Tag Archives: Jon Mettus

Relax, Refresh & Renew on Spring Break

Happy Easter!

Sonya Christian cropped Nov 8 2017

Good morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, March 31st and a great day to be a Renegade!

Woke up to Bakersfield College featured multiple times in the Bakersfield Life Magazine.

Let me start with page 71 and Kristen Mercer‘s awesome piece about Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg.  Sit back and enjoy a little bit of Nan.

Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg March 31 2018 Bakerfeild Life Magazine

And this is Nan enjoying Bruno Mars as she walked to her car late one evening and I discretely caught her on camera.

Then on page 21 we have Olivia Garcia featured as one of the dining divas.  How cool!

Olivia Garcia a dining diva Bakersfield Life Magazine March 31 2018

 

And then on page 90, there are photos snapped by Rod Thornburg during BC’s Future Teachers Event organized by Kimberly Bligh and other faculty and staff.

Bakersfield Life Magazine March 31 2018 Future Teachers Event Photos by Rod Thornburg

Do you see why I am the luckiest and happiest college president ever?

Spring Break on Campus

Parking Lot RepairsSpring Break gives us just enough time to prepare for the sprint towards commencement and the rush of end of the year celebrations. This year, campus was still bustling with activity as crews work to repair and renovate the largest student parking lot on campus, the one surrounding Memorial Stadium.

I love weeks like this because it gives me time to reflect on the various departments that truly make BC a special place to live, learn, and work.

Our Outreach team also prepared a big mailing reaching out to the next incoming class of Renegades. Zav Dadabhoy texted me some fantastic pictures and said, “Guiding students into the pathway begins with a huge mailing to ensure students register on their priority date, for 15 units and in their pathway.”

 

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March for our Lives

Last weekend, students who survived the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida – some of them only 14 years old – organized a march that brought together more than a million people on the Washington Mall of our nation’s capital.

Cities around the country participated in Saturday’s March for Our Lives, including in Kern County. Golden Valley High School students organized Bakersfield’s March for Our Lives event, walking from Yokuts Park to Empire Drive, according to Joseph Luiz’s article in the Bakersfield Californian. There was also a March for Our Lives event in Tehachapi, according to KERO.

Kate Pluta, Isabel Stierle, Rob Parsons

KERO also reported on the two local teachers who flew out to the main March for Our Lives protest in Washington, DC. Mary Miller from Foothill High and Olivia Shears of McKee Middle School held a sign that said “I March For My Students’ Lives #standwiththekids”

Many of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas students spoke on the main stage of the Washington, DC, March for Our Lives, telling their stories of how they were able to survive the shooting. David Hogg, one of the most outspoken survivors of the Parkland shooting, gave a powerful speech saying “change is here. …..The sun shines on a new day, and the day is ours.”

In the New York Times article summarizing last Saturday’s march in Washington, DC, a 360-degree video at the top of the page offers a dizzying look at the packed crowd in front of the White House.

Chief Counts 2

At BC, our Public Safety Department led by Chief Chris Counts is active in teaching our students and community how to respond in cases of emergency.  Chief Counts is also educating our campus to be aware of our surroundings all the time and as he says – if you see something, say something, and let’s do something about it.

BC’s Umoja ASTEP Students Touring HBCUs

It’s an exciting time in the lives of BC’s Umoja ASTEP Students! On Monday, March 26th, I was fortunate to be able to help send off ten of BC’s Umoja African-American Success Through Excellence and Persistence (ASTEP) students for a tour of 5 Historically Black Colleges/Universities (HBCU) in the Washington DC, Maryland and Virginia areas.

Group picture HBCU send off March 23 2018

 

Dr. Paula Parks, Umoja ASTEP Community Coordinator and English Professor, began working with Cerro Coso’s Umoja Community coordinator on joining this tour in November 2017. Paula began fundraising in December for our students’ tour costs. Students had to apply for the tour by January and selection was based on GPA, being on a transfer pathway, and interest in attending one of the HBCUs.

HBCU Tour

HBCU Tour

The 10 students attending are part of BC’s Umoja Community African-American Success Through Excellence and Persistence program. The program includes coursework (English and student development); mentoring, supported study time, a counselor who keeps students on the path to graduate, and academic and cultural trips. This is the third year of the program. The success rate is 2-4 times the success rate of Black students not in the program.

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Representatives from Howard University, Norfolk State University, and Morgan State University were on BC’s campus on February 12th, 2018 for the 3rd Annual HBCU Caravan Tour put on by National College Resources. See my blog about the HBCU Visits BC from February 24th.

i-zwpFWG6-X4Dr. Parks and Jonathan Ward, Umoja ASTEP Community Counselor, are escorting the students to five HBCU’s from March 26th to March 30th. They will visit the campuses of Norfolk State University, Virginia State University, Howard University, Morgan State University, and Bowie State University. The students will be able to experience the excitement and atmosphere of being at these historical campuses. We look forward to their successful transfer to one of these colleges.

Did you know that in order to be an HBCU the historically black college must be established prior to 1964? The oldest of the colleges the BC Umoja ASTEP students will tour is Bowie State University, located in Maryland, founded in 1865. The next two, in order of age, were both founded in 1867: Howard University is a private research university in Washington DC, and Morgan State University is a Carnegie-classified doctoral research institution in Maryland. The next is Virginia State University, located 20 minutes south of Richmond and founded in 1882. The youngest the HBCU they will visit is Norfolk State University, located in Norfolk Virginia, founded in 1935.

i-qTNpjQ5-X4What a wonderful opportunity for our students. Thank you Dr. Paula Parks for spearheading this educational and motivational trip for the students. I also want to thank Jonathan Ward and the Office of Student Success & Equity for their work in bringing this trip to fruition.  Thank you Steve Watkin for leading the African American Initiative at Bakersfield College.

This trip has allowed me to dream much bigger than before. I have explored options that I did not know existed. I now have a great opportunity to go further in life because of this awesome HBCU tour experience — Kim Evans (Umoja student)

AlthoughBakersfield College has provided the foundation for my creator mindset, this experience just reinforced the need for my success.  — Korrie Edwards

 

HUGE Congratulations to BC Drumline!!!

Our Drumline won First Place at last weekend’s Winter Guard’s West Regional Championships for the third year in a row. There were 81 total scholastic and independent groups at the competition. There were 10 groups in our division, Percussion Independent Open, which is the second highest in the activity.

Want a glimpse of what you missed? You have to check out this video here!

The Drumline got a score of 90.85 out of 100 to win the Percussion Independent Open event for the third consecutive year. The group is currently getting ready to compete in the Percussion World Championships in Dayton, Ohio on April 19-21.

They’ll also be performing at Centennial High School on April 14 for the Pep and Pageantry Arts Association of Central California’s Percussion Finals competition. A ticket will support our local circuit and the young people it serves. This is an opportunity to see our team do what they do best in front of a packed gym of local students, parents, and other fans of the marching arts. Tickets are $10 for adults, $7 students/seniors, and kids under 5 are free. Congratulations to BC’s Drumline and Tim Heasley! Support BC’s Drumline by following every beat on Instagram @BCdrumline and Facebook.

Drumline_Instagram

BC everywhere in the state:

Honestly, I can’t keep track of our faculty and staff who are presenting all over the state.  This week Michelle Pena did two presentations at the CCCApply (a tool for students to apply for admissions to CA Community Colleges) Conference.

Michelle did a workshop on understanding residency algorithms with Michael Quiaoit, Dean of Student Services.  She did a second presentation with Craig Hayward and Patty Donahue the Product Manager for CCCApply on the new filtering tool for MetaMajors we got passed through the Steering Committee last year.

And then ……

Grace and MariaGrace Commiso and Maria Wright presented at the Get Focused Stay Focused conference in Santa Barbara. Get Focused…Stay Focused! is a program that focuses on helping students acquire the wisdom and skills to flip the college decision-making paradigm without waiting a quarter of a century of hard won experience to figure it out. It achieves this by helping students to understand who they are, what they want and how they’re going to get it.

Upon completion of the GFSF program, students identify and graduate with:

  • A carefully-considered career path
  • An informed major or program of study
  • A post-secondary institution or training program that not only matches their career and life goals but is affordable
  • A unique Skills-based Education Plan that facilitates successful entry into a highly competitive workforce upon completion of their education.

 

BC Softball on the map

Loved this piece by Jon Mettus of The Bakersfield Californian about our new softball coach Casey Goodman.

Casey Goodman Photo by Rod Thornburg March 2018

Photo by Rod Thornburg of Casey Goodman

Here are a few excerpts of what Mettus had to say:

Togetherness is seemingly one of the themes Goodman is building the program around. The team constantly goes out to eat together, and after Tuesday’s win at Santa Barbara City College, the Renegades went to the beach.

One of the concepts central to Goodman’s coaching style is honesty. She doesn’t yell a lot like she did earlier in her career and values conversations with her players. The staff has an open-door policy, pitching coach Megan Rowe said, so the players can address any issues.

For the whole article: https://tinyurl.com/y8coxway

Thank you Trustee Romeo Agbalog for attending the game on Thursday.  It is always a treat to have our trustees on campus.

Successful Training Day

CalSOAP Staff

Cal-SOAP Staff

Kudos to our Cal-SOAP staff for organizing a successful training day, “Next Steps for High School Seniors.” Cal-SOAP Spring Staff Development took place with high school Counselors and Career Technicians. Thank you, Steven Watkin, Mark Osea, Ashlea Ward, Manuel Muralles, and Pedro Ramirez for coming out to prepare our high school partners and staff for Registration Rocks Day on April 5th.

I also want to thank Dr. Terri Goldstein for introducing DSPS student eligibility and support services, Crystal Montoya for covering Next Steps for CSUs, and Maria Madrigal for the UCs.

EOPS

Imelda Valdez June 13 2017College Council is a college wide governance committee that is responsible for policy, planning and evaluation of the college as a whole.  I chair this committee that includes leaders from the various constituency groups as well as functional areas on campus.  At our last meeting on Friday March 16, 2018, we had the pleasure of a presentation on BC Guided Pathways: EOPS Momentum Points and Outcomes by Imelda Simos-Valdez.

Extended Opportunity Programs & Services (EOP&S) was established in 1969 by Senate Bill 164 to encourage and retain students affected by language, social and economic hardships. BC’s EOP&S department also includes Cooperative Agencies Resources for Education (CARE) program, established 1982 by AB 3103, to collaborate with Kern County Department of Human Services for EOP&S students who are single heads of households; and California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs), established 1997 in response to 1996 federal welfare reform legislation, which collaborates with Kern County Department of Human Services to provide supportive services and resources to students (parents) in transition to achieve long-term self-sufficiency and transform lives.

Statistics show EOP&S students attempting 15+ units by the end of the first semester increased by 4.08% in fall 2017 to 15.6% and increased by 2.97% in the spring 2018 to 17.01%. Enrollment in college-level English in the first year increased from approximately 8.0% in fall 2016 to 15.7% in fall 2017 and increased from 10.3% in spring 2017 to 27.5% in spring 2018. Enrollment in college-level math in the first year increased from 6.3% fall 2016 to 8.6% in fall 2017 and from 7.8% to 21% in spring 2018.

Thank you Imelda Simos-Valdez and all of the counselors, staff and faculty that have helped in supporting our students. Their success can be attributed to the completion coaching EOP&S has put into place resulting in a focused approach to students completing their degree or certificate.

eops

The presentation also included a little bit of Program Review for 2016-17. With the goal to increase number of students served (high school seniors/classroom presentations), EOP&S saw 2,900 applications for AY 2017-2018. 1,800 students were admitted in fall 2017, compared to 800-1,000 in previous years. In the summer, EOP&S will be adding a parent component to the second annual Freshman Day.

Did you know that EOP&S has resources for students such as book vouchers, grants and school supplies? These are just a few of the support and services that they provide in addition to reviewing/updating CSEPs, registration assistance for priority enrollment, intrusive follow-up counseling, academic progress reports, academic probation follow-up, educational/life skills workshop, career counseling, transfer assistance, university campus visits, and follow up communication: email and personal phone calls. EOP&S is an important resource for our qualifying students.

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

Sharing on Social Media

This week, I found on twitter the push to encourage students enroll in 15 units per term. Make sure to follow BC on Twitter @Bakcollege! And of course follow me @sonyachristian.

twitter

Kern County STEMposium Coming Soon!

Christina Sistrunk Stemposium

Christina Sistrunk at the 2017 STEMposium held at BC

On Thursday, Harold Pierce of the Bakersfield Californian wrote an article previewing the Kern County STEMposium, an event which aims to inspire the STEM professionals of the future. This year’s STEMposium, which is being held at the Kern County Fairgrounds on April 13, and is a hybrid between a science fair and a job fair, businesses and the community together to raise awareness of all the awesome STEM careers available in Kern County. The Kern Economic Development Foundation hosted last year’s STEMposium here at BC and you can read about it in my blog last year.

Special thank you to Harold Pierce for drawing attention to this important event and for being one of the featured speakers for the Health and Social Justice Hackathon at BC, giving a presentation about using journalism to inspire community engagement.

CTE and Student Employment at BC!

CTE at BC helps create a pathway for our students while also helping them gain the hands on experience and technical training they need to be successful in the pathway they choose, while also encouraging them to be a part of the strong workforce of the future.

Career Technical Education (CTE) Vision Board

Career Technical Education (CTE) Vision Board

Our commitment is to help prepare our students for a wide range of high-wage, high skill, high-demand careers. CTE is at the forefront of preparing students to succeed in fast-growing, high-growth industries around the country. According to the California Community Colleges Task Force on Workforce Job Creation and a Strong Economy, the labor market is increasingly demanding a more skilled workforce and by 2020, 65% of all job openings in the U.S. will require some postsecondary education or training – though not necessarily a four-year degree.

It is CTE’s mission to provide educational leadership in developing a competitive workforce. For more information on the different Career and Technical Education programs that Bakersfield College has to offer visit the Career Pathways webpage.

Student Employment OfficeStudent Employment is a subdivision of CTE that supports career readiness and pathway work through on-campus employment, work experience, internships and other work based learning activities. Employing over 500 students each year, on-campus employment is a special component that moved to a 100% online application system through Jobspeaker to provide students a more realistic approach to applying for jobs. Students can access employment on and off campus through the online system in addition to the free mobile app available. Career related services such as resume review, job search strategies and mock interviews are available through appointments with Job Development Specialists, in addition to utilizing computers in the Student Employment Lab located in FACE 9.

Unsung Superstars of BC!

Have you ever wondered where all the BC forms, brochures, and posters come from?  Our Marketing Department Graphics Designers and Print Shop! These four people do great work keeping up with the design and printing needs a campus of our size. Get to know these unsung heroes below! #WeAreBC!

Josephine Garcia_Matt Foster_Eric Carrillo And Dylan Wang

Josephine Garcia, Matt Foster, Eric Carrillo, and Dylan Wang

Eric Carrillo, Graphic Designer
Eric is a proud alumni of Bakersfield College who began his employment while still enrolled in 2006. Shortly afterwards, he was promoted from a Publications Assistant to Graphics Designer. He credits two awesome mentors Debby Moberg, Publications Coordinator and Bill Parker, Lead Printer who passed on their knowledge and taught him much more than graphics and printing.

Dylan Wang, Graphic Designer
Dylan is a graduate from Houston Community College where he completed his associate’s degree in Digital Communications and has been working at Bakersfield College since July, 2015. Dylan is often my go-to guy when I need some beautiful artwork or design in a pinch!

Josephine Garcia, Lead Printer
Josephine considers herself a printing concierge with a vast knowledge of the industry. Her goal is to continuously provide superior results and expeditious service, all while pursuing new growth opportunities and maintaining lasting relationships with faculty and staff.

Matt Foster, Print Shop Clerk
Matt started working at the BC Print Shop as a Student Worker in 2014 and was hired full time in 2016. His job is crucial to the workings of the Print Shop and to ensure BC staff and faculty receive their ordered jobs quickly and accurately.

KCET’s Jason Galvin

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Jason Galvin, photo from Twitter

This week, it was announced that KGET Sports Reporter Jason Galvin is leaving the network to focus on sportscasting in the community. See the clip and his note on Facebook here.

Galvin started as the weekend sports anchor for KGET, eventually transitioning to become one of the faces of the morning team. Good news is, Galvin will stay in Bakersfield as one of the play-by-play announcers for CSUB Roadrunner Baseball on ESPN Radio.

This week,  a highlight reel about Jason’s career even had a few connections to BC and I smiled when I saw Memorial Stadium. The first was the Condors’ Winterfest game from last year, and the other was doing play-by-play commentary with Chad Manning for the Renegade football team’s game-winning run in the final five minutes against El Camino College. Jason referred to Chad as “a sports icon”.  Chad is a huge supporter of Bakersfield College and Renegade Football. #GoGades

Bakersfield is truly a great community. Thank you to KGET for all the partnerships you’ve inspired.

It’s what Spring Break is about!

I love staying connected with faculty and staff, and I always love a great photo! I received some wonderful messages throughout Spring Break from faculty and staff resting, working, and gearing up for the sprint to commencement!

Janet Fulks

Picture from Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg in Wisconsin

Wisconsin March 31 2018

Extra Fun Photos

Sandi Taylor emailed me this fun photo with Cynthia Williams.  Cynthia recently shared with me that the last of her nine grandchildren (twins) Mason and McKenzie will be graduating from Bakersfield College this year. McKenzie will be going into the nursing program specializing in the Neo-natal field, and Mason will be going into the Ag program at either Cal State Bakersfield, or Fresno State. All of her grandchildren are college graduates and she says “they make us very, very proud. Education is the most important legacy in anyone’s life.”  Thank you Cynthia!

Sandi and cynthia williams

Tracy Hall-Powell and Jennifer Marden-Serratt sent this fun photo of smiles. You may remember, Tracy embarked on a new adventure in Washington last September and we miss her smile!

Tracy and Jennifer

And here is a photos of Bryan Hirayama and his boys from Facebook

Bryan Hirayama Spring Break 2018.jpg

What a gorgeous Easter weekend. 

March 31 2018 Sonya Christian and Neo

Sonya Christian and Neo out for a walk on Easter Saturday.  62 degree temp. Yes!

Happy Easter all!

Sonya Christian Bitmoji Happy Easter

 

 

MArch 31 2018 Sonya Christian and Neo 2

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

So Many Things to Celebrate in our Community

Good morning Bakersfield.  

Sonya Christian Bitmoji Good Morning

It is Saturday, February 17, 2018….anticipating SpaceX’s first Falcon Heavy west coast launch (the best of times) and the week when 17 individuals were shot dead in Florida (the worst of times).

Let’s take a moment to go back and see their faces and read about them.  Here are two of those beautiful faces — Alaina Petty (14) and Peter Wang (15) from the cnn.com website

For more: https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/15/us/florida-shooting-victims-school/index.html

 

Lincoln Day

two students delivering food to the pantry

Students delivering food to the pantry

Yesterday, campus was quiet as we’re celebrating Presidents Weekend. I recently came across this great article by William Lambers about bringing back the Lincoln Friendship Train to help feed starving countries. He says “Peace and freedom cannot be founded on empty stomachs.”

It brought to mind how lucky we are at Bakersfield College to have the Renegade Pantry. The Renegade Pantry focuses on alleviating food insecurity, hunger and poverty among BC Students. Just another reminder of why I am so proud of Bakersfield College and why I’m the luckiest and happiest college president ever.

Read William Lambers’ We Need Abraham Lincoln’s Friendship Train again article.

Valentines Day Performances on campus

Students from BC’s Performing Arts classes delivered a special theatrical production for Valentine’s Day in the Campus Center. Such a treat.  Have I mentioned yet that I’m the luckiest and happiest college president ever?

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BC Performing Arts Students on Valentines Day

See all the photos of the lovely performances at BC’s Smugmug.

Engineer It, Girl!

The Engineering Girl event was well received, a fantastic program promoting engineering for girls ages 4-6. The event is hosted through Valley Public Broadcasting Service (VPBS) located in Fresno and by Engineering for kids of Kern County.

February 10, 2018 was one of the two days this will be hosted at BC. The second day will be on May 10, 2018 that will offer projects in all types of engineering. MESA was a volunteer partner along with other entities. Our MESA students volunteer assisting in the environmental engineering project for over 100 attendees. MESA had over 8 volunteers helping promote engineering to little girls and the next generation of engineers.

After the event, Suzanne Galindo, from the KCCD District Office sent an email of appreciation for the event and said how much her granddaughter and friend loved it.

Suzanne Galindo Granddaughter

Future Renegades, Annalise Aguirre and  Mila Perez with the MESA crew at BC

Industrial Automation Info Sessions Coming Up

BC is hosting three public events at the end of February for members of the community to learn more about our Baccalaureate Degree in Industrial Automation.

Students in the Industrial Automation program, which teaches the design, operation and management of automated machinery used in manufacturing and agricultural production, are able to graduate with a four-year degree that prepares them for a career in a high-paying, high-demand field. The sessions will be held on February 20th at 1 p.m. in SE 56, February 24th at 10 a.m. in SE 46, and February 27th at 6 p.m. in SE 46.

Thank you to both KGET and 23ABC for mentioning these upcoming sessions.

We’re excited to have our first-ever Baccalaureate students in Industrial Automation walk across the stage during our 104th Commencement ceremony this May.

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BC Industrial Automation students

BC Fight Song Remastered

dsc01621-x3On Thursday morning, members of famed local band Mento Buru were on campus to record the voice track to the updated version of the BC Fight Song. Matt Munoz, Cesareo Garasa and Jay Smith of Mento Buru joined Commercial Music Professor Josh Ottom’s class and collaborated on the vocals. Josh Ottom used the session as a lab for the class. Matt Munoz came to the Foundation in June with the concept to revive the BC Fight Song and after much research from the Archive Department, General Counsel Chris Hine, Chancellor Tom Burke and others, the project received the green light just prior to TailGade in October. The instrument tracks were laid down in December with Josh Ottom’s help. Keep your ears open for the new and improved BC Fight Song in the near future…Fight, Fight, Fight!!!

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See all the photos from the afternoon on BC’s Smugmug.

BC Adult Education

The first issue of BC’s Adult Education Newsletter was released this week. It’s so wonderful to hear the fantastic things happening to empower our adult students. The Bakersfield College Adult Education program  serves students in North and South Kern
County in collaboration with local adult schools, and in various locations such Delano, Wasco, and McFarland adult schools, and most recently, the Bakersfield Adult School (BAS). The newsletter is available on BC’s Website. 

Special thank you to Endee Grijalva and the whole Adult Education Team. #WeareBC!

AEBG students visit BC main campus in October 2017

AEBG students visit BC main campus in October 2017

Recognizing BC Art Faculty

David Koeth Selfie Sep 2016

David Koeth

It’s always exciting to share stories that highlight BC’s talented faculty. During the weekend of January 26, 27 and 28, David Koeth participated in the stARTup Art Fair in Venice Beach. David tells me that while art fairs are not a new concept, they are a great community alternate to showing work in a gallery. Most art fairs require the artist to be represented by a gallery but stARTup is juried and intended for artists who are independent of the gallery system. To be nominated, David had to submit a portfolio of his work to be shown to a select panel of judges to decide on which artists would be invited.

This year stARTup took place at the Kinney, and each artist had a room that was then transformed into a gallery space for the duration of the fair which was well attended, with hundreds of visitors from the public coming to the event space. David showed two pieces of art called “Citrus Series” and “Drought Series”.

You can see his art on his Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/koethart and also on his Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/davidkoeth/

This event provided opportunity both for art buyers and curators to view his artwork, as well as to engage with the art community.

Nano Rubio

nano1Another BC faculty also recently showed pieces at an different art show. Nano Rubio, an adjunct instructor of Art at Bakersfield College, was recently invited to include his work in the LA Art Show. This show was held at the LA Convention Center as part of a group show titled Eyes Forward, and was curated by LaunchLA Gallery in partnership with the California African American Museum. The group show included artists April Bey, June Edmonds, Duane Paul, Ana Rodriguez, Holly Tempo, Chukes, Loren Holland, Miles Regis, and Tim Washington.  Work at the Show also included master works from Monet, Picasso, Chagall and many others. To celebrate diversity the LA Art Show worked with local and international museum curators and galleries to develop innovative programs, engaging dialog and showing cutting-edge exhibitions with an ecumenical resonance.

Rubio brings his work to students at BC and at the Kern High School District and says, “I share my professional experiences with students to show them that the profession of being an Artist in the 21st Century is very much alive and has room for more voices.”

Gadfly Cafe

Gadfly Cafe Roundtable discussions

Reggie Williams leading the discussion at Gadfly Cafe

Engaging student experiences is one of the highlights of being a student at BC. Philosophy Professor, Reggie Williams hosted his first installment of this year, Gadfly Café, with War: Causes, Consequences, and Costs as the topic.

The hour-long, round table discussion this past Wednesday, February 14th, was jam-packed with a fun, diverse crowd that included students, faculty and staff, of all ages and backgrounds, and not afraid to voice their opinions when called on.

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Conversation kicked off with an eye-opening statement. “Did you all know, that during the last century, 100 years, from all the War’s during this time frame, that there were 123 million total deaths caused from these wars alone?”

Hands went up and the conversation  lively. Thank you to Professor Reggie Williams for hosting this discussion and for all the BC’s students, staff and faculty for participating. Mark your calendar for the next Gadfly Café event on Wednesday, 3/14/2018 with the topic of Truth: Objective, Invented, and Esteemed.

Gadfly Cafe logo

Jack Hernandez

BC’s Jack Hernandez has a published piece in the Community Voices section of The Californian. You can see it online, “The Parable of the good cake baker with a clear conscience.

Jack Hernandez

BC Superstar, Connie Gonzales

Connie at Univision

Connie Gonzales (right) at Univision

Connie Gonzales was recently featured on Univision to share the exiting news that MESA’s STEM and Pre-Health Conference is returning for a second year to the BC Campus on March 3rd, from 8 am to 2 pm.

The interview was in Spanish, and she’s proud to promote STEM among the Spanish speaking community, inviting them to come to BC and get exposure to different STEM careers with this conference.

The conference is a joint effort with UCLA and other industry partners. Interested in learning more or getting tickets? visit the Eventbrite page for more.

Bakersfield DBA State of Downtown

On Thursday morning, I attended the Bakersfield DBA Breakfast as a guest of Bob Bell. (Thank you Bob for the invitation.) At our table was Bill Thomas, Shannon Grove and several individuals from the City of Bakersfield.  Here is a picture of the team with Mayor Karen Goh.  Thank you Mayor Goh for posting great pictures celebrating the people of Bakersfield.  I snagged many of them for my blog 🙂

City of Bakersfield award receipient with Mayor Goh.jpg

I sat near Dianne Hoover, director for Bakersfield Parks and Rec.   I am so thankful for the investment in parks in Bakersfield.  I told Dianne that the first thing I noticed when I returned five years ago after a 10-year stint in Oregon was the investment in parks.  I use them so many times a week.  It is a critical component of healthy communities.

It’s exciting to hear the plans to revitalize our city and the downtown district. So much care and love is being poured into our downtown area so local community, businesses and development can thrive. Robert Price covered the morning in-depth in his article, “At DBA breakfeast, nothing but good news about downtown’s growth.”

Also, the City of Bakersfield is considering a Property-based Business Improvement District (PBID) for parts of downtown Bakersfield.  Bakersfield Colelge’s Weill Institute and the KCCD District Office will be included in the PBID and our Chief Finance Office Debbie Martin is a member of the Steering Committee.

PBID_2017_Aerial_FullBoundary.jpg

For more information check out: http://bakersfielddbdc.com/downtown-bakersfield-property-based-business-improvement-district-2/

KC Career Expo Happening Next Week!

On February 22, 2018, join us for a night of Career Exploration and Educational Programs that will give you an opportunity to learn the expectations, work ethic, certificates and degrees needed to join the workforce. Speak directly with over 100 Kern County Employers from different industry sectors and engage with activities that will help you decide what career is right for you! Don’t forget! The Event is February 22, 2018, 4:30-7:30 pm at Rabobank Arena & Convention Center.

CareerExpoFlier2018

Renegade Athletics

Jon Mettus of The Bakersfield Californian did a nice article on BC’s Spring Sports.
Check it out here: https://tinyurl.com/ybvn25no

BC Tennis with Coach Nick Jacobs February 2018.jpg

BC Tennis with Coach Nick Jacobs. Photo from TBC

Fun pictures:

Welcoming Baby Leo.  Mom Prof. Ximena Da Silva Tavares and baby are doing well.

Baby Leo Feb 16 2018

As I was heading back from the cafeteria having picked up some chicken strips for lunch, I saw a lot of activity in the campus center with Julian West, Lisa Ken and Steve Watkin.  I so enjoyed it and snapped this picture.

Julian West, Lisa Kent, Steven Watkin Feb 2018.jpg

 

Loved this selfie that Liz Rozell took with Horace Mitchell at the Chamber’s Leadership Bakersfield Education Day.

Liz Rozell and Horace Mitchell at Leadership Bakersfield Feb 16 2018

Liz Rozell joined colleagues from CSUB, University of LaVerne, Point Loma University, and  Wonderful Education to discuss trends in education with participants in the Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce Leadership program. It was an honor to speak with Horace Mitchell, CSUB President who is retiring at the end of this academic year. John Nikon, CSUB Trustee, moderated the event. And Heather Pennella, who is a member of the Leadership Bakersfield Class of 2018, cheered the team along.

Thank you Heather Pennella for this photo of the group of presenters

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On twitter, here is a post from Dr. Joe Saldivar with his premed students visiting Geffen Med School at UCLA

Joe Saldivar with premed students Feb 2018.jpg

 

students had a great time visiting Geffen Med School

March 10 – Monty Byrum and Lydia Ranger – Buy your tickets now and support our choir!

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.

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The concert will assist the Chamber Singers with their final fundraising effort for their tour to Australia(!), where they will perform in the Sydney Opera House this coming July.

It promises to be a great evening of music and for such a good cause. Mark your calendar now! March 10 at 5 pm and 7:30 pm. The 5 pm concert tickets are $35 and the 7:30 pm concert tickets are $50-$100. Tickets can be purchased at the Music Hall of Fame website www.musichalloffame.com or by calling or emailing Courtney Carter at the BC Foundation at 395-4800 or courtney.carter@bakersfieldcollege.edu. Come enjoy the music and support the BC Chamber Singers.

Here is a post from Jen Garrett on FAcebook:

Today is a day I will always remember. I conducted the finest performance of my career with the hard working choir I’ve ever had the privilege of conducting.

We auditioned and were selected last year to be one of the performing choirs at the California All State Music educators conference in San Jose. This is a great honor and we wanted to bring our best.

While we performed in this gorgeous basilica it felt like we were all carrying each other. I was nearly emotional in the sound check and many emotions surfaced during the performance and after we finished. I’m still in a high.

Thank you Chamber Singers for going in this wild adventure with me. I know it nearly involved blood, sweat, and tears but I hope it was worth it all. I am so grateful for your dedication and willingness to let go. We have so many more adventures to take this year and more mind blowing music to make. Australia here we come! BC Chamber Singers: All Day……Every day!

Come on out to the William M. Thomas Planetarium

Nick Strobel

Nick Strobel

Here is an exerpt from Dr. Nick Strobel’s article in today’s Californian

Thursday was the first show of the William M. Thomas Planetarium’s spring lineup as “Black Holes” played to an audience eager to see a beautiful star field with the Goto Chronos projector and take a flight through the Milky Way into the supermassive black hole at the center. This coming Thursday is “Supervolcanoes,” which after a tour of the night sky will explain what happens in the most powerful eruptions on Earth (thousands of times more powerful than Mt St Helens). Supervolcanoes put so much ash, gases and other material into the atmosphere that they can cause global mass extinctions through the very dramatic climates changes. Fortunately, these types of eruptions are rare!

Read the whole piece at: https://tinyurl.com/y7twehos

Took Neo to work yesterday since the campus was closed.  Here we are checking out the Future Home of the Veterans Resource Center.  He is 11 months old today, February 17, 2018 and weighs 85 lbs.  Can’t wait for his first birthday on March 17th.

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Was happy to see Coach Bob Covey when he stopped by the office

Bob Covey and Sonya Christian Jan 26 2018

Sonya Christian Bitmoji Feeling Lucky

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever

A thing of beauty is a joy forever

Clouds on flight from PDX to BUR Jan 6 2018

Cloud formation from the turbulent flight from PDX to BUR Jan 7 2018

Good morning Bakersfield…It is Saturday, January 13, 2018 and a great day to be a Renegade!

This week, it seemed that I was able to see beauty all around me.  I have noticed that there are times that my sensitivity to all things beautiful seem more heightened.  It is during these time that I pick up my poetry book from high school at Mount Carmel Convent ….. this week I found myself reading Keats.  So my friends, here are images of beauty for you as you soak in Keats

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:

Its loveliness increases; it will never

Pass into nothingness; but still will keep

A bower quiet for us, and a sleep

Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.

Pacheco Pass Jan 12 2018

San Luis Reservoir, Pacheco Pass, Jan 12 2018

 

Before Magnolia and Brazilian Pepper

An extremely active week at BC with faculty arriving back on campus for inservice activities, workshops as we gear up to welcome over 31,000 students back to our campuses in Bakersfield, in Delano, in Arvin, in Shafter, online, …… I did a bit of travelling to San Jose to attend the accreditation commission (ACCJC) meeting.

With half of the school year in our rear view mirror, all of Bakersfield College’s faculty and staff came together once again in anticipation for the next semester during our Spring 2018 Opening Day celebration Thursday at the Indoor Theater.

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One of my favorite parts of the day kicks off with seeing familiar faces during the gathering in the plaza. I was so glad to have beautiful photos this year of the activity before the program.

Great group from our Child Care Center.

Child Care gang Opening Day Jan 11 2018

Dezi Von Manos opened the program with the traditional remarks from the BCSGA President.

Dezi Von Manos Opening day

Dezi Von Manos Opening day

Opening day spotlighted our accreditation work under the leadership of Liz Rozell, dean of Instrcution, and Jason Stratton, history faculty.

Liz Rozell and Jason Stratton

Liz Rozell and Jason Stratton

After showing a brief video interviewing students and staff about accreditation and Student Learning Outcomes, Liz and Jason thanked the faculty team leads who will be putting together the materials for our four accreditation standards and the writers, editors and communication team for the Quality Focus Essay that will wrap our self-evaluation report in a neat little bow and tell the world BC’s story.

Our primary editor for this project is Dr. Nick Strobel, and he’ll be responsible for putting all of the information together into a coherent narrative. Manny produced a silly comic relief video of Nick dressed up as a monk, walking around the library while carrying large scrolls as Gregorian chants echoed through the halls.

Following Accreditation, Andrea Thorson took the stage to emphasize the importance of maintaining a singular, coherent voice about BC’s institutional philosophy when we talk to students or people in the community.

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Andrea Thorson

 

Di Hoffman and new Dean Billie Jo Rice talked about assessment and Student Learning Outcomes, using the acronym PARR (Plan, Assess, Reflect, and Refine) as a pneumonic device to outline our assessment process.

Billi Jo Rice and Di Hoffman

Billi Jo Rice and Di Hoffman

Julian West addressed the audience about how he’s able to keep 600 students in our African-American affinity group engaged and striving for their highest level of excellence, using a combination of data analysis and “real talk” face-to-face mentorship to ensure that none of our African American students are falling through the cracks. See Julians full remarks here.

Janet Fulks and our new Web Content Editor, Nicole Griffin discussed our state-of-the-Renegade Scorecard 3.0, that continues to bring our institutional data to life on the web with an unprecedented level of interactivity displaying statistics about our student population and programs of study.

Nicole Griffin and Janet Fulks

Nicole Griffin and Janet Fulks

 

I was excited to announce the planned campus renovations that are going to be made possible via Measure J, which was initially going to take place over 25 years, has now been compacted planned for a shorter time line. This means that many of you will get to see our campus transform before your eyes during your tenure at BC, and the money will be used more efficiently to avoid cost increases due to inflation.

Todd Coston

Todd Coston 

Bill Potter presented the new Facilities Master Plan to the audience at our Opening Day presentation, with a special guest for the presentation, Todd Coston dressed as a janitor showing how accreditation is a whole campus endeavor. I heard Todd even threw a mop bucket full of silver confetti into the theater.

Toward the end of the Opening Day presentation, Tina Johnson introduced the new members of the CSEA board, Isabel Stierle encouraged faculty members to welcome our new faculty members into the CCA, and Steven Holmes urged faculty and staff to be active participants in all of our various committees including Guided Pathways.

 

Sue Vaughn gave an update sharing the constant and rapid movement in the Management Association.  At one point the audience gave a standing ovation for Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg. Love this photo taken by Earl Parsons.

Audience applauding Nan Spring 2018 Opening Day

Our SGA Senators, Ashley Harp and Mustapha Burraj led the entire audience in a stretch break.

Stretch Break for Opening Day

Stretch Break for Opening Day

Reggie Williams, the recipient of the 2017 Shirley Trembley Distinguished Teaching Award, gave his thank-you speech during this semester’s Opening Day since he was out of the country during the Fall 2017 festivities. He gave special recognition to Jack Hernandez for inspiring him to learn more about philosophy during his time in one of Jack’s classes as an 18-year-old freshman at BC.

Susan Pinza announced Oliver Rosales as the winner of the Norman Levan Faculty Colloquium Award. Oliver will be delivering a presentation about multicultural civil rights activism in post-World War II Bakersfield.

Oliver Rosales standing to be recognized

Dr. Oliver Rosales standing to be recognized

Opening and Closing Days are a huge undertaking, and I’d like to take a moment to thank everyone who made it possible. I’d like to thank Manny de Los Santos for his work compiling all of the videos for this event, as well as running the livestream. And special thanks to Nate from Freestyle who was our sound technician and is a BC student studying Computer Science!

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Manny De Los Santos and Nate

Thank you also to our photographers from the Marketing and Public Relations team—Earl Parsons, Eric Carillo and Dylan Wang

Dylan Wang

Dylan Wang capturing the day through the lens.

 

Thank you Eric Carillo for texting me some of the selfies and bringing me vicariously to Opening Day.  I so loved them.  Here are a few.

 

 

All of their photos for the day can be found on the BC Smugmug.

Thank you to Monika Scott, Jennifer Serratt and Lesley Bonds for coordinating and planning, and Kristin Rabe for coordinating the theater.

Jennifer Serratt, Aricia Leighton, Kristin Rabe, Monika Scott

Jennifer Serratt, Aricia Leighton, Kristin Rabe, Monika Scott

Jennifer Serratt, Lesley Bonds Jan 11 2018

Jennifer Serratt, Lesley Bonds

And Opening Day wouldn’t be the same without Francis Mayer as our emcee.

Francis Mayer

Francis Mayer, the man behind the microphone

Thank you to our Food Services crew led by Chef Eric Sabella, who put together another great breakfast and lunch.

Food Services on Opening Day

Food Services Crew with BC’s awesome Breakfast Burritos

And our interpreters Jarris Wright and Carolyn Borso and our incredible ushers were Arisve Pimentel, Bernadette Martinez, Chris Glaser, Danyel Owens, Jordaun Bennett, Lori Ortiz, Tarina Perry, and Wendy Lawson.

Ushers

Flex Week

The week before the semester begins is always exciting because Faculty come back and re-engage with the campus through flex workshops which cover an array of topics. This year workshops covered everything from eLumen Curriculum led by Jennifer Johnson, Best Practices for Online Learning by Matt Jones, and Summer Bridge by Kimberly Bligh, Erica Menchaca, Isabel Castaneda, and Teresa Mcallister among many many others. Here are some photos from Flexweek!

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See all the photos at Bakersfield College’s Smugmug.

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Erica Menchaca, Isabel Castaneda, Kimberly Bligh

Corrections to College California

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Bryan Hirayama on the left with his Distinguished Teaching Award

Corrections to College California just released a new short documentary, The Sergeant and the Professor, featuring a CDCR-College partnership. The video tells the story of Sergeant Jeff Ervin and Professor Bryan Hirayama. Sergeant Ervin has worked for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation for 12 years. Two years ago, Bakersfield College began offering classes in his housing unit. Sergeant Ervin was reluctant and skeptical. Professor Hirayama was the first Bakersfield College professor to teach inside Sergeant Ervin’s facility. The two didn’t always see eye to eye, but these unlikely colleagues learned to work together to support the college students. You can find out how this program transformed Sergeant Ervin and the prison by watching the video.

See the video on Facebook by clicking here.

Visitors from Korea

BC and KCCD representatives met January 8 with a representative from a Bakersfield’s Sister City, Bucheon City to talk about a possible exchange program for students and faculty. This is the second time that BC has hosted Bucheon City visitors. They were here this summer.

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John Means, Vice Chancellor, Shohreh Rahman, Counselor International Students So-Hyun Kim, Representative Bucheon City, Republic of Korea Eun-Ja Kim Park, retired professor CSUB Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, Vice President Instruction

BC Point Guard, Johnathan Murray

cropped conf champions feb 17 2016 rich hughes

Coach Hughes after winning the Conf Championship Feb 17, 2016

There was a great piece by Jon Mettus of the Californian about our record setting player Johnathan Murray as the teams ‘unsung hero.’

Mettus wrote that “Murray is the facilitator for BC’s offense and the glue that holds the team together. On a squad that features players like Jamar Hammonds, Tucker Eenigenburg and Jaylunn English, who can all go off for more than 20 points on any given night…” He goes on to credit coach, Rich Hughes with naming Murray the “unsung hero.”

Bakersfield is so proud to have Coach Rich Hughes leading the Renegade Basketball team. Have you been a game recently?  There’s a few great games left this season. Check out http://www.gogades.com/sports/mbkb/2017-18/schedule  for the schedule and follow Coach Hughes on Twitter  @coachrichhughes

To see the article by Jon Mettus visit, http://www.bakersfield.com/sports/bc-point-guard-johnathan-murray-is-the-team-s-unsung/article_9195640c-f6fb-11e7-8c83-db2b4fe11733.html

EOP&S

Starting this semester, representatives from the Department of Human Services (DHS) are holding office hours in the second floor of the CSS building to help students to assist students with children who receive financial assistance through their department.

EOPS

DHS Social Service Workers from the Employment Services division are partnering with our Extended Opportunities Programs and Services Department (EOP&S) to help BC student parents attending school while receiving cash aid benefits via CalWORKS (California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids). Their offices will be located in the EOP&S area of the CSS building, and they’ll be helping provide our students educational support services, employment training and work study opportunities.

This partnership will help our BC CalWORKS program that was already being run under EOP&S integrate more efficiently with the Department of Human Services, and I’m excited for all of the potential that this partnership holds.

Accreditation and ACCJC

I always feel a little reluctant to snap pictures at the Accreditation Commission Meeting.  But here are a few after we were done with the meeting.  In the first picture you see the Chair of the Commission Raul Rodriguez who is the Chancellor of the Rancho Santiago Community College District with Mary Okada who is the president of Guam Community College and is on the ACCJC Exec Committee.  Inn the second picture, I am with Richard Mahon, who is currently a dean at Alan Hancock College.  In the last picture I am with Jared Spring, a manager at ACCJC and one of my favorite people.

Sonya Christian and Jared Spring ACCJC Jan 12 2018

Let me end with John Keats again

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever

Neo Jan 12 2018

Sonya Christian Pacheco Pass heading back home from ACCJC Meeting Jan 12 2018

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever