Labor Day Weekend 2022

I hope you are all keeping cool the best you can this Labor Day weekend, with temperatures soaring as a heat wave grips much of California. The San Francisco Chronicle published this piece explaining the science behind the heat dome causing these uncomfortable and often dangerous temperatures.

Here is a tidbit about Labor Day:

The first Labor Day was celebrated in New York City on Tuesday, September 5, 1882. That event was planned by the Central Labor Union. In the years that followed, 23 more states adopted the holiday. On June 28, 1894, President Grover Cleveland signed a law making the first Monday in September a national holiday.

The original founder of Labor Day is disputed – there are disagreements on if the first person to propose Labor Day was Peter J. McGuire (cofounder of the American Federation of Labor) or Matthew Maguire (secretary of the Central Labor Union).

I did not know the reason so many of our national holidays fall on Mondays….The Uniform Monday Holiday Act of 1968 changed several holidays to always be observed on Mondays, so federal employees would have more three-day weekends. The Act, signed into law on June 28, 1968, moved Washington’s Birthday Memorial Day and Columbus Day so they would always be on fixed Mondays.

There are now 5 federal holidays that always fall on Monday:

  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
  • George Washington’s Birthday (President’s Day)
  • Memorial Day
  • Labor Day
  • Columbus Day

Well, my weekend will be quiet reading and doing Neo walks early in the morning to miss the heat.

yup … that’s him

Good morning, friends.
It is September 3, 2022.
The sun shines bright over Kern CCD.

Porterville College

Former Student Talks About Law Enforcement Careers with PC Students

Administration of Justice Instructor Jeff Jacobs introduces
Officer Chapman to the class

Former PC student and current California Highway Patrol Officer Cory Chapman visited our Intro to Administration of Justice students this week to talk career exploration in the CHP and law enforcement.

The students were given the opportunity to hear about his experiences, to ask questions about the CHP, and to learn about some of the over 1000 jobs currently open for recruitment in the agency.

Officer Chapman also discussed some of the requirements of a career in law enforcement, along with the details of being a CHP Officer and the difference between the Highway Patrol, Police, and Sheriff Departments.

He highlighted the importance of continuing education to the students and how various levels of education will allow someone to earn higher pay and find more opportunities for advancement within law enforcement.

Innovative PC Experience Program featured in Inside Higher Education

A unique virtual exchange program spearheaded by PC Business Instructor Dr. Elisa Queenan was highlighted in a recent article from Inside Higher Education. The program allowed students from PC to interact daily with students in Iraq by using technology like Zoom, Slack and WhatsApp to maintain close connections over thousands of miles. Something that would have been unheard of just a few years ago.

Queenan is co-teaching the class with Elizabeth Flynn and they have their students with the students in Iraq work together on a project that involved the United Nations’ sustainability goals. Working on this type of project or making connections with people in other countries would have been impossible for many of our students without the use of technology.

“[My students] have very little money. They have very few connections,” said Dr. Queenan, “[Now], they all talk about how incredibly empowered and confident they are to move forward with different ethnicities, different religions, different cultures, how bold they feel about being able to tackle problems that before they would have thought were completely outside of their realm.”

You can learn more about the program and our use of technology to provide world-wide connections for our students in the complete article at

CSU Arts Program Provides Enrichment for PC Students

Submitted by Diran Lyons, PC Professor of Art

Porterville College students Jakeb Marshall, Christian Rivera, and Ayla Mora joined art students from all over California to attend a CSU Summer Arts course titled Art > Anthropocene < Action from June 27 – July 10, 2022. The class focused on a diverse range of environmental topics such as deforestation, wildlife die-off, natural disasters, and climate change as content for works of art. Drawing upon the leadership of course coordinator William Raines, the lectures of art historian Dr. Ron Graziani, and feedback from world-class visiting artists like Charles Gaines, the students experienced the powerful interaction of art and science as these multidisciplinary fields relate to creative experimentation, innovation, and activism. 

Alongside their talented classmates, Marshall, Rivera, and Mora worked diligently to synthesize their thoughts on environmental issues and how art might play a proactive role in improving our ecological state of affairs. Their efforts culminated in an exciting exhibition at Fresno State’s Conley Art Gallery, where tremendous strides as makers and thinkers were on full display.

Cerro Coso Community College

Star Party and Barbecue Slated for Sept. 23rd

It’s Astronomical Barbecue and Star Party time again at Cerro Coso Community College.

The community loves this family friendly fundraising event where they enjoy great food, children’s activities, outdoor games, music, and exposure to the beauty and wonders of the night skies.

This year’s signature event will be held at the Ridgecrest Campus on Friday, September 23, 2022 in the fountain area.

Mark your calendars for this fun-filled fundraiser to benefit Cerro Coso Community College and the Dr. Alexis Shlanta Observatory.

A barbecue dinner will be held in the fountain courtyard from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. and the Star Party will get underway at 7:30 p.m. at the Observatory. For those desiring transportation, golf carts will be running continuously to the Observatory and back. Major stars and constellations will be pointed out by college staff, students, and enthusiasts from the China Lake Astronomical Society. There will be telescope stations set up inside the Observatory compound for public viewing and education.

Star parties have been an important part of the amateur astronomy scene for many years. All are invited to enjoy the wonders of the night sky.

Tickets for the event may be purchased online at Ticketspice or the college website at

New this year is the option to purchase beer and wine. Dinner will include a grilled tri-tip sandwich, salad, beans, drink, and dessert for $20.

For more information on this family evening of fun, call the College at 760-384-6262.

The Cerro Coso Community College Foundation is a 501©3 non-profit organization that provides more than $100,000 in scholarships to CC students every year.  They also support the Cerro Coso Promise, special grants, Phi Theta Kappa, and other programs and services of the college.   For more information on the CCCC Foundation contact Natalie Dorrell 760-384-6252 and on the web at .

Cerro Coso Community College Participates in the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act (DFSCA)

The Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act (DFSCA of 1989 – also known as the Drug-Free Schools and Campuses Act – requires higher education institutions to establish policies that address unlawful possession, use, or distribution of alcohol and illicit drugs for faculty, staff, and students.

CCCC acknowledges its legal obligation to conduct an annual review of compliance with the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act and authorized an administrative review to determine if the college fulfills the previously mentioned Federal Regulations requirements.

All members of the Cerro Coso community are encouraged to review the information on the following pages.  This information is distributed on an annual basis.

Drug and Alcohol Prevention Program

  • Standards of Conduct
  • Legal Sanctions
  • Health Risks
  • Drug and Alcohol Help Resources

Keenan Safe Colleges offers both an employee training portal and a separate student training portal.

Barksdale Returns as Access Counselor

Rachel Barksdale began working at Cerro Coso in the fall of 2014 as an Access Program Assistant.  This is where she developed a passion for working with students, specifically, students with additional barriers in obtaining their goals.  Access Program counselors Anna Mora and Penny Talley recognized her compassion and empathy for students, understanding of student needs, and heart for helping others over come life and academic hurdles, and encouraged Rachel to go back to school to get her master’s degree.

With a strong support system of family, friends, and husband, she returned to Cerro Coso this fall as the new full-time Access Program Counselor at the Ridgecrest Campus replacing Penny who retired in December of 2021. 

In addition to her job at the college, Barksdale works part-time as a mental health therapist at the Ridgecrest Crisis Stabilization unit where she assists children, adolescents, and adults with mental health crises.  

Her motto in life is “be kind, you never know the positive impact you may have on another, just by being kind.”

Cerro Coso is excited to welcome Barksdale back.  She made a big impact on Access Program students before and will continue to do so now as a counselor. 

Bakersfield College

Science & Engineering Building Grand Opening

BC is excited to announce a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the grand opening of the new Science & Engineering Building on the Panorama Campus. The event will take place Wednesday, September 7th at 9:15 a.m. We hope that everyone can join us as we celebrate the opening of this beautiful, brand new facility.

Bakersfield College’s Distinguished Speaker Series Returns

Bakersfield College hosted several in-person events as part of their Welcome Week festivities. One of these events was the return of the Distinguished Speaker series which had been on hiatus since the pandemic.  The guest speaker of the first installment of this year’s series was Aron Ralston, author, wilderness protection advocate, and motivational speaker.

Ralston authored the New York Times best-seller, Between a Rock and a Hard Place which tells his inspirational story of survival after being trapped under an 800-pound boulder for six days without water, means of communication or hope of escape. In 2010, his story was made into the feature film 127 Hours, which was nominated for six Academy Awards including best picture.

Ralston delighted attendees as he shared his story of tragedy, escape, his journey since his life-changing experience, and how he was able to transform “boulders into blessings.”  He also shared his experience with prosthetics, being invited to popular talk-shows, and speaking to thousands worldwide as a motivational speaker. It was amazing to hear first-hand Aron Ralston’s story of perseverance and triumph.

Transfer Day 2022

Bakersfield College will be hosting Transfer Day 2022 in September, which will showcase educational programs of more than 40 colleges and universities. Attendees will get the chance to learn about transfer opportunities and meet campus representatives from Cal State Universities (CSU), University of California (UC) schools, and several other in-state and out-of-state private colleges and universities.  It will be an incredible time for our BC students to plan for their academic journey beyond Bakersfield College.

For more information and a full list of participating schools, visit the Transfer Pathways Webpage.

BC Hosts Student Involvement Festival

This week also saw the return of the Student Involvement Festival. Traditionally, this was the largest event of Welcome Week with hundreds of students and dozens of information tents with information on how to get involved at BC. 

This year’s festival was an amazing success. It featured music, vendors, free swag, resources, and a water slide. Hundreds of students were able to get information about how to be more involved at BC, and how to enhance their educational experience.

BC Kicks Off the Football Season with Home Opener

The BC Athletics Department and football team are excited to welcome back fans to Memorial Stadium this weekend as the 2022 season is set to begin. The Renegades will be taking on LA Pierce on Saturday, September 3rd at 7 pm. (Note: The original kickoff time at 6 PM, but due to high temperatures this has been pushed back to 7 pm. Gates will open at 6 pm.)

This season will feature specific theme nights for our community heroes in Kern County. For the home opener, the Renegades will be honoring first responders, who will receive free admission to the game when they wear their uniforms or show specific ID. For more information about the game, including tickets, parking, tailgating, and more,  please visit the Renegade Athletics Website.

We hope to have a packed stadium to honor our community heroes and cheer on our Renegades!

BC Foundation PANORAMA Newsletter

The September issue of PANORAMA, the BC Foundation’s Newsletter, is available now at

Cheryl Scott, Exec Director, BC Foundation

Highlights this month include:

  • Students are back on campus in full force!
  • New Science & Engineering Building is the hot spot on campus
  • Homecoming Week activities have something for everyone
  • Inaugural Renegade Promenade: Alumni, Family, & Friends Day at BC
  • and more!

Find out more at

USDA Hosts Community Listening Session in Lamont

Kern CCD hosted the USDA’s Rural Development team at a community listening and informational session at the David Head Center in Lamont. At Wednesday’s event, which was titled “Advancing Equity”, USDA Rural Development Specialist Sally Tripp explained all of the housing, education and business development opportunities available to residents of Arvin and Lamont. Rural Development Staff members went on to facilitate small group discussions with community members about the high-priority needs in the area.

Participants at the “Advancing Equity” event at the David Head Center included Trustee Jovani Jimenez, Dolores Huerta, and Arvin Mayor Olivia Trujillo.

Reyna Olaguez, Mayor Olivia Trujillo, Kern CCD Trustee Yovani Jimenez

In the News

Channel 23 Features BC’s Renegade Pantry

BC’s Renegade Pantry was featured on a Channel 23 for the wonderful service they are providing for students who are experiencing food insecurity. The story features two BC staff members who play an integral part in operating the Renegade pantry; Isabel Varelas, Pantry Coordinator, and Caitlin Davidson, Program Manager for Basic Needs. Their hard work helps distribute food to hundreds of BC students on a daily basis.  

The pantry also provides other goods including clothing, cleaning supplies, infant nutrition items, and other household items. BC is proud to offer this service to their students in need, and the hope is that it can assist them in reaching their educational goals.

Link to News Story (Channel 23):

Fun Photos & Spotted on Social Media

I loved this post from Nicole Parra:

“We have started our mornings- the last 2 weeks- up at 545 am for a 2.5 mile walk. I meditate, organize my thoughts & plan my day-while Bailey is seeing the sights. She does walk close to a mile, but then she is ready for the backpack 🙂 Thank you to my family & friends for welcoming me- so kindly- back home, especially my work family. I am so happy.”

Bakersfield Mayor Karen Goh posted about the 26th Annual Hispanic Business Conference & Expo hosted by the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Here are a few pics of the Kern CCD/Bakersfield College team.

And check out this new video from Cerro Coso Rocks:


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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