Tag Archives: Kris Tiner

November is Here!

Good morning, Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, November 2, 2019… A great day to be a Renegade.

First Responders Day

America honored the brave men and women on the frontlines of catastrophe on Monday during the first annual National First Responders Day. This summer, the US Senate approved a bipartisan resolution establishing October 28 as a day to honor the 4.6 million first responders who keep us safe every day.

BC’s programs range from our EMT and paramedic programs to our fire science and police academies.

Our EMT students spend 350 hours training in the Hall EMT Academy, developed in partnership with Hall Ambulance. The program is now in its 18th year. Hall Ambulance founder and former Bakersfield mayor Harvey Hall was the program’s fiercest champion.

Our registered nursing program is the 6th oldest in the state of California, launching in 1951 through a partnership with Kern General Hospital (now Kern Medical Center). BC’s first cohort of graduating nurses received certification in 1952, and the program has continued changing people’s lives ever since.

Industry partnerships have been crucial to the development of first responder training programs at BC. Our BC Fire Science program launched in 1956 through the joint efforts of the Bakersfield Fire Department and our vocational career leadership. Students learn a special curriculum designed for Bakersfield city firefighters that mixes academic courses with on-the-job training, incorporating all motorized fire equipment used in emergency situations.

Fire tech student learning to carry a person down a fire ladder
A Fire Tech student learning to carry a person down a fire ladder in 1975.

In another example of joint partnerships benefiting our students and community, our police academy consists of both Bakersfield Police Department staff working together with BC Public Safety Training staff.

Let’s take a moment to recognize those who have chosen the difficult but meaningful career path to be a first responder. Every day, we have first responders to be thankful for, as we are reminded now in the midst of the wildfires blanketing the state.  Whether first responders are assisting a neighbor or rallying together to address larger statewide needs, the quality of our lives is only possible thanks to their care and sacrifice.

ACBO 2019 Conference: Supporting Equity and Inclusion with Early College

This past week, Vice President Mike Giacomini, Senator Emeritus Jean Fuller and Early College Manager Kylie Swanson attended the Association of Chief Business Officials (ACBO) Fall 2019 conference in San Diego. Our team presented on our Early College initiative, and attended sessions related to business operations and incorporating equity into every aspect of our institutions.

The team’s presentation framed Early College as a “sound strategy” for both student success and fiscal sustainability.

My thanks to our team for representing BC at the Fall 2019 ACBO Conference.

BC’s Disability Awareness Day

The last day of October was also BC’s Disability Awareness Day, a day to shine a light on disability awareness by celebrating special programs and services, such as tutoring, accommodation, and job placement, that help students with disabilities.

Dr. Terri Goldstein, Director of Disabled Student Programs & Services (DSPS) presented awards to some of our outstanding departments, faculty, staff, and students who work with students with disabilities.

Participants had the opportunity to learn about the game of Goalball. This paralympic sport for athletes with vision impairment is designed around senses of hearing and touch. William Slason explained the rules of the game to those in attendance. Basically, Goalball is a 3-on-3 sport played with a ball that has bells inside. Similar to soccer, the object of the game is to roll the ball over the opponent’s goal line.

Thanks to our exhibitors for sharing valuable information with BC students, and to William Slason for teaching everyone how to play Goalball!

BC Choir and Chamber Singers

Last Friday, October 25, the BC Choir and Chamber Singers gave an amazing performance in creative collaboration with the Synergy String Quartet, a professional Bakersfield ensemble. Jennifer Garrett this was yet another amazing concert!  Check out the videos below to catch a glimpse of the talent that was on display that night. 

BC Jazz Combos Concert

On Thursday, October 30, the BC Jazz Studies program hosted the 2nd annual BC Jazz Combos concert in the Indoor Theatre.  The BC Monday, Wednesday, and Applied Jazz Combos were featured, along with a special guest performance by the jazz band Ralph Alessi and This Against That.

The Monday and Wednesday Jazz Combos performed an arrangement of songs from Miles Davis’ “Milestones”, Lee Morgan’s “The Sidewinder”, Charles Mingus’ “Nostalgia in Times Square”, and Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good”. The Applied Jazz Combo performed original songs by students from Izzy Foster’s “Hmm, What’d You Say” and Abigail Wilson’s “Jet Lag,” which showcased students’ creative musical talents.

I love Nina Simone…. Here is the piece Feeling Good performed at the concert.

and here is my favorite Nina Simone song….. Sinnerman

The night featured the world-class jazz band Ralph Alessi and This Against That, who performed their original songs “Iram Issela” and “Fun Room” from their recently released 2019 hit record “Imaginary Friend.”  Ralph Alessi noted that the title of their song “Iram Issela” is actually his daughter’s name spelled backwards. Thank you Kris Tiner for bringing to us this amazing concert.

Thank you to the BC Jazz Studies program, Wednesday, Monday, and Applied Jazz Combos, and Ralph Alessi and This Against That for their incredible and inspiring musical performances.

BC Hosts Undocumented Student Week of Action Activities

During the week of October 14-18, 2019, a collaborative week of events was organized across the AB 540 Program, EOPS, Rural Initiatives team, Student Life, BC Foundation, SGA, LUPE Student Club, and Project Conexiones. Community organizations provided support and services, including UFW Foundation and Youth 2 Leaders. The planning committee included Dr. Anna Laven (AB 540 Program Manager), Jaime Lopez (Rural Initiatives Program Manager), Benjamin Balderrama (Student Life Program Manager), Manuel Rosas (EOPS Counselor and LUPE Advisor), Marivel Servin (Catalyst Fellow and BC Graduate), and Christopher Hernandez (SGA Director of Student Activities).

Anna Laven, Imelda Valdez
Rafael Centeno, Educational Advisor, explains about the AB 540 Program to Open House attendees.
Left to right: Manuel Rosas, Elizabeth Rodacker, Dr. Anna Laven, Rafael Centeno, and Isabel Castaneda

Attendees were asked to use a pin to show where their journey began.  Pins were placed across the world, ranging from Southern California, Central America to as far as Pakistan and the Philippines.

Serving the largest population of undocumented students in the state, California Community Colleges are committed to serving ALL students, regardless of immigration status. Undocumented Student Week is a systemwide campaign to advocate and provide support resources for our undocumented student population.

Launching the week-long series of events was the AB 540 Program Open House, housed within the EOPs umbrella. Students and faculty stopped by…thank you Elizabeth Rodacker for bringing your class.

The Bakersfield College AB540 Program provides a comprehensive program of services for students who are eligible under the AB540 out-of-state tuition exemption. The goal of the program is to help eligible students meet their educational objectives, whether they seek occupational certificates, associate degrees, or transfer to four-year institutions.

Signed into law in October 2001, California Assembly Bill 540 (AB 540) is a bill that provides an exemption to the requirement to pay nonresident tuition.  California Community College students who are granted an AB 540 exemption will be charged in-state tuition and fees, and not the supplemental tuition charged to nonresidents.

The AB 540 team (Dr. Anna Laven, Rafael Centeno, student Catalyst Fellows, Marivel Servin, Maria Jaimes, and Imelda Simos-Valdez) provided an informational table and materials at the GBLA-sponsored Immigrant Civil Rights Conference, hosted at Hodel’s, Those in attendance gained helpful information about the asylum process and importance of the census, and heard as well from BC student, Jose Bello, and other notable speakers including Supervisor David Couch and Bakersfield Police Chief Lyle Martin.

The Delano Campus also hosted a number of events including an activity called “Painting the Symbolic Butterfly: What does it mean to you?,” which included a fun and symbolic opportunity to paint butterflies.  The monarch butterfly is commonly used as a symbol to recognize the globalization and movement of people.

The movie by CSUB graduate Maria Rodriguez Ornelas, entitled “5 Decades Later: The Aftermath of the Grape Strike,” was viewed by aproximately 20 students, followed by a panel discussion led by student Catalyst Fellows, Marivel Servin, panelists, Oscar Camacho, Yesenia Garcia (BC students), and Professor Bianca Moreno (Communications).

Dr. Anna Laven introduces the filmmaker and discusses the importance of recognizing the Undocumented Student Week of Action.

More than 60 students, faculty, staff, and community members attended the sugar skulls activity hosted by the LUPE student organization and headed by their Faculty Advisor, Manuel Rosas.  The two dozen butterfly images produced during the “My Immigrant Story” held earlier in the week were showcased at the sugar skulls workshop.

Dr. Anna Laven poses with LUPE student club leadership.

Learn more about the AB 540 Program at Bakersfield College.

Larry Itliong Day

Local middle school students in Delano got the opportunity to learn about the rich history of labor and civil rights activism in their community during the celebrations for Larry Itliong Day on BC’s Delano Campus last week.

In 2015, Assemblyman Rob Bonta introduced a bill officially declaring October 25 as “Larry Itliong Day” to honor the contributions of Filipino-Americans in the farm labor movement of the 1960s. While thousands of pages have been written about the work of Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta, it was Larry Itliong and the Filipino laborers who initiated the famous Delano grape strike and boycott in 1965. When Chavez and the Mexican laborers agreed to join the Filipinos in their strike, the United Farm Workers organization was born, and it would take five years and a nationwide movement for workers to achieve a Collective Bargaining Agreement, the first for farm workers in American history.

BC’s programming for Larry Itliong Day was organized by Andrew Bond, Oliver Rosales, and the team for the “Energizing the Humanities in California’s San Joaquin Valley” grant provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities . The festivities started with an historic tour of Filipino History in Delano. Alex Edillor, President of the Filipino American National Historical Society, Delano Chapter, led BC faculty and staff through a number of historic landmarks from the Delano grape strike and boycott era.

The tour concluded at Agbayani Village, which was built by Itliong, Filipino activist Philip Vera Cruz, and the UFW in 1974 to house retiring Filipino laborers known as Manongs. The Manongs were able-bodied Filipino men who migrated to the US in the early 20th Century to work in the fields from Alaska to the Coachella Valley. Manongs were unable to marry or have children outside of their race due to anti-miscegenation laws, and an entire generation of these laborers grew old without families to support them, so Agbayani Village was created as a safe haven and retirement community for them. Once the last Manong passed away in 1997, Agbayani Village was converted into a national historic landmark. It’s also where Cesar Chavez participated in his last fast in 1988, a 36-day water-only hunger strike to draw attention to the dangers of pesticide use on farm workers and their families.

The BC team later reconvened at the Delano Campus to greet middle school students from the Delano Union School District. The NEH team screened the documentary “Delano Manongs” for students and answered any questions that students had about their community’s history. Delano resident Javier Cardena also shared his personal collection of photos, newspaper clippings, and memorabilia from the grape boycott with middle school students. His collection will be archived by the BC team as part of the Digital Delano project.

After lunch, the keynote speaker for the event, author Patty Enrado, talked about her book “A Village In The Fields”, which tells a fictionalized account of a Manong in Agbayani Village. The book was the culmination of 20 years of research on Agbayani Village and the Manongs, and it was shortlisted for the 2016 Saroyan Prize for Fiction.

I thank the National Endowment for the Humanities team for organizing this event, Abel Guzman for supporting the event at the Delano Campus, and the Delano Union School District for busing students out of class to participate in Larry Itliong Day, as well as the BC Education Department for providing additional funding.

High School Chamber Festival

Fall is musical season for local high schools. Before they start performing at other schools around the county, BC holds its annual High School Chamber Festival on Monday in the Indoor Theater.

Our award-winning BC Chamber Singers host this event every year so high school choirs can perform and get advice from professionals, such as this year’s guest Dr. Christopher Peterson, a professor and concert choir director at the University of Fullerton. Dr. Peterson gave constructive feedback on each high school’s performance, and also demonstrated different techniques and drills that local choirs could use for maximum performance.

The event also featured the first-ever performance of BC’s Men’s Chorus that had the audience on the edge of their seats.

Thanks to the BC Chamber Singers for organizing, as well as Dr. Peterson for helping so many students.

Cafe Murder

On Thursday, October 17, the Office of Student Life collaborated with the Theater Arts department to host a murder mystery dinner called Café Murder. Guests arrived to the Renegade Room at 5:30 p.m. to enjoy a Basque-themed dinner, but found themselves sharing the space with a birthday party. After some awkward encounters with the birthday guests, and the fact that everyone seemed to hate the birthday girl, they all left to use the restroom, and that is when the night turned upside-down. The birthday girl never returned and fingers were pointing at everyone in the room, especially since everyone mentioned how much they disliked the birthday girl. After some questioning from the audience, they were left to determine who was the murderer, and let’s just say, it’s in your best interest to tip and treat your waiter generously in the future.

This event was highly popular (it sold out within a day) and both offices look to collaborate in the future. This performance was made possible with the guidance of Professor Kimberly Chin.

Standout Interview and Resume Seminar

To help our students develop strong resumes and stand out in job interviews, BC held a workshop on Monday in the Levan Center.

The guest speaker for the workshop was Susanne Rego, Senior Manager of Human Resources for Target. Rego spoke about what she looks for personally from a resume and job interview. Business pathways counselor Jonathan Ward informed students about all the things they should watch out for during the semester, including the start of priority registration.

I thank all employees who helped with this event, from our business department to our job development specialists embedded within BC’s Learning and Career Pathways.

Pre-Rad Tech Orientation

BC’s Radiologic Technology Department held an orientation on Wednesday to inform students about how to apply and what to expect out of the Rad Tech curriculum at BC.

BC faculty and staff, including Jacelyn Hill, Venessa Reyes, Victoria Coffee, and Dinorah Castro, presented information regarding pre-requisites, scholarship and employment opportunities. Current students in the Rad Tech program held a panel discussion to answer students’ questions about learning habits, time management, and personal growth during the program.

The Radiologic Technology Program is a 2-year commitment that prepares students to pass licensure and eligibility for California’s Fluoroscopy Permit exam. Thank you to BC Rad Tech and Allied Health for preparing the Rad Techs of the future!

Chevron Employee Appreciation Day

Bakersfield College was invited by Chevron North America to participate in their Employee Appreciation Day at the Chevron Kern River Oilfield site on Thursday, October 31. This was an opportunity for approximately 1,000 Chevron employees to come together and enjoy a lovely lunch, play yard games, and have the chance to connect with local organizations.

Heather Pennella and Aubrey Priest

Heather Pennella, Alumni & Donor Relations Manager and Aubrey Priest, Program Manager-Industrial Automation, attended the event. Thank you to Gina Pettit of Chevron for including Bakersfield College in the celebration!

BC at the Vineyards

Our Bakersfield College Rural Initiatives Team took their outreach efforts on the road! Last week, the team visited vineyards throughout rural Kern County during the 2nd Annual BC at the Vineyards to promote the programs and services Bakersfield College has to offer throughout its various locations to more than 1,000 farmworkers. These visits to the vineyards were followed up with matriculation events at the Delano Campus and Arvin High School, where prospective renegades had the opportunity to complete their applications and meet with a counselor to determine their pathway options. 

These outreach efforts would not have been possible without the collaboration of the California Farmworkers Foundation and support from the Outreach and CTE Departments at Bakersfield College.

Huge shout out to our Rural Initiatives team, especially our Program Managers Jaime Lopez and Endee Grijalva for coordinating these efforts!

Foundation of California Community Colleges Provides Mobile Hotspots to 11 BC MESA Students

Through collaboration with the Chancellor’s Office and MESA (Math, Engineering, Science Achievement) program, and in partnership with ThinkEDU, the Foundation for California Community Colleges and California Connects Equity Program has provided 11 BC MESA students with free WiFi hotspots with 12 months of prepaid service. The California Connects Equity Program helps reduce barriers to learning by assisting MESA students who are currently enrolled in a California community college. Although many students are connected through a smartphone, they are considered “under connected” in that the consistency of their access is lower than they would like it to be.

Left to right: Annabelle Recino, Ramssess Patterson, and Peter Rodriguez

The requirements for participation are: (1) student is enrolled in the MESA program; (2) student is enrolled in a California community college; and (3) student is willing to receive and respond to periodic surveys measuring the efficacy of this program and online education for the community colleges.

Danielle Zepeda and Ian Spark

MESA students receiving the hotspot devices include Jesus Barrita, Mark Gutierrez, Jason Moore, Katie Ramirez, Annabelle Recinos, Peter Rodriguez, Rebecca Sinor, Ian Spark, Maria Valencia, Alejandra Zapata, and Danielle Zepeda.  At the conclusion of the 12 months of prepaid service, students will have the option to return the device or pay $19.99 per month for continued service.

As the Acting Program Director for MESA, Martin Perez has purchased a device (valued at $125.00) for his own use.  He is paying the $19.99 monthly service charge and will be disconnecting his internet from home.  Learn more about these hotspot devices.

Fun Photos

Fun Photos: Times Past

I received a wonderful email from Trustee Nan Gomez-Heizeberg about a trip we once took together.  We had traveled to Tehachapi to observe an adjunct faculty member teach a math class; I was the department chair at that time and Nan a dean.  Such great memories! Check out this magazine article from years ago regarding Nan’s many trips up and down Highway 99.

Students’ Halloween at BC

Web Content Editor Earl Parsons snapped these great photos of some Renegade students wearing their Halloween costumes.

Financial Aid Halloween

Heather Skibinski, Financial Aid Technician, sent over these great photos of Financial Aid staff in their Halloween costumes. Bob Ross, Slash, and a T-Rex? What’s not to love?

Physical Science Halloween

Chris Benker‘s authentic Indian garb!

Taken From Facebook: BC Staff Celebrate Halloween

Some of our BC staff posted photos on Facebook of how they celebrated Halloween. Check out these great photos!

Endee Grijalva and her daughter looked very spooky!
Monika Scott spent Halloween in Toronto with Buzz Lightyear.
At Basketball
Fun Video: Creative Design Center

Renegade video intern, Thanh Cao, from the Marketing and Public Relations Department, created a short video highlight reel using footage provided by Derrin Willis, Professor of Industrial Drawing. The short video will be featured on the BC website.  Great work, Thanh!

Fun Video: Health Fair

Renegade video intern, Thanh Cao, also created another short video highlight reel about the Health Careers Fair.  Great work (again), Thanh!

Kern Schools FCU Renegades of the Week (10/20-10/26)

Emily Lostetter, Women’s Soccer

Emily scored three goals in a 7-0 win over West LA, and two more goals in a 4-1 win over Glendale for a total of five on the week.

Jonathan Hunter, Wrestling

Jonathan placed 1st in the 165 lb. class at the Meat Head Movers Tournament on Saturday (10/26) beating both the #1 and #2 ranked wrestlers in the state to help the team to a 2nd place finish.

Student Athlete Spotlight

Anthony Ponce, Men’s Soccer

Enjoy this week’s Renegade Student Athlete Spotlight video on Anthony Ponce from our Renegade Men’s Soccer team. The video was shot and edited by BC digital media student Jacob Amado. Great work, Jacob!

Renegade Athletics Scoreboard

Athletics Events ‘On the Hill’

Be sure to put on your Renegade Red and cheer on our student athletes as they compete this coming week. If you can’t make it in person, check GoGades.com to catch the livestream. Events include:

  • Tue. 11/5 – Women’s Soccer vs West LA @ 3pm
  • Wed. 11/6 – Volleyball vs. West LA @ 6pm
  • Fri. 11/8 – Women’s Soccer vs. LA Valley @ 3pm
  • Sat. 11/9 – Wrestling hosts SEWA Tournament

That’s all for now.

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.

the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Bakersfield College in Arvin, Shafter, …..

Good morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, November 18, 2017….a great day to be a Renegade.

I often say it’s an exciting time to be at BC and it’s true. I mentioned in last weekend’s blog that Bakersfield College is bringing higher education to Shafter and at our Express Enrollment event this week, it was great to see the excitement and activity in the Shafter area. Over the past three years, BC has remained focused on the strategic goal of bringing higher education into the communities of Delano, Shafter, Wasco, McFarland, Lamont, and Arvin. We look forward to expanding courses offered  in Shafter so that students can complete all or a significant part of their degree locally and I know this will directly benefit our students.

Shafter Enrollment (2)

Students registering for classes in Shafter

Some of the comments heard throughout the day included:

  • “I don’t also have access to a car to drive to school, so I sometimes miss class or miss office hours. I could be a better student in Shafter.”
  • “This would be great! I could save money and focus more on my school work so that I can start my career.”
  • “I have been taking classes online, but would rather take them in person. “

Shafter Enrollment (3)

BC Express Enrollment in Shafter, CA!

Thank you to all who have believed in this goal and have worked hard to make BC in Shafter a success. Thank you Steve Watkin, Abel Guzman, Rich McCrow, David Franz, Ashlea Ward, Victor Crosthwaite, Lovejot Chahal, Mark Osea, Dinorah Castro, Jesus Oropeza, Jessica Garcia, and Monika Scott.

BC in Shafter Nov 14 2017

Thank you to our KCCD Board of Trustees for supporting these goals and thank you to our media partners for highlighting our event on KGET and at The Bakersfield Californian.

Shafter Enrollment (1)

Mark Osea giving a presentation Tuesday morning in Shafter.

Abel Guzman enjoying Mark Osea's Presentation in Shafter

Abel Guzman, Director of Rural Initiatives watching Mark Osea present

Let’s listen to Jessica a young woman who came in toe register

From Shafter Learning Center Facebook post

Shafter Learning Center Facebook Nov 2017

Season of Giving

One of my favorite things about the holiday season is the spirit of giving; a spirit which is alive and true in our community. As I look forward to celebrating thanksgiving next week, I’m almost overwhelmed by the list of things to be thankful for… family, friends, opportunities, blessings, each and every day… I couldn’t list everything.

But, I’d like to spotlight one service on campus which gives all year long, thanks to the kind donations from our community, and this holiday season if you’d like to make a donation of some non-perishable goods, they will go to students in need.

two students delivering food to the pantry

Student Life delivering food to the pantry

The Renegade Pantry is a student assistance program which aims to help students in need, with nonperishable food, clothing, and hygiene items. Each year, they hold a Holiday Turkey Drawing, and over the past week, 93 turkeys have been distributed to students who signed up and were chosen through the drawing.

The pantry, however is always accepting non-perishable goods like instant noodles, spaghetti, rice, beans, canned chicken, mac and cheese, etc. If you’re considering a donation to a local food pantry over the holidays, consider donating dry nonperishable goods or hygiene items, such as soaps, toothpaste, and toothbrushes to the Renegade Pantry.

This heartfelt season of giving is truly something to be thankful for.

And thank you to BC’s Child Development Center for donating goods to our veterans on the heels of our weeklong Veterans celebration which I covered in last week’s blog, “Celebrating Veterans All Week Long!

Season of Giving

Donation from Child Development Center to our Veterans accepted by Paul Beckworth

Cafecito Time with Prez Dez

CafecitoI’m so proud of BC’s Student Government Association led by this year’s President, Dezi Von Manos. SGA is always looking for ways to support the student body and regularly hosts events where students can come together and speak to the administration of the school. Examples of these events are “Coffee with the Chief” or like this past Monday, “Cafecito Time with Prez Dez” where students could directly speak to the Dezi and the SGA team.

Dezi spoke of how the SGA is always available to lend support and help assist students through their academic studies but also in life itsself.

Pictured in the group photo below is Jose Manuel McIntyre Cortez, Rayven Acosta-Webb, Dezi Von Manos, Jose Eduardo Lopez, and Mustafa Barraj.

Randy Rutledge

Taft College Hall of Fame Randy Rutledge 1984

Randy Rutledge and Sonya Christian

I recently had the opportunity to meet Randy Rutledge, a Taft College graduate who played on the 1984 national championship winning football team before transferring to the University of Oregon and getting to be a Rose Bowl MVP. Randy relished the opportunity to tell me how they “smashed the Renegades” during their championship-winning season.

Taft College hasn’t had a football program for over 20 years, but their rivalry with BC was one of the best in junior college sports, serving as the inspiration for the 1986 film “The Best of Times” starring Robin Williams and Kurt Russell. In the film, Robin Williams is a former Taft College receiver obsessed with the worst moment of his life – dropping a pass in the 1972 game between Taft and BC. Thirteen years later, he convinces Kurt Russell, his Taft quarterback, to help him re-stage the game.

A must read is this article from The Bakersfield Californian from 2006 titled, “Film on Kern rivalry still hit XX years later.

And here is the movie trailer from 1986.


Dennis Mccall and Sonya Christian Taft College Nov 12 2017 cropped

Dennis McCall, Sonya Christian

I also got to visit with Dennis McCall who was a journalist with the Taft Midway Driller and later became a faculty member at Taft College. Dennis now volunteers at the Oil Museum at Taft that is open 3 days a week Thursday through Saturday and half a day in Sunday.  I promised him that I would go check out the museum.  In fact when I dropped by Senator Jean Fuller’s Thanksgiving Open House, her husband Russell was very complimentary about the Museum saying that it is a ” must visit” location.  I had a wonderful time visiting with both Dennis and his wife Jan.  I was Googling Dennis and came across this July 22, 2015 article in the Midway Driller. It is a fun read!



Renegade Football Players

As the football season comes to a close, the Renegades will take the field one last time in the Patriotic Bowl against Long Beach City College at 4 p.m. tonight. The Bakersfield Californian published two articles about the game this week, including a brief informational blurb when the game was announced last Sunday, and a preview article by Teddy Feinberg on Tuesday highlighting what Renegade fans can look forward to. I’m excited to watch our team close out the season strong. Is anyone else traveling to Long Beach for the game?

The BC Wrestling team won the SCWA Southeast Conference championship last weekend, with five champions and two runners up. Our coaching staff were also winners of the Head Coach of the Year and Assistant Coach of the Year awards.


Team Results:
1) Bakersfield College –   147 points
2) West Hills College –    137 points
3) Cuesta College –        107.5 points
4) Moorpark College-        49 points
5) East LA College –        39.5 points
6) Victor Valley College-  13 points
Individual Results:
Pedro Ramirez – 1st place @ 125
Marco Velasquez – 2nd place @ 133
Pedro Corona – 1st place @ 133
Emmett Kuntz – 1st place @ 149
Brayden Riley – 1st place @ 165
Adrian Godinez – 2nd place @ 184
Jeremy Maas – 1st place @ 184
Zavion Roberson – 2nd place @ 197


Coaches’ Awards:
Assistant Coach of the Year – Joe Espejo
Head Coach of the Year – Marcos Austin and Brett Clark

A complete list of team results and placers is available at GoGades.com.

Men’s Basketball

Mens Basketball Nov 15 2015

The Renegades used a strong second half to pull away from Santa Barbara and secure a 89-65 victory.  Four BC players scored in double-figures.  Tucker Eenigenburg (22 points and 7rebounds), Jaylunn English (15 points and 9 rebounds), Henry Galinato (13 points and 9 rebounds) and Johnathan Murray, who led the Renegades with 5 assists, added 12 points and 7 rebounds. (from gogades.com)

Women’s Soccer

Women's Soccer defeat Victor Valley Nov 13 2017.jpg

The BC women’s soccer team finishes the regular season, with a 1-0 victory over Victor Valley, on Friday.  Ashley Quintanilla scored for the Renegades, her fisrt goal of the season and Taylor Serrano earned her 5th shut out of the year.  The Renegades finished in second place in the conference (8-7-3, 3-3-2). (from gogades.com)

Geology Field Trip

Bakersfield College Geology Professor, Chris Benker and six BC Geology majors joined the annual CSU Bakersfield Geology three-day field trip to the Zzyzx Desert Studies Center in the Mojave Desert.  BC students planning to transfer to CSUB had an opportunity to network with CSUB Geology professors, as well as CSUB undergraduate and graduate Geology students. This partnership has been longstanding. Geology Instructor Cari Meyer has also taken groups on this great adventure in past years. BC and CSUB Geology work hard to create a seamless pipeline into the Geology pathway and have fun at the same time! Bakersfield College participation was sponsored by CSUB’s Claude Fiddler Endowment.

The fun trailer highlights just a few of the adventures on this three-day geology expedition!


Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers

The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) Conference is the main event for SHPE the and the most massive technical and career conference for Hispanics in the country. Respectively, the SHPE Conference attracts over 6,000 engineering professionals, students, and corporate representatives. The meeting is an opportunity for engineering companies and corporations to recruit talented SHPE members and also to provide educational and career opportunities for professionals and engineering students.  This 2017 SHPE conference was held in Kansas City from November 1-5th. Six BC/MESA/ASME  students attended with Professor Lewis from the math department as the chaperon.  The students and faculty were sponsored by the engineering department and MESA.

Students at SHPE

Leah Altman, Ashely Anderson. Lizbeth Sanchez, Rodrigo Salazar, Christian Gutierrez, and Matt Abbot.

IMG_1963Arvin Christmas Parade


In Richard Beene’s column, Bakersfield Observed, he mentioned that Supervisor Leticia Perez donated to save the Arvin Christmas Parade from cancellation. I’m one of many who wish to publicly say thank you. This is a special parade for a special community.

Did you miss the news we announced in August regarding BC in Arvin?  Check out my blog post from August 8th, “Enriching Lives through Campus and Community.”

This week on Social Media

I loved seeing this tweet from Assemblymember Rudy Salas:

Rudy Salas Tweet Vetfest

Kimberly Bligh posts on Facebook about the wellness class

Wellness class Nov 15 2017.png

From Jen Garrett’s Facebook.

The future of BC Music

Josh Ottum, Jen Garrett, Kris Tiner Nov 2017

John Ottum, Jen Garrett, Kris Tiner

Tweet from Connie Gonzales

Connie Gonzales Tweet Nov 2017

Thank to you the KCHCC

With the technology of today and how much we utilize email, texting, social media, etc., it is a real treat to have time to sit and open up the mail. I was overjoyed to open a large envelope from BC friend and supporter, Jay Tamsi and the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Thank you for the beautiful award and recognition.


The Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce works to promote Hispanic and minority-owned businesses, and those that cater to, or employ Hispanics by being active and visible in the community and by raising the level of awareness of our member’s needs in the business community. Their vision of the KCHCC is to create innovative and influential business programs that will promote Hispanic Business and economic development at the local, state, national, and international level.

In February of this year, I was honored to be recognized as Woman of the Year by KCHCC and you can see my blog from February here.

Great College Council Meeting:

I really enjoy my work with various groups on campus.  These folks are smart and dedicated to students.  This week at College Council, a team of faculty and deans presented the work BC is doing with the money that we received for “Strong Workforce.”

Strong Workforce at College Council Nov 17 2017.jpg

This is money legislated to improve the workforce for high wage jobs.

Strong Workforce Funding.png

Here are the local and regional projects that are underway.  For example, BC’s baccalaureate program in Industrial Automation has made the regional list.  This work includes working with the community colleges close to us in the region to align the freshman and sophomore level curriculum for Industrial Technology so that students can transfer with junior standing into the baccalaureate program.

Strong Workforce Projects.png

The presenters did a fabulous job describing how they were using the funding to develop the various certificates within the degree programs.  In some cases the equipment is so expensive that BC would not have been able to purchase the equipment without this grant.

Let’s see what Dr. Josh Ottum and our Commercial Music program is doing related to Strong Workforce


Let’s hear from Sarah Baron about the Patient Navigator program within BC’s Health Sciences degree.

I’m so proud of this work!  We are BC.

Alex Epstein in Bakersfield

Chad Hathaway invited me to the Alex Epstein talk on Thursday, Nov 16th.

Alex Epstein Nov 16 2017

His book:

The Moral Case for Fossil Fuel

Jay Tamsi, Karen Goh, Chad Hathaway, Bill Thomas, Sonya Christian Nov 16 2017.jpg

Karen Goh, Jay Tamsi, Chad Hathaway, Bill Thomas, Sonya Christian

KAren Goh, Shannon Grove, Sonya Christian Nov 16 2017

Karen Goh, Shannon Grove, Sonya Christian

Loved seeing Jean Fuller, one of my favorite people at her Thanksgiving Open House on Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Karen Goh, Jean Fuller, Sonya Christian Nov 14 2017

Oliver and Samson

Lisa Kent's Oliver and Samson

Neo on November 14, 2017, 3 days before his 8-month birthday

Neo Nov 14 2017

Sonya ASUGSV San Diego April 18 2016


That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Our 60th Homecoming at 1801 Panorama

Good morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, October 14, 2017….our homecoming.  A wonderful day to be a Renegade.

Tailgader Homecoming Sep 30 2017This year marks the 60th Homecoming celebration at 1801 Panorama Drive. I hope you’ll come out and show your unique Renegade pride in celebration of 114 years of BC transforming lives in Kern County. The game starts at 6PM, but we’ll be serving steak dinner with music by local legends Mento Buru at TailGade starting at 3PM and our grand Homecoming Parade starts at 4:45PM before the game.

On campus, we’ve been celebrating Homecoming all week. When I arrived on campus on Monday morning, I was greeted with Renegade decorations and school spirit everywhere. We kicked off with an office decoration contest hosted by The Office of Student Life. This year there was a tie between two areas: the shared area of the Marketing & Public Relations and Institutional Effectiveness departments, and the Extended Study Area. Congratulations!!



Guess who is the king in the picture above? Answer will be provided at the end of this blog post.

There was also a poster artwork competition for the Red&White Traveling Trophy. Congrats to this year’s winners of the Team Poster Competition. You can stop by the Office of Student Life to view them all. First place to “Free on the Outside,” second place to the Student Nursing Org, and third place to the Ag Club.

Renegade Homecoming Paint Night

In the evening, SGA hosted a Renegade Paint Night where BC students, faculty, staff, and friends could come together and create their own masterpiece.

On Wednesday, we held a talent show to showcase our talented Renegades. The host for the evening was Stig Jantz, who cracked jokes and kept everyone laughing. Congratulations to the first place winner Dezi Von Manos & Rayven Acosta-Webb (Duet Cover of Dynamite by Taio Cruz) second place went to Valentin Vargas (single dancer) then in third place came Ganae Romo (Alessia Cara – Scars To Your Beautiful). Special thanks to the BC Food Services for providing the nachos and beverages for the event.

The Office of Student Life held a Pancake feed and pep rally on Thursday, bringing everyone into the Homecoming spirit. Students were jousting with rubber batons “American Gladiators”-style in a ring and knocking down milk jugs with bean bags in celebration of Homecoming Week. Our cheer team led routines and high energy dancing while our drumline gathered all on campus to the Renegade Crossroads for the activities.

Learn the BC Fight Song

Before the big game, listen live here!

We will fight fight fight when we’re winning
We will fight fight fight when we lose
Ere play ere goes ere the whistle blows.
We will fight where ere we choose.
We will fight fight fight in the morning,
We will fight fight fight in the night.
We are bound to win today, as we battle in the fray.
We will fight fight fight fight fight.


Homecoming Queen: Robbie Bonas

Robbie (1)

1961 Homecoming Queen, Robbie Bonas

In 1961, Robbie Bonas was our Homecoming Queen and I recently requested her photo from back then. Can you spot the BC on her crown? I absolutely love this photo.

Robbie was also one of our 100 stars. She gained numerous honors during her career as a student at BC, including homecoming queen, head song leader, and was an active member of the Newman Club. She married and raised 3 daughters, one of whom assisted in nominating her for the 100 stars centennial award. Her daughter, Tarina Perry works in the executive suite with Academic Senate. Robbie returned to BC in 1992, and served as the key support person for numerous deans. She was known on campus for her kindness and patient nature.

Doesn’t Tarina look like Robbie?

Somaly Boles and Tarina Perry May 12 2017

Sonya Christian with Robbie Bonas at the Red and White Wine Festival April 12 2013

BC Cannon Crew Captain

Courtney Carter Shooting BC CannonIt’s a great day to be a Renegade and it’s a great day for honoring tradition and celebrating new milestones. BC Gun Crew Captain John Medvigy will be retiring after 50 years of shooting our BC cannon. The Home of the Renegades wants to say thank you for the many years of service to our students, our alumni, our friends, community, and fans. Our next Captain has a love for shooting cannons stemming from her childhood. Courtney Carter is not only a renegade alumni, she’s also currently working with Tom Gelder and the BC Foundation.  The love she has for shooting cannons defies explanation – please see the whole story done by Tabatha Mills at KGET.com.

Panorama Creative Music Summit

The Panorama Creative Music Summit started last night and will also continue tonight! This is the first annual Music Summit organized by faculty members Josh Ottum and Kris Tiner.


It was  good to faculty out to support this inaugural event on Friday the 13th.  Janet Tarjan, Mathematics; Reggie Williams, Philosophy; Andrew Bonds, English.

Janet Tarjan, Reggie Williams, Andrew Bonds at Panorama Creative Music Summit Oct 11 2017

Janet Tarjan, Reggie Williams, Andrew Bonds

The music was phenomenal.  The performers included the BC Commercial Music Students, Josh Ottum Trio, and Chris Schlarb & Psychic Temple.

You be the judge of that and listen to Josh Ottum perform Tom Petty’s Learning to Fly.  I don’t know about you….. but I’d take Ottum over Petty.  It is a quieter but more powerful version of the original–great bass.

I am so glad Josh did this piece.  Tom Petty is one of my all time favorites.  Listen to Ottum in the first video doing Learning to Fly and then Petty in the second with Free Falling.

Here is Tom Petty and Free Falling

Josh Ottum Trio with Kyle Burnham on the drums and Jared Gardner on the bass guitar was followed by Chris Schlarb and Psychic Temple.  Just great music.  Schlarb invited Kris Tiner to join them for two pieces.  Here is a 41-second snippet of Tiner.


During the transition of bands, I asked our philosophy student Andrew Martin to do a short video for my blog.  Let’s listen to Andrew

Distinguished Speaker, Dr. Ignacio Garcia

Ignacio GarciaDr. Ignacio Garcia was a guest speaker on campus this week, giving a talk he calls “Becoming brown in America: Remembering the Chicano movement.” Dr. Ignacio Garcia is the professor of western American history at BYU he has written 5 books. He says the presentation is a memoirist odyssey on why and how he and many other Mexican American youth in the 1960s became brown and Chicano and went into activism and the academy. He talked about the conditions in which many lived, the inadequate schools attended, the identity crisis faced and the bleak economic future that awaited many. Thank you Dr. Garcia, for coming to BC and thank you SGA and Student Life for hosting the Distinguished Speaker Series.

One Heart, One Voice – 1965 Choir Documentary

In the summer of 1965, the Bakersfield College Choir toured Europe and now, 52 years later, I had the privilege of seeing this incredible story documented on the big screen at our very own indoor theater on campus. We held two premier showings on Sunday, October 8th of the documentary “One Heart, One Voice: How the Bakersfield College Choir found success on the international stage”.


The film documented both the triumphs and hardships they experienced. From humble beginnings of signing waivers before leaving on the trip, to the Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod, singing for the Pope, and meeting the President of the United States. It was incredible to see the reunion, and film’s premier showing take place at our campus on the hill, the place where it all started 52 years ago. I fell in love with the story and can’t wait to share more with you.


Herb Benham wrote a fantastic piece available here at the Bakersfield Californian website. I love how he started the article, “They broke all the rules, they broke some of the rules, they broke enough of the rules to prove they were 18, human and in the midst of a grand adventure.”

Thank you to everyone who contributed to creating the film and those who attended. Among all the familiar friendly faces, it was fantastic to see Joe Hustzi, Director of the 1965 Choir and our mayor, Karen Goh at the event.  Thank you city councilman Andrea Gonzalez for attending and the fabulous Jerry Ludeke.

Mary Jo snapped a photo of the choir singing benediction afterwards. Just incredible.


The Links 40th Celebration


BC was in full force at The Links, Incorporated’s 40 year celebration of providing important educational resources to the community at the Seven Oaks Country Club last Saturday. The Bakersfield chapter of The Links offers has offered dozens of programs to support Kern County youth over four decades, including health and wellness conferences; panels on human trafficking, cyberbullying, HIV/AIDS prevention and other important social issues; and its hallmark “Leadership STEAM Academy”, introducing students to academic achievement tools and information about careers in science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics.

There are three women who are members of The Links in our BC Faculty – Debra Strong, Denise L. Norris and Odella Johnson, who is now retired. Also in attendance were Shanell Tyus, Paula Parks, Steven Watkin and June Charles. I’d like to thank all of our faculty who supporting the Links in making a positive impact on our youth.

Research and Planning Group: Student Success Conference

Several Bakersfield College Staff and Faculty attended the conference to present data and programs and to take back valuable information to BC. Collaboration at National conferences is vital to build communication across our regions.  I’m so proud!

BC Team Pictured: Isabel Castaneda, Darla Cooper (RP Group), Erica Menchaca,  Kimberly Bligh,  Teresa McAllister, Karen Snow, Shanell Tyus, and Lisa Kent

BC Team at RP SSSC Oct 2017 cropped.jpg

Craig Hayward.pngOur very own Dean of Institutional Effectiveness, Craig Hayward, was part of a team who presented a break out session titled “Multiple Measures Assessment Project (MMAP): From Pilot to Paradigm). The MMAP research team has found that assigning the highest placement from either a test or from multiple measures rule sets (i.e., disjunctive placement) reduces error and increases appropriate placement into transfer-level English and math. Disaggregation of student groups also demonstrates improved access and throughput for important demographic groups, decreasing or eliminating disproportionate impact. Pilot college results confirm reductions in required semesters of developmental education and increases in successful completion of transfer-level courses, while maintaining success rates in those courses. Participants learned about these results and heard about lessons from pilot college implementation to inform their own plans or refinement of their own implementation of a high-quality multiple measure placement system.

Isabel Castaneda, Darla Cooper, Erica Menchaca, Kimberly Bligh, Theresa McAlister cropped

Isabel Castaneda, Darla Cooper, Erica Menchaca, Kimberly Bligh, Theresa McAlister

At team from Title V and the Academic Development at BC, Dr. Kimberly Bligh, Isabel Castaneda, Teresa McAllister, and Dr. Erica Menchaca presented a break out titled “Extending the Classroom: Intensive Academic Support for Accelerated Basic Skills Pathways” Participants learned about how BC has redesigned traditional math pathways to offer more coherent accelerated options in remedial math. By extending the classroom to support college readiness, BC provides intrusive academic and counseling support to improve student learning in the math classroom and beyond. During this session, participants will hear how these acceleration and intensive support practices have increased student success at BC. Participants discussed how one of these approaches, interventions, and practices can be adapted to fit most colleges. Several participants requested a visit to BC to learn more about the ETC program! One participant stated that BC as a “Zootopia College: A College that ‘has it together and others want to imitate…’”  #WeAreBC

Family Literacy Night

On October 5 Bakersfield College Elementary Education students supported Family Literacy Night at Stella Hills. The students were paired in groups creating activities to develop literacy for children. Parents played games with their children and in each classroom throughout the Stella hills campus kids were laughing  enjoying spelling, reading and finding words. It was a very successful event and a proud night for Bakersfield Colleges future teachers.  Thank you Bernadette Towns for sending me these photos.


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Gadfly Cafe

On Thursday, the Gadfly Cafe met in the Levan Center and they discussed how robotics can help out in many different situations. It was inspiring to see how all the students attending were laser focused and paying close attention to the speaker. Thank you to Reggie Williams for organizing the Gadfly Cafe.


Jobs for Justice

Criminal justice professionals from across Kern County, many of them former BC students, came to campus on Wednesday to teach students how to get into the field, and what to expect when they get there.

Our Career and Technical Education department organized “Jobs in Justice: A Panel on Careers in Criminal Justice,” putting together panelists from Kern County Superior Court, the Bakersfield Police Department, Probation, Kern Valley State Prison, and the Department of Human Services.

The panelists detailed the application process for their various fields, which almost all require some combination of written, physical or oral examinations; background checks; and several rounds of panel interviews, as well as academy training after being hired to ensure that the right applicants are being chosen to serve the vulnerable populations that criminal justice professionals are tasked with helping.


While the application process can be daunting, many criminal justice fields, including juvenile probation, allow students to work as trainees while earning their degree, working around students’ class schedules. Monique DeLeon, a deputy probation officer for the Juvenile Investigations division of the Probation Department, recommended attempting to work in detention facilities in some capacity to prepare for a career in probation, where you’ll be responsible with making sure people are on the right path after getting out of those facilities.

“It will really prepare you in a closed environment for when you have to interact with people in an open environment,” DeLeon said.

Another entry point is by applying for temporary extra help terms, which have lower standards for application but allow you to learn important skills and network with professionals in the field before applying for permanent positions, Human Services Program Director Juan Rocha said.

Panelists reiterated the importance of dressing and conducting yourself in a professional manner in preparation for a criminal justice career, as well as maintaining a clean social media profile, as professionals in this field will be looked at as figures of authority.

All of the panelists emphasized the reality that a long, successful career in criminal justice can be very stressful and emotionally taxing. Rocha, who works with child custody disputes, detailed a harrowing first assignment where he assigned custody of a newborn child to its biological father with no criminal history, who displayed no red flags, to later find out that the man had killed the child at five months old.

“In child welfare, you see the worst society has to offer,” Rocha said. “When you’re dealing with human behavior, you can never be sure that everything is going to be OK.”

To see a gallery of photos, visit BC’s Smugmug.

Alliance Against Family Violence Fundraiser

It was a pleasure seeing representatives from our district and the community converge at the KGET parking lot for the annual fundraiser lunch for the Alliance Against Family Violence, a hotline and support program for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in Kern County. As I parked my car and was walking over, there was Gary Moser, Vice Chancellor of IT crossing the street from the Weill Institute to the KGET parking lot.  I joined him and we decided to take a few moments and have lunch rather than rushing back and eating at our desk.  It was great catching up with Gary and getting to know of the larger projects that he is working on a with other community colleges in the state.  Louis Gill came and joined us for a few minutes.

I ran into so many people I know.  John Means, Derrick Jeffries (thank you KGET for all your support), Jeff Green (a board member of the Alliance), Sandy Woo and many more.  I spotted the very unique Mustang car of Board member Trustee Agbalog as he pulled into the drive-through lane.

KGET interviewed Louis Gill, CEO of the Alliance, about sexual assault.


Board of Trustees Meeting

I loved this photo taken with our incredible students at the last Board of Trustees meeting on Thursday.

BC Students at KCCD Board Meeting

Afterwards, Bill Henry, President of Porterville College handed me this treasure in the parking lot.  A record of the 1965 choir that he found at his mother’s home.  Thank you Bill for safely getting this record to the Bakersfield College Archives.

Bill Henry at Board Meeting on Oct. 12, 2017

President Bill Henry

Board meeting Bill Henry (2)

What an incredible time to be a Renegade. So much history, so much love from our community. Can you see why I’m the luckiest and happiest college president ever?

Kern County Workforce Summit

Bakersfield College was present at the 2017 Kern County Workforce Summit.  Liz Rozell, Dean of BC’s baccalaureate program in Industrial Automation did an amazing job presenting the program to our community.  I was on the panel highlighting BC’s work in Arvin, a collaborative venture with Michael Turnipseed from KernTax, Supervisor Leticia Perez, Bryon Schaefer and KHSD and Bakersfielf College.


Karen Goh, Mark Novak, Sonya Christian

Karen Goh, Mark Novak, Sonya Christian

Cheryl Scott, Kristen Barnes, Richard Chapman, Sonya Christian

Cheryl Scott, Kristen Barnes, Richard Chapman, Sonya Christian

BC Choir Heading to Australia

And speaking of the BC Choir, Jennifer Garrett was so thrilled with the Board’s decision to help fund their Australia trip that she made up fake checks to give them at one of their rehearsals this week.  She said some of them cried and others just squealed with delight.  Regardless, she said they were so appreciative. I loved the photo they all took – well done all.


Wellness at BC

Wellness Core Value

Many of us at BC are attempting to be deliberate about developing habits that promote wellness.  Our Office (VPs and President), under the leadership of Chris Glaser, has tried to cultivate one habit every month.  Last month it was hydrating by drinking water.  This month is taking breaks and going for walks.  Here is a photo I snapped with Chris Glaser and Denis Spencer after Dennis shared with us that his doctor had ordered him to walk more.  So he tried several times a week to do ten rounds through the gym which included two flights of stairs.  His routine included placing 10 pennies on a banister and after every round he would pick up one of the pennies to make sure that he made the ten rounds.  I thought that was pretty cool.

Chris Glaser, Sonya Christian, Dennis Spencer

Chris Glaser sent this great email this week to remind us to take breaks and walk.  In it he had a video about the Pomodoro Technique to overcome procrastination.  Check it out

He wrapped up his email with this:

And, now that I’ve intensely focused on writing this piece, I’m going to take a break and recharge by brewing my second cup of tea.

Happy Thursday and Happy Renegade Pride Day!

Keeping in Touch

Alex DominguezI got a lovely email from our former SGA president Alex Dominguez, who’s currently studying law at Old Miss. Alex wanted to let me know that he’s taking a class about Torts, Contracts and Civil Procedure in his first semester with a professor who has a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Oxford University. It’s good to know that Alex hasn’t given up on electioneering, as he successfully ran for one of only three Senate positions on the Student Bar Association for his graduating class. He’s also staying connected back home by writing a column in the Kern County Bar Association’s monthly magazine.

As well as staying in touch with me, Alex makes sure to maintain contact with Nicky Damania and fellow former president Clayton Fowler, who share stories about how BC has impacted their lives and looking forward to their return to Bakersfield to give back to our college and community.

BCSGA Presidents with Nicky Damania June 16 2017

Four Generations of SGA Presidents and Nicky Damania

Ag Advisory Meeting

BC students, past and present, are a huge inspiration to me. Here are some photos from this week’s BC Agriculture Advisory Meeting. Thank you Corny Rodriguez for the photos!


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Celebrating our Faculty

This week, one of our faculty in Art, Diego Gutierrez, was invited by the Consulate General of Mexico in Fresno to show his stunning artwork. You can view some of Diego’s artwork online at: https://diegomonterrubio.weebly.com/

Congratulations to Diego for this high honor. We are so proud of you! And thank you Manny Mourtzanos for letting me know.  You are always bragging about faculty accomplishments.

Monterrubio at Mex Consulate

BC Social Science professor Matthew Garrett was granted an award by the Utah State Historical Society for his book about Native American children who left their reservations to live with Mormon foster families. Garrett is the winner of the 2017 Francis Armstrong Madsen Best Utah History Book Award for “Making Lamanites”, a book about the Indian Student Placement Program published by the University of Utah Press last year. “Making Lamanites” documents the Church of Latter Day Saints’ Native American foster program that ran for over 50 years and the debate between First Nations leaders who saw the Mormon Church as an empowering force for natives, and Red Power activists who viewed them as colonial invaders.


BC Passings

Beverly Keiper-MaloufKim Nickell shared that our beloved colleague and friend, Bev Keiper, passed away this past week in Los Angeles with her husband, Bob, at her side. As most of you know, Bev had battled and beaten cancer several years ago; however, she continued to battle pneumonia and other illnesses for some time. Bev was a remarkable woman and teacher.  She created a supportive atmosphere for our ACDV students in the writing courses she taught and in the Student Success Lab.  Students always sought her out because she was helpful and encouraging to them in many ways.  And despite the fact that Bev didn’t always feel well, she still came to work with a cheerful spirit. She had an amazing work ethic, and she brought many years of valuable teaching experience and a professionalism that elevated the work in the lab as well as the Learning Center

Renegade Athletics:


October 11 2017 BC vs AVC

The Renegades swept Antelope Valley (25-17, 25-10, 25-13), on Wednesday night.  And on Friday, won 25-24, 25-12, 25-18 over LA Valley.

It was a treat having Mr. and Mrs. Packer there to support Renegade Volleyball.  They  recently celebrated 55 years of marriage and met while attending BC…they are long time supporters of volleyball and men’s and women’s basketball.

Mr and Mrs Packer October 13 2017 Renegade Volleyball

Mr. and Mrs. Packer with Sandi Taylor and Coach Paula Dahl

Men’s Soccer:

The Renegades defeated Victor Valley 1-0, On Monday night, for their first win of the year.  Alazhar Magali scored the only goal of the game, his first of the season.  Israel Rodriguez, making only his second start of the season recorded the shutout for his first career win.

I was at the Memorial Stadium on friday the 13th supporting our soccer program.  And of course saw Stig Jantz there.  He is always there for all sports supporting our students.  I snapped this picture of him with a track student Edward who is an Engineering major.

Women’s soccer:

The Renegades women’s soccer team played to a 1-1 draw against Antelope Valley.

October 10 2017 against AVC.jpg

Grand Jury presentation about Bakersfield College

My favorite thing to do, besides sitting in the galleries watching our students, is to talk about BC.  So, I was delighted when the Grand Jury invited me to present to them about the State of Bakersfield College.  It was so much fun.  And the individuals where full of energy with sharp probing questions.

Grand Jury October 11 2017.jpg

Fun Pictures:

Welcome to Wendy Lawson, Nan’s new assistant.

Wendy Lawson and Jennifer Serratt Oct 10 2017

Andrea Thorson and son Jimmy from Facebook

Andrea Thorson and Son Jimmy from Facebook October 13 2017

Liz Rozell and grandaughter from Facebook

Liz Rozell with grand daughter from FAcebook Oct 13 2017

Matthew Garrett and his daughters

Matt Garrett and his daughters Oct 14 2017

Craig Hayward:

And the answer to the quiz above.  The king in the picture is…….[drumroll]

Craig Hayward October 10 2017


And in closing, here’s Neo being smart, alert, and figuring things out…

October 13 2017 Neo on leash

Sonya Christian walking Neo Oct 8 2017


That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Moments that take our breath away!

Good morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, October 29th and a great day to be a Renegade!

Let me start by having you get instructions from Nick Strobel on how to fill out your ballot.


This was one of those weeks of hard focused work, very little sleep and moments of great joy.  Yes….joy!  Sometimes words don’t seem enough to accurately describe how uplifting and inspiring the campus can be. There are times – daily and even multiple times a day – when in the middle of a busy day I witness spectacular BC students making a difference and sharing their talents with the world around them.

Wednesday afternoon was one of those moments.  I was in my weekly meeting, in my office,  with the Academic Senate President, Steve Holmes and Executive Vice President of Instruction, Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg when Tracy Hall opened the door and said “you must see this.”  Through the open door, in the quad enclosure I saw our choir students gathered and two of them with drums, seated on the ground. Dr. Jen Garrett, their music director was having them rehearse by performing in different parts of the campus.  Their song had a haunting  melody with strong, forceful yet sad rhythmic drumming sounds.  The voices of the students were pure and sweet, and floated through the afternoon air of the college. Students and staff gathered around, captivated by the one song that they performed.  Don’t you want to be on this campus filled with moments that take your breath away?

Life Is Not Measured By the Number of Breaths We Take, But By the Moments That Take Our Breath Away

It’s moments like these are the most inspiring and uplifting and they are one reason why… I’m the happiest and luckiest college president in the world.


Did you pay attention to each of those faces standing in an arc facing Jen? Our students are just spectacular… They are complex and diverse in their interests and what drives them. They each strive daily to overcome different and unique challenges, yet they always come together as one communal collegiate spirit that continues to be the heart of our campus. These incredible students are the center of all that we do. They are our future and together, we are BC!

Here is another moment that took my breath away…. Students from our soccer team volunteered for phone banking on Wednesday, October 26th.  I was wondering if these young men would indeed do phone banking and I was hugely surprised and teary-eyed as I wandered around the second floor seeing them sprawled out fully engaged in making phone calls, while having fun, horsing around and finishing the pizza.  We had to order three more pizzas that night 🙂  Nicky Damania did a short video with four of our student soccer players. Coach Vayron Martinez is indeed the man!


Coach Vayron Martinez and Janet Tarjan

Jazz at BC

Kris Tiner Oct 23 2016.jpg

On Sunday, October 23rd, Transylvanian born, NYC-based pianist LUCIAN BAN and American violist and Grammy nominee MAT MANERI performed material from their award winning 2013 ECM release Transylvanian Concert, as well as premiering new compositions, and performing interpretations of Romanian traditional music, and the music of George Enescu in the context of contemporary jazz and improvisation.

Kris Tiner, thank you!


Got this wonderful picture from Corny Rodriguez with Lynn Krausse and Mike Ivey.  They are attending ASCCC meeting on Faculty Qualifications and Equivalency.

Lynn Krauss Mike Ivy Corny Rodriguez Oct 29 2016.jpg

Come join us for Vet Fest 2016 on Wednesday, November 2nd at 9:30 a.m.

Kay Meet Vet Fest 2016

Trustee Kay Meek at last year’s vetfest

Enlisting in the service is a very big decision for anyone to make but for those who do, and many who lose their lives we give thanks. After returning from service, many veterans go back to school to complete their certificates, or access job training. Bakersfield College’s Veteran Resource Center is an approved institution for the training of veterans and veterans’ dependents entitled to educational assistance. Our veterans are given credit for specific service experience and certain educational training completed while in service. The Office of Admissions and Records will make evaluation of such experience and training. All educational opportunities and personnel services offered in the college are available to the veterans. BC makes it one of its goals that the Veterans are included in everything. These are not traditional students; they need to be taken care of holistically not just academically.

There are many initiatives on campus focused towards the veterans, including an education advisor that caters to Veteran’s needs, a veteran development course, veteran orientation and priority registration, as well as the Veteran’s Club. The goal of the veteran’s club is to give available resources for all Bakersfield College student veterans, and provide information, service, and a feeling of belonging. Meetings are held in the veterans lounge on select Tuesdays from 10:00 am to 11:00 am.

Paul and Wesley Halloween 2014

Beckworth, Barrientos

The Veterans Lounge is a place that many veterans hold dear to them. The Veterans Resource Center provides a range of counseling, and outreach services to aid in a comfortable post-war readjustment to civilian life. The Center is full of bright natural light and is a quiet space where veterans can study, rest, and use the center’s computer. For more information visit he Vet center located in the Campus center and is open Monday through Thursday 8am-4pm.

On Wednesday November 2, 2016, Bakersfield College will be hosting its 4th annual Vetfest as a celebration to our student veterans as well as all veterans everywhere for Veteran’s Day. The Vetfest will include several community veteran organization and informational booths. We will have a keynote speaker J.R. Browning, who is a graduate of CSUB graduate school of counseling and now a veteran’s counselor at the Bakersfield Vet Center. The festivities start at 9:30am until 1pm located in the grass area between the library and CSS.

Homecoming 2016

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Homecoming 2016 was a week-long celebration, and I can’t believe it’s over already. Last Saturday, the event concluded with the Big Red Dinner, Renegade Parade, and the phenomenal BC Football game! For over 20 years, Renegade alumni and fans have asked for the Big Red Dinner to make a comeback and this year, I’m glad we did as the fan favorite was a hit. Thank you to our Big Red Dinner sponsors, W A Thompson, Kern Schools Federal Credit Union, International Soccer, and Don C. & Diane S Lake Family. Thank you Nicky Damania, Tom Gelder, Marlene Heise, and Mary Jo Pasek for making it happen.

After everyone had their fill of spaghetti dinner, the parade was escorted through campus.  Horns were honking, pompoms shaking, flags flying, and Renegades waved from various vehicles as they made their way to Memorial Stadium. If you missed it, a video has been posted by Nicky Damania on the BCSGA Facebook – check it out at https://www.facebook.com/SGABC/videos/1179048165503055/

One of my favorite things about the evening is how BC is true family – our community is a blend of both traditional families who support and attend BC for generations, and families you can choose to be a part of! The BC Women’s Basketball team is a perfect example of this united teamwork and they are a BC family.  Coach Paula Dahl is the best!

And here is a moment I shared with our Women’s Basketball team.


Kimberly Bligh and her mini Renegade granddaughter were out in the stands cheering on the home team with Trustee Romeo Agbalog and Lily Perez. And I spotted another future Renegade, Valerie, with her grandpa, Chris Hine.

Trustee Agbalog did the coin toss at the beginning of the game.  It is always great to have our trustees on our campus!

Trustee Agbalog getting ready for coin toss Oct 22 2016.jpg

Thank you to Trustee Romeo Agbalog, and JP Lake for being on the Vance Palm Show.  Vance Palm is just the very best!



Thank you Keith Wolaridge and Jay Rosenlieb for the Measure J table.

Keith Wolaridge and his daughter Oct 22 2016.jpg

Keith Wolaridge and his beautiful daughter

Enjoyed meeting Chris Cruz one of our awesome students who is a friend of a dear friend of mine Lauro Braganza.


Sonya Christian, Chris Cruz

The Renegades closed out the evening with a win in front of over five thousand fans at the big game. Check out the recap at http://gogades.com/sports/fball/2016-17/releases/20161025s6ikt5

Renegade Volleyball

Coach Carl Ferreira led the BC Volleyball team to victory against College of the Canyons on Friday night and broke Canyons’ 33-match conference win streak.  See tweet!


Renegade Volleyball takes over first place in league by sweeping state ranked number 12 College of the Canyons.

Grand Opening of the Wonderful Academy

On Friday, October 28th, the Wonderful Academy opened its doors to their new location.  Lynda and Stewart Resnick have been great partners of Bakersfield College and committed to advancing the educational attainment levels in the Central Valley.  Trustee Romeo Agbalor, Rich McCrow, and Raquel Lopez represented KCCD and BC at this event.  There were many dignitaries to support the great work being done by Wonderful.

Kristen Barnes Philanthropy-Matters

Talking about the Wonderful Academy, there was a great piece by Kristen Barnes in Thursday’s Californian titled Dual-enrollment program jump-starts college education

Check it out http://tinyurl.com/grduo94

Here is the closing sectionin her article:

In a community with lagging educational attainment rates and a large population of first-generation college students, dual enrollment offers an innovative solution to improving educational outcomes.

Education is the bedrock of any community and it is imperative that we all work together to provide opportunities for improvement and change. KHSD, KCCD and CSUB should be commended for their collaborative efforts in the name of expanding opportunities for local students.

Disability Awareness Day

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The Fireside Room was packed and almost every seat taken when a constant stream of students filled the back wall. There was standing-room-only during the student panel that kicked off the three-part program of Disability Awareness Day on Thursday afternoon.

Outside the Campus Center, 26 booths, tables, and tents lined up along the walkways. Groups like Guide Dogs of America, League of Dreams, and Bakersfield Parks and Rec were present to share the information about what they can offer and how they can help people with various disabilities.

Back inside, Ian Kennedy, Viridiana Alvarez, Maria Medina, Abel Carlon, and Edward Davila shared personal stories and experiences about being a college student at BC with disabilities. These challenges present themselves in many forms… from reading comprehension to motor skills, to anxiety and depression to blindness, deafness, and mobility difficulties. These students shared inspiring messages that show dedication, extreme strength, a drive to overcome any challenges, but possibly most of all… their stories shared their ability.


The ability to do what they love, pursue an education, and give back to their communities and make a difference in the world through their talents and gifts.

First DSPS Awards

A number of those willing, helpful people were recognized during the awards presentation that followed the student panel. The award recipients were:

Outstanding Department: Maintenance and Operations – For always being on call, day or night. The M&O staff support student success by ensuring that accessible furniture and equipment such as CC TV’s are in class locations across campus.


Outstanding Faculty: Tom Greenwood – Reaching out to deaf students on campus, Tom’s support of student success has included taking American Sign Language courses that allow him to communicate directly with students. His sabbatical leave took him on a journey to explore how deaf faculty teach mathematics to deaf students and to share what he has learned both at BC and to his colleagues in the state.


Outstanding Faculty: Bernie Scanlon – Students describe him as caring, understanding, and funny. Students look for his Math 60 and 70 courses to assist them in gaining the skills to succeed in mathematics. DSP&S counselors and students are aware that his style of teaching connects with people and incorporates diverse learning styles.


Outstanding Staff: Kristin Rabe – Kristin has been a driving force in establishing the Accessibility Task Force on campus. Her advocacy for captioned media and knowledge of all things related to media services has been instrumental in ensuring live streamed events on campus are captioned. Her knowledge of cccconfer is being used to explore potential ways to support veterans on campus.


Outstanding Staff: Bob Shimmin – Bob is the “Go-To Guy” when it comes to assistive technology. He has been involved in specialized training at the High Tech Center Training Unit and works closely with DSPS staff and students to ensure equal access and student success.


Outstanding Student: Maria Medina – Maria will be competing her AA-T is sociology degree in spring. Her goal is to transfer to a University of California to pursue a degree in political science. Her career goal is to utilize her education and experience to become a disability advocate.  Maria has demonstrated the core values behind the Habits of Mind as she incorporates self-advocacy and persistence to strive for excellence.


Outstanding Student: Douglas Bolds – Doug is a proactive student. While working for Public Safety Department driving cart he uses his connections and knowledge to help his peers achieve success. He educates students about DSPS services that are available and has been known to personally deliver students looking for work to the Workability Program office. His great attitude, reliability, and willingness to go out of his way to assist others goes above and beyond.


After the awards presentation, a handful of various faculty and staff took their seats on the panel.

Thank you to Jonathan Schultz, Jackie Brouillette, Moya Arthur, Helen Acosta, Alexandra Dallara, Jennifer Garrett, Barbara Mathis and our student panel for publicly disclosing your disabilities, challenges, and successes with everyone on Thursday. Your stories continue to inspire classmates and colleagues. Together we can improve services, better our tools, create greater awareness, and ultimately make the world a better place.

People with disabilities are, first and foremost, people…. They are our neighbors, our friends, our colleagues, our classmates, you, and me. BC Professor, Helen Acosta said on the panel, “All of our diversity makes us stronger.” Our dreams are not any different, and together we are BC.

Thank you to channels 17, 23, and 29 who all covered this important and special event. Check out two of the articles online at



KGET: http://tinyurl.com/jc35ku2

Extra pictures taken by Manny De Los Santos are available at https://bakersfieldcollege.smugmug.com/Disability-Awareness-Day-2016/i-FB5rTTf

CSEA Halloween Potluck Party

On Monday afternoon the Fireside Room was filled with tricks and treats for the first annual CSEA Halloween Potluck Party. All classified staff was invited to bring their favorite dish and arrive in costume for a small lunchtime gathering. The staff at BC are at the core of making everything happen and I sincerely appreciate each and every one of them. Tina Johnson, BC’s CSEA President, said in an email that everyone seemed to love the food, since only a tiny bit was leftover!

Special thanks to the team who brought all of this together, Heather Barajas, Theresa Rodriquez, Stephanie Vega, Mary Webb, Bernadette Gutierrez, and Yadira Guerrero. Thank you to everyone from food services to helped warm food and set up tables and Manuel De Los Santos for taking pictures! Check out all the photos at https://bakersfieldcollege.smugmug.com/CSEA-Halloween-Potluck/


Congratulations to Dr. Josh Ottum

Josh Ottum and Omar March 10 2016Earlier this month, I mentioned a moment when Prof. Josh Ottum stopped by my office to pick up the signed approval to apply for a grant. I’m proud to announce, he has been selected for funding! Dr. Josh Ottum is a creative artist and scholar who is completely committed to our community and his students.

In his application, he mentioned “developing seven essential courses to prepare students for success in fields of music and audio technology. The state has approved our certificate and I am thrilled to give students the opportunity to learn about the exciting facets of commercial music, including live sound, composition, sound design, and so forth.”

Thank you, Dr. Ottum, for applying for this mini grant under the “Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy” – it’s going to make a difference for many of BC’s talented music students.

An Out-of-this-World Encounter


Photo by Cara Jackson

On Wednesday, October 26, author Andy Weir gave an extremely witty and comical speech at BC. He also answered questions from the audience regarding his book, “The Martian.”

He made the audience feel connected to the plot of the book, but at the same time was completely honest about new ideas of  our understanding of Mars. He was very happy he had “established a trust with the readers… and they accepted what I had to say.”

It took him three years to write his book, and get in touch with publishers. He previously worked as a computer software programmer, but in his spare time he worked on the book. The book turned into a movie and in October of 2015, The Martian was in theaters.  It follows a story of Mark, the main character who is left on Mars alone and thinks of every way possible to survive until his crew can come back.

Many students in the audience had a chance to ask Andy what inspired him to write the book. A brief question and answer session followed:

How do you feel as the writer watching the movie?

Andy: I liked how Matt captured the personality of the character very well and I was able to work with all involved.

What is your favorite movie?

Andy: The Martian… No I believe, Match Stick Men, since I love con men and crime scene movies.

When did you start the book?

Andy: In 2009, and it took me 3 years to write it.


Photo by Cara Jackson

What was the most interesting research topic?

Andy: I liked the orbital dynamics and I wrote software to calculate the simulations.

Are you working on any other books?

Andy: Yes, right now I am working on “The Woman on the Moon.” The main character is super intelligent, and has a strong moral code, and attractive side.

What new discovered aspects about Mars doesn’t show up in your book?

Andy: When I wrote the Martian we had a certain view of Mars and now since a probe landed we know that there is a huge amount of water on Mars. Every cubic meter has 35 liters in it from the ice crystals.

Also, the dust storms on Mars would not have any force behind it, because even though Mars does get 150 k/h winds, the atmosphere is so thin it would have a difficult time knocking over a piece of paper.

What helps you write?

Andy: I like to listen to instrumental music and the sound tracks to movies and drink lots of diet coke. Also, I use the morning to write and keep motivated.

nick-strobel-returning-from-precinct-oct-29-2016Thanking Nick Strobel

I often say that I’m the luckiest college president in the world and it’s true. A large part of that is because I get to work with the best staff, faculty, and administration. Anna Agenjo, our incredible Librarian, sent this beautiful email praising Nick Strobel that I just have to share.

“Everyone already knows what a huge asset Nick Strobel is to the BC community, not just in the classroom but also through his work on committees and in the community. We are very lucky to have him on campus.  Although it is not needed, I want to add my voice to the many by telling you about Nick’s contribution to the Cerro Author program this year. I approached Nick this past summer to ask if he could present a show about Mars in the planetarium to complement this year’s author, Andy Weir.

Nick did not hesitate, and last Thursday he gave a well-attended and well-received presentation on Mars at the planetarium. He was able to bring Mars and the cosmos to life for his audience, and it was the perfect prelude to today’s Andrew Weir events. We all learned so much, and his enthusiasm in sharing his knowledge with the community made me very proud to be associated with Bakersfield College. Because of Nick’s extraordinary efforts, BC’s star shone brightly last Thursday night at the planetarium. I wanted you to know how much we in the Library appreciate Nick for going above and beyond.”

Soccer Staff & Antelope Valley Student

Going above and beyond is something our BC staff and faculty do regularly for all students. At a recent soccer match on campus an Antelope Valley student was injured and had to be taken to Kern Medical Center (KMC). Our coach, as well as Chief Chris Counts, were at KMC with the student, and a group text message keeping all informed. This is what BC does – a culture of care and support. We Are BC!

Measure J:

Walked into the Campaign HQ this morning and saw Chris Glaser and Lesley Bonds role modeling anticipated conversations when volunteers precinct walk.  It was so fun watching them.

Chris Glaser Lesley Bonds Oct 29 2016.jpg

And a quick thank you to Micahel O’Doherty who has put in hours volunteering his time to Measure J. Even is his Halloween gallivanting pirate costume.


Michael O’Doherty

Let me start my update of Measure J with the community voices piece in The Bakersfield Californian by Prof. Debbie Rosenthal.  Check it out at


I love how Debbie described Bakersfield:

No, Bakersfield is not a tourist destination. And yes, Bakersfield is too hot in the summer. But Bakersfield is what I call an easy city to live in.

The city is large enough to have everything I need and small enough to have little traffic congestion. People are considerate to one another to make it feel like a small town. I call this “The South of California.” There is one major difference. I am accepted here and not treated as an outsider.

and Bakersfield College:

Bakersfield College is amazing. It has provided me with numerous opportunities for growth in my profession. The choice of conferences, meetings, presentations, training, and committees allows me to focus my unleashed energy into positive channels. The students are ambitious to be challenged for the reassurance that I believe they are capable of achieving their dreams. Their expectations from me demand I deliver the best I can at all times.

The administration, staff and colleagues have quickly accepted me and respect my extensive experience, training, and research in chemical education. They trust my judgment and allow me to try new ideas in the classroom.

and Debbie concludes with:

One of the top priorities for Measure J is to renovate and expand the science building. The series of short bonds, with more return on investment than one long bond, are strictly to improve the aging facilities. I ask you to support Measure J. It will not be used to increase my salary. It is for the future of students and Kern County.

Debbie Rosenthal Oct 27 2016.png

We are BC! and as Karen Goh said in her remarks to the college during Opening Day ….BC is so integrated within the Bakersfield Community that we should, in addition to We are BC!, chant We are Bakersfield!

Measure J endorsements:

j_dbacathy-butlerThe endorsements keep coming in.  This week we were delighted when Cathy Butler stopped by and handed the endorsement of the Downtown Business Association.  Thank you Cathy Butler and Bob Bell.

Here are few of the over 2000 endorsements that we have received so far: #MeasureJ


Joe Aguirre, Former Delano Mayor
Kevin Burton, President, SJCH Foundation
Kyle Carter, Bakersfield Mayoral Candidate
Ricardo Chavez, Delano Mayor
Stephanie Cortez, Porterville Chamber of Commerce CEO/President
David Couch, Kern County Supervisor
Robert de la Rosa, Ola Raza Director
Jose Flores, Arvin Mayor
Mick Gleason, Kern County Supervisor
Karen Goh, Bakersfield Mayoral Candidate
Doug Greener, Bakersfield Fire Chief
Shannon Grove, California State Assembly Member
Virginia Gurrola, Porterville Councilwoman
Harvey Hall, Bakersfield Mayor
Cam Hamilton, Porterville Vice Mayor
Harold Hanson, Bakersfield Vice Mayor
Mike Maggard, Kern County Supervisor
Terry Maxwell, Bakersfield City Council Member
Kay Meek, KCCD Trustee
Arnold Morrison, DJUHS Board Member
Chris Parlier, Bakersfield City Council Member
Leticia Perez, Kern County Supervisor
Leticia Prado, Lamont Water District Member
Janet Rabanal, Delano Chamber of Commerce Director
Rosalina Rivera, Delano Union Elementary School District Superintendent
Willie Rivera, Bakersfield City Council Member
Rudy Salas, California State Assembly Member
Mary K. Shell, Former Bakersfield Mayor
Bob Smith, Bakersfield City Council Member
Milt Stowe, Porterville Mayor
Jay Tamsi, Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce President
Rob Taylor, Owner, Stafford’s Chocolates
Bill Thomas, Retired U.S. Congressman
Grace Vallejo, Delano City Council
Greg Williamson, Bakersfield Police Department Chief
Donny Youngblood, Kern County Sheriff

Milt Younger, Attorney

And here are some of the organizations who have endorsed Measure J

The Bakersfield Californian
Bakersfield College Alumni Association
Bakersfield Downtown Business Association
Building4SUCCESS Inc
California City Chamber of Commerce
Delano Camber of Commerce
Democratic Women of Kern
Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce
Greater Tehachapi Economic Development Council
KCCD California School Employees Association
KCCD Community College Association
KCCD Management Association
Kern Agriculture Foundation
Kern County Black Chamber of Commerce
Kern County Democratic Party
Kern County Farm Bureau
Kern County Firefighters Union
Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Kern County Young Republicans (PAC)
Kern Economic Development Corporation
Kern County Taxpayers Association
Latina Leaders of Kern County
Murray Family Farms
Porterville Democratic Club
RA Johnsfam
Renegade Helmet Club
Sikh Women’s Association
Veterans of Foreign Wars District #6
Veterans of Foreign Wars #97
Wendale Davis Foundation

Thank you Measure J volunteers


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Sunday, Oct. 23 – Ivan Valadez, Tom Gelder, Dana Gelder, Carla Gard, Jeffrey Bender, Hannah Bender, Karl Bender, Rachell Morehouse, Isaac Vannasome, Tarina Perry, Nicky Damania, Brent Berton, Chris Glaser


I will post the list of volunteers as soon as I get the list.  So please come back!

Karen Schuett’s regional CTA director volunteering her time at the Measure J Head Quarters.  Thank you CTA for endorsing Measure J!


Janet Fulks, Karen Schuette

Thank you Liz Rozell for bringing your engineer’s mind to organize the volunteers for November 8th.

Liz Rozell organizing the work for Nov 8 2016.jpg

Two little somethings:

A friend shared with me a historical vignette about Trojan football while we were discussing Reggie Bush.  He described in an engaging fashion the intense rivalry between Notre Dame and USC and a famous game in Indiana on a typical fall evening in 1965 when the air and grass were full of moisture.  John McKay who was as good with words as he was with coaching his athletes was there in Notre Dame with “Touchdown Jesus” overlooking the stadium.  The rivalry could be felt by each and every person in the packed stadium as the game began.  Mike Hunter, the Trojan returner of the opening kickoff sprinted to the eight-yard line but then slipped on the moist grass, when USC coach John McKay, fearing the worst, shouted “Oh, my God, they have shot him!!”  This story had me laughing the rest of the week and again just now as I was blogging.  So I checked it out on yes Wikipedia and verified that my friend was not pulling a fast one.  Such a great story, and so funny.  Enjoy these pictures of John McKay and the Notre Dame Stadium, from the web.

And here is a fascinating story from this morning’s LA Times about fabric that generates energy.  Here is the opening paragraph:

In the future, your clothes will work for you. A team of scientists led out of the Georgia Institute of Technology has created a fabric that can gather energy from both sunlight and motion, then store it in embedded fibers.

Check out the whole story at http://tinyurl.com/zgq5mfl

And I love this picture of Bruce



That’s all for now.  

Until next week.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya — the luckiest and happiest college president ever


BC’s Jazz Ensemble is just magnificent!

kris tiner


The Bakersfield College Jazz Ensemble held its Fall Concert on Monday November 24th. The newly-opened Simonsen Performing Arts Center served as the venue (its first time showcasing the ensemble since its reopening). Directed by Kris Tiner, the BC Jazz Ensemble played a selection of classic and modern jazz, featuring music by legendary jazz composers Thelonious Monk, Oliver Nelson, Thad Jones, Gerry Mulligan, Duke Ellington, Freddie Hubbard. The work of talented student composers Omar Murillo and Amanda McCaslin was also featured.

If you didn’t have the chance to check it out, here is a clip of them performing “A-hunk-a-hunk” by Thad Jones.


I encourage everyone to come out to their next concert in the spring — you’ll be supporting local music and our faculty and students, and I guarantee you a wonderful evening filled with great music!

Check out the photos thanks to our student Salvador Cruz: