Tag Archives: Dr. Jeet Singh

BC in community, having fun, and caring for each other

Good morning Bakersfield. 
It is Saturday, November 3, 2018…..a great day to be a Renegade.

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Gorgeous eastern sky.  Photo snapped during the early morning dog walk.

Very active week at BC…but then that’s how we roll at BC.

On Friday, College Council met at our Delano Campus.  It was a treat to be in Delano for our meeting.

College Council in Delano Nov 2 2018

Abel Guzman, Raquel Lopez and Jaime Lopez did a great presentation on the expansion of Rural Initiatives.

College Council in Delano 2

Homecoming Game

It was an exciting Saturday evening, October 27th, at Memorial Stadium with the Homecoming Game. The Renegade Football Team hosted East LA College in a wild 2018 homecoming game that ended with a big 58-17 Renegade win.

view of game from the stands

At halftime of the game the 1988 JC National Championship Renegade football team was honored on the field and presented with a special hat remembering their exceptional achievement.

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About 40-50 players and coaches, including Murray Adams, Chris Figueroa, William Young, Bobby Blackman, and Raymond Braxton, came from all across the country to reunite and remember their perfect 11-0 season from that year.

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At the conclusion of the game all in attendance were treated to an incredible fireworks show with a finale that left multiple car alarms blaring throughout the tailgating parking lot!

I love when families come to Renegade athletic events. And I was happy to see retired Dean Frank Gornick out at the game – once a Renegade always a Renegade! More about Frank-Gornick, Board of Directors for Foundation for California Community Colleges

Look at who else was at the homecoming game:

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As always, the fireworks display was spectacular.

Did you see the feature on KGET highlighting the incredible work of BC’s Industrial Automation seniors? See how students Chad and Aaron prepared their robots for Renegade football on KGET.

Homecoming Week

Homecoming Week closed out with a bang last week as Student Life and BC Student Government Association (BCSGA) welcomed the community to the BC Campus for the Friday Night Halloween Bash on October 26th. Over 800 guests attended our trunk-or-treat, Student Organization led game tables, face painting, inflatables, dancing, and a viewing of Hotel Transylvania 3. It was a great night!

Saturday’s Homecoming Parade visited the packed Tailgating Area with the Drumline leading the way. Fans were so excited to see and take photos with the mascot, Emmanuel Limaco, who was crowned later at the halftime show as Homecoming Royalty. Thank you to Homecoming Royalty Candidates (pictured from left to right) Paul Coffman, Francis Benavente, Aliyah Khan, Andrea Lopez, and winner, Emmanuel Limaco – Congratulations, Emmanuel!

BC in the Vineyards Project — Very proud of this work by the Rural Initiatives Team

As I wrote in last week’s blog, BC was out in the vineyards of Kern County this week. In partnership with the Central Valley Farm workers Foundation, Bakersfield College Rural Initiatives team and outreach advisors visited 20 farmworker crews at local vineyards throughout North and South Kern to promote higher education. The team was able to reach over 1200 farmworkers, planting a seed of hope for higher education. Over 150 workers have requested follow-up services to begin their matriculation.

I would like to thank all those who assisted in this project and Adult Education Managers, Jaime Lopez and Endee Grijalva for coordinating the efforts to make this possible. Although, this outreach effort is the first of its kind, it will not be the last as the Rural Initiatives Team continues to change lives across Kern County!

BC team of 9 in front of the grape vines

Art for Planet, Art for People

Levan Center speaker Esther Iverem spoke to the Umoja Community ASTEP students before her evening presentation on Tuesday, October 30, 2018. Iverem is an independent journalist who has written on social justice, arts, and culture for the New York Times and Washington Post. She also has published books on poetry and film reviews.

Olukun of the Galaxy book cover and Esher Iverem Author-artist activist, quilts, Olokun of the Galxy, Pantsdolls, Fiber Arts, Words

Iverem, also host of the On the Ground radio show, talked to the students in Dr. Paula Parks’ Umoja English class on the importance of creating their own media and locating non-biased sources of information. Most students admitted that they get their news from social media. “Something I took away from her discussion was that everything we enjoy in the media was written by someone and that writing is a career option,” explained Michaela Edwards. Iverem, a native of Philadelphia who lives in Washington, D.C., also spoke on the importance of writing to express oneself. “She reminded me that not only do I have the ability to create as an individual, but the power as an African American to make great narratives. It was very motivating,” stated Dujour Sams.

The author smiling with a pants doll

The evening presentation consisted of Iverem reading and showing art from her latest book Olokum of the Galaxy, which is the story of Olokum, a West African spirit who lives in the oceans. From below, he witnesses the creation of the seas, bodies of slaves who jumped or were thrown off the slave ships, smoke and coal debris from the industrial revolution, today’s oil and chemical spills, and eventually the destruction of the planet due to man’s abuse.

Iverem said that “the way that we are treating the planet is an emergency. We were not great stewards before, but we seem to be going backwards.” She cited recent pipeline construction and increased offshore drilling.

Most of the audience questions centered on her art.

Umoja students and faculty with the author and 5 dolls made from repurposed clothing

The book was an offshoot of the Olokum figures that Iverem was making from reclaimed fabric and discarded buttons, chains, and belts.  She said that it takes her a few days to hand make each doll. Some also have necklaces with small photos of African Americans (such as Tamir Rice) who were gunned down by police.  Iverem’s Olokum projects have combined her passions for social justice, the environment, African-American culture, poetry, writing, and visual and textile art.

We are so fortunate to welcome journalists, artists, authors and speakers to Bakersfield College to enrich the lives of our students and community with culturally diverse experiences. We are able to educate our students and community beyond the regular classroom curriculum. See why I feel like the luckiest and happiest president? I would like to thank Dr. Paula Parks and Reggie Williams for organizing this event.

Animal Advice: Are You Listening?

Speaking of our fortune in being able to bring great scholars to enrich our lives, yesterday, Friday November 2nd, Dr. Rae Ann Kumelos, Bakersfield College English Professor, was honored as this year’s Faculty Colloquium in the Levan Center. About 50 faculty, staff, students and community members were present for her presentation “Animal Advice: Are You Listening?”

Rae Ann in front of the screen that says Dream a little dream

The colloquium examined the relationships between humans and animals through stories from myth, fairy tale, literature, science, pop culture and life. She pointed out that animals are often depicted as a wise helper in fairy tales, shamans use them as totems and spirit guides. We see them in our dreams and the etymology of the word “animal” can mean soul, breath, life and impulse.

In the physical world, animals are a major part of human life. 63% of homes have animals, while only 35% have children. 89% of pet owners call their animals their children and 94% talk to their pets like people. Presence of animals can lower blood pressure, cholesterol and anxiety and dogs are being used to assist people with medical issues like sensing epileptic seizures and low blood sugar, while others can be used for leading the blind. As our culture shifts from the rural life to a more suburban existence, we are bringing the animals into our homes and backyards and seeing their individual personalities. Yet, 50% of animals have gone extinct in the last 40 years. We recognize our individual pets as having a personality, yet hunters view wild animals as trophies. Rae Ann’s point is that animals are showing us our future and speaking to us about the state of our world and what we humans have done to it. We need to listen to the animals and pay attention to politics about our environment and treatment of animals.

Wild Wisdom book cover

Rae Ann writes academically and as a columnist for a variety of national publications about the relationships between humans and animals in myth, literature, astronomy and popular culture. She lectures at various conferences, most recently at Oxford University and has her own radio program broadcast on XM Satellite Radio called Voice of the Animal. Her book Wild Wisdom: Animal Stories of the Southwest received a national award as gift book of the year. We are lucky to have such quality faculty as Rae Ann, congratulations on your award.

The Faculty Colloquium is made possible by the generous donation from Dr. Norman Levan. Rae Ann was presented a plaque and a $1500 stipend which she plans to use for a safari to see the animals of Africa. Thank you to the Faculty Colloquium committee Susan Pinza, Bob Allison, Adel Shafik, Donna Starr, Nick Strobel, Erin Miller and Richard Marquez (Rae Ann outed that Richard doesn’t like cats, he says he does like dogs), Reggie Williams, Director of the Levan Center, and Alex Gomez for the fabulous food. And now, I am off to ask Neo and Bessie for some wisdom.

Oct 21 2018 Bessie and Neo at Riverwalk Park

Community Healthcare Needs Discussion

Senator Andy Vidak opening the Healthcare Initiatives Partnership Meeting

Bakersfield College, CSU Bakersfield, and Senator Andy Vidak partnered together earlier this week to create a forum of discussion between some of the top healthcare professionals in our region and higher education faculty.  Bruce Peters, President  & CEO of Mercy Hospitals, Sharlet Briggs, President & CEO of Adventist Health, and cardiology specialist Dr. Jeet Singh were just a few of the power houses in attendance.  Attendees chatted about how we can all work together to ensure that our area is being provided the programs that it and the industry needs, and to try to help prevent any shortfalls in occupation employment.  The interactions and topics were great, and exactly what we wanted to address!

BC’s Associate Dean of Instruction Carla Gard shared her insight on BC’s nursing program. KCCD Associate Vice Chancellor Cindy Collier shared her insight on assisting in the healthcare workforce development in Kern. CSUB’s Chair of the Nursing Program, Debbie Boschini shared insights on challenges and opportunities for developing and strengthening our nursing pathways.

2 attendees pose in front of the Levan Center

Top Healthcare Leaders in Kern County

6 people posing in front of Levan Center

The conversations and interaction between education and healthcare industry partners led to a commitment to continue working together to develop opportunities for allied health education in our area. THANK YOU to everyone who attended. I cannot wait to see what the future holds for this new partnership!

Dream Big Conference

Two-hundred and forty two participants attended the Dream Big Conference at the Bakersfield College main campus on Friday, October 26th.  A grand total of 18 local high schools participated in the youth conference. It was a great day of inspiration for English second language learners, migrant students, undocumented youth, and first generation high school students of Kern County. The conference’s mission was to educate, motivate, and inspire disproportionately impacted youth groups with the intention of promoting education as a viable mechanism for future prosperity and social class mobility.

Students perusing booths on campus

Participants learned about the various resources on campus, such as FAFSA/CA Dream Act, Dual/Concurrent Enrollment, Matriculation Steps, Transfer Services, EOP&S, and attended a resource fair from a variety of departments and community agencies. In addition to the wealth of knowledge students received, this extraordinary youth conference imparted resiliency, hope, sense of community, and stressed the importance of creating generational change within their immediate family by pursuing post-secondary education. Participants gained insight from a college panel which was made up of student leaders from the LUPE Student Organization. Students received BC swag, danced a little, left the campus well informed, and had a great time.

Students listening to staff in the forum

I want to thank the following departments that supported, organized, and made the conference possible: Office of Student Success & Equity, EOP&S/CARE/CalWORKs Programs, Cal-SOAP, Office of Student Life, Office of VP Student Affairs, Office of Outreach & School Relations, Office of Financial Aid, Adult Education & Rural Initiatives, Counseling & Advising Department, LUPE Student Organization, Kern High School District (KHSD), Academic Support Services, Maintenance & Operations, BC Food Services, and the many wonderful student volunteers!

Students getting excited

We are BC!  (Somos BC!)

Students and staff in front of a large butterfly poster

Fall Pathways Fest

This week we had another inspiring event for current students about the Learning & Career Pathways and support services. The sky was blue and the weather was perfect for the BC Counseling Faculty and Educational Advising team to host the inaugural Fall Pathways Fest outside on the Student Crossroads lawn. On Wednesday, October 31st, 2018, campus students were provided with full access to informational tables hosted for each Learning and Career Pathway, such as Agriculture/Nutrition/Culinary Arts, Arts/Humanities/Communication, Business, Education, Health Sciences, Industrial and Transportation Technology, Public Safety Training, Social and Behavioral Sciences, STEM, and Personal and Career Exploration.

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In addition, CSU Bakersfield, the FINISH IN 4 Program, BC Transfer Center, LET’S TEACH, Summer Bridge, and EOP&S/CARE/calWORKS hosted tables promoting various support program services critical to student success and completion.

At the event, students met one-on-one with their Pathways Counselors and Advisors, signed up for educational workshops, received information regarding their majors, and obtained additional services such as change of major, educational planning, and major exploration. Food was provided by the Office of Student Success and Equity.

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I would like to thank Mark Oseo and the Counseling and Advising Department for organizing and hosting this event and thank all of the departments, staff and faculty that participated. This successful event exemplifies a structured educational experience to support our students. As a partner with California Guided Pathways project, BC is changing the way education is provided to our students. We are integrating our initiatives and providing students with maps to achieving their goals. This event exemplifies our dedication to the Guided Pathways Project and our students.

Employer of the Year for Large Business

BC is honored to be recognized as Employer of the Year for Large Business at the 2018 Mayor’s Helping Incorporate Reliable Employees (HIRE) Luncheon. Manager of Operations, Ramon Puga accepted the award on October 16, 2018 during the HIRE luncheon which celebrates local employees with disabilities, employers, and National Disability Employment Awareness month. Originally founded by former Mayor Harvey Hall, current Mayor Karen Goh is continuing to champion and celebrate diversity within our workforce. The recipient of the Employer of the Year Award is a recognized employer who has shown active recruitment and hiring practices promoting the concept of employment of people with disabilities.

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(Left to Right) Carlos Medina, Denise Crawford, Jessica McGrath, (back) Rudy Gutierrez, Mayor Karen Goh, Terri Goldstein, (back) Paul Beckworth, (front) Daniel Gutierrez, and (back) Ramon Puga.

Bakersfield College is proud to offer on-campus student employment opportunities which can sometimes evolve into full time or permanent positions alongside programs like Disabled Students Programs and Services (DSPS), which ensures equal access to educational opportunities for all students with disabilities. Services are available to support students through certificate or degree completion in order to gain skillful employment within the local workforce.

HIRE-Award-Mayor-and-Ramon

(Left to Right) Priscilla Varela, Mrs. Kern County Mayor Karen Goh, City of Bakersfield Ramon Puga, Manager of Operations, Bakersfield College

Bakersfield College staff, Daniel Gutierrez, was also nominated for Employee of the Year, while Howard Silver, long-time volunteer on the Bakersfield College Workability Advisory Board, was nominated for the Harvey L. Hall Humanitarian of the Year Award.

HIRE-Award-Sonya-Christian-and-Group

Tony Cordova, Director of Career Education, Bakersfield College Sonya Christian, President, Bakersfield College Mayor Karen Goh, City of Bakersfield Denise Crawford, HIRE Committee and Program Manager, WorkAbility, Bakersfield College Liz Rozell, Vice President of Instruction, Bakersfield College

Various BC staff participate in the HIRE Committee including Rudy Gutierrez, Workability Job Development Specialist, Jessica McGrath, Career Education Job Development, Carlos Medina, Career Education Job Development Specialist and Denise Crawford, Program Manager for Workability.  I am truly the luckiest and happiest president to have such caring staff.

Kern High School Transition Fair for Students with Disabilities

Disabled Students Programs & Services at Bakersfield College was well represented at Kern High School Districts’ Annual Transition Fair for Students with Disabilities on November 1, 2018. DSPS’ Job Development Specialist Rudy Gutierrez, Alternative Media Specialist Katrina Marquez, and Director Dr. Terri Goldstein met with students and their parents as they considered options for what to do after high school.

DSPS staff pose at table with brochures

Also at the event were Janis Mendenhall and Amar Abbott from Taft College and representatives from CSU Bakersfield and Fresno State, as well as a number of state and community-based programs.

3 people smile at the camera

Lucky attendees won gift baskets from various groups, including a large basket of BC items that every respectable Renegade needs. The event was so well attended, they will need to find a larger location for 2019!

parents and students getting advice from the DSPS staff

Thank you Terri, Rudy and Katrina for representing the college. It is so important that we prepare all of our students for the transition from high school and to enable them to be successful.

KCCD Leadership Academy

On Friday, November 2, Bakersfield College hosted the KCCD Leadership Academy, which works to prepare classified, faculty, and management employees for leadership roles at every level of the organization through experiential learning opportunities in day-long workshops.  This year’s Leadership Academy cohort was presented with topics that included Guided Pathways, Baccalaureate degrees, Dual Enrollment, Facilities, and Strong Workforce.

18 attendees at tables with laptop computers, note pads, pens, and name tents.

John Means, Vice Chancellor, began the day by welcoming everyone with an overview of the day’s activities.  He was followed by Cornelio Rodriguez, Dean of Instruction at BC, who talked about the BC campus, including its centers, programs, and bright future.  The audience was moved by his story of a young Latina student who, after graduating, received a bouquet of roses from her father.

Corny animated and smiling during his presentation

After the morning session, the group was treated to a cart tour of the BC campus, which highlighted Memorial Stadium, the Veterans Center, and Horticulture Lab. The day was a good opportunity for the district staff in attendance to learn about all the great things going on at BC. Everyone learned information to help enhance their leadership skills.

Thank you to all of the presenters for your time and effort, including:

  • John Means, Vice Chancellor, KCCD
  • Michele Bresso, Dean of Instruction, Bakersfield College
  • Cornelio Rodriguez, Dean of Instruction, Bakersfield College
  • Jennifer Johnson, Dept. Chair, Nursing Program, Bakersfield College
  • Grace Commiso, Dean of Counseling & Student Success
  • Michele Bresso, Dean of Instruction, Bakersfield College
  • Keith Ford, Associate Athletic Director, Bakersfield College
  • Paul Beckworth, Faculty Lead, Veterans Services, Bakersfield College
  • Nicky Damania, Director of Student Life, Bakersfield College
  • Chris McCraw, Agriculture Department Chair
  • Steve Watkin, Director of Outreach & School Relations, Bakersfield College
  • Anna Laven, Program Manager, Dual Enrollment, Bakersfield College
  • Bill Potter, Director of Maintenance & Operations, Bakersfield College
  • Tony Cordova, Program Director, CTE, Bakersfield College
  • Cindy Collier, Associate Vice Chancellor, Economic & Workforce Development, KCCD

Your hard work and dedication to making our district a great place to work is much appreciated!  We are BC!

Renegade Report

If you missed watching the Renegade Report live this last Thursday at 11 a.m., check out the segments from this week’s show. This week’s highlights include segments with Head Women’s Basketball Coach Paula Dahl and one of her Assistant Coaches Clarence Stephens and Women’s Basketball student athletes Victoria Trevino, Jasmyn Rodriguez, Kaylana Demmin and Aubrey Stone.

Renegades of the Week

Renegade Athletics is proud to announce this week’s (10/21-20/27) Wells Fargo Renegades of the Week!

Lanie Camarillo and Jesus Barjas Renegades of the week

Lanie Camarillo, Volleyball – Total of 26 kills, 3 errors, 43 attempts, .605 kill% and .500 hitting% in leading team to wins over Cuesta and LA Mission.

Jesus Barajas, Men’s Soccer – 1 goal and 2 assists in helping team to victories over Canyons and Victor Valley.

Congrats to Angelo Benitez and Ben Carlson

5CTCA Academic All-state Angelo Benitez and Ben Carlson #wearebc | #gogades

Renegade Athletics is proud to announce that men’s cross country student athletes Angelo Benitez and Ben Carlson have been named to the 2018 Academic All-State Cross Country team by the CCCCCTCA (California Community College Cross Country & Track Coaches Association). To make the team cross-country student athletes must complete a minimum of 24 academic units with a 3.5 GPA or higher. This is now the third time that Ben has been awarded Academic All-State. He was previously named Academic All-State in both Cross Country and Track & Field last year.

Roundup of Athletics Events this week

It was a full week of athletics events for our Renegades teams. Highlights from the week include (click for the story on GoGades.com):

Stay Connected to Renegade Athletics

Be sure to stay connected with Renegade Athletics by following us on social media. On Facebook find us under ‘Bakersfield College Athletics’, on Twitter – @GoGadesGo and on Instagram – @gogadesgo.

Halloween Spirits at BC

Wednesday was a boo-tiful day as many of our faculty and staff got into the Halloween spirit. Here are a few fun photos:

I heard a rumor that Matt Garrett made his costume from scratch.

Jennifer Garrett and Matt GArrett Halloween 2018

Steve Watkin as Grut and 8 Outreach Staff members as minions

We are BC!

Sonya Christian cropped image Oct 31 2018

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Bright Futures start with Good Teachers

Feb 10 2018 Neo Live Laugh LoveGood morning Bakersfield.  

It is Saturday, February 24, 2018 and a great day to be a Renegade.

This was a short but action packed week.  I traveled to Santa Rosa to present at the Association of California Community College Administrators (ACCCA).  The drive was long to Santa Rosa and back.  There were several high points in this trip, including (1) hearing from the President of Santa Rosa College of how they supported the community during and after the fires and (2) crossing the bay on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge.

We have all been impacted by the California fires…. here is a poignant piece by Thomas Fuller in the California Today section of the NYTimes about Santa Rosa.  https://tinyurl.com/y8bv77jk

 

From the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge Feb 21 2018.jpg

Photo snapped from the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge Feb 21 2018

The Richmond-San Rafael Bridge is the northernmost bridge crossing over the San Francisco Bay.  I, like everyone else likes to ride the train and enjoy bridges.  Apparently, this 5.5-mile engineering feat was rejected by Frank Llyod Wright for its aesthetics. Wright must have taken after Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg,  who tolerates everything and anything with a gentle soul but is unforgiving when it  comes to poor design and bad colors.  I don’t remember where this photo was snapped, but all I can say is that this I stay quiet when Nan is in a serious art conversation with David Koeth.

Nan Gomez Heitzeberg

The Conference held at Santa Rosa is the annual ACCCA conference and I was invited to present at the opening plenary.  As I walked in I spotted Gustavo Enrique and Jaime Lopez from Bakersfield College.

Gustavo Enrique, Sonya Christian, Jaime Lopez Feb 21 2018

 

BC is such a large campus, and I am always surprised and delighted to see us all over the state.  I spot BC administrators, faculty and staff presenting at different statewide conferences via tweets and posts on facebook and other social media.  #WeAreBC

Here are my fellow presenters at the ACCCA — Reagan Romali, President of Long Beach City College; Joe Wyse, President of Shasta College; and Willy Duncan, President of Sierra College.  We are in the photo with Susan Bray, Executive Director of ACCCA who is in the middle.

Sonya Christian, Reagan Romali, Susan Bray, Joe Wyse, Willy Duncan Feb 21 2018

Sonya Christian, Reagan Romali, Susan Bray, Joe Wyse, Willy Duncan

So now for few of the very many activities on campus…..

Judge Raymonda Marquez

Judge Raymonda Marquez

Yesterday, we held the 3rd annual YES! Youth Empowering Success Conference. The all-day event began with a welcome and introduction from Judge Raymonda Marquez of the Kern County Superior Court. She spoke of how there are people in our lives who believe in us, even when we sometimes doubt ourselves.

An article from last November titled “Families changed for the better on National Adoption Day in Bakersfield” mentions Judge Marquez. She introduced the keynote speaker by saying, “With all of the adversity he faced in life, his experiences inspired him to dedicate his life to helping troubled youth and adults overcome the negative challenges within their own lives and discover that they have greatness within them.”

The keynote speaker of the morning, Mark Anthony Garrett, opened with a video recounting how his third grade teacher is “his hero.” The video can be seen on his website, www.teachersareheros.com. Mark shared his life story in a compelling, motivational, and inspiring talk that pumped up the audience before the smaller breakout sessions.

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Mark Anthony Garrett

It brings great joy to our campus to provide a place for events like this that not only inspire, but empower our young students to achieve greatness. As Mark said,

Everyone is brought to this world with a special gift. When one discovers what that gift is, they must let it shine so that others lives will become brighter. Teachers shine that light every time they impart knowledge to a student.

Special thank you to Kern County Superintendent of Schools Foster Youth Services Coordinating Program, Human Services, Kern High School District, and QPI. Special thank you also to Aracelli Navarro, and the team from BC who worked so hard to make the event a success.

BC Team at YES Conference

Child Development CenterChildCare2The Child Development Center provides a hands-on laboratory experience for our students as they pursue their certificate or degree in child development.

Beyond the educational opportunities the Child Development Center provides, it also offers a child care for students with small ChildCare1children so they can go to their classes  — knowing that their child is well taken care of. The proximity of their children helps our students access campus services and study opportunities while their children are safe and sound right here on campus.

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As a traditional Child Development Center, our center provides important direct laboratory experiences and opportunities for students in child development programs and allied health programs. Students have access to supplies and materials, trained teachers who mentor them through the experience, a quality physical environment with vibrant classrooms, and low student-to-child ratios. Together, these benefits make for a quality facility for children and an outstanding educational environment for our students.

Calling Future Teachers

Are you inspired to teach? Learn about the programs at BC that lead to careers in education of all ages. Two upcoming events will answer all your questions so you can know what’s needed to qualify to become a teacher at a variety of levels. Events take place March 3rd at the Delano Campus and March 20th on the Panorama Campus. Learn more here.

Kern County Career Expo

Career Expo 2018

The Kern County Career Expo took place on Thursday night and BC was represented in a HUGE way! #WeAreBC

This career awareness event geared towards the students and employers of Kern builds career awareness for tomorrow’s workforce. Employers from Kern County had the opportunity to promote the different career opportunities that are available within their companies through interactive booths. I loved seeing BC students in this clip on ABC 23.

It is exciting to see all the various departments at BC sharing their programs with the future generations of Renegades. I especially love seeing how the Engineering programs and Industrial Automation brought out the robotics and 3D printing machinery to inspire visitors. Nursing and RAD tech were out in full force and so was the team from Adult Education and our Rural Initiatives team. Special thanks to the CTE team for their work on organizing BC’s involvement with this fantastic event. #WeareBC!

Can you see why I’m the luckiest and happiest college president ever?

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Engineering and INDA Booths at the Career Expo

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Rony Recinos and Automotive Tech Students

And a tweet from Pam Gomez

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CHAP at Allensworth

Laura Hooton and Oliver Rosales

Laura Hooton and Oliver Rosales

On Saturday, Feb 10, the Bakersfield College Delano Campus Cultural and Historical Awareness Program (CHAP) participated in a Black History month event at Allensworth State Historical Park located just northwest of the Delano Campus in Tulare County.  Allensworth is the only state historic park in California dealing exclusively with the history of African Americans.  The CHAP program hosted a booth at the event in partnership with the National Endowment for the Humanities Common Heritage grant “Digital Delano: Preserving an International Community’s History.”

Professors Oliver Rosales, Paula Parks, Michelle Hart, and Librarian Elisabeth Sundby were joined by BC students Danielle Wiley, SGA Photographer and Christian Bravo, SGA Mascot, as well as PhD Candidate Laura Hooton from UC Santa Barbara, an expert on rural African American History in the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands, to visit the historic Allensworth site in the goal of spreading information about the digital history effort at the Delano Campus to “harvest local and family histories” related to the San Joaquin Valley.  A number of contacts were made among attendees, particularly community members with familial ties to Allensworth and historic black families from Tulare County.

Elisabeth Sundby , Laura Hooton and Oliver Rosales

Elisabeth Sundby , Laura Hooton and Oliver Rosales

What makes Allensworth unique as a space of historical significance is it draws African Americans from across the state for its annual celebrations.  Folks from San Diego, Oakland, Richmond, Los Angeles, and elsewhere visit Allensworth because it represents a place of great importance to the history of African Americans in the United States.  If you haven’t made the trek to Allensworth, the entire CHAP team strongly recommends attending one of Allensworth’s annual events. More information can be found at the Allensworth SHP Website.

Bridging the Racial Divide

Students had a great opportunity to talk to leaders from local law enforcement agencies across Kern County, who were all in the same room for a special forum in the Levan Center on Tuesday. BC criminal justice professor and former Arvin police chief Tommy Tunson moderated the forum, titled “Transformational Policing: Bridging the Racial Divide”, which addressed how the community policing model is evolving nationwide in response to several high profile officer-involved shootings in Baltimore, Ferguson, Missouri and other cities over the last few years.

left to right FBI Special Agent Bennett O. Scott, Kern County Assistant District Attorney Scott Spielman, McFarland Police Department Chief Scot Kimble, CHP Commander Ron Seldon, Bakersf

left to right: FBI Special Agent Bennett O. Scott, Kern County Assistant District Attorney Scott Spielman, McFarland Police Department Chief Scot Kimble, CHP Commander Ron Seldon, Bakersfield Police Department Chief Lyle Martin and BC criminal justice professor Tommy Tunson talk about restoring the public’s faith in law enforcement on February 20th in the Levan Center.

Tommy Tunson,

Tommy Tunson, a criminal justice professor at BC and the former Chief of the Arvin Police Department, moderates a discussion on transformational policing in the Levan Center on February 20th.

Before giving the floor over to the panel—which included police chiefs from McFarland and Bakersfield, a California Highway Patrol Commander, a Kern County Assistant District Attorney and a field agent from the local FBI office—Tunson showed video from a police brutality protest, pointing out that every officer on the field is one cell phone video away from being on the national news, no matter how small the city that they’re tasked with keeping safe. He then outlined the Transformational Policing Model (TPM), a two-pronged approach to law enforcement that emphasizes using data analysis to target areas where agencies can serve the public better, as well as community and media outreach to restore the public’s faith in the people who protect and serve them every day.

Bakersfield Police Department Chief Lyle Martin talked about the work he’s done during his time as chief to keep the lines of communication open with the public and the media. When something controversial happens around one of the officers in his department, he is proactive in reaching out to local media before they reach out to him, and he’s leveraging the power of social media to reach out to the increasing number of people who don’t read the newspaper or tune into local news.

Bakersfield Police Department Chief Lyle Martin

Bakersfield Police Department Chief Lyle Martin outlines the importance of proper law enforcement training at the Transformational Policing Forum on February 20th in the Levan Center.

“When you mess up, you’ve got to dress up and fess up,” Martin said, adding that the BPD’s motto for this year is “Change the Experience”.

California Highway Patrol Commander Ron Seldon described his department’s Public Trust Initiative, a series of assessments in which the CHP is graded on its public relations and community outreach by a third-party organization and given advice on how to improve.  “Are we treating the public as we’d like to be treated?” Seldon asked.

McFarland Police Chief Scott Kimble said that outreach efforts such as his “Ice Cream with the Chief” event have been crucial in changing the culture in McFarland, which sits at the border between California’s Norteno and Sureno street gangs, making it a potential hotbed for violent crime. Kimble credits the restoration of trust between law enforcement and the community for McFarland’s inclusion on the National Council for Homeland Security’s list of the 100 safest cities in California. McFarland, ranked at number 60, is the only city in Kern County on the list, with only 33 violent crimes committed in the area in 2016.

Kern County Assistant District Attorney Scott Spielman

Kern County Assistant District Attorney Scott Spielman speaks on the importance of separating one’s emotional response to a traumatic case from the duties required to mete out justice during the Transformational Policing event at the Levan Center on February 20th.

Assistant District Attorney Scott Spielman reiterated the importance of maintaining the bond between law enforcement and the community. If people don’t feel comfortable with reporting a crime or serving as a witness for the prosecution, then it makes it more difficult on the District Attorney’s office to deliver justice. Regardless of whether law enforcement officials feel that the public’s mistrust is justified, agencies must strive to create a perception of fairness, and it’s important to understand the history of the relationship between the police and the community that lead up to where we’re at today in order to change that relationship.

FBI Special Agent Bennett O. Scott shared information about an anonymous tipline that people in the community can use to report crimes without fear of reprisal and described how the local FBI office collaborates with local authorities on counter-terrorism and gang violence prevention. With only 11 FBI agents for all of Kern County, it’s important for the federal office to be in constant communication with local police and county sheriffs.

Students and local media

Students and local media pack the Levan Center for the Transformation Policing Forum on February 20th.

I’d like to thank Dr. Tunson and Steve Watkin for helping to organize this important and educational event for our students as part of Black History Month. For more about the Transformational Policing forum, you can read Steven Mayer’s article published in the Bakersfield Californian on Wednesday.

HBCU Visits BC

Last week, representatives from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) set up tables in the Renegade Crossroads to offer scholarships and registration at schools across the country. HBCUs provide an opportunity  for students to learn within their peer group, and we were honored to have the HBCU Caravan back for another year.

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We also had representatives from historically black fraternities and sororities to provide information about how students can find support from their peers at the four-year institution of their choice, not just at HBCUs. I’d like to thank Lisa Kent from Student Success and Equity, as well as Steve Watkin from Outreach, for helping to put the HBCU event together. It’s an extremely valuable resource for our students, and I can’t wait to see how the opportunities provided by these HBCUs will help our students grow after they graduate BC.

Renegade Athletics

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Tucker Eenigenburg

For the month of January, BC’s Tucker Eenigenburg averaged 23.2 points, 5.6 rebounds and two assists per game over the course of nine games.  He shot 52.4 percent from the floor, 53.4 percent from three-point range and 91 percent from the free-throw line. Eenigenburg had a career high 51 points, in an 87-81 win, against College of the Canyons on Jan. 27.  In that game, he was 13 of 21 (61.9 percent) from the floor, 8 of 12 (66.7 percent) from three-point range and 17 of 17 (100 percent) from the free-throw line. See the CCCAA website for more. 

Military Ball

Bakersfield College was out in full force at the 8th Annual Military Order of the Purple Heart Military Ball, held at the Doubletree Hotel last Saturday night.

Paul Beckworth, Steve Watkins, Lisa Kent, Sandra Beckworth, Olivia Garcia, Sgt. Julio Garcia.

Paul Beckworth, Steve Watkins, Lisa Kent, Sandra Beckworth, Olivia Garcia, Sgt. Julio Garcia

Mayor Karen Goh and Zav Dababhoy

Mayor Karen Goh and Zav Dababhoy

One of the organizers of this event had a busy week, Professor Tommy Tunson, retired Army.  As last year’s recipient of the Ball’s Veteran Support Organization of the Year, BC was well represented by Dr. Zav Dadabhoy, who handed off this year’s award to Chevron, in honor of the company’s support of veterans in Kern County. And thank you Mayor Karen Goh for the great photos!

According the their website, “Chartered by Congress in 1958, The Military Order of the Purple Heart is composed of military men and women who received the Purple Heart Medal for wounds suffered in combat. Although our membership is restricted to the combat wounded, we support all veterans and their families with a myriad of nation-wide programs by Chapters and National Service Officers.”  The Order’s mission is to foster an environment of goodwill and camaraderie among combat wounded veterans, promote patriotism, support necessary legislative initiatives, and most importantly, provide service to all veterans and their families.

While a good time was had by all, the night’s theme was a somber one; remembering America’s POWs and MIAs from the Vietnam War.  The United States still has over 1,600 unaccounted-for personnel from the conflict that divided this nation.  As a part of the ceremony to honor America’s missing, a POW/MIA table was set.

According to tradition, the POW/MIA table is smaller than the others, symbolizing the frailty of one prisoner alone against his or her oppressors. This table is separate from the others and can be set for one to four place settings to represent each service participating in the event.

Honor TableThe white tablecloth draped over the table represents the purity of their response to our country’s call to arms. The empty chair depicts an unknown face, representing no specific Soldier, Sailor, Airman, or Marine, but all who are not here with us.The table itself is round to show that our concern for them is never ending. The Bible represents faith in a higher power and the pledge to our country, founded as one nation under God. The black napkin stands for the emptiness these warriors have left in the hearts of their families and friends. A Purple Heart medal can be pinned to the napkin. The single red rose reminds us of their families and loved ones. The red ribbon represents the love of our country, which inspired them to answer the nation’s call. The yellow candle and its yellow ribbon symbolize the everlasting hope for a joyous reunion with those yet accounted for. The slices of lemon on the bread plate remind us of their bitter fate. The salt upon the bread plate represent the tears of their families. The wine glass, turned upside down, reminds us that our distinguished comrades cannot be with us to drink a toast or join in the festivities of the evening.

The significance of the POW/MIA table is called to attention during the toast of the evening. This is an important part of many military banquets to remind us that the strength of those who fight for our country often times rests in the traditions that are upheld today.  These men, these women are not forgotten.

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Creating Lasting Guided Pathways

The CCCCO is conducting a series of 7 workshops on Creating Lasting Guided Pathways. Bakersfield College is being highlighted at each of the 7 events around the state as one of the first colleges that has data in California showing benefits to students.

Julian West

Julian West was part of a plenary panel on that data and followed up with a breakout on student voices and equity. He shared statistics from Spring 2018 such as:

  • 783 African-American Students Total Enrolled
  • 414 Students Have Completed Less Than 30 units
  • 136 Students started Fall or Summer 2017
  • 89 Students started Spring 2018

He shared how BC’s high tech, high touch level of support is truly making a difference for our students.

AAI Outcomes

Grace Commiso and  Maria Wright will be presenting at plenary panels and reporting on BC’s completion coaching teams and student voices.  Janet Fulks is presenting Bakersfield’s Outcomes over the next two weeks and presenting Guided Pathways 101 breakouts. These early outcomes and distinctive work at Bakersfield will help other colleges plan strategies to successfully help their students complete programs of study.

So proud of the incredible work being done by the BC staff, faculty, and completion coaching teams.

Cheryl Scott

Kern Economic Development Foundation Executive Director Cheryl Scott wrote an op-ed in the Bakersfield Californian on February 12th urging business leaders in the community to build partnerships with teachers and students at all levels of school.

Darren Scott and Cheryl Scott

Darren Scott and Cheryl Scott

“Kern County’s future workforce is entrusted largely to our local educators,” Scott writes, outlining how important it is for business leaders to reach out to the schools and let educators know the exact skills they’re looking for. Many Kern County businesses have to look outside of the Valley for job applicants with the advanced skills that they need, and developing these partnerships at the primary, secondary, and post-secondary educational levels will create more home-grown applicants for those positions, which leads to upward mobility for individuals and their families in the process.

“Bringing business into the classroom can give students a leg up in their future careers and sets them up for success by equipping them with the skills and information employers need, “ Scott writes, highlighting the work done by the CSUB School of Business and Public Administration Student Professional Development Initiative, as well as Independence High School’s Energy and Utilities Academy as examples of programs that are creating effective mentorship opportunities for students looking to join the skilled labor force after graduation.

Chancellor Tom Burke Seen on Twitter

i-k66vmpv-lAs one of the nation’s largest networks of higher education, California community colleges were well represented in Washington, DC at the 2018 National Legislative Summit hosted by the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) last week.

KCCD Chancellor Tom Burke represented the Kern Community College District at the annual summit, which raises awareness of the issues impacting community colleges across the country while allowing opportunities for community college leaders to meet with congressional representatives to advocate for policies that would benefit them, according to the FAQ page on the National Legislative Summit’s website. Burke, who can be seen in the tweet towards the back on the right, met with Congressman Kevin McCarthy at his office in Capitol Hill during the summit.

Jake Tapper, CNN’s Chief Washington Correspondent and the host of The Lead with Jake Tapper, was the keynote speaker for the opening event on February 12th. US Department of Labor Secretary R. Alexander Acosta also spoke about the importance of workforce education to close the skills gap in the nation’s labor market, and Carroll Doherty of the Pew Research Center gave statistics that provided context for the political divide in higher education and reasons behind misperceptions many members of the public have about the value of community colleges.

Thank you to our Chancellor, Tom Burke for representing our district at this year’s National Legislative Summit. You can find a list of legislative priorities from the summit on the ACCT’s website, which include reauthorization of the Higher Education Act and Perkins Career and Technical Education Act, investment in education and workforce development, and a path to citizenship for DREAMers. During the summit, California Community College Chancellor Eloy Oakley was also quoted in an article from the Washington Post regarding the president’s comments about vocational schools.

Congratulations to Professor Chris Ennis

EnnisCongratulations to Adjunct Architecture Professor Christopher Ennis, recipient of the American Institute of Architects California Council’s Emerging Educator of the Year.

The official article states, “The Educator Award recipient is also a member of the Golden Empire Chapter. Chris Ennis, AIA, is faculty at a community college and experiences difficulties and roadblocks different than his peers in the four-year university system. The jury applauded his efforts to ignite passion and interest in students who may not otherwise be exposed to possibilities in the field of architecture before they transfer.” Check it out here.

Spotted on Media

Say these two articles in the Bakersfield Life Magazine this morning.

Dr. Jeet Singh is on the Bakersfield College Foundation Board of Directors and is doing incredible work in service to this community.

Jeet Singh Feb 24 2018

 

And here is our very own Prof. Olivia Garcia

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And finally let’s support our choir students

Get your tickets now for an incredible night of collaborative music between some of Bakersfield’s finest musicians. Local celebrities Monty Byrom and Lydia Ranger are coming together with the BC Chamber Singers to perform in a benefit concert at the Music Hall of Fame.  Email me!

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Feb 10 2018 Sonya Christian Walking Neo 2

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Celebrating MLK & Spring Kickoff

Good morning Bakersfield…it is Saturday, January 20, 2018 and a great day to be a Renegade.

Steve Watkin leading the MLK event Jan 15 2018The week started on Martin Luther King day with the campus closed and Bakersfield coming together at the Martin Luther King Jr. Center on South Owens for a morning of honoring Reverend King.  The emcee for the event was our very own Steve Watkin or Pastor Steve Watkin as he was introduced.  Steve did a great job keeping the program moving along.  Watching Steve in this leadership role in our community made all of us at BC very proud.  And there were many of us there that Monday morning….two tables full of faculty, staff and students.  #WeAreBC

Martin Luther King Jr.

Nationwide, we remembered the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday, which is why the Spring 2018 semester started on a Tuesday. Dr. King’s civil rights activism laid the groundwork for realizing the voting rights of millions of people, opened the way to the promise of American democracy. In this work he saw education as the key to helping people understand shared struggles, and developing empathy for struggles that are not shared.

BC Gang MLK event Jan 15 2018

In his essay “The Purpose of Education,” Dr. King wrote,

The function of education… is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. But education which stops with efficiency may prove the greatest menace to society. The most dangerous criminal may be the man gifted with reason, but with no morals.

As we look back on Dr. King this week, we should reflect on the responsibility we have as educators to ensure that we’re not leaving any of our students behind in providing a quality education for all, regardless of ethnic background, socioeconomic status or political affiliation. We can’t grow complacent and say that the work we’ve done so far is good enough—we must push forward and continue to find where we’re falling short of advancing BC’s educational mission of BC to everyone with the drive to be successful and achieve their dreams.

Mayor Karen Goh with Sonya Christian and BC gang MLK event

Debra Strong, Paula Parks, Mayor Karen Goh, Gilbert Ayuk, Sonya Christian, Julian West, June Charles, Kim Evanson

I was honored to attend the annual MLK Community Awards Breakfast which recognizes prominent African American leaders for their achievements. I was so glad to see this picture by Felix Amado of The Bakersfield Californian on the front of Tuesdays paper.

TBC with Steve Watkin

It was so much fun catching us with friends and colleagues in the community.  Here I am with Assembly Member Rudy Salas and the two vice presidents, Zav Dadabhoy and Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg.

I was sitting next to June Charles and the event and we had a great time enjoying the emceeing of Steven Watkin and the many honorees.  I was delighted to run into my daughter’s high school friend Roopa Raman.

Here are the Umoja students Kim Evanson and Jordan Taylor with their faculty Paula Parks and Jonathan Ward.  When Jordan told me he was transferring to CSUB, I walked him over to meet President Horace Mitchell.

At this year’s breakfast, those being honored included Horace Mitchell, retiring president of Cal State Bakersfield; Essie Davis, retired high school vice principal; Odella Johnson,  retired Bakersfield College administrator; Lisa Green, the departing Kern County District Attorney; Ramon Hendrix, superintendent of the Greenfield Union School District; Harry “Doc” Ervin, the superintendent of the Bakersfield City School District; Darryl Johnson, director of human resources at Panama-Buena Vista Union School District; Karyn Bostick, dance director at The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center; and Bakari Sanyu, who has spent 20 years as a volunteer tutor at the MLK Community Center.

Sonya Christian, Odella Johnson, Valerie Robinson

In his remarks, Dr. Horace Mitchell quoted Dr. King… “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

Keynote speaker, Chief Lyle Martin shared that we need to be “constructively kind” and that tough love with high expectations is the way to success. This made me think of our completion coaching communities and their coaches at Bakersfield College who work tirelessly to inspire and keep our students on the path to graduation and beyond.

BC was well represented at the event and I loved seeing our UMOJA students there with Dr. Paula Parks.

Umoja Students

Back row- Professor Jonathan Ward,  Mr. Julian West, and Professor Gilbert Ayuk Front row – Dr. Paula Parks, Dr. Sonya Christian, and Umoja students Kim Evans and Jordan Thomas

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Welcome to Spring Semester 2018!

The BC campus came back to life this week, as students returned to school on Tuesday to start classes for the Spring 2018 semester.

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Debi Anderson from Outreach hosting a Welcome Tent

The Welcome Center and Counseling area were busy with students trying to register into classes at the last minute, and students were lined up in the bookstore to get their materials for the semester.

The Office of Student Life gave away hot cocoa and cookies in front of the Campus Center, and staff held court outside of the Administration building, helping new students find their classes in the fog. The start of the semester is always a busy time, but we all look forward to helping our students leap forward into their educational future.

Mentalist Richard Aimes gave a presentation to students on Wednesday in the cafeteria, and the Office of Student Life aired a movie on Thursday in the Fireside Room. Next week, the festivities only get bigger with our Spring Involvement festival, jousting in the center of campus, our Tunes and Tie Dye event and a comedy show by Steve Hofstettler, so come on out and help us in our goal of “Conquering the Road Ahead”, the motto for our Spring 2018 Welcome Week. Photos from this week are available at BC’s Smugmug.

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Students at the Welcome Center

Dolores O’Riordan

Irish singer Dolores O’Riordan of ’90s group The Cranberries passed away in London on Monday at the age of 46.

The Cranberries–known primarily for the song “Zombie”, which was about a Irish Republican Army terrorist bombing during The Troubles conflict in 1993–reached the Billboard Top 20 with four of their albums before disbanding in 2003, according to an article by The New York Times Christine Hauser. O’Riordan’s publicist did not specify the cause of death, but it’s not currently being treated as suspicious.

Writing about O’Riordan, Hauser said that “her unmistakable Irish accent and the Celtic inflection of her melodies gave her singing a plaintive individuality and a flinty core.”

I love the song Zombie …. here they are performing on the David Letterman show.

Sweet Treat Delivery

The President’s Office had a surprise visit on Wednesday from Chef Alex Gomez and his Advanced Food Practicum B55E students, Joshua Crews, Tammy Brannon, Alma Herrera, Lora Penaloza, and Ana Mendez. Josh prepared chocolate brownies with peanut butter frosting topped with popcorn and pretzel. They were delicious. The class that Chef Gomez was teaching is Advanced Food Practicum B55E

Chef Alex Gomez and Students

Joshua Crews, Tammy Brannon, Alma Herrera, Lora Penaloza, and Ana Mendez with Chef Alex Gomez

I brought a piece back from my mom who loved it and wanted more.  When i told her that this was part of the culinary program and not a regular item in our cafeteria, mom responded..well aren’t you president…. 🙂

GET Bus Report to the Community

Golden Empire Transit (GET), Bakersfield’s bus system, highlighted BC student Ian Kennedy in its 2017 Report to the Community newsletter. Ian, who is legally blind, rides the GET bus to BC every day to pursue a degree in music. His service dog Dominic helps him navigate his bus routes and get around the campus. Ian has aspirations of being a vocal coach after earning his associate’s degree. “Being able to travel independently is important and GET makes that possible”, Kennedy said. “GET brings me closer to my goals.”

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Thank you to our friends at the GET Bus for highlighting Ian and providing transportation for all of our 31,000 students. Without GET, many of our students would be unable to make it to class every day

eLumen Training

On top of all the activity going on during Welcome Week, Bill Moseley and the Academic Technology Department held several workshops training faculty on eLumen, the new Curricular and Assessment software we’re rolling out for Spring 2018.

We also invited over 100 adjunct faculty — from first-semester adjuncts to a 24-year veteran instructor — to eat together and learn about all of the exciting new developments on the campus.

Renegade Basketball

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Renegade Basketball

On Wednesday night, the Renegades women’s basketball team opened conference play by beating Los Angeles Pierce College by 40 points at home. The Renegades forced 35 turnovers using a 1-3-1 half-court trap defense, and Octavia Croney scored 21 points in 23 minutes on the field to lead the Renegades to a much needed win after starting 7-11 for the season, according to an article by the Bakersfield Californian’s Jon Mettus.

The Renegades open their competition in the Western State-South Conference of the CCCAA tied with West LA College, and they enter into tonight’s game against College of the Canyons with a two-game winning streak. A full season schedule for the women’s basketball team is available at GoGades.com.

Familiar Faces in Bakersfield

This week, I had the chance to meet with Dr. Jeet Singh and the fabulous Michael Bowers.  Dr. Singh is a remarkable man and co-owner of the Bakersfield Heart Hospital. This Bakersfield Californian article from 2016 shares that at the time Dr. Singh had performed the TAVR, an alternative to open heart surgery at Cedars-Sinai, but will now also be offering it in Bakersfield. “It’s a good moment for Kern County” he said, as quoted in the article.

Dr.Singh and Michael Bowers

And Michael Bowers is a fantastic friend and supporter of Bakersfield College. He is a field representative for Andy Vidak and was instrumental with his endless support in helping with the Measure J campaign at BC.

Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce Board Installation and Awards Luncheon

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Carla Musser at the Luncheon Photo by April & Co.

Celebrating the past accomplishments and looking forward to new opportunities was the theme of the Chamber’s 2018 Board Installation & Awards Luncheon on Jan. 11, 2018. More than 300 people attended. The event served as the installation of the Chamber’s Board of Directors, including Carla Musser, of Chevron, as the 2018 Chairwoman of the Board. Carla is actively involved in the community and serves on several boards in Bakersfield. She is the Manager of Policy, Government, and Public Affairs for Chevron and is responsible for communications and community engagement function for major global upstream business unit covering exploration and production activities California. Carla and Chevron are great supporters of Bakersfield College and I’m so proud she is the Chamber’s new Chairwoman of the Board for 2018.

Karen Goh, Nick Ortiz, Carla Musser Jan 2018.jpg

April & Co. has provided photos from the event.  They are available here.  One of my favorites features BC’s own Mary Jo Pasek with Michael Chertok and Nancy Pollard.

Michael Chertok, Mary Jo Pasek, and Nancy Pollard

Michael Chertok, Mary Jo Pasek, and Nancy Pollard. Photo by April & Co

I was photographed with Carla during our Sterling Silver in 2016 – check the photo on my blog post here.

College Council

On Friday, Abel Guzman, Faculty Chris Cruz-Boone, and counselor Jesse Oropeza presented to College Council on Rural Initiatives. College Council is a collegial, consultative, oversight body designed to serve the good of the College. The group facilitates timely, factual, and clear communication between constituents and the President. It provides recommendations to the President on college-wide matters.

Choir and Chamber Singers Rehearsing at BC

I love to see the activities at BC that just never stop, and our talented performing arts students are so inspiring. Here is a post from Dr. Jen Garrett — she says “There’s some seriously good Choral music happening in Bakersfield”  It’s true.  If you haven’t been to a concert recently, keep your eyes on BakersfieldCollege.edu for details on the upcoming shows.

Chamber Singers

Talking about the choir, this week we had our second meeting with Trustee Kyle Carter who is spearheading the fundraising for the dollars that are needed to send our students to Australia to perform at the Sydney Opera House.  Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg was there and snapped this picture.

Concert fo Choir Trip to Australia March 10 2018

Mark your calendars for March 10, 2018.  Two celebrities in our area have stepped up to help the choir –Lydia Ranger and Monty Byrum.

Here is Lydia Ranger singing the national anthem at a Lakers game

Here is Monty Byrom singing with the Bakersfield Symphony Orchestra

We are trying to sell two shows of 251 tickets each.

And here is a great video put together by Mason Edwards and other students wishing Jennifer Garrett happy birthday.  It is awesome!

On Friday I presented on Guided Pathways to the North Orange Community College District.  Here I am with the Chancellor and two presidents or North Orange.  And Amita Suhrid who organized the event.

Greg Schultz, Joanna Schilling, Sonya Christian, Cheryl Marshall, Amita Suhrid

President Greg Schultz, President Joanna Schilling, President Sonya Christian, Chancellor Cheryl Marshall, Amita Suhrid

I remembered my friend Dr. Ken Meehan, a great researcher from Fullerton College, who passed away several years ago.  Here is a photo with Ken on May 7, 2005.

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And Neo turned 10 months old on Jan 17, 2018.  He is 78 pounds

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Sonya Christian Jan 12 2018 San Jose cropped

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever