Mothers building peace and goodwill – Happy Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers

Eisha Christian, Paul Christian, Pam Christian, Sonya Christian

Peace Initiatives at Bakersfield College: Young Mothers for Peace

In honor of Mothers Day this weekend, I wanted to share an update from the BC Peace Initiative.

The Mothers for Peace kick-off event was held on March 30. Norma Rojas-Mora moderated the discussion with Sandy Woo-Cater, Lauren Skidmore, Pawan Gill, and Antrenette Carr.

I wanted to highlight part of that discussion. In this video, the panelists look to the future, imaging their children as adults and what hopes they have for their children and the world their children will inhabit:

You can find all the videos from the discussion on the BC Peace Initiative Website (check the “Peace Projects” tab).

Good morning Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, May 8, 2021 … a great day to be a Renegade.

Asian-American Heritage Month

In 1990, George H.W. Bush signed a bill passed by Congress to extend Asian-American Heritage Week, and two years later, May was officially designated as Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month.

Originally, Pacific/Asian American Heritage Week had been recognized at the start of May for two reasons: On May 7, 1843, the first Japanese immigrant arrived in the United States; and on May 10, 1869, the golden spike was driven into the First Transcontinental Railroad – an engineering feat completed using Chinese labor.

It was 178 years ago yesterday that a 14-year-old fisherman named Manjiro arrived in the country by way of a whaling ship. He was the first recorded Japanese national to set foot on American soil. He was part of a crew on a fishing trip near their coastal Japanese village when a sudden storm left them adrift. Eventually, they washed up on a desert island 300 miles away, stranded for five months until an American whaling ship happened by the island to take on sea turtles.

The ship’s captain, William Whitfield, adopted young Manjiro as his son, and renamed him John Mung. John Mung/Manjiro came with Whitfield to America, where he was educated in English and studied navigation.

Please join me this month in honoring our Asian-American and Pacific Islander brothers and sisters.

AAPI Heritage Month One-Day Conference 5/13

Speaking of Asian American Heritage Month – next Thursday, May 13, will be the AAPI Heritage Month One-Day Conference, celebrating Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders in our community. All the events will be held virtually on Zoom, and prior registration is required.

The schedule of events is:

  • 4-5 pm: AAPI Faculty & Staff Spotlight: Joseph Tipay, Professor of Art
  • 5:30-6:30 pm: The Delano Manongs and a Post-Viewing Discussion
  • 7-8 pm: Readings and Conversation with Portia Choi

Find out more about the events – and register to attend – at

I also wanted to share this poem from Jack Hernandez that news of the BC Peace Garden inspired him to write:

A Garden of Peace

There is a garden

where we might gather

to walk and talk as one

to find the innocence

of peace with ourselves

and others in love’s

tranquility and forgiveness,

a garden where

all voices are heard

all lives are embraced

in joyful grace.

Pep ‘Sounds’: Mento Buru takes on BC ‘Renegade Fight Song’

Local band Mento Buru recently recorded a 3-song EP, “Renegade Sounds,” featuring new takes on Bakersfield College’s fight song.

The Bakersfield Californian published an article about the project, which was a collaboration between Mento Buru, the BC Commercial Music program, and the BC Foundation.

“Mento Buru can trace our formation to meeting and performing as members of the Renegade Marching Knights,” Matt Munoz, lead vocalist and BC alumni, said in a news release. “The ‘Renegade Fight Song’ was the first piece of music we were handed along with our uniform. I can still remember marching on the field for half-time shows and hyping up the crowd with the fight song after a touchdown like it was yesterday. The reaction and electricity of those crowds was unforgettable. We played that song in its traditional form countless times.”

The three versions are:

KGET also put together a great video about this collaboration. Check it out below:

Pursuing the Dream Conference

The Bakersfield College AB 540/ Undocumented Students Program and Rural Initiatives hosted the first Annual Pursuing the Dream conference on Friday, April 30, with over 200 listed RSVP and 81 active participants.

Students, educators and community members from Kern County and beyond had the opportunity to hear from the inspiring Dr. Gloria Itzel Montiel during her keynote address. After the keynote address the attendees participated in a number of workshops presented by the UFW foundation (Immigration Policy Updates​), mental health advocates (Mental Wellness Care Practices​), BC and CSUB staff (Student Self Advocacy, Path to BC/CSUB​), BC students (Beyond Undocumented Students: Missed Status Families), alumni (In this Together), faculty members (Decolonizing the Classroom & Power of Image), and elected officials (Organizing for Change).

BC Student Health COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics

On Friday, the BC Student Health Center held another vaccine clinic, at David Nelson Pocket Park.

Nicky Damania shared these pictures from the clinic:

Bakersfield City Councilmember Andrae Gonzales also shared this photo of BC Nursing students from the clinic:

Be sure to check the Vaccine Clinics page for information about upcoming BC clinics. Upcoming clinics include:

  • May 14, from 10 am to 12:30 pm, at 7th Day Adventist Church in Lamont
  • June 10, from 5-8 pm, at the Hindu Temple of Kern County
  • July 8, from 5-8 pm, at the Hindu Temple of Kern County

The BC Student Health Center has administered over 3,500 vaccine doses so far!

May the 4th Be With You- From Outreach & Early College

The Outreach & Early College team post with the Star Wars characters of choice.

The Outreach & Early College Team celebrated May the 4th this past week. The team brought their Star Wars stuffed toys to the morning meeting for a photo op. One team member who shall remain anonymous even shared their Star Wars themed tattoo! The meeting closed with a dance break in true Outreach & Early College fashion. May the 4th be with you!

The meeting closed with a dance session. This move is called “The Ashlea”.

107th Commencement Celebration

As we approach the end of the semester, I wanted to invite everyone to celebrate the Class of 2021 with a special commencement tribute on Sunday, May 16, from 6-8 pm.

Join us May 16, 2021 at 6 p.m. on KGET Channel 17 or on Telemundo Valle Central Channel 13 (with antennae, 17.3). This event will also be streamed on KGET’s website and KGET-TV17 Bakersfield Facebook Sunday, May 16, 2021 from 6 p.m.- 8 p.m. You do not need to have a Facebook account to view the stream on Facebook.

Every graduate who chose to participate will be honored with their photo and name read by BC faculty, staff and administrators.

Graduates, we are incredibly proud of what you’ve accomplished this year, despite all the obstacles, and look forward to tuning in along with your friends, family and community to celebrate your achievements.

Back to Campus

I’ve been loving the photos our Renegade Family is sharing as we make the return to our physical campus. I love seeing these smiling eyes – even with the masks you can see how happy our colleagues are to be back together in person.

Nicole Alvarez, from Outreach & Early College, posted this photo with Steve Watkin, Ashlea Ward, & Angela Williams to her Twitter (while on campus for the Welcome Back drone footage shoot):

Jenny Frank snapped this photo of our Veterans Resource Center staff transitioning back to campus, with the note:

“We are anxious and exited to begin serving our veteran and military-affiliated students IN PERSON again!”

The Academic Technology team was back together:

Here’s a few members from our Executive Office:

Jennifer Jett was back to work in her office this week:

In The News

Auto Program helps cut down on thefts

KGET featured this news story about how the Bakersfield Police Department partnered with Motor City and students from BC’s Automotive Program to etch unique numbers on catalytic converters in an attempt to cut down on thefts. With the numbers, they can easily be tracked down.

Spotted on Social Media

Jennifer Garrett shared an exciting update from performing arts as our musical groups get back to campus:

The Padrinos de Bakersfield College Facebook page shared these great photos from the #PaletasConProposito Spring scholarship fundraiser:

Kalina Hill shared support for the Academic Support Programs team:

And Athletics got into the Star Wars Day spirit with this post:


Coach Painton Wins Game #600

Huge congratulations go out to Head Baseball Coach Tim Painton who earned his 600th victory this last weekend after his team beat Antelope Valley in a doubleheader at Gerry Collis Field. No other coach in Renegade Baseball history has won as many games! Coach Painton has been coaching at BC for 26 years and has built quite the program in that time. In addition to having the premier baseball field in the state, he has had 199 student-athletes receive scholarships to continue their educations and playing careers at the 4-year level. In the same time period, the Renegades have had 38 players selected in the Major League Baseball draft including major leaguers Colby Lewis, Philip Dumatrait, Jacob Woods, Sean Barker, and Justin Miller. We are excited for Coach Painton and are glad to have this living Renegade legend at BC!

That’s all for now.
Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.
sonya –
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

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One thought on “Mothers building peace and goodwill – Happy Mother’s Day

  1. […] On Tuesday, May 18, 2021, at 5:00 pm, I invite you to join me at the “Educators for Peace” panel. I will be hosting with Student Success and Equity Program Manager Kara McDonald moderating the discussion with Richard McCrow, Jessica Wojtysiak, Bryan Hirayama, and Jeremy Staat. This is the second panel in the BC Peace Initiative; I highlighted the first panel, “Mothers for Peace,” in last week’s post. […]

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