Tag Archives: Connie Perez

BC — Beat Covid

BC stands for Beat Covid — David Torres

David Torres, Centric Health Foundation Chairman, put it best “BC may stand for Bakersfield College, but to all of us here in this community, for us, BC stands for Beats Covid.”

I loved his energy and excitement at the clinic:

We also celebrated Community Relations Director Norma Rojas-Mora’s birthday with a drive-through singalong:

On Friday, March 26, Bakersfield College hosted our second big drive-through vaccination event – vaccinating 1,025 people!

I am grateful to everyone whose hard work and dedication helped make BC’s second drive-through Covid vaccination clinic an absolute success.

Check out more pictures from the March 26 clinic on BC’s SmugMug site.

I’m continuing to share pictures of our vaccinated Renegades. If you’d like to share your vaccination photo, please email it to president@bakersfieldcollege.edu.

BC supporter Nicole Parra got her vaccination at our first drive-thru clinic:

Nicole Parra getting vaccinated

Program Manager for Counseling & Student Success Isabel Castaneda tweeted about her Johnson&Johnson vaccination:

Food Services Manager Fidel Cabuena got his second Pfizer shot:

Department Assistant Cheryl Caswell-Fairbanks got the shot with her husband and Shawn Newsom from the History Department:

Good morning Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, April 3, 2021 … a great day to be a Renegade.

This Easter weekend, I wanted to share a few photos of spring flowers:

And the rose season is getting started:

First Lady comes to Central Valley

This week, First Lady Dr. Jill Biden visited the Central Valley to meet with farmworkers at The Forty Acres. She was joined by Gov. Gavin Newsom in touring The Forty Acres, which was created by Cesar Chavez and became the headquarters for the United Farmworkers of America, and in thanking farmworkers for their hard work during the pandemic. Connie Perez-Andreeson from the BC Foundation Board introduced Dr. Jill Biden…. so cool!

And here is an Instagram post by FLOTUS; the picture is of Connie introducing her.

Sonya Christian, Dolores Huerta, Norma Rojas-Mora

Young Mothers for Peace

Mothers for Peace, the first in a series of seminars through the Bakersfield College Peace Initiative, kicked off on Tuesday this week with a Zoom webinar where panelists reflected on their experiences and concerns as they raise their children, as well as their visions for a peaceful future. Norma Rojas-Mora, served as emcee. Our panelists were Sandy Woo-Cater, Anti-Trafficking Expert; Lauren Skidmore, District Director for Assembly Member Vince Fong; Pawan Gill, Director of HR and Community Development for the City of Arvin; and Antrenette Carr, Human Resources Manager at Amazon.

Here are my opening remarks:

Then, our panelists each gave a short introduction of themselves and their families:

Norma then asked our panelists to reflect on a series of questions.

As a mother, what do you see as the threat?

Let’s fast forward to 2035, your child is now an adult. As you envision that world what do you want it look like? 

What do you want to do to reach that vision for a peaceful society  in 2035?  What is your call to action?

Norma wrapped up the seminar with a few closing comments:

Please stay tuned to the BC Peace Initiative website for information about upcoming seminars, events, and other projects.

Early College Info Night at Valley Oaks Charter

Last Thursday the Early College team hosted a virtual student & parent information night for Valley Oaks Charter School. The session was focused on incoming 9th graders and their parents, but was open for all Valley Oaks students. The student testimonials were the highlight of the event. Two graduating seniors shared their experiences with taking Early College classes through Valley Oaks. They also participated in a question and answer session for the parents and students.

Here are some quotes from our Early College students:

“It’s a really good experience… If you do start, I would start with 1-2 classes.” – Jaxon Young

“I was nervous too. It’s ok to be nervous. It puts a little bit of pressure on you but don’t be afraid to ask your professors for help.” – Elise Mayer

Inmate Scholars Update

Jennifer Craig, an assistant professor of English and the Inmate Scholars Program, sent out the latest edition of the Inmate Scholars Newsletter on March 26.

You can check it out below:

She also shared two links – Success Stories (Roberto Luca’s story), and Professor Sara Wallace’s Reflections from Outside blog.

Spotted on Social Media

BC Cheer shared a throwback photo from the 1994-1995 squad:

The Kern Exceptional Family Center shared some pictures from their vaccination clinic in partnership with the Kern Regional Center and Bakersfield College:

History Professor Olivia Garcia spotted some Easter cheer on a trail:

One of our Culinary Arts students was preparing pastry boxes for Nixtamal Cafe:

Job Development Specialist Carlos Medina’s family took a bike ride through the bluffs:

The Story of Kitty

Before I wrap up with the Athletics Corner that Brandon sends my way, I wanted you to enjoy this story written by one of my regular contributors to the blog, Dr. Jack Hernandez, aka “Grandpa Jack” who wrote a delightful short story for his seven year old granddaughter who is a terrific gymnast…she was cartwheeling and flipping when he was visiting in Williamstown.

        Kitty was a small, grey fluffy cat. Her older sister, Kiki, loved to musically meow and dance, waving her paws in the air like flags. Her big brother, Cosmic, was a superstar mouse chaser.

        But one morning as Kitty watched them from her high breakfast perch she wondered what she could do to be happy like them. She remembered all the things she had tried to do, but hadn’t worked.

        First she had tried swimming, but didn’t like her fur all wet, soggy, and heavy. So that didn’t work.

        Next she had played catball, but didn’t like waiting for her turn, plus she missed too many. So that didn’t work.

        Then she had gone outside on the grass to race snails, but that was too easy. Like even an ant can beat a snail. So that didn’t work.

        Finally she had tried tooting a horn, but didn’t like her lips all tired and worn. So that didn’t work.

        O me, o my, she thought, what can I do? And as she sat and wondered, she suddenly fell from her perch and without thinking landed upright on her paws! Wow, she said, I can do this, can do tricks in the air!

        So when her mama cat, Lipsi, brought her a pancake, she asked her how she could learn to leap and turn, leap and circle in the air.

        He mom answered, “I know a place, Kitty, that teaches kiddy cats to do catnastics, and after breakfast I’ll take you there.”

        “Thank you, mom,” Kitty purred as she put some syrup on her pancake.

        So that very afternoon Kitty began her catnastics lessons. And she practiced and practiced.

        Then one day, not too long after, she was cartwheeling her way! Here and there! Everywhere!

        O how she could flip and dip! Backward and forward! Up and down! Cat flips to the ceiling, to the floor. Tricks, tricks, and tricks galore!

        She was no longer just watching other cats in their jazzy fur. She was now cool, cool Kitty. Jumping. Pumping. Swinging and zinging. Every day.  Every way.

        And that is how she became Kitty–The Cartwheeling Cat.


Volleyball End Spring I Season With Perfect Record

Even though they were not playing competitively for over a year, the Renegade Women’s Volleyball squad is playing like they haven’t skipped a beat. They recently wrapped up play in the abbreviated California Community College Athletics Association (CCCAA) Spring I sports season with a perfect 9-0 record. In the process they swept seven of the nine opponents and only gave up two sets in those nine games. While there will be no conference or state championship for them to play at the end of this season, we are proud of the what they accomplished and how they represented BC!

Coach Littlejohn on KGET Coaches Corner

Be sure to catch our very own Renegade Head Football Coach R. Todd Littlejohn as he joins KGET sports reporter Taylor Schaub to dissect the local high school football games each week. Watch last week’s segment of the first week of Kern High District games by clicking below:



That’s all for now.
Until next time.

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

A busy Homecoming Week at BC!

Asha Nicky Sonya with 4x8 Oct 21 2016.jpg

“I don’t think there’s any jobs like back then.” – Bob Thompson

Two years ago, in 2014, The Washington Post published a story following Bob Thompson, a man from Southern California who had never gone to college, but as a young man in his hometown of Downy in the 1960’s it was easy to find a decent job. Since it was the proud hub of aerospace manufacturing, he quickly secured a job at a local plant with no higher education.

At the end of the video clip, he said, “Today’s world – I don’t think there’s any jobs like back then. Today’s world – you have to be educated… college educated, or trades, something like that. But to just go out and get a job, a nice paying job, I think those days are over with.You can check out the short video clip here on Washingtonpost.com.

His words have stuck with me over the past week… Especially as I’ve witnessed the amazing dedication from individuals who persistently support BC and Measure J. It is BC’s goal to provide necessary job skills for the people of this community for the next 50 years.


Michael Turnipseed supporting Measure J

Georgetown University, in its Job Growth and Educational Requirements Through 2020, has predicted that, “By 2020, 65 percent of all jobs in the economy will require postsecondary education and training beyond high school” and “The United States will fall short by 5 million workers with postsecondary education- at the current production rate- by 2020.” https://cew.georgetown.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/Recovery2020.ES_.Web_.pdf

Bakersfield College – and community colleges nationwide – are the pipeline to prepare the workforce for both middle-skill jobs and transfering to higher levels of educational obtainment and the highly-skilled workforce. A lot has changed since the 1960s, and the demands for more education will increase, right along the increasing number of students. The success of our community, the success of our local economy, and the health of our people depend on locally and technically trained prepared students to meet this upcoming demand.  #MeasureJ


David Torres supporting Measure J

This was made clear at the Kern Workforce Summit on October 19th organized by Supervisor Leticia Perez, Teresa Hitchcock and a team of business and industry partners.  Unfortunately, I did not take my own pictures at the event, so here is a collage from Karen Goh’s facebook page.  Thanks Karen!



Supervisor Leticia Perez supporting Measure J

David Womack, a retired USAF colonel, is the senior vice president and area manager for Kaiser Permanente in Kern County.


David Womack

Have you seen his piece in the Community Voices section of the Bakersfield Californian? He says,

Measure J has the potential to transform our region and create a tipping point for generations to come. Here is how your vote will make a difference.

He concludes with:

Desmond Tutu once said, “There comes a point where we need to stop just pulling people out of the river. We need to go upstream and find out why they are falling in.” Measure J is our upstream opportunity. You can choose to invest in the health of our community and wellbeing of our veterans.

You can choose to vote Yes on Measure J.

Find out how by checking out his letter at http://www.bakersfield.com/opinion/community-voices-how-measure-j-can-improve-kern-s-health/article_4516a34e-973f-527d-a569-256b8f93fa9b.html

David Womack Oct 18 2016.png

Good morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, October 22nd …. Homecoming at Bakersfield College and an amazing day to be a Renegade.  An amazing day following an amazing week of activities both on-campus and off-campus.

And why would the week not be great when we had Scott Cox in it 🙂

First Look with Scott Cox


Scott Cox, Marlene Heise, Bill Thomas, Sonya Christian

Retired Congressman and KCCD Trustee, Bill Thomas and I were guests on First Look with Scott Cox this past week to talk about Measure J.  It was really a lot of fun.  Also notice Hop, Mike Hopper, with the Measure J sign.  We was wonderful and so funny.  Thank you Marlene Heise for making this happen.

A recording of the live video is available on First Look’s Facebook page at


Measure J Update


The Kern County Farm Bureau Endorses Measure J.  See press release


Thank you President Jeff Rasmussen and Beatris Espericueta Sanders and each member of the Board for your support of Measure J.


Beatris Espericueta, Heather Baltis, Sonya Christian



Doug Starr of the Kern Ag Foundation supports Measure J

Over 1800 individuals have endorsed Measure J.  Check out the list at http://www.yesonj2016.com/endorsements.html

Here are some examples in alphabetical order:

Kevin Burton, President, SJCH Foundation
Kyle Carter, Bakersfield Mayoral Candidate/KCCD Trustee
David Couch, Kern County Supervisor
Jose Flores, Arvin Mayor
Karen Goh, Bakersfield Mayoral Candidate
Doug Greener, Bakersfield Fire Chief
Shannon Grove, California State Assembly Member
Harvey Hall, Bakersfield Mayor
Harold Hanson, Bakersfield Vice Mayor
Mike Maggard, Kern County Supervisor
Kay Meek, KCCD Trustee
Terry Maxwell, Bakersfield City Council Member
Chris Parlier, Bakersfield City Council Member
Leticia Perez, Kern County Supervisor
Leticia Prado, Lamont Water District Member
Willie Rivera, Bakersfield City Council Member
Rudy Salas, California State Assembly Member
Mary K. Shell
Bob Smith, Bakersfield City Council Member
Jay Tamsi, Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce President
Bill Thomas, Retired U.S. Congressman
Greg Williamson, Bakersfield Police Department Chief

Milt Younger

What’s happening at the Measure J Head Quarters?

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Volunteers are coming from all around to give their time and talent to ensure Measure J is a success!

Here are some smart, beautiful and talented women who support Measure J

Womenendorsing Measure J.jpg

January Lau-CEO January & Company (Bakersfield)

Norma Rojas-Mora-President Latina Leaders of Kern County (Bakersfield)

Pauline Larwood-Retired Kern Community College Trustee/Kern County Supervisor (Bakersfield)

Connie Perez-CPA (Bakersfield)

Sue Benham-Retired Bakersfield City Council (Bakersfield)

Mariela Gomez-student ( Bakersfield)

Carolina Espinoza-student (Bakersfield)

Raji Brar-Owner Countryside Market & Restaurants (Bakersfield)

Tina Miller-Host “Open Up” talk show (Bakersfield)

And here is the fabulous Nicole Parra.  I love this picture.


Nicole Parra supporting Measure J

At the headquarters this week, I had a minute to chat with Malique McClanaan, a high school student volunteering with his mom who also wants to take dual enrollment classes at BC.


I also saw smiling faces like Manny De Los Santos and Venessa Reyes, who made phone calls to voters.


Manny De los Santos, Vanessa Reyes

I snagged a selfie with adjunct faculty, Kaureen Brady. And Kenneth Mireles, Carlos Baraban and Paul Beckworth also hit the phones and chatted with potential supporters.


Sonya Christian, Kaureen Brady


It was great to also see Ken Byrum, a local attorney, a member of our Board of Directors and a strong supporter of Bakersfield College phone banking out on behalf of Measure J.


Ken Byrum phone banking

Check out our Academic Senate Vice President volunteering her time phone banking.

Andrea Thorson phone banking Oct 2016.jpg

Andrea Thorson phone banking Oct 19, 2016

Here is Dena Rhoades, Kathy Howarth, and Kristin Rabe counting and preparing Measure J yard signs!


Dena Rhoades, Kathy Howarth, Kristin Rabe

Matt Stahl and I took a look at the voters map for walking precincts.


Sonya Christian, Matt Stahl

BC is a family and so it was refreshing to see Grace Comisso downtown at Measure J headquarters with her whole family, even the baby in tow! Marissa Marquez and her daughter Clarissa were on hand to help with whatever was needed!

The Delano crew also got together. The committee meeting for lunch and “walk” planning took place – Here is Raquel Lopez, Alma Feathers, Carolina Madrigal; Juan Torres; Gustavo Enriquez; Abel Guzman; and Helen Calip.


Shout out to Volunteers:

Tuesday, October 18th:

Terri Goldstein, Michelle Pena, Keri Kennedy, Adel Shafik, Amanda Rangel, Lesley Bonds, Ashlea Ward, Claudio Felix, Shanell Tyus, Manuel Muralles, Josie Guillen, Steven Watkin, Debi Anderson, Tom Gelder, Paul Beckworth, Jackie Lau, Yadira Guerrero, Chris Glaser, Steve Waller, Cynthia Munos, Jay Rosenlieb

Wednesday, October 19:

Jackie Lau, Carlos Banbaran, Pat Smith, Heather Barajas, Tracy Lovelace, Kristin Rabe, Loy Salarda, Lisa Kent, Kathy Howarth, Dena Rhoades, Somaly Boles, Chris Glaser, Steve waller, Keesha Collins

Thursday, October 20:

Lesley Bonds, Lisa Kent, Brenda Silva, Silvia Silva, Jason Page, Mark Osea, Keesha Collins, Terri Goldstein, Michelle Pena, Linda Cordobam, Josh Shackelford, Jackie Lau, Sergio Maldenado, Salvador Gomez-Pantoja, Shohreh Rahman, Matt Hinson, Sam Moreno, Steve Waller, Chris Glaser, January Lau, Tom Gelder, Janet Tarjan

Friday, October 21:

Stephen Waller, Keesha Collins, Kalina Hill, Jackie Brouillette, Shanell Tyus, Pedro C. Ramirez, Tom Saba, Janet Tarjan, Elina Garcia, Maria Duenas, Brenda Silvia, Sam Moran, Daulton Jones, Shanice Watson, Liz Rozell, Kate Pluta, Ruben Chavez, Mariah Earl, Iris Gonzalez, Loy Salarda, Nicky Damania, Teresa McAllister, Chase McAllister, Lucero Cisneros, Andrea Lopez, Lesley Bonds

And a little birdy told me that some people didn’t sign in – you know who you are!

Homecoming 2016!

School spirit is alive at 1801 Panorama Drive! The week was off to a magical start with our campus’s first “Quidditch Tournament!” Students drew a crowd as they participated in the magical sport created by J.K Rowling in her Harry Potter series. Teams were formed, competitions began, and no one walked away empty handed! You have to see the pictures to see a glimpse of how this whimsical sport was a fantastic start to Homecoming Week at BC!

On Tuesday, BCSGA set up bumper ball soccer for students! Large plastic balls were inflated for one person and that’s how the games began! Student booths for Student Life and BCSGA were on hand to get students involved and assist with the bumper games.

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Wednesday was all about fun and food with a special event Tacos & Tie-Dye out in the Renegade Crossroads. As you can imagine, tie-dye was incredibly messy and the tacos from the Taqueria el Roble del Leon Taco Truck are always a hit with the students.



Campus was fired up on Thursday in preparation for the big weekend. Students listened to music and enjoyed pancakes at the traditional Pep Rally and Pancake Feed! The BC Cheerleaders and BC Drumline raised the excitement and our campus spirit with stellar performances.


It’s an exciting time to be on campus, and this evening is the best chance to reconnect with your community college – Bakersfield College! Homecoming 2016 is going to be the best one yet and it all takes place tonight starting with the Big Red Dinner! You don’t want to miss the parade and big game vs. Cerritos College.

I hope to see you up at “the campus on the hill” tonight! For Homecoming 2016!!

Third Thursday

There were two events this past Thursday, October 20th — the third thursday prayer group luncheon for public sector leaders and the Downtown Business Association’s event in the evening.  Our mayor Harvey Hall was recognized at both events.

I enjoyed hearing the McKinley School Choir perform and found this youtube video of them receiving a check from Robin Mangarin on behalf of Dignity Health.

Another event that happened Thursday evening was the Kern Citizens for Sustainable Government.  Thank you JP Lake for having me as your guest. I did not take photos but found this collage on Karen Goh’s Facebook.  Thank you Karen Goh!


Creative Experiences at BC

BC at Via Arté

It is through the music and art curriculum and experiences that BC students are prepared for a myriad of creative fields. From professional music to drawing, painting, ceramics, architecture, digital media and more, our students accomplish great things. Each year, the Bakersfield Museum of Art presents Via Arte at The Marketplace where artists recreate a traditional Italian street painting festival with original chalk art.

Check out these incredible pics from Art adjunct faculty, Diego Gutierrez Monterrubio and BC Art student, Emily Lloyd.


BC Chamber Singers

On Monday, our BC Chamber singers were featured on First Look with Scott Cox. If you missed this wonderful highlight of Dr. Jennifer Garrett and a portion of the BC Chamber Singers, make sure to check out this link for the recording!


Yesterday, on Friday evening, this group of talented students took the stage along with the entire BC Chamber Singers, BC College Choir, Lucy Adams on french horn, Naomi Rivera from Marvin Ramey’s Experience Dance, and one of our own BC students Linda Snoddy on bagpipes. The beautiful Indoor Theater was filled with talent and the evening’s theme was one to remember: Life and Death.

Here is the Director’s Note to us:


Dr. Jen Garrett emailed me… “I have done quite a few concerts in my life, but I don’t think any of them have meant as much to me as this one.  I thought of the idea just over a year ago on the day my Mom passed away and I had to do a rehearsal with College Choir immediately after I arrived home from traveling to see her one last time.  I knew then that I wanted to do something to honor her.”

I did not take photos but saw Cara Jackson at the vent.  When she gets her pictures to us, I will go ahead and add them to this blog.  So check back.

Here are two of my favorite songs from the evening and since I did not take a video of the BC Choir performing, I found the songs on youtube take a few moments to close your eyes and listen and see the amazing Jen Garrett with her choir, in her pale but bright blue dress with a delicate black vest.

We Rise Again:

Peace Like a River

All of the choir members have made dedications to people that have influenced their lives–both people still living and those that have passed on.” The BC Choral program is constantly working to bring light to our community through performance, art, and music. The next performance is December 2nd for “Winter Around the World” – you don’t want to miss it.  We love you Jen Garrett!

Lucian Ban & Mat Maneri:

Tomorrow, Sunday October 23rd at 6:00pm, the BC Jazz Program presents a unique evening with Transylvanian born, NYC-based pianist Lucian Ban and Grammy nominee Mat Maneri, who will share their musical discoveries. Admission is free, open to the public and also for our students. Performing Arts adjunct faculty, Susan Scaffidi shares more about these incredible artists in her article on Bakersfield.com.

I hope you’ll check it out.

Traveling to Mars at BC


BC’s planetarium director, Nick Strobel, presented a Mars Travel Guide on Thursday at BC’s very own William M. Thomas Planetarium on Thursday. This special show covered the hazards of the months-long flight to Mars, properties, the atmosphere and geology, weather, and the history of our explorations on the surface of Mars from Viking to Curiosity.

planetarium1Nick said, “To give it proper justice would probably require a whole semester’s worth of a class or at least a six-hour show but most people, I suspect, would find that a tad too long.”

Just a tad, he said!

What a fabulous gift for the community at BC – the gift of knowledge and education concerning one of our most interesting subjects – space!

Check out this link for more about the Bakersfield College Planetarium or click here to read one of Nick’s biweekly Bakersfield Night Sky articles.

Student Initiatives

African American Mentor Program:

Making a transition to a new environment such as college can be overwhelming, especially for first-time and first-generation college students. That’s why Bakersfield College strives to offer many diverse student organizations and initiatives. One initiative in particular, the African American Mentor Program, is one that incorporates drop-in mentors, peer mentors, resiliency guidance, and general assistance to encourage students to be motivated in their studies.

Julian West is the coordinator for AAMP and he has said, “A big part of what AAMP is for and what I do, is to ensure that African American students feel like they belong at BC and get them comfortable with using these services. We have a network of dedicated staff and community members that are addressing the unique issues faced by African American students.”


The group holds weekly meetings with dedicated black tutors, or “real talk” sessions in which students can speak their mind and talk about any issues on or off campus.

The most recent “Real Talk” was conducted by Danny Morrison of Hot 94.1 radio, who runs Project Dynamo, helping children strive in school. I’m told Danny spoke on how important it is to break the cycle of black stereotypes and how it must strive from motivation to change and its talks like this that help motivate our students and keep them on track.

The mentors of AAMP make note of and reach out to students when they are missing items like educational plans or financial aid paperwork. They incorporate a very intrusive approach to educational advising including outreach and even text message reminders!

BC is a family and nothing makes us more proud than to see students accomplish their goals and better their future; services like AAMP on campus allow us to do that.

If students want to get involved, find contact details and more at https://www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/student/aai/aamp

Spotlight On: The Grace Van Dyke Bird Library


This week, I’d like to take a moment to focus on our fabulous library.  This is the newest building on campus, built in 1996.  Most of the other buildings were built in 1956.

The Bakersfield College library is a tremendous academic resource to students in need of books, reference books, articles, research assistance, research workshops, or just a quiet place to study.  The library subscribes to 12 online research databases and offers access to 150,000 electronic books in addition to the 80,00 print volumes housed in the library. The library staff consists of 5 full-time librarians, 3 adjunct librarians, and 4 support staff. The library is open 62 hours each week, including Saturdays.

Each semester librarians teach 2-3 sections of Library B1 (Introduction to Library Research), almost 70 research workshops, and well over 100 discipline-specific library orientations. In Spring 2016, a small library was opened at the Delano Campus, staffed by both adjunct and full-time BC librarians.

The Delano library is open 24 hours each week.

There are a total of 70 library workshops available to students every semester. These workshops help students learn research strategies, which give tips on how to find information about a certain topic by using key words; find books, including e-books and using the library catalog, as well as using EBSCOhost and other scholarly sources needed for researching. To find the schedule of all library workshops, visit the website: https://www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/library/workshops


The library hosts an annual Cerro Author Lecture, thanks to the generous bequest of Dolores Cerro. This year, we’re pleased to host Andy Weir, author of “The Martian”, which is now a major motion picture.

This book portrays the story of a young astronaut, Mark, left stranded by his crew after being presumed dead during a sand storm on Mars.

Left with only broken machinery, and no way to contact Earth, Mark is left to rely on his intuition and knowledge to survive. The book has proven to be a page-turner and hard to put down!

Weir will present programs to our students, faculty and staff on October 25th and 26th. On October 25th, he will also present a public program at 7 pm at the Indoor Theatre – all are welcome to this free event! For more information visit the Bakersfield College Librarian desk, or see https://www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/library/cerro-authors.


You can follow the library on both Instagram (bc_library) and Twitter (LibraryatBC)

Celebrating our favorite red!


The days are ticking down to Nov. 8th, and a few short days later, Jennifer Marden will be saying “I do!”

Last weekend, it was a great thing to see so many friends and colleagues take the time out of our busy lives on a Saturday afternoon to celebrate with Jennifer and her soon-to-be-husband, Mark. Stepping out into the patio at the Pyrenees Café was like stepping into a Tuscan retreat.

The food was delicious, including the gorgeous cake made by BC’s Rad Tech Dept. Assistant, Anita Karr.  Thank you to the special party planners, Kathy Howarth, Tracy Hall, Cynthia Munoz, and Becky Dargatz.

Jennifer’s wedding website says that even with an ocean, the 2nd largest city in America, and a mountain range between their homes, they did everything possible to spend as much time together and now their wedding is quickly approaching! There’s so much to celebrate at BC, but I’m glad last Saturday afternoon was all about Jennifer. Congratulations Jennifer Marden and Mark Serratt – I can’t wait to share a picture from the joyous occasion in a few short weeks!

Sonya and Pam in Singapore

Sonya Christian, Pam Christian

That’s all for now.  

Until next week.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya — 

reading Jenn’s note about her mom made me go back through old pictures.  Here I am with Pam Christian in Singapore many years ago.

¡Somos El Colegio De Bakersfield!

¡Somos BC!

Latina Leaders BC Gang July 11 2015

Maritza Carlisle, Sandra Serrano, Odella Johnson, Dana Gelder, Lisa Kent, Victor Diaz, Sonya Christian, Kimberly Bligh, Tom Gelder, Rick Kreiser

Last evening, July 11th, a group of us attended the Latina Leaders Awards banquet to celebrate the recognition of one of our very own–Lisa Kent.  It was a beautiful event recognizing the talent of Latinas in Kern County.  We were so proud of Lisa Kent who believes in the transformational power of higher education and who believes in Bakersfield College.  She puts herself out there to do whatever it takes to help others, particularly the young women in our community.  Lisa Kent, we are proud of you!

We had two of our students, two Latinas, from the Making it Happen Program attend the event.  Mariaha Lopez, from Shafter High, and Alondra Lule from Arvin High.  Here they are with Odella Johnson, myself, Lisa Kent, and Kimberly Bligh

BC team with Mariaha Lopez  and Alondra Lule July 11 2015

Standing L to R: Odella Johnson, Director of Equity and Inclusion; Sonya Christian, President; Lisa Kent, award winner; Kimberly Bligh, Department Chair Sitting L to R: Mariaha Lopez, Alondra Lule

The Latina Leaders of Kern County is a great organization whose President this year is Norma Rojas-Mora, who is also on the Bakersfield College Foundation Board of Directors.  You can find more information at http://kernlatinas.com/.  Another recipient is Camila Chavez, Executive Director for the Dolores Huerta Foundation (DHF) whom I met prior to my presidency when she was spearheading the movement locally to pass Prop 30 during the November 2012 election, which helped education in California as a whole and Bakersfield College in particular.

Talking about Latina leaders, I am reminded of Jo Ann Acosta, another amazing Latina, and the person behind the detailed planning and execution of BC’s Chicano/Latino Commencement Celebration.

The 21st Annual Bakersfield College Chicano/Latino Commencement Celebration, held on May 6th, was a festive evening filled with a performance by the Aztec Dancers, a live mariachi band and heartfelt remarks from our graduates. Take a moment to watch the 6:02-minute condensed version of the evening put together in a video by Manny de los Santos.


The program began with a processional of BC’s committed faculty and staff, followed by our students draped in beautiful Hispanic serape stoles with hues of green, blue, red, orange, yellow and white. Both MCs for the event, Lily Martinez (Professor, Foreign Language) and Maritza Salgueiro-Carlisle (Professor, Foreign Language) addressed the audience with translations in English and Spanish. The audience then received words of inspiration from the speaker of the evening Connie Perez (Partner, Brown Armstrong). The Student Speaker was Jose ”Jimmy” Moran (Vice President, Student Government Association), followed by the Presentacion de Certificados! Each of the graduates expressed their heartfelt appreciation for all who touched their lives, there was barely a dry eye in sight!

Thank you Jo Ann Acosta, Corny Rodriguez, the Committee and all parties that helped make the Chicano Commencement a cultural celebration to remember! and thank you Karla Young for capturing content for me for this blog.

More photos can be found at:

¡Somos El Colegio De Bakersfield!

¡Sí Se Puede!