system of justice or systemic injustice, and Holmes presented statistics that challenged the audience to entertain the question of whether minorities in fact commit serious crimes more frequently than do other members of society. I’m very proud of the quality and rigor of discussion of our faculty.  

speaking while wearing a t-shirt that says "I'm confused, wait... maybe I'm not."
Michael Harvath

Thank you Reggie Williams for organizing these Renegade Round Tables to enhance the education of our students and our community. There will be three more Renegade Round Tables in the spring. Topics and dates are forthcoming, but the panels will be on Wednesday evenings in the Levan Center. They are always free and open to the public. For scheduled events, visit the Levan Center Lectures and Events.

Working with Faculty to Build a Better BC

On Wednesday our Science & Engineering faculty met with the architecture firm who was awarded the Design/Build contract for the Science & Engineering building.  This will be the third building to be built using Measure J funds here on the Bakersfield College campus. The meeting was a great opportunity for faculty to let the designers know what is best suited for the new building, and what is essential to improving the classroom and therefore educational journey of our BC students.  I can’t wait to see the final rendering!

2018 BC Employee Holiday Reception

Our annual BC Employee Holiday Reception was held on Thursday in the Fireside Room.   The great food and collegiality is a festive kick-off to the holidays and recognition of the hard work of all administrators, faculty, and staff over the fall semester.  Over two hundred Renegades enjoyed scrumptious treats by Chef Stuart and the BC Food Services Staff, along with Chef Gomez’s yummy bread pudding from the Renegade Room with the Culinary Arts Students. 

We enjoyed beautiful holiday music provided by John Gerhold, Jennifer Garrett, Robbie Martinez and Kris Tiner along with their wonderful student musicians.  The annual event is coordinated each year by the Bakersfield Holiday Reception Committee (Susan Pinza, Kristin Rabe, Leah Carter, Tracy Lovelace and Pat Smith) and is made possible by generous donations from the Bakersfield College Foundation, President’s office, CCA, CSEA, and numerous employee donations. 

I want to send a special thank you to our amazing Food Services department, who once again outdid themselves.  Thank you to Stephanie Stuart for managing such a great team, and to Penny Loos for all of the beautiful decorations!  The Fireside Room was warm and festive, with our many faculty and staff spreading holiday cheer while eating delicious goodies.  Planning has already begun for next year’s reception, so if you’d like to contribute, please contact the BC Foundation. Enjoy these fabulous photos by Manny De Los Santos.

Renegade Athletics

Renegades of the Week

BAKERSFIELD, CA – Renegade Athletics is proud to announce this week’s Wells Fargo Renegades of the Week:

  • Ryan Bayne, Women’s Volleyball – Had 10 total blocks in helping the team to playoff wins over Mt. San Jacinto on 11/20 and San Diego Mesa on 11/24.
  • Shahadah Camp, Men’s Basketball – Shot 54.5% to score 22 points in helping the team to a 76-67 win at West Hills Coalinga on 11/20.

Women’s Soccer Post-Season Awards Announced

The Renegade Women’s Soccer team finished the 2018 season with an 11-5-4 overall record (3-2-3) in conference and hosted a CCCAA playoff play-in game.

With the season coming to a close, post-season awards were announced and the team took home a host of conference awards.

  • Drew Hallum (Centennial HS) 2018 CCCAA All-State & 2018 WSC East 1st-Team All-Conference
  • Brooke McDonald (East HS) – 2018 CCCAA All-State & 2018 WSC East 2nd-Team All Conference
  • Michelle Vargas (Independence HS) – 2018 WSC East 1st-Team All Conference
  • Rhyan Acosta (Liberty HS) – 2018 WSC East 1st-Team All Conference
  • Emma Gross – (Liberty HS) – 2018 WSC East 2nd-Team All-Conference
  • Jackie Zavalla (Bakersfield HS) – 2018 WSC East Honorable Mention
  • Cameron Jimenez (Independence HS) -2018 WSC East Honorable Mention

Roundup of Athletics Events this week

Men’s Basketball Tops West Hills 

Renegades on Social Media

BC in Digital Journal

Bakersfield College and our efforts in partnership with Jobspeaker was highlighted in Newswire article “Jobspeaker and Bakersfield College Creating Equitable Career Pathways” in the Digital Journal The article says, “Bakersfield College supports students through their Learning & Career Pathways approach to keep students on track in their skills development for their chosen field” and featured BC’s Stephanie Baltazar. Check out the full “Jobspeaker and Bakersfield College Creating Equitable Career Pathways” article.

Tyrone Crawford Instagram and Twitter

Bakersfield College Alumnus Tyrone Crawford of the Dallas Cowboys was all over social media with his slick Renegade jacket lining. I am so proud of Tyrone and his success in the NFL!

Recently, the Cowboys filmed a documentary about Tyrone and visited our main campus to interview Coach Jeff Chudy and film the Memorial Stadium. I first talked about this in my September 2nd blog. His story led him from Canada to Bakersfield College before transferring to Boise State and on to the NFL. Watch the completed documentary: Deep Blue: from the Edge: The Tyrone Crawford Story.

Renegades on Facebook

It’s great to see Renegades in the community being recognized for their service. Paws for Liam which helps raise awareness for Autism Service Dogs tagged BC in a post which highlighted a BC rad tech student. 

Upcoming Events

This season is rich with celebrations and entertainment and BC is doing our part to entertain our community. Make sure to support our many student endeavors. Here are a few on the calendar:

Fun Photos

Here is some fun with Media Arts students hard at work!

Sonya speaking with her hand in an ok sign

That’s all for now.

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.

the luckiest and happiest college president ever

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One thought on “November to Remember

  1. Nick Strobel December 1, 2018 at 8:58 pm Reply

    Also on December 6 is “Season of Light” at the William M Thomas Planetarium!

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