The Luckiest and Happiest College President

The Luckiest and Happiest College President

President Sonya Christian

It is a significant week for me …. a time of looking back with immense gratitude …. here are some heart warming memories.

Measure J

Of course, high on the list is when Measure J passed in November 2016, providing funding to upgrade all of KCCD’s campuses and support our students for years to come. I am deeply grateful for the hours of hard work from countless volunteers throughout the district to help get that measure passed – and of course, for the voters who reaffirmed their commitment to our community colleges.

Bakersfield College’s Centennial Celebration

In 2013, Bakersfield College celebrated its 100th year as Bakersfield’s community college. An entire year of events culminated with the Centennial Gala (Check out the gallery on the BC Smugmug site!). We also honored the 100 Stars of Bakersfield College – recognizing some of key alumni, faculty, staff, and community supporters who have made Bakersfield College what it is today.

We kicked off the Centennial Celebrations during the Opening Day festivities.
Former BC presidents Rick Wright, Sandra Serrano, and Greg Chamberlain joined me in cutting the Centennial Cake.

2018: A Commencement Of Firsts

Every commencement is special and amazing, but the 2018 Commencement will always hold a special place in my heart.

That year, we celebrated the first Dual Enrollment class from the Wonderful Academy – graduating with their Associates Degrees as they completed high school.

We also celebrated the first graduating cohort of the Kern Promise, students who piloted a Guided Pathways model of shared responsibility and support completing their degree within 2 years.

And Bakersfield College became the first community college in the State of California to award a four-year baccalaureate degree (!) to seven graduates of the Industrial Automation program:

Good morning Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, June 26th 2021 … a great day to be a Renegade.

Back to Campus

More and more of our Renegade family is coming back to campus as vaccinations work their magic, and I have so loved the photos they’ve been sharing.

First – check out this amazing photo of BC at dusk, from Diego Monterrubio:

On Wednesday, Jo Ellen Barnes shared these photos as members of the Executive Office get settled in:

Camila Anderson
Debi Anderson
Zav Dadabhoy

And I loved this post from Mindy Wilmot, who shared that it was “surreal” working in her office for the first time since March 17, 2020.

And the BC Bookstore has reopened in its new location in the new Campus Center Building on the Panorama Campus. They are physically open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Thursday for in-store purchases and online order pick-up. 

A reminder that campus COVID-19 safety protocols are in place, so wear a face mask, maintain social distancing protocols, check in on the KCCD Campus Pass mobile app and scan the QR code before entry.

Check out these photos – the new bookstore is amazing!

BC & Rotary: Building Peace in Kern County

On Tuesday, we held the third installment in the Peace Seminar Series. Michael Henstra from Rotary E-Club of One World D5240 and Fernando Aguirre from Bakersfield East Rotary Club joined BC Foundation Executive Director (and Bakersfield Breakfast Rotary Club member) Cheryl Scott to discuss the partnership between Bakersfield College and Rotary Club.

I wanted to share a few videos from the event.

Here, our panelists discuss peace builders they have seen in their own lives:

Michael shared some information about Rotary Club, including its efforts to eradicate polio:

Fernando discussed how we can address division in our communities:

Here, they discuss the Peace Pole project at Bakersfield College:

And of course, for those of you who may want to learn more about Rotary Club or get involved:

For more about the BC Peace Initiative, visit The rest of the videos from this seminar will be posted there in the next week or so. In the meantime, you can also find videos from our previous seminars, as well as information about our other peace projects.

I loved this piece that KGET did about the seminar. Please check it out!

Mindy Wilmot Named Rotarian of the Year

And speaking of Rotary, BC Librarian Mindy Wilmot was named Bakersfield Breakfast Rotary Club’s Rotarian of the Year.

Congratulations to Mindy on a well-earned distinction!

Early College Automation Summer Academy visits Setton Farms

This week, the Early College INDA Summer Academy visited Setton Farms.

I love this picture of Berenice Arellano and Kylie Campbell:

A2MEND Battle of the Field 7-on-7 & Lineman Challenge 

The African American Male Education Network and Development (A2MEND) Student charter at Bakersfield College was at Memorial Stadium last night providing information about A2MEND, BC Athletics, career and pathway opportunities, and enrollment opportunities along with football drills & skill challenges run by BC football players.
Don’t miss today’s 7-on-7 tournament and Lineman competition! Events will be in Memorial Stadium from 7AM to 9PM. Learn more about the A2MEND Battle of the Field.

GET Imagining Your Future

As you’re travelling about town, keep an eye out for our new ads on the GET buses. We are inviting Kern County to reimagine your future at the home of the renegades!

Closing Day 2021

Today, I am wrapping up my look back at our Closing Day 2021 celebrations with four videos. I have purposely saved these for my final week.

My final President’s Leadership Award went to the unconquerable Jennifer Serratt:

We also paid tribute to outgoing KCCD Chancellor Tom Burke.

First, with video messages from several members of our Renegade community:

And then I shared my own thoughts:

Tom, your leadership and guidance over the past few years have been phenomenal for the Kern Community College District. You are a hard act to follow, and I hope that I am up to the challenge. Thank you for all you have done for the students, staff, and faculty at all the colleges in our district – and for the communities we serve.

Finally, here is my thank you to everyone who helped make Closing Day 2021 possible:

You can see all the videos from the 3 days of production on the Closing Day website.

Sandi Taylor named to CCCAA 2021 Hall of Fame Class

Speaking from the podium.

Longtime BC softball coach Sandi Taylor was named to the California Community College Athletic Association Hall of Fame Class of 2021. During her tenure as coach, she led the Renegades to the postseason 15 times, while amassing 500 career wins. She was selected as the Southern California Coaches Association Coach of the Year in 1997.

Sandi retired in 2020 as BC’s Athletic Director.

Due to the pandemic, the Class of 2021 was unable to be celebrated in person. The 2021 class will join the 2020 and 2022 honorees during ceremonies at next year’s convention.

I wanted to share this video from Sandi’s retirement celebration in 2020:

And this one from our Closing Day 2020 celebration. Sandi earned the Presidential Lifetime Achievement award:

Sandi has left a lasting impact on the athletics department and the college, and I am deeply grateful for her commitment to our student athletes. I am so pleased to hear of this well-deserved honor.

Congratulations Sandi!

Commencement 2021

Today, I am also finishing up with sharing the videos from our 2021 Commencement Tribute program.

Part 5 of our graduates:

Part 6 of our graduates:

Our degree conferral, featuring KCCD Trustees Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, Kyle Carter, and Romeo Agbalog:

And a choral performance titled “Be the Change”:

You can look back at all the videos from the 2021 Commencement Tribute on the Bakersfield College website.

Vaccine Clinics

The BC Student Health Center is still hard at work providing COVID-19 vaccines to our community.

Upcoming clinics include:

  • Tuesday, June 29 @ Emmanuel Lutheran Church (1900 Baker Street) from 5 to 8 pm: Moderna (18+)
  • Thursday, July 1 in partnership with the Governor’s Office, Kern Medical, Telemundo, and KGET-TV 17 @ 2120 L St, Bakersfield, CA 93309 from 3 to 7 pm: Pfizer (12+) and Johnson and Johnson (18+)
  • Thursday, July 8 @ the Hindu Temple of Kern County (6700 Valley View, Bakersfield) from 5 to 8 p.m.: Moderna (18+) and Pfizer (12+)
  • Saturday, July 10th BC Mass Clinic on campus from 10 am to 2 pm: Moderna (18+) and Pfizer (12+)
  • Friday, July 16 @ Mercado Latino (2105 Edison Hwy, Bakersfield, CA 93305) from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.: Moderna (18+) and Pfizer (12+)
  • Monday, June 19 @ BC Delano Campus from 5 to 8 pm: Moderna (18+) and Pfizer (12+)
  • Wednesday, July 21 @ Kern County Veterans NOR Veteran’s Hall (400 Norris Rd, Bakersfield, CA 93308) from Noon to 3 p.m.: Moderna (18+)
  • Saturday, August 7th BC Mass Clinic on campus from 10 am to 2 pm: Moderna (+18)

The BC Student Health and Wellness Center is currently administering the Moderna COVID vaccine Tuesdays and Wednesdays between 9 am to 3 pm, and Johnson and Johnson COVID vaccine is administered Thursdays from 9 am to 3pm. Walk-ins are accepted at all clinics, or register at or call (833) 422-4255 and schedule your appointment. Enter the zip code of 93305 to view the Bakersfield College Student Health and Wellness Center availability.

Clinics with Pfizer vaccines are in partnership with and administered by Albertsons/Vons Pavillions, Southern California Division, as part of the White House and U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services Federal Pharmacy Program. 

Poetry Corner

Please enjoy this poem from Jack Hernandez:


You taught me how 
to take the bus downtown,
how to shovel walks
stuffed with overnight snow, 
to belly flop on frozen roads,
skate fast with some grace
on a pond’s smooth ice.
You did not teach me, though,
to know those pushed
aside because of color,
fenced in and feared.
You raised me 
in a walled cradle
of warmth and joy,
it would take leaving you.
not forgetting but opening
my childhood eyes
to the suffering and anger
it did not know.

In the News

BC job skills training program seeks young people who are struggling, out of school

The Bakersfield Californian wrote this piece about BC’s ENCORE program, which aims to help young residents earn a job skills certificate.

“As we look toward working our way out of the pandemic, education with a focus on employment is going to pave the way for so many families,” BC’s dean of instruction, Anthony Cordova said.

You can find out more or apply to the program at

BC to host U.S. Air Force Band of the Golden West concert on July 2

If you missed it on the KGET website, our own Outdoor Theatre at the Simonsen Performing Arts Center will host the U.S. Air Force Band of the Golden West on July 2. Gates open at 6 pm for the free concert, which will start at 7 pm.

Spotted on Social Media

Check out these selfies that BC Nursing shared for National Selfie Day:

I loved this create Father’s Day gift that Endee Grijalva shared:

BC Cheer posted a Wayback Wednesday photo of their 1991-92 team:

And I just had to share this inspirational post from Dr. Daisy Gonzales, Deputy Chancellor of California Community Colleges:


That’s all for now.
Until next time.

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

Carnaval del Barrio as BC opens

This week, Bakersfield College officially welcomed students back to campus with an Ice Cream Social and vaccination clinic on Tuesday and Wednesday.

And look who visited us ……

Governor Gavin Newsom visited BC in a private event the day after he officially declared California as open. The Governor had heard about BC’s vaccination clinics staffed by ONLY volunteers — student nurses who gave shots, nursing faculty on site to supervise, along with other faculty, staff and students volunteering to do set up and take down of pop up clinics at our various communities as well as the mass drive-thru clinics on the Panorama campus.

What a thrill to share the amazing work being done at Bakersfield College with our governor.

And if you still need to get a vaccine, please come by BC. The BC Student Health and Wellness Center is open to all students and community to be vaccinated. In addition to the various community pop-up clinics, we are administering the Moderna vaccine on campus every Tuesday and Wednesday, and the Johnson & Johnson Janssen vaccine every Thursday between 9 am and 3 pm. Walk-ins are accepted at all clinics. You can also register at or call (833) 422-4255 to schedule your appointment. Enter the zip code of 93305 to view the BC Student Health Center availability.

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

Juneteenth — Celebrating Independence and Freedom

Just watched this 4-min video that was done last year leading upto the Juneteenth events. Really love the music backdrop from our choir. Check it out.

This week, Bakersfield College held a series of Zoom events commemorating Juneteenth, leading up to our local community event this evening.

History: January 1, 1863 – June 19, 1865

On June 15, Rich McCrow facilitated a discussion between BC history professor Jamal Wright and CSUB history professor Kiran Garcha about the history of the African-American struggle from the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation to June 19, 1865 (Juneteenth).

What Juneteenth Means to Me?

On June 16, Dean of Counseling and Student Success Marisa Marquez hosted a forum titled “What Juneteenth Means to Me”. The panel featured Daron Mackey, BC Educational Advisor and Lead for the African-American Mentoring Program; Natasha Harris, Senior Admissions Officer at CSUB; and Julian West, Director of the Career Ladders Project.

Celebrating Juneteenth: Customs and Traditions

For the last seminar on June 17, we closed out the series with a look at Juneteenth customs and traditions facilitated by Keith Wolaridge, a BC professor of Business Management and Information Technology. The panel featured Dee Slade, Executive Director of the African-American Network of Kern County, in conversation with Vikki Coffee, Co-Chair of BC’s Equal Opportunity and Diversity Advisory Committee.

Finally, BC will be in attendance at the NAACP Bakersfield Branch’s Juneteenth Celebration at Yokuts Park between 3:30 and 8 p.m. today, June 19, where we’ll be handing out The Taste of Juneteenth food to the community.

Industrial Automation Summer Academy

Room full of excited students and their parents.

Last Thursday, June 10th, 2021, we kicked off our very first Industrial Automation Summer Academy for our early college students. We welcomed 31 students and their parents on campus during our orientation.

We were joined on stage by Roy Allard, instructor of the ELET B70 course the students will be taking during the academy, to review COVID guidelines and introduce the students to their course on CANVAS. We were also joined by one of BC’s advising experts, Dylan Jensen, and job development specialist, Carlos Medina, who presented information about our baccalaureate program and the awesome benefits of completing their industrial automation degree at Bakersfield College.

Our early college students were given backpacks full of Bakersfield College swag, textbooks for their summer course, and a guided tour of the industrial automation classrooms.

Industrial Automation Summer Academy students pose with
their backpacks and textbooks for ELET B70.

Participants left excited about the INDA Summer Academy and looking forward to starting class and the field trips we will be taking every Friday for the duration of the academy, starting this Friday, June 18th with a tour of the Witron facilities!!

Special thanks to Tony Cordova, the entire Industrial Automation team and the BC Foundation for finding our sponsor, Phillips 66, and making this all possible!

Kylie Campbell and Berenice Arellano
at the orientation check-in.

Free Immigration Legal Services at Bakersfield College

Bakersfield College and the United Farm Workers Foundation have partnered to provide free Immigration Legal Services to all Bakersfield College students, faculty, and staff. Services are provided by authorized immigration attorneys via Zoom/Phone appointments. As a reminder, USCIS, the agency that administers DACA, is NOW accepting initial applications. Bakersfield College AB540/Undocumented Students Program and the UFW Foundation strongly urges all BC students, staff and faculty who believe they may be eligible to schedule an appointment for free Immigration Legal Services. DACA fee assistance is currently available while funds last. 

Appointments can be scheduled using the following link:

Poetry Corner

Please enjoy this poem from Jack Hernandez:


His namesake was learning
to walk    getting a first tooth,
they would have looked
at each other recognizing
their yearning to be free
to follow roads
narrow    wide
up exultant hills
through reflective valleys,
but he had taken himself
off the road years before,
his namesake so sweetly fresh
would never know
his searching face.

Spring Internships: Windmill Cattle Ranch Video

In last week’s blog, I wrote about Spring Internship Success internships of several of our students.

Today, I’d like to share the video that student James Bruce created to capture his experience. James was one of three welding students who interned at Windmill Cattle Ranch on a project of tearing down old horse corrals and installing new ones.

Commencement 2021

On May 16, our special Commencement Tribute for the class of 2021 aired on KGET. Today, I am sharing 4 videos from that production.

KCCD Trustee Romeo Agbalog‘s remarks:

Congressman David Valadao‘s remarks:

The third section of our graduates:

And the fourth section of graduates:

You can see all the videos from our 2021 Commencement Tribute production at

Early College Newsletter

The Bakersfield College Early College team has created a newsletter to keep everyone informed about the great work that they are doing with our Early College students across Kern County.

The first edition includes recognition for the Early College Class of 2021, as well as highlights of student Jayleen Vargas and community supporters Clifford and Patricia Mettler, and more!

To subscribe to the newsletter, please visit

Closing Day 2021

Our Closing Day 2021 production spanned 3 days and featured speakers and performances from across our Renegade community.

Today, I am sharing three videos – three of the President’s Leadership Award recipients.

The COVID-19 Vaccination Team:

The Academic Services Team:

And Pam Rivers:

Check out all the videos on the Closing Day 2021 website.

In the News

Bakersfield’s “kindness ambassador,” Chuck Wall, dies at age 80

Chuck Wall, a longtime Bakersfield College professor, was known as Bakersfield’s kindness ambassador to the world. He popularized performing “random acts of kindness”. He passed away at age 80 on June 8.

I hope you will all join me in honoring Chuck Wall with some extra kindness this week.

Disability Awareness Assessment Center Recepient Speaker Chuck Wall

Community Voices: BC and Community Voices: BC and Rotary: Building peace in Kern County

Mindy Wilmot and Cheryl Scott wrote this piece in the Bakersfield Californian promoting the next seminar in our ongoing peace seminar series.

“Indeed peacebuilding is at the heart of everything Rotary stands for. Through its service, Rotary is dedicated to causes that improve lives and communities around the world, including those in our own backyard.”

Please consider tuning in to the June 22nd event, which will be held via Zoom from 4-5 pm. Registration is required. Please visit the BC website to register.

You can find out more about the BC Peace Initiative, including the seminar series, on the Bakersfield College website.

Community Voices: Ignorance of Things Past

Jack Hernandez wrote this piece in the Bakersfield Californian about the importance of looking back on history, and trying to view it with a fair lens that acknowledges there was good as well as bad:

“What is the point of these revelations? How do we respond when we learn about the dark side of the past, our past? Forget? Forgive? Learn? Change? Some would have us demonize the past: all was evil and terrible. Others would have us mythologize the past: all was good and wonderful. Usually, though, the past is a mixture of happiness and suffering. In Detroit, growing up, I had a very happy childhood, while others had terrible, segregated, poor childhoods. Mine was full of opportunities, theirs was not.”

Community Voices: An American Tapestry

Check out Dr. Brij Bhambi’s piece here

This world is not a monochromatic experiment. It’s a chaos of colors. Colors that lend diversity and festivity. Colors that divide and bridge. Prejudice is an ultimate versatile emotion, a true chameleon. It piggybacks on color, culture, nationalism, reason, region, religion and God forbid, politics.

What distinguishes the United States of America is its virtues, which far outweigh its flaws. The pursuit continues but progress is everywhere to see. It’s the most benevolent empire the world has witnessed in human history.

Community Voices: Everyone Deserves to Find Their Path

Sandy Woo-Cater wrote this piece in the Bakersfield Californian about the importance of supporting our students so they can achieve their goals:

“Imprinted on my heart is the encouragement I received from the late Jack Brigham, who instilled in me the values of social justice. Initially my history professor, he mentored me throughout my academic career until his passing. I will also never forget my second time on a plane. Don Turney, our former dean of students, took a group of us to D.C. for a student leadership conference. I remember buying my first blazer for that trip. With people like Jack and Don by my side, I understood for the first time that I had a purpose and contributions to make toward creating a just world.”

Fun Photos & Spotted on Social Media

Librarian Sondra Keckley shared some photos of new construction on campus:

“Today at work I finally took a look around the campus during my lunch break to see all the new changes. (For those who don’t know, we had a huge Measure J bond pass in 2016 for major building construction and improvements.) Thanks to the pandemic, the construction could go on without interrupting classes or a hassle for students, and we get to come back to a big surprise.”

Pamela Rivers shared an update from the Renegade Hub:

“The Renegade Hub is here to help our BC students with all their technology needs. See us in person in the library or online!”

Rural Initiatives Team in Wasco

The Library shared that they’ll be open this summer:

And I just loved this picture that Regina Rivera shared when she sent out the daily Gades Grub Food Menu on Tuesday:

The Gades Grub is parked right in front of the new Dining Commons. Currently, they are only accepting cash, with breakfast service from 7-10:30 am and lunch service from 10:30 am – 3 pm. If you’re on campus, be sure to stop by to try out the amazing breakfast burritos and other offerings from food service!

Lin-Manuel Miranda does it again

In the Heights is a must see. check out this 1-min teaser of my favorite song in the movie.


That’s all for now.
Until next time.

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

BC doing it right – Early College in Kern County

Have you heard about 2-year-old Kashe Quest? Her IQ is 146, which is nearly 50 points higher than the average American adult.

Kashe, who is from Los Angeles, is America’s youngest member of Mensa – the oldest high IQ society in the world. She knows the periodic table and can identify the states by shape – wow.

A faculty member from BC sent me this story…. made my week.

Good morning Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, June 12, 2021 … a great day to be a Renegade.

Early College Students Graduate from Wonderful College Prep Academy in Delano

Early College graduates from the Wonderful College Prep Academy celebrated graduating as Renegade-Wolves during their ceremony on Saturday, June 5. A team of Bakersfield College advisors were present at the graduation to let parents know about the course offerings available in Summer and Fall 2021. 

Student speakers included these accomplished young wpmen, pictured with Abel Guzman and myself. Crystal Herrera Heredia will be attending UCLA, Destiny Serna will be attending UC Davis, and Adriana Alvarado will be attending Princeton.

Abel Guzman, Crystal Herrera Heredia, Destiny Serna, Adriana Alvarad, Sonya Christian

Destiny Serna was named the Excellence in Pathways Student Speaker. She earned a 4.5 GPA with 430 credits. In her speech, she spoke of the “sense of independence and responsibility” at Wonderful Academy.

Salutatorian Crystal Herrera Heredia earned a 4.5 GPA with 450 credits. In her speech, she talked about the difficulties of attending high school and graduating during a pandemic and the importance of staying connected ….. “when we are apart, it is important to connect to each other.”

Valedictorian Adriana Alvarado earned a 4.5 GPA with 460 credits. In her remarks, she mentioned how her parents were farm workers, as we well as fruit and tupperware vendors. She credited her parents with helping her understand the value of a strong work ethic, and she urged her fellow graduates to remember the sacrifices their loved ones had made to give them a better life.

Congratulations to these incredible young women, and all the graduates at Wonderful College Prep Academy. #ProudPrez #WeAreBC

Visit the photo gallery by Earl Parsons to see more pictures from the Wonderful College Prep Academy graduation.


I’d also like to share some more videos from our commencement tribute for our class of 2021, which aired on KGET on May 16th. Our production included some phenomenal speakers who offered words of advice and congratulations to our amazing Class of 2021.

KCCD Chancellor Tom Burke:

State Senator Shannon Grove:

Assemblyman Vince Fong:

We also included a photo roll of our graduates. Today, I’m sharing the second segment:

You can see all the videos from the Commencement Tribute at

BC Celebrates Juneteenth

Dr. Paula Parks embraces a student from the Umoja Club
during the Black History Month conference in February 2020.

Join us on June 15, 16 and 17 at 3 p.m. as we celebrate the history and contributions of African-Americans in a series of virtual seminars leading up to June 19. Visit the Zoom registration link to sign up for all three days.

On June 15, Rich McCrow will be facilitating a discussion between BC history professor Jamal Wright and CSUB history professor Kiran Garcha about the history of the African-American struggle from the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation on June 19, 1865 through the Reconstruction era to the civil rights movement of the 1960s.

On June 16, Dean of Counseling and Student Success Marisa Marquez is hosting a forum titled “What Juneteenth Means to Me”. The panel will feature Daron Mackey, BC Educational Advisor and Lead for the African-American Mentoring Program; Natasha Harris, Senior Admissions Officer at CSUB; and Julian West, Director of the Career Ladders Project.

Finally on June 17, we close out the celebration with a look at Juneteenth customs and traditions hosted by Outreach and Early College Director Steven Watkin and Dean of Instruction Jessica Wojtysiak.

On the morning of June 17, a team of volunteers led by Reggie Bolton, Kara McDonald, Michele Puentes, and Cecilia Lopez will be handing out Juneteenth Recipe kits filled with all of the materials needed for some great traditional recipes. Finally, BC will be in attendance at the NAACP Bakersfield Branch Juneteenth Celebration at Yokuts Park between 3:30 and 8 p.m. on Saturday, June 19.

BC and Rotary: Building Peace in Kern County

BC and local Rotary clubs are partnering to raise the peace conversation to a new level locally. Join us to hear what your neighbors are already doing to promote peacebuilding in Kern County, and to learn how you can join in the effort! The virtual seminar on Tuesday, June 22 at 4 p.m. is free and open to the public. To attend, visit the registration link

BC Foundation Executive Director Cheryl Scott will be facilitating a discussion between Rotary E-Club member Michael Henstra and Bakersfield East Rotary Club member Fernando Aguirre about how individuals can be empowered to contribute to a peaceful community and world. The discussion was inspired by a video from Rotary Action Group for Peace Director Reem Ghunaim, who described how her experiences living in Palestine shaped her understanding of peace as a conscious choice.

For more information about the BC and Rotary virtual event, visit the BC website.

This event is part of the BC Peace Initiative. You can find out more at There, you can find videos from our two previous seminars, “Educators for Peace” on May 18, and “Mothers for Peace” on March 30.

I’d like to share a few videos from the Educators for Peace seminar, to give you a taste of the types of discussions we have been having.

Here, our panelists are responding to the following prompt:
“It’s a painful reality that we live in a time of extreme polarization, and higher education is no exception. With that said, what are the professional as well as personal challenges of being an educator or administrator in higher educator right now, in this environment, and why?”

Richard McCrow:

Bryan Hirayama:

Jeremy Staat:

Jessica Wojtysiak:

Spring Internship Success

Manufacturing Professor Robert Stewart and Manufacturing Student Antonio Zavala

Internships are a great way for students to receive hands-on experience utilizing the skills they have learned from their pathway program. Every semester the Career Education Department works to expand placement opportunities for our students out in the community. The spring semester was no exception for great placements.

Antonio Zavala, a manufacturing student, was placed with a new employer partner, Shar-Craft Inc’s, a local manufacturing company that provides coating, machining and sealing services. Professor Robert Stewart was diligent in ensuring a positive placement, and Antonio was the perfect fit. Three weeks into his internship, Shar-Craft Inc. offered Antonio a full time position with their company.

The Welding department also had the opportunity for a great internship project over the spring semester at Windmill Cattle Ranch. Three students were placed on the project of tearing down old horse corrals and installing new ones. One of the students, James Bruce, had so much fun with the internship program he created a short video to capture the experience.

Express Enrollment

Last week, Bakersfield College’s Outreach Team served over 190 students during their Express Enrollment Event on June2nd! We hope to see similar turnouts throughout the summer! The next Express Enrollment Event is Wednesday June 16 from 12pm to 5pm. Register here: or visit the website at

There are two more Express Enrollment events planned for this summer, on July 7th from 12pm to 8pm, and August 11th from 12pm to 8pm.

BC Foundation Panorama Newsletter

The BC Foundation released their fourth issue of Panorama – their final issue for the 2020-21 academic year. Great work Heather Penella and Cheryl Scott.

A few items of note –

Kylie Campbell contributed a piece about donations from Bank of America and Phillips 66 to benefit the Early College program. Bank of America’s $56,000 donation will help the Public Health Pathway’s 4-year program that allows students to earn an Associate Degree for Transfer in Public Health. The $25,000 from Phillips 66 will provide course materials and travel funds for students in Industrial Automation.

Longtime BC Foundation Board Member Fran Florez is retiring in September after nearly two decades. “I am so proud of the major improvements to the campus today,” she said.

There will be a Celebration of Life for Professor Emeritus, BC Alumni Association President and Cheer Coach Becki Whitson, who passed away in December. The celebration will be held in the new Campus Center at BC on Monday, July 26 – her birthday. Guests must register online to attend.

Becki Whitson

Closing Day 2021

I am continuing to share videos from our Closing Day 2021 celebration, which took place virtually May 11-13. We enjoyed three days of video productions featuring speakers and performances.

We heard from KCCD Trustee Romeo Agbalog:

I’m sharing three more of the President’s Leadership Awards today.

The first is for the Curriculum Committee:

The second is for Chris Glaser:

And finally, the third is for Steven Holmes, who is ending his tenure as Academic Senate President:

Check out all of the videos from the multi-day production at

Poetry Corner

Please enjoy this poem from Jack Hernandez:

The Desert

The moon rise
over the desert
is no longer surprising,
he had not foreseen
living in its barren canvas
painted in his later years.

Until this time his life
scurried like an ant
seeking    always seeking,
now he sits grasping
for nothing more
than silent truth in silver light.

BC Vaccine Clinics

If you still need to get your COVID vaccine, I invite you to come to one of BC’s upcoming clinics. Walk-ins are accepted at all clinics, or register at or call (833) 422-4255 and schedule your appointment. Enter the zip code of 93305 to view the Bakersfield College Student Health and Wellness Center availability.

This week’s clnics include:

  • Tuesday, June 15 on-campus Student Life Office from 10 am to 3 pm: Moderna (18+) and Johnson and Johnson Janssen (18+)
  • Wednesday, June 16 on-campus Student Life Office from 10 am to 3 pm: Moderna (18+) and Johnson and Johnson Janssen (18+)
  • Friday, June 18 @ Mercado Latino (2105 Edison Hwy, Bakersfield, CA 93305) from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.: Moderna (18+) and Pfizer (12+)
  • Saturday, June 19 @ Yokuts Park (4200 Empire Drive) for the 6th Annual Juneteenth Celebration from 3:30 to 8 pm:  Pfizer (12+)

You can find all upcoming clinics at

In the News

Jamal Wright featured in CTA piece about pandemic’s silver linings

Jamal Wright

The California Teachers Association’s California Education magazine, which showcases CTA members, did a piece on the pandemic’s silver linings and how educators have emerged “better, stronger and kinder.”

One of these educators is BC History Professor Jamal Wright:

“For me, the silver lining was learning how to create information resources for students, so they knew something about a topic before even coming to class,” says Wright, a member of the Kern Community College District chapter of the Community College Association (Kern CCD/CCA).

“I learned how to embed videos in lectures using Canvas. I post lectures with videos that students can watch any time. I engage in ‘flipped learning,’ so students can watch clips of Gladiator before I lecture on the Roman Empire. It develops a deeper understanding of the material. I also create quizzes in Canvas to test for understanding and help them retain information.”

102 high school students in Kern County will graduate with an associate degree

I loved this article by Emma Gallegos which made the front page of the Bakersfield Californian. Across the Early College program, 102 graduating high school students in Kern County will also be receiving an associate degree from BC.

Arvin High School Principal Ed Watts credits the program with helping students continue their education even beyond their associate degree.

“Once a kid has a college plan in their pocket, they’re much more apt to keep going,” he said.

CityServe hosts graduation ceremony for Project HireUp students

KGET did a piece on the Project HireUp program’s latest graduation. Seven students completed the 6-week course, which incorporates job training and life skills development for those struggling with unemployment. And here is Sam Morgan with a front page piece in the Bakersfield Californian with photo below from Alex Horvath.

Fun Photos

Here are my latest photos of Neo and Bessie:

Here are a few social media posts I’ve enjoyed this week:

From BC Librarian Mindy Wilmot:

From Counseling and Student Success & Kern Promise Program Manager Isabel Castaneda:

And from History Professor Olivia Garcia:


That’s all for now.
Until next time.

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

June – new graduates new beginnings

This week, I went out to eat at the New Vintage Grill, and was so pleased to run into two new Bakersfield College Students.

Erica Vitela is an incoming nursing student. Avery Edgmon just graduated from Liberty High School.

I was able to get a picture with them, along with Heidi Allison and Janet Tarjan:

I just love running into students…. and these two smart young women are amazing and totally made my day.

Good morning Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, June 5, 2021 … a great day to be a Renegade.

Memorial Day Tribute from Jenny Frank

I wanted to share this beautiful email that Veterans Services and Programs Manager Jenny Frank sent out in honor of Memorial Day:

Zav Dadabhoy, Armando Trujillo, Paul Beckworth, Sonya Christian and Jenny Frank at the VRC dedication

Each Memorial Day, I take time to quietly reflect on the blessings that have been afforded to us as Americans. I pause to give thanks to all those who made the ultimate sacrifice so that we may enjoy these blessings. Every year, I am driven to pay tribute to them in a way that would honor their sacrifice. 

This year, I am reminded of a story told by our center’s namesake, Vietnam veteran, the late Vernon Valenzuela. Over two decades ago Vernon learned of the tragic, violent death of a young football player here in Kern County. Angered and saddened by this travesty, Vernon reasoned that he did not fight in the jungles of Vietnam to have our youth die this way in our own country. He was moved to action and so began his journey to extend his efforts to create peace within our community.  

Whether they fell on the battlefield, as a result of an internal battle after they left the front lines, or due to physical ailments brought on by their time at war, the brave Soldiers, Marines, Sailors, Airmen and women and Coast Guardsmen and women who gave their last full measure are deserving of our gratitude and honor.  

This Memorial Day 2021, I propose to you that we commit to peace in their honor. They fought and died so that we may know peace. For their sacrifice, let us do our part by continuing to seek peace, peace within ourselves, in our neighborhoods, within our country, so that one day we may be the example of peace. 

May the families, friends, and comrades of the fallen find peace in their loved one’s absence but most of all, may the souls of the brave men and women that answered our Nation’s call rest in peace.  

The soldier above all others prays for peace, for it is the soldier who must suffer and bear the deepest wounds and scars of war” -Douglas MacArthur 

A message from Bakersfield College’s Vice President of Student Affairs, Dr. Manny Mourtzanos:

On this Memorial Day (and every day), we remember our fallen military personnel who made the ultimate sacrifice in the performance of their duties to secure our freedom and liberty, and we remember their families who also sacrificed for our country. Words are insufficient to fully convey our appreciation. As we know, our military personnel serve voluntarily and willingly, not through conscription. In so doing, each and every member of our armed forces, including active duty, reservists and retired personnel, is prepared to make the same sacrifice made by our fallen heroes. Let us collectively express our gratitude for our fallen personnel, their families, our veterans, and current military personnel for their willingness to serve.

BC Students to serve as COVID Outreach Project Interns

This summer, the Kern Inyo Mono Central Labor Council in Partnership with the Central Valley Workers Center is engaging in direct community outreach to educate residents of Kern County on COVID-19 and the ongoing vaccination efforts. As part of this initiative, up to ten Bakersfield College students will receive an internship to participate in direct community engagement activities.  

Freddie Rodriguez, Job Development Specialist at BC, is an advocate for students getting involved in community wide efforts. He says, “We have a lot of passionate students at BC who want to serve their community, especially while we navigate this pandemic. Our nursing students are administering vaccines, students are volunteering at the pop-up clinics, and these ten interns will help bolster public health outreach efforts to keep our community safe and healthy while gaining work experience. It’s a win-win.”

Through this program, the interns will advance efforts of educating Kern residents on COVID-19 and vaccination efforts. Activities planned for the positions include reaching impacted communities through phone banking, texting, social media, participation at vaccine clinics, and community events.  

BC Vaccine Clinics

The BC Student Health and Wellness Center is open to all students and the community to be vaccinated. They are currently administering the Moderna COVID vaccine Tuesdays and Wednesdays between 9 am and 3 pm. The Moderna vaccine is available for people who are 18 and older.

Community clinics will also continue throughout the summer. You can see a list of upcoming Vaccine Clinics on the BC Student Health & Wellness Center website.

Walk-ins are accepted at all clinics or register at or call (833) 422-4255 and schedule your appointment. Enter the zip code of 93305 to view the Bakersfield College Student Health and Wellness Center availability.

Closing Day

On Day 2 of our Closing Day Spring 2021 festivities, we heard from KCCD Chancellor Tom Burke:

I’d also like to share a few of the President’s Leadership Award winners for the 2020-2021 year.

Our fabulous Nursing Department:

And the Student Information Desk/SID Team, led by Dan Hall:

You can see all the videos from Closing Day at

2021 Commencement

The 2021 Commencement Tribute aired on KGET on May 16, to honor our amazing Class of 2021. I’d like to share a few videos from that production:

Philosophy Professor Anna Collins was the Samuel W. McCall Outstanding Faculty Recipient:

Bakersfield Mayor Karen Goh shared remarks:

We also heard from Assemblymember Rudy Salas:

Our graduates were able to submit photos to be included in the program. We divided our graduates into 6 groups, and today I’m sharing Group 1:

You can see all the videos from the 2021 Commencement Tribute at

Additionally, all 2021 BC graduates will be welcome to participate in the in-person commencement with the Class of 2022 when restrictions for large gatherings are lifted. Information regarding how to participate will be available on the Commencement page in March 2022.

CCC Women’s Caucus to welcome Lilly Ledbetter

On June 22, the CCC Women’s Caucus will welcome guest speaker Lilly Ledbetter. Lilly was the plaintiff in the US Supreme Court Case Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., regarding employment discrimination. The court decided that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 does not allow employers to be sued for pay discrimination more than 180 days after an employee’s first paycheck. However, Congress passed a fair pay act in her name – the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 – to remedy this issue.

This event is free to members of the women’s caucus. Non-members may attend for $35.

For more information, or to register, please visit the CCC Women’s Caucus website at

In the News

Bakersfield College Creates Innovative Partnerships to Expand Resources

Advanced Transportation and Logistics published a piece about a partnership that BC Automotive Instructor Andrew Haney initiated between Bakersfield College and the Greater Bakersfield New Car Dealers Association.

“We have an industry that depends on each other, and we can help create that fusion here,” Haney said. “Our students are eager, and the technician shortage is tremendous. We need the entire industry to come together to address it. The more we work together, the more we’re exposing students to the industry, giving them the opportunity for a stable career, living wage, and good future.”

Andrew Haney

CTEC students at KHSD graduate with a sense of purpose

Check out this article form the Bakersfield Californian about Career Technical Education Center graduation:

Jesse Espinoza, a senior at Foothill, said that he had contemplated other options for his future but he really wanted to be a firefighter. He enrolled in the fire technology program at CTEC, and that solidified it for him.

He’s planning to enroll to take firefighting courses at Bakersfield College, and ultimately become a firefighter. His parents were beaming and proud at Wednesday’s ceremony.

He wanted to be a firefighter and he’s accomplishing it,” said his dad Juan Espinoza. “He’s really going for it.”

Fun Photos & Spotted on Social Media

Thank you April for this great photo of Neo, enjoying a nice walk this week.

Bill Moseley shared this throwback picture with a note:

“June, 1998. It was a summer of disaster movie blockbusters, with Deep Impact and Armageddon in theaters. Stanzi, our oldest, was two weeks old. She and my wife accompanied me (as one of our first trips out of the house) to a job interview at Bakersfield College, and sat in the lobby while I met with my future boss. 23 years (and six kids) later, I’m still here. I have a bit more gray, and a lot of experiences that have shaped me. The two week old is all grown up and finishing a master’s degree, and my wife and I would still choose to spend every minute together, rather than be apart. I’m thankful for everything BC has done for me over the years, and hope the college and our students have benefitted from my work. As I look to the future, I hope that I can continue to serve California’s most impactful population of students, and that I can work to support equity for students and my colleagues.”

BCSGA shared this screenshot from Emma McNellis, who spoke at the 2-21 Celebration: Student Messages for their Community College Family webinar with the Student Senate for California Community Colleges:

Nick Strobel shared pictures of his saguaro cactus flowers:

And the BC Cheer team celebrated National Donut Day:


That’s all for now.
Until next time.

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

Sunsetting May 2021 as BC Builds Bridges

This week I read an article about the Brooklyn Bridge. May 24th was the 138th anniversary of the opening of the Brooklyn Bridge, which connected New York and Brooklyn for the first time in history. It seems almost impossible now to imagine a time when those two cities were not connected. And the sheer amount of planning, thought, work and engineering that went into what became the “eighth wonder of the world.”

I’m so pleased to see resources set aside in the upcoming nationwide infrastructure plan that will help restore our great nation’s precious bridges — a thing of remarkable beauty and great engineering feat.

And it’s not only physical bridges that are key to maintaining our relationships. Our metaphorical bridges also must be maintained so that we can continue to connect with people and ideas that otherwise may have been unreachable.

That’s why I’m so proud of the Bridge to BC program. This high-touch, high-tech program helps our first-year students get all the support and guidance they need to be successful. This year’s program will be fully online, designed as a one-week course with online sections that run Monday through Saturday. The sessions will run from June through August, and are available to all our incoming freshmen, including those who earned college credits in high school.

Chancellor Tom Burke visiting Bridge to BC before COVID. With Isabel Casteneda and Kimberly Bligh

The thousands of students who completed Bridge to BC over the last 6 years were twice as likely to attempt and complete more units, including transfer level Math and English, and to persist Fall-to-Fall than non-Bridge students. 

Stephanie Ruiz

Stephanie Ruiz, a studio arts major who plans to transfer to CSUB, wrote a piece in the Bakersfield Californian about how the Bridge to BC program helped her:

“When Bridge to BC returns to being an on-campus or hybrid experience, I know students just like me will continue to benefit, learning to navigate college both online and on campus. This experience was a great introduction and it made my first year enjoyable even though all my classes were online. This next year, I feel even more prepared to tackle my classes with confidence thanks to all the support from Bridge to BC.”

Kimberly Bligh and our entire Bridge to BC team are truly remarkable.

Where would we all be without bridges?

Good morning Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, May 29, 2021 … a great day to be a Renegade.

Thousand Flags at The Park at River Walk

If you’re looking for a way to honor our heroes over Memorial Day weekend, head out to The Park at River Walk where Bakersfield Breakfast Rotary Club will present “Thousand Flags.” 

Bakersfield College and Rotary have been partners in many ways over the years, and the college has close ties to the Breakfast Rotary club in that Cheryl Scott, Mary Jo Pasek, and Mindy Wilmot are all members of the club, and of course Chancellor Tom Burke is a member as well!

Umoja Community honors all African-American grads

Umoja Community African-American Success Through Excellence and Persistence (ASTEP) celebrated student accomplishments and honored all African-American graduates.

Despite the challenging times, there was much to celebrate: Umoja grew in the number of courses and in programing. Jazz Appreciation, taught by Kris Tiner, and Statistics for the Behavioral and Social Sciences, taught by David Reiss, were both offered in Umoja with an African-American cultural component.

In addition, Umoja in conjunction with the Nursing department created the Employment Preparation Academy – exposing four pre-nursing students to options in the nursing field and giving them tips on applying to BC’s program.

But the real highlight of the program was honoring the eighteen participating African-American graduates. Two students shared their struggles and triumphs on the way to completing their associates degrees.

Zariyah Hall

Explained Zariyah Hall, who struggled in high school: “It wasn’t until I joined Umoja that I saw the value of my journey. I learned that I have an ancestral obligation to be successful and that revolutionary patience is a virtue. These are lessons I will take with me.”

She added that she will attend an Historically Black College in the fall and earn a degree in communication with the goal of creating content that tells the stories of Black people.

Shorell Darrett

Shorell Darrett said she almost didn’t make it: “I found myself in one of those dark moments and lost my focus when my younger brother died from COVID and my sister from cancer within the same week during my finals. I couldn’t see myself finishing, but here I am graduating with three degrees (early childhood education, communication, and liberal arts) and cum laude. I am forever thankful to my village: family, friends, BC counselors, and professors who held up the light that guided me.”

Thank you to Umoja Coordinator Dr. Paula L. Parks, Executive Director of Outreach and Early College Steve Watkin, and Educational Advisor Daron Mackey for making this event happen.

Umoja is accepting applications for fall and offering enrollment sessions throughout the summer. See for more information.

Virtual Express Enrollment Event on June 2

Last week, Bakersfield College’s Outreach Team served over 230 students during their Express Enrollment Event on May 19th. We hope to see similar turnout throughout the summer! The next Express Enrollment Event is Wednesday June 2 from 12pm to 8pm.

Register here: or visit the website at

There will also be three more Express Enrollment events planned for this summer, on June 16th from 12pm to 5pm, July 7th from 12pm to 8pm, and August 11th from 12pm to 8pm.

Thank you to the Child Development Center

I wanted to share this touching email from a student, thanking our Child Development Center Rosita Barron:


My name is Sapphire Hernandez. I am the mother to Daniel Bredemann, a current student and Elizabeth Bredemann, a former student. When I originally had my children I became discouraged that I would no longer be able to pursue a higher education. After a few years I left the state I was living in, left my job and moved back with my mother determined to make a better life for my children. This semester I ended all my prerequisites for my nursing degree, graduating with a 3.8 GPA. I am eligible to apply to both BC and CSUB nursing program. I just really wanted to express my gratitude towards the Child Development Program. Knowing that my children are in a safe place with people who are honestly invested in their well being feels like a blessing. I know that my achievements would not have been possible without this program. I really appreciate the support and feel determined to achieve my goal of becoming a nurse.  

Thank you. 

I’m so proud of the Child Development Center and all they do to help our student parents. In fact, at this year’s Closing Day celebration, the CDC team received my President’s Leadership Award:

Closing Day 2021

Our first day of Closing Day 2021 programming also featured a musical performance from the Bakersfield College Choir, Chamber Singers, and Renegade Chorus. Please enjoy “In Meeting We Are Blessed”:

Vice President of Instruction Billie Jo Rice also recognized our faculty receiving tenure:

All the videos from our Closing Day programming are available at

BC Hosts Fire Department Training Session

This week, Bakersfield College welcomed friends from the Bakersfield City Fire Departments Technical Search and Rescue Team to the Panorama campus. The BFD team used blocked off areas of the campus to perform non-invasive training exercises and drills utilizing GPS, search cameras, and activities focused on search and reconnaissance. I am so happy that our campus continues to be a place of learning, growth, and skills attainment for our community.

Commencement 2021 Tribute

Our 2021 Commencement again went virtual with a special tribute program that aired on KGET and Telemundo.

Today, I’d like to share a few videos from that production.

Outgoing BCSGA President Gian Gayatao’s remarks:

And our Bachelor of Science in Industrial Automation graduates.

You can see all the videos from the program at

Poetry Corner

Another Jack Hernandez poem, inspired by the horrific violence facing parts of the world:

A Distant Country

My car is being routinely
serviced    oil changed
brakes and tires checked,
I at a table by a window
drinking special coffee
watching people order
their favorites to go.

In a distant country
dusty and war weary
young school girls
leaving their classroom day
are shredded by a bomb,
their clothing now
bloody pieces,
their parents weeping.

My car is ready for the road.
The girls are lowered into the ground.

In the News

Community Voices: The Crowning Glory of Vaccines

Dr. Brij Bhambi

Dr. Brij Bhambi wrote about the importance of vaccination and continued mitigation measures as we fight to come out of the Covid-19 pandemic:

“As I have reiterated ad nauseam, vaccine hesitancy is the last mile we need to triumph through doctors offices. It’s the steepest part of the hill, the part where you retool to summit the top.”

You can read more of Dr. Bhambi’s thoughts on the blog he and I have created together,

Community Voices: Out of the cave, into the sun

Jack Hernandez’ piece in the Bakersfield Californian looked at what good might come after over a year of pandemic:

“So as we leave the shadows of the pandemic, let us also leave the false shadows of so-called normal life. Let us leave all the shadows of the cave. Let us emerge into the clear sunlight of the truth about what is really important in life: that we care for others, our families, our friends, our neighbors, the strangers who are homeless.

Community Voices: Education is peacebuilding

Kara McDonald wrote about the place education has in building peace in our society:

“So, what if in school, we were taught to recognize indicators of conflict? Or how to have non-violent conflict? Or how to listen with empathy and curiosity instead of judgment? Our lives would also be exponentially easier if we understood peace as much as we understand conflict. We would navigate conflict more easily, there would likely be less violence, and we would develop societies where peace, justice, and equity are able to thrive.”

I’d like to share a few more videos from the Educators for Peace seminar on May 18.

The first question in that seminar was “what is peace, and what does a peaceful future look like to you?”

Here is Jessica Wojtysiak responding to that:

And Richard McCrow:

You can see all the videos from the Educators for Peace seminar, as well as the Mothers for Peace seminar, at

Fun Photos & Spotted on Social Media

I loved this message from Bakersfield City Councilmember Andrae Gonzales, about the Cash for the Arts utility box project. These are near Williams Elementary in East Bakersfield:

Olivia Garcia got some exercise with her mother:

Check out this view from Faith Bradham, who shared a picture from Canyonlands National Park:

Abel Guzman shared this note from the McFarland graduation – Early College team members Alma Feathers and Raquel Lopez were on hand to celebrate our Early College graduates from McFarland. Congratulations class for 2021!

This week, Cerro Coso Community College President Sean Hancock hosted Zav Dadabhoy (who will be BC’s interim president), Porterville College President Claudia Habib, and myself.

President Claudia Habib, Incoming President Zav Dadabhoy, President Sean Hancock, Incoming Chancellor Sonya Christian

I also had to share this throwback photo of Neo, four years ago, taken June 3, 2017.


Congratulations to former Renegade Hector Ruvalcaba, who was named to the 2021 National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association’s 2021 All-Central Region Team. Hector now plays for Oklahoma Baptist University.


That’s all for now.
Until next time.

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