Bienvenido Mayo 2022

This morning’s walk was just perfect. At 5:15 a.m. the predawn light was slowly emerging to a gentle breeze that carried the fragrance of jasmine. I gave Neo a bath late yesterday afternoon after I got back home, and he was fluffy and happy this morning with his tail swaying like a white flag as he walked with purpose and anticipation. We usually see the same cast of characters, mostly cats with an occasional skunk, racoon, kit fox, road runner, and even a coyote once. There is one particular Orange Cat (OC) or Ms OC as we call her, who is mischievous and frolics to get Neo’s attention.

Neo loves spring and fall in Bakersfield, because I spend a lot more time in the back yard, and he enjoys exploring or relaxing when I am outside. Usually, I have my laptop and park myself on the back porch with a cup of coffee or ginger-lemonade depending on the time of the day and the ambient temperature.

Today, I am particularly happy that my crazy April schedule is over and I feel a sense of spaciousness going into the month of May – and as Pope Francis reminded me on twitter this morning, May is the month dedicated to honoring Mother Mary.

Of course, tomorrow is Mother’s Day a very special day for a very special woman in our lives.

For our colleges and our students, spring semester ends this week with Commencements at Bakersfield College on Thursday at 7:00 p.m., Porterville College on Friday at 7:00 p.m., and Cerro Coso Community College on Friday as well at 11:00 a.m.

Good morning, friends. Happy Mother’s Day
It is May 7, 2022.
The sun shines bright over KernCCD.

This week, the Pirates, the Coyotes, and the Renegades continue to 

Porterville College

PC Academic Senate Celebrates “Distinguished Students”

On Friday, April 29th, the Porterville College Academic Senate hosted its first annual Distinguished Student Awards Ceremony in the Student Center cafeteria.  Twenty-two students were recognized by PC faculty at the ceremony as “students who, in the judgement of one or more faculty in an academic division, have been outstanding in their classroom performance and/or campus service.”  Students were invited to the ceremony knowing only that they were receiving an award, but not which faculty had selected them or why – which they found out only as the faculty announced their names, and gave speeches to an audience of student recipients, their families, and other PC faculty and staff. 

Students received a special certificate and a pin to commemorate their accomplishments.  After the Distinguished Student Awards were presented, a final award was given to the Scholar of the Year.  This award is our faculty’s highest honor for our graduating students, and is selected by the Academic Senate from among those nominated by Porterville College faculty.  To be nominated for Scholar of the Year, a student must have a minimum 3.75 GPA in all courses counted for graduation at the time of the nomination.  In addition, the student must have demonstrated outstanding abilities through their Porterville College coursework in areas of intellectual and critical thinking skills; exceptional curiosity, creativity, and effort; accomplishment within their major(s), and accomplishment in other disciplines. This year, the Academic Senate recognized Aimee Cauwet as the Scholar of the Year, who will be receiving degrees in Biological and Physical Science and in Business Administration, and whose nomination was made by faculty members, Buzz Piersol, Chris Vanni, Elisa Queenan, and Stephanie Cortez.  Aimee will receive a scholarship for her achievement through the Porterville College Foundation, as well as a special commemorative certificate and pin.  This new event replaces the former ‘medals of distinction’ that were awarded at the commencement ceremony itself, but the award recipients will be recognized in the commencement program, and during the ceremony. 

Approximately one hundred and twenty people were on hand for the awards, and stayed after the presentations for conversation, snacks, and photographs.  While we are proud of their accomplishments, and look forward to what they will do after leaving Porterville College, we were grateful to have this chance to commemorate their time with us with a memory for them to take with them after graduation.

Pirates celebrate 2021-22 season at 12th annual awards banquet 

Director of Athletics Joe Cascio and Women’s Basketball Head Coach Alia Alvarez presented the Sophomore of the Year Award to Mo Mosley (Softball)
and Chirrag Sidhu (Men’s Basketball).

The 2021-22 athletics season at Porterville College officially came to a close last week and on Monday, the Pirates honored their best and brightest at the 12th annual Academic and Athletic Achievement Awards banquet at the PC Student Center. The ceremony made its return after a two-year absence due to the COVID pandemic.

Highlights from the event include an impressive 31 Pirate student-athletes being named to the President’s Honors List (3.50-4.0 GPA) while 16 more earned Dean’s List honors (3.0-3.49 GPA).

Click Here for a complete list of award winners and a photo gallery from the event.

Pirates softball team captures six All-Central Valley Conference awards

Mo Mosley (left) and Cienna Enriquez (right) earned first-team All-Central Valley
Conference honors for the Pirates. (Photos by Anja Goebel)

Following the close of the 2022 Porterville College softball season, six members of the Pirates were honored with All-Central Valley Conference postseason awards.

Leading the way were first team selections Mo Mosley and Cienna Enriquez. Second team picks were Hailee Smutz and Cheyenne Ausborn. Also for PC, Cassie Cannon and Ally Boyd were named honorable mention.

Mosley wrapped up an amazing sophomore season for the Pirates as she led the conference in hitting (.524), hits (55), runs (41), on-base percentage (.597), and stolen bases (37). Among state leaders, Mosley ranked third in batting average, fourth in stolen bases, and fourth in on base-percentage.

Enriquez appeared in all 36 games this season and saw time at first base and outfield for the Pirates. As a freshman, she hit .329 with 38 hits, 7 doubles, 15 walks, a home run, and 28 RBI. 

Smutz was honored at the middle infield position and hit .328 her freshman season with 38 hits, 8 doubles, 4 triples, and totaled 23 RBI. Ausborn was the Pirates’ primary third baseman and had a productive sophomore year with a .340 batting average to go along with 26 hits, 11 doubles, 2 home runs, and 17 RBI.

Cannon batted .247 with 24 hits, scored 26 runs, walked 20 times, and smacked 8 doubles. Boyd was the Pirates No. 1 pitcher throughout the season and compiled a 10-17 overall record with 55 strikeouts and a 5.16 earned run average. She tossed 19 complete games. With the bat, Boyd hit .342 with 3 home runs and 25 RBI.

2022 All-Central Valley Conference Softball Postseason Awards

First Team
Mo Mosley, OutfieldCienna Enriquez, Utility

Second Team
Hailee Smutz, Middle Infield
Cheyenne Ausborn, Third Base

Honorable Mention
Cassie Cannon, Middle Infield
Ally Boyd, Pitcher

Cerro Coso Community College

The Future is Bright: Annual Access Programs Awards

The theme for the 41th Annual Access Programs Awards ceremony held on Friday, April 29th was “The Future is Bright”.

Student speaker Coral Ashlock from the Ridgecrest campus shared how focus and determination kept her on track with her schooling during the pandemic. Matthew Guntert from the Eastern Sierra College Center (ESCC) credited all the personal ways Counselors, tutors, lap-top loans, wi-fi, and variety of communications and programs sought to engage students remotely as very helpful to students and their achievements. 

Special recognition went to Access Program Students of the Year: Taylir De Stefano, Ridgecrest; Jeanna Hill, Kern River Valley; Yoav Golan, ESCC; Robin Montero, Tehachapi; and Misty Franklin, Online.  

Outstanding Faculty of the Year for Access Programs went to Dr. Tyson Huffman, Professor and Learning Assistance Center Coordinator.

Others recognized at the event included Special Services United Club Graduate of the Year: Tiffany Dibble; Peer Mentors Nicolas Ellis, Courtney Bowen, and Joyce Chung; Study Hall Tutors Jeanine Halbrook, and Amelia Plumhoff.

Your future is bright. For all the times of late night studies, lack of sleep and sacrifice of enjoyment, your reward is here! -Anonymous

Safety Holds Sexual Assault Awareness Event at CCCC

Every April, Cerro Coso Community College participates in Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) and joins together to support students and community members who are victims and survivors of sexual and relationship violence. 

College Safety and Security Manager Kevin King invited the Ridgecrest Police Department and Women’s Center High Desert to share facts and resources during a luncheon held on April 28th at the Ridgecrest campus.  The event held in-person was also made available virtually for students and interested parties outside the college to attend. 

We can all play a role in violence prevention by speaking up and stepping in when we notice something that may be concerning or problematic.

Preventing any problem first starts with education.  This begins by raising our own awareness and understanding, as well as the community’s.  Start conversations about this topic with other students and challenge myths about violence when you hear them.  Learn more on what you can do at  SAAM 2022

Coyote Athletics Holds 2021-2022 Awards Ceremony

Cerro Coso held a modest in-person awards ceremony to highlight and celebrate the 2021-2022 athletic year, and award recipients on Wednesday, May 4, 2022 in the Gymnasium at the Ridgecrest campus.  

Baseball Awards:

  • Dominic Lopez- Gold Glove Second Base – # 28 Infielder for the Coyotes
  • Danny Jimenez– Gold Glove First Base / 2nd Team All-Conference – #13 Infielder
  • Brentt Olmo- 1st Team All-Conference – #27 Outfielder
  • Jaxon Holzem– 1st Team All-Conference – #17 Right Home Plate/Outfielder
  • Brooks Scott– Gold Glove Catcher / 1st team All-Conference – #2 Centerfield
  • Johnny McHenry– Gold Glove Short stop / Big Bat Award/ Conference MVP – #5 Infielder

Softball Awards:

  • Mattie Lane- Honorable Mention – #11
  • Emily Curtis– Honorable Mention – #16
  • Tawny Ford– 2nd Team All-Conference – #12
  • Kyla Collins– 1st Team All-Conference – #13

Four Coyote baseball players signed letters of intent to play:

  • Johnny McHenry – Cal State University Northridge, Northridge, California
  • Michael Doerr – Lindenwood University, St. Charles, Missouri
  • Trevor French – Union College, Barbourville, Kentucky
  • Carlos Soto – Union College, Barbourville, Kentucky

“The 2021-2022 academic year has been another year with many things to celebrate for our athletes,” said Athletic Director John McHenry.  “The last two years have been hard.  In their time with us, they have experienced a lot of change, but they have stayed committed to their sports and their studies,  and worked hard to be successful on the field as well as in the classroom. 

“We are incredibly proud of our student-athletes,” said President Dr. Sean Hancock.  “These athletes have faced unique challenges, adapted to the changing times, and achieved at a high level in athletics and in their academics.  You have represented  Cerro Coso well in competition, in the classroom, and in the community.  Congratulations on the well deserved awards!”      

Bakersfield College

BC Wins Reader’s Choice “Best Of” for Best College

Thank you to everyone who voted in this year’s Readers Choice Awards at the Bakersfield Californian’s “Best of” Bakersfield series!

Bakersfield College has been voted best in the “Best College” category. What an honor!

Criminal Justice Students Participate in Tour of Juvenile Hall and Law Enforcement Mock Interviews

Criminal Justice Professors Pat Smith and Tabitha Raber took criminal justice students on a tour of the James G. Bowles Juvenile Hall detention facility this month. Students learned about Juvenile Justice treatment programs for detained minors.

The James G. Bowles Juvenile Hall is a secure juvenile detention facility operated 24 hours a day, 365 days a year by the Kern County Probation Department. Counseling, guidance, individual and group activities, and schooling programs are all provided to help the minors. The Bakersfield College Rising Scholar Program has recently begun offering college-level courses at the facility. Bakersfield College criminal justice students also participated in a mock law enforcement interview panel last week.

Officers from the Kern County Probation Department, California Highway Patrol, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, and the Bakersfield Police Department helped students prepare for future interviews with law enforcement agencies. Dominica Rivera and Jessica McGrath, from Career Technical Education also participated. Each student was provided important feedback from the panelists and given a written evaluation of their interviews.

Our criminal justice students stated that these are the types of events that help them tremendously to prepare for their careers in law enforcement. The Wasco High School early college criminal justice students also participated in the law enforcement mock interviews and for the first time were able to attend a B.C. Criminology Club meeting on the main campus. Robert F. Kennedy High School in Delano invited Bakersfield College to attend their Annual College & Career Day on April 21st. Members of the Public Safety Training Program attended this wonderful event and met members of the Delano community along with current and future students.

BC Foundation 2022 Honors Celebration

Once a year we get a chance to celebrate with our BC students as they are recognized with a scholarship and/or award for their tremendous academic achievements. This recognition takes place at the BC Foundation Honors Celebration, held virtually this year on YouTube.

The program included name recognition for all student recipients. Remarks were given by Manny Mourtzanous (Interim Dean of Student Affairs), Jennifer Achan (Executive Director of Financial Aid & Scholarships), and Cheryl Scott (Executive Director, BC Foundation), with a keynote address by Sandy Woo-Cater (BC Alumni Board Vice President).

The virtual celebration premiered at 6:30 PM on Thursday, April 28th, and featured a chat for attendees to celebrate the achievements of their loved ones.

You can view and share the program recording on YouTube:

The day after the virtual premiere of the 2022 Honors Celebration, all student recipients of awards and scholarships were invited to attend a drive-thru medal pick-up event. The event featured a photo opportunity and refreshments for students and their friends and family members to enjoy.

Check out more photos at:

Professor Stockton Receives USPO-EDC Chief’s Challenge Coin

Professor Stockton has almost 23 years of teaching for our Criminal Justice program. She recently received the USPO-EDC Chief’s Challenge Coin for her assistance with their Case Plan Improvement Project (CPIP). Ms. Stockton and seven fellow officers collaborated over several months to develop and present the training to enhance the successful reintegration of supervisees, promote public safety, and improve the accuracy of data collection for this federal program.

The U.S. Probation Office utilizes the Post-Conviction Risk Assessment (PCRA) as a dynamic actuarial risk assessment. These assessments were developed for federal probation officers to classify cases into risk levels of low, low/moderate, moderate, and high. CPIP brought focus to the understanding and targeting of general criminal thinking and applied preventive measures to address drivers of criminogenic, or criminal behavior risk probability. This amazing effort enhances the supervision including discussion regarding supervisee monitoring, restrictions, and interventions.

Professor Lonnie E. Stockton is a shining example of the exceptional talents adjunct professors bring to Bakersfield College. She is to be congratulated on her recognition and appreciated for her support for our students and community.

Good Jobs with Equity: The Future Workforce

This Tuesday, the Kern Community College District welcomed educators, government officials and business leaders from across the state – and the nation – as we met for the Good Jobs with Equity: The Future Workforce.

Emma Gallegos, of Ed Source, focused on the Community College Baccalaureate in her coverage of the event.

“California is one of 23 states in the nation that offers community college baccalaureate degrees, according to a 2020 report by Community College Research Initiatives at the University of Washington. Both the pilot and expanded programs require community colleges to demonstrate that the degree offered satisfies an unmet industry need and that the program is not already offered by local universities.”

John Cox wrote this wonderful article in The Bakersfield Californian about the summit, in which he quoted California Community Colleges Chancellor Eloy Oakley, who spoke at the event:

“We feel very clearly and very passionately that California cannot be successful if communities like Kern and communities up and down the San Joaquin Valley are not successful,” Oakley said.

I will be sharing more videos from the summit once they are all processed and uploaded, but here’s a sample with remarks from –

Amy Loyd:

Ben Chida:

Eloy Oakley:

And here are a few photos from the event:

Our District’s Vice Presidents of Instruction
Thad Russell from Porterville College, Billie Jo Rice from Bakersfield College, and Corey Marvin from Cerro Coso Community College.

More information about the summit, including resources (and videos once they are available) can be found on the Kern Community College District website.

Chancellor’s Seminar Series

Last week, I hosted the final event in the Chancellor’s Seminar Series for this academic year. We wrapped up our three-part series on The Future of Teaching and Learning. Robert Simpkins was our moderator, and we welcomed panelists Krista Moreland, Alec Griffin, and Melissa Long.

Here’s a video of the first question for our panelists:

You can find videos from all the Chancellor’s Seminar Series events on the Kern Community College District website.

And check out the new Teaching & Learning Experiences blog at!

CVHEC Annual Legislative and Policy Summit

On May 6th, the Central Valley Higher Education Consortium hosted it’s Annual Legislative and Policy Summit in Fresno, California. This year theme was “The Post Pandemic World: Recovering with Equity and Inclusion in the Central Valley.”  Kern county was represented by Steven Watkin (BC & KCCD), Dr. Craig Hayward (BC), Alma Feathers (BC), Primavera Arvizu (PC), and Dr. Thad Russell (PC).

Dr. Craig Hayward participated in a panel along with partners from UC Merced (Dr. James Zimmerman) and CSUB (Kris Grappendorf), sharing with the audience the tremendous growth in program and transfer pathway mapping across the Central Valley and across the state. As part of the dialogue, Dr. Hayward shared some astounding data: that collectively the Program Mapper has served 11.8 million pages to over 580,000 visitors since January, 2021!

In the News

BC campus earns recognition from National Arbor Day Foundation

Stacey Shepard wrote this piece in The Bakersfield Californian about Bakersfield College’s recent Tree Campus Higher Education designation from the National Arbor Day Foundation.

“Bakersfield College is the first education campus in Kern County to earn the Tree Campus recognition, and the only community college in the state to be recognized for it in the past year.”

Rotary members, other volunteers plant nearly 4,000 trees in forest

The Porterville Recorder published this article about volunteers planting sequoias as part of the Green Side Up project, which was spearheaded by the Rotary Club of Porterville, Breakfast Rotary Club of Porterville, The Rotary Club of Woodlake, and Foothill Rotary of Lindsay in partnership with the Forest Service, Porterville College, CAL FIRE, Tulare County Fire Department, and property owners from the communities of Sequoia Crest, Alpine Village, Cedar Slope, Pierpoint Springs, Camp Nelson and Ponderosa.

Community Voices: A new emphasis on creating quality jobs

Trudy Gerald, associate vice chancellor for Economic and Workforce Development for the Kern Community College District, wrote this piece in The Bakersfield Californian about “high road jobs.”

“At KCCD, we have already started to lay the groundwork for high road job creation by actively building coalitions focused on major economic sectors like manufacturing, healthcare and energy. Critically, these coalitions include both industry partners and employers as well as workers and employment associations to plan and strategize for the future.

Simultaneously, on the equity side, KCCD is casting a wide net to bring non-traditional students into our education and training programs. We’re committed to new efforts to reach those who are disconnected from traditional pathways to work and school so they too have access to better jobs.”

Fun Photos & Spotted on Social Media

I love these photos from an event celebrating Brenda Lewis:

Kern CCD Trustee Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, Endee Grijalva, Norma Rojas-Mora, and Billie Jo Rice at Garden Pathways:

From @PortervillePrez on Twitter: “Open House taking place right now @PCollegePirates  Pleased to have met Sara, who is attending PC to become a teacher. She brought her beautiful children to see the campus so they can understand what she does. Faculty are showcasing their programs and staff are giving tours”

Kern CCD Trustee Yovani Jimenez shared this:

Thank you Dr. @amyloyd1 for coming to @CityofArvin to see the future site of the @BAKcollege Educational Center.

And finally, Kern CCD Board of Trustee President Romeo Agbalog presenting a certificate of leadership to Student Trustee Gian Gayatao:

Trustee Romeo Agbalog, Student Trustee Gian Gayatao

Gian has been an exemplary student trustee who worked with the student leadership at all three campuses in fall 2021 as we were navigating the “return to campus” protocol.  Those were difficult times … times of fear and apprehension.  Gian with his clear thinking, relaxed yet strong communication, and a compassionate heart, helped alleviate the anxieties for the KCCD student body. I am truly blessed that Gian was the student trustee during my first year as chancellor.

Gian, thank you for your hard work and dedication this year!


That’s a wrap for now.
See you next Saturday!

The future is bright at KernCCD.

a joyful and grateful Chancellor


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