Tag Archives: Martha Kanter

Sprinting to the finish line –Commencement 2019

Good morning, Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, May 4, 2019… A great day to be a Renegade.

I wake up every morning to NPR’s Morning Edition….for many years now. A change is coming — after 40 years, the tune BJ Leiderman composed in 1979 is being replaced by a new jingle on Monday, May 6, 2019. Click on the youtube link below and cherish the soon-to-be-replaced 60-second theme song for NPR’s morning edition. It’s been with us for so long; this is all I knew since I started listening to morning edition in 1988 as a foreign student at USC.

Last day for this version of the morning edition theme song. Cinco de Mayo 2019

It is good to be back home after two weeks of travel which started with the Non-Credit Conference in San Diego. We had a BC team present and engaged by doing our planning to create more opportunities for adults with low academic skills to onboard and complete a certificate which will give them the necessary skills for an entry-level job.

I had a lot of fun keynoting at the CACCRAO conference in San Diego. This is the statewide organization for Admissions and Records professionals, and our Director, Michelle Pena is the current Vice President. She is super smart and has a keen mind for system fixes. Michelle was there with Jackie Lau and Erineo Garcia.

2019 ACCJC Partners in Excellence Conference: What the Future Holds

ACCJC’s bi-annual conference was held in San Francisco this year. I was there primarily in my role as a commissioner and the current Vice Chair of the commission. However, we had a large team from BC doing two presentations at this conference and it gives me great joy and pride when I watch “my peeps” presenting.

Kim Nickell, Kristin Rabe, Jessica Wojtysiak, Janet Fulks, Sonya Christian, Lesley Bonds, Amber Hrioch, Steve Waller

At the opening session of the ACCJC conference, I had the pleasure of introducing the former Under Secretary of Education, Dr. Martha Kanter. Dr. Kanter now leads the College Promise Campaign nationally which focuses on higher education affordability and accessibility.

Dr. Kanter speaking at the ACJCC Conference

Dr. Kanter has made many contributions to higher education, most notably her work on equity, innovation, and accountability. Her work is grounded in the conviction that education is not only an economic imperative but more fundamentally a civic imperative; and that education is necessary to individual freedom and essential to a healthy society and a vibrant democracy.

Kristin Rabe, Kim Nickell, Amber Hroch, and Steve Waller presented on how BC is engaged with Program Review and Program Planning that drives institutional resource allocation. A data informed process, the Program Review process has not only brought transparency to our work, but has helped us determine priorities more effectively.

Amber Hroch, Kim Nickell
Kristin Rabe, Steve Waller

Jessica Wojtysiak and Lesley Bonds presented on BC’s work on Guided Pathways with a focus on “It takes Leadership” from all constituent groups to make this happen.

Here are some other pictures that I snapped. Enjoy!

Jessica Wojtysiak, Amber Hroch, Sonya Christian, Kristin Rabe, Kim Nickell
Sonya Christian, Daisy Gonzales, Sabrina Sencil, Terrence Willett

BC partners with CSUB

On Tuesday, April 30, 2019, over 40 administrators, faculty, and staff from both CSUB and Bakersfield College met to discuss and plan for programmatic collaborations at the new BCSW Center co-located on the CSUB campus. The synergistic teamwork evident at this meeting is indicative of this exciting partnership between BC and CSUB, and of our shared commitment to our students and community. It’s a great time to be in Bakersfield!

BC represented at African-American Town Hall with State Chancellor Oakley

Last week BC’s Steve Watkin, Outreach Director; Dr. Paula Parks, Umoja faculty lead; Jonathan Ward, Umoja Counselor; and Daron Mackey, AAI Ed Advisor attended the Fresno Town Hall & College Fair.  There, state Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley urged community members to support Central Valley leaders who are advocating for changes that result in higher success rates for African-American students. “We need you to push,” Oakley said “because what we’ve been doing hasn’t been working.”

Fresno Town Hall & College Fair Agenda

“Friction has to happen around college completion,”Oakley advocated, adding that “we have to get to the point where we put the needs of the students above the needs of employees and staff.”

Chancellor Oakley
Tweet from California Community Colleges on the Fresno Town Hall

He cited the passage of AB 705 as a positive step in increasing equity for students of color. The law, which goes into effect this fall, will allow most community college students to start at college-level English and math.

Steve Watkin, Dr. Paula Parks, Chancellor Oakley, Jonathan Ward, & Daron Mackey

The Fresno event was sponsored by the California Community College Black and African-American Advisory Panel and featured information on financial aid (Icanaffordcollege.com), attending a Central Valley community college, and transferring to a CSU or Historically Black College or University (adegreewithaguarantee.com).  The Advisory Panel was created in 2017 to increase the graduation and transfer rates of African-American students in support of Oakley’s Vision for Success. They are planning other events around the state to share information and gather feedback. Oakley joked at the end that the Community Colleges will not have an admissions scandal because “we take the top 100% of all applicants.”

Daron Mackey, Jonathan Ward, Dr. Paula Parks, & Steve Watkin
Steve Watkin

Celebrating Judge Tafoya at Kern Literacy

Judge Robert S. Tafoya was honored as a Read for Life Award Recipient at the 2019 Kern Literacy Council Celebration. Former KCCD Chancellor Sandra Serrano, Judge Tafoya’s spouse, was in attendance to celebrate her husband’s passion for reading and his service as a Kern Literacy Council tutor for the past four years. In addition, a group from Bakersfield College joined the festivities. Pictured in the photo below are Traco Mathews and Krista Herrera (KCSOS), Abel Guzman and Pearl Urena (BC), Sheri Horn-Bunk (Taft), Elaine McNearney (Dress for Success), Romeo Agbalog (KCCD Trustee) and Liz Rozell (BC). Liz Rozell was also able to connect with longtime friends, Fred and Cynthia Brakeman (KHSD Trustee).

BC and Community Leaders at Kern Literacy Event

Presidential Investiture at CSUB

CSUB President Lynnette Zelezny

A festive CSUB Presidential Investiture took place Friday morning, May 3rd, in recognition of Dr. Lynnette Zelezny, fifth President of California State University, Bakersfield and the first female president. She was recognized and honored by many, including Mayor Karen Goh, Congressman Kevin McCarthy, and CSU Chancellor Timothy White. The processional included student leadership, delegates from educational partners, and CSUB faculty and staff.

Mary Barlow (Kern County Superintendent of Schools), Doc Ervin (Superintendent of Bakersfield City School District), Kevin Silberberg (Superintendent of Panama-Buena Vista Union School District), Liz Rozell (VP of Instruction, BC), and John Means (Vice Chancellor, Educational Services, KCCD)
Mariachi band from the BCSD Migrant Program

63rd Annual Honors Celebration Rocks this Year’s Scholars!

On April 26th, the Outdoor Theater pulsed with the energetic beats of our BC Drumline as they drummed for our 2019 class of scholarship and award recipients at the 63rd Annual Honors Celebration.

BC Drumline performing

This year, nearly 400 outstanding Renegades were named for over $494,000 in scholarships and awards, capping off a demanding academic year with some exciting financial awards.

Attendees at the Honors Celebration

Tom Gelder, the Executive Director of the BC Foundation and SGA President Ashley Harp, welcomed students and their guests to the festivities, expressing his gratitude for the many donors, faculty, and staff that made the evening possible.

Prior to the reading of names, BC Alumna and Foundation Board Member, Connie Perez-Andresen inspired students with an emotional keynote that demonstrated the power of self-belief and finding a career path that speaks to your heart.

The BC Foundation team

The memorable evening ended with a sweet goodbye as hundreds of freshly baked cookies arrived, provided by our very own BC Food Services.  Be sure to check out all of the photos of the event!

All current and future Bakersfield College students are encouraged to apply for scholarships again, later this year, on October 1st, coinciding with the opening of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Visit the website for details.

2019 Student Employees of the Year

On Thursday, April 25th, the Office of Student Life held its annual Student Leadership and Involvement Awards Ceremony.  The awards included “Student Employee of the Year” that recognizes exceptional contributions to their office or department during the academic year. The award was jointly given to Jasmen Taylor and Rico Carrillo from the BC Tutoring Center.  Congrats to Jasmen and Rico!

Jasmen with the medallion to be worn at commencement in 2020!  

Thank you to Student Life for recognizing the importance and dedication of our student employees!  Additionally, thank you Student Employment for facilitating the hiring of student employees!

McFarland Early College 8th Grade Application Workshop

This past week, our Early College team went out to McFarland Junior High School to prepare students for the Early College journey that they will embark on at McFarland high School next Fall. All 8th graders completed a BC application and now have their BC ID numbers, which will streamline the process for getting them enrolled in their first dual enrollment course STDV B3 Career and Life Planning. It’s official, we have 280 new Cougar-Renegades!

Students at the Early College workshop
Students at the Early College workshop

To learn more about the Early College program at McFarland High School, please visit The Early College website.  

Students at the Early College workshop
Students at the Early College workshop
Students at the Early College workshop

BC Jazz Spring Concert

The BC jazz program held its spring concert in the Indoor Theater on Monday, focusing on standards from the 1930s while giving the audience a masterful performance of more modern music.

Students performing at the Jazz Spring concert

Jazz professor Kris Tiner said that this year’s program was the culmination of extensive study on the history of jazz. The Jazz Studies program is growing fast since its expansion in 2016, and the amazing performances made for an exciting night.

I’d like to thank Professor Tiner and the Jazz Studies program for putting together a beautiful evening of music.

Students performing at the Jazz Spring concert

2019 Kern High School District Physics Olympics at Bakersfield College Campus

The annual Kern High School District Physics Olympics was held last Friday at BC main campus. Sponsored by the Kern High School District and hosted by Bakersfield College the competition features the work of student teams from over a dozen high schools in Kern County in activities requiring skills and knowledge in theoretical and experimental physics and engineering. Eighteen different activities were held from 9:00 am to 2:30 pm at various venues around the Bakersfield College campus, with over 1,000 high school students participating!

The efficiency bridge, where students design carts to successfully carry heavy loads across a bridge.
The magnetic field competition, where students make measurements and do calculations to determine the earth’s magnetic field at their location.
The spring constant competition, where students use measurements of the elongation of springs due to suspended masses to determine the spring stiffness coefficients.

Dual Enrollment Symposium Connects High School Partners and Bakersfield College

On Friday, April 26, the Dual Enrollment team hosted a symposium for over 85 local high school teachers, counselors and administrators.  The half-day event focused on helping high school partners understand responsibilities within a dual enrollment program, learn about resources available to support students, as well as opportunities to develop college and career pathways.

Breakout session participants

The Dual Enrollment Symposium opened with a welcome from Steve Watkin, Abel Guzman and Liz Rozell who emphasized the importance of partnerships in offering a successful dual enrollment program.  Breakout sessions provided for discussions, including one for STDV B3 Instructors and Counselors provided by Mark Osea, Victor Diaz, Hilda Rodriguez and Alma Feathers, that addressed the unique opportunity this course affords students to clarify their path.  High school administrators asked questions about infrastructure during a session hosted by Steve Watkin. Dr. Anna Laven, Raquel Lopez, Savannah Andrews and Kylie Swanson led subject-area instructor sessions with discussions facilitated by Chris McCraw, David Neville, Jennifer Johnson, Kris Stallworth, Jennifer Jett, Stephen Waller, Christian Zoller, Darren Willis, Robert Stewart, Creighton Magers, Michael Ivey, Jason Dixon, Jeremy Staat and Jason Stratton.  

Steve Watkin and Dr. Anna Laven present during a breakout session for Administrators

After working in small groups, attendees came together for presentations about student resources, academic resources, guided pathways, and a dual enrollment overview. Many thanks to Terri Goldstein, Bill Moseley, Kirk Russell, Lesley Bonds, Yvonne Armendariz, and Anna Laven for providing helpful information and resources.  Attendees were impressed to learn that they are part of the largest dual enrollment program in the state! Following lunch, Kylie Swanson provided student highlights and several teachers shared stories about their hardworking students.

Dr. Terri Goldstein and Dr. Anna Laven present on resources for Students with Disabilities
Dr. Anna Laven

Attendees from across the Bakersfield College service area indicated they found the symposium to be helpful and beneficial.  They came away with a better understanding of the value of dual enrollment and were excited to be a part of the program.

Kirk Russell
Kylie Swanson
Lesley Bonds
Vice President Liz Rozell
Steve Watkin
Yvonne Armendariz

Food Historian Ken Albala Visits BC

Food historian Ken Albala visited BC on Monday to provide context to the rising popularity of the artisanal food movement over the last few years. Albala is a professor of history at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, and he’s authored 25 books about the culinary arts, including “Cooking in Europe: 1250-1650”, “Food and Faith”, and “Three World Cuisines”, winner of a 2012 Gourmand World Cookbook Award.

Food historian Ken Albala

BC English professor Neal Stanifer first learned about Albala from “Food: A Cultural Culinary History Podcast,” which is a 36-episode series examining how food evolved throughout human history, from the Stone Age to the Digital Age. Stanifer listened to the whole series over the course of a weekend and was inspired to work with Levan Center Director Reggie Williams to bring Albala to campus. Several students from BC’s culinary arts and nutritional science programs showed up to hear Albala speak.

Food historian Ken Albala speaking

Albala opened his talk by asking the audience what they imagine what they see when they think of “bad” pizza, then to imagine what they see when they think of “artisanal” pizza. He then gave a history of the terms “artisanal” and “craft”, which used to mean different things but are now utilized the same way in contemporary marketing jargon – to convey food or beverages that are prepared by hand with fresh ingredients and a bare minimum of industrial processing.

Food historian Ken Albala speaking

After the Great Depression and World War II, the rise of canned goods, processed food and fast food was perceived positively as making life easier and preserving meat and produce longer. Increasingly, Americans have felt disconnected with their relationship to food, contributing to the increased popularity of farmers’ markets, organic produce, farm-to-table restaurants and independent breweries in the 21st Century. Major corporations have begun catching on to this trend, leading to the rise of “fast casual” restaurants such as Chipotle and Blaze Pizza which purport to be fresh or “artisanal” while maintaining the large-scale, industrialized philosophy of fast food. Beer companies such as Coors and Anheuser-Busch have also started buying out small breweries to distribute their products nationwide while marketing mass-produced brands such as Blue Moon and Shock Top as “craft” beer.

Audience members at the presentation

I’d like to thank Neal Stanifer and the Levan Center for organizing this informative event examining the culinary arts through the lens of the humanities. I’d also like to thank Ken Albala for driving down from Stockton to speak on our campus.

Food historian Ken Albala speaking

Transfer Celebration

On Thursday, BC celebrated students that continue to pursue further education and transfer to a four-year university during the Transfer Celebration in the courtyard between Financial Aid and the Indoor Theater.

CSUB staff member speaking to a student about transfer.

CSUB staff were also on hand to assist students transferring to CSUB, and BC Food Services provided catering and light refreshments for all who attended.

Food for attendees at the Transfer Celebration

BC offers a great program to help student receive two degrees in four years called Finish In 4, which encourages completion of both an Associate’s and Bachelor’s Degree. Students in this program are guaranteed admission to CSUB after they finish 2 years at BC. Representatives from Finish In 4 were on hand to interact with students and provide more information about the program.

I would like to thank everyone who helped put on this event and congratulate all of the students who are continuing their academic career.

The Office of Student Life assisting at the celebration.

ENGL B24 Field Trip

This year’s ENGL B24 class had the opportunity to speak with Carol Jacques, a commissioner for the City of Los Angeles. She shared her story as a child of one of the many families displaced from her neighborhood by the city of LA for the construction of Dodger’s Stadium and her subsequent activism and organizing pre- and post-Civil Rights.

The ENGL B25 field trip attendees

The field trip was supported by funding from a Campus Collaborative Action Grant which allowed students to visit the El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument in the Olvera Street district of L.A., a point of cultural and historical significance in the development of Latino literary identity. That same day they went to the Ramona Pageant, California’s oldest running outdoor play, in Hemet, CA. Staging every spring since 1923, the play is based on the novel Ramona by Helen Hunt Jackson and offers a theatrical interpretation of the novel’s literary glimpse into the Spanish days of California, its changing demography amidst westward expansion, and the mixing of indigenous and old-world cultures.

Emails Worth Sharing

Earlier this week Abel Guzman received an email from a student sharing her experience with one of Delano’s tutors in the reading and writing skills lab tutor Kim Collins.

When I began college it was suggested I attend school in Delano because I did not know how to write paragraphs and follow grammatical rules. I was at a 4th grade level.

However, I went on to become a journalist for our college newspaper. I also would become an editor for the paper. I would end up completing my AA in journalism last semester. This semester I completed my AA in communication. I was also awarded the Sigma Chi Eta distinction for being a honor roll student in communication.

The reason I shared this is to simply say how [Kim’s] faith in me when I was a returning student made a huge difference, along with a few other people who believed in me.

My tutor had said during a tutoring session that my desire to write a New York Best Seller was a ‘lofty goal.’  Well, my book is halfway finished. Although it may not reach that status, I won’t stop climbing. It’s desire, dreams and good tutors/educators that sure do keep them afloat!

Sincerely,

Melissa Puryear

Kim Collins

I received an email from Manny Mourtzanos that at first had me panicking… and then laughing!

“Subject: Center for Disease Control Advisory! Measles hit Bakersfield

Good morning, Deans. Please be advised: The CDC stated that the measles outbreak in California has recently impacted Bakersfield and is so severe that it is even affecting vehicles! Just ask Liz!

Be ye all forewarned!!”

VP Rozell's truck covered in stickers

Fun Photos:

Shauna Turner graduates! Shauna is graduating with her bachelors degree this weekend. Her cap reads: Mom of 3 with a degree.

Shauna Turner in her cap and gown.

She has been diligently working on her BA since she started at BC 4 years ago. She uses her lunch breaks and late evenings after she puts her boys to bed to prepare for class, write her papers, and study for tests. Congratulations Shauna; you deserve it!!

Nestle Field Trip: Last week, students from the Delano HVAC program took a field trip to Nestle’s plant here in Bakersfield.  There the students were able to observe the operation and system components of “The Largest, Most Complex Ammonia Refrigeration System In the World”!!

BC Students at the Nestle plant
BC Students at the Nestle plant
BC Students at the Nestle plant
BC student at the Nestle plant
BC students at the Nestle plant

Chamber’s Leadership Bakersfield Program: BC’s Endee Grijalva is a member of this year’s Leadership Bakersfield class and unveiled her team project yesterday.  Her team renovated the Dream Center Bakersfield Infant and Toddler room to a safer and warmer space for these children.  Very cool!

Endee Grijalva & Tamara Baker
Endee Grijalva and teammate Sarah Hickock Levan
GBCC President Nick Ortiz introducing Team 2 and their project.
Norma Rojas-Mora, Endee Grijalva, Tamara Baker, Lupe Aguirre, Samantha Guillory, Evelyn Hernandez, and Abel Guzman at the project ribbon cutting.

CSEA Gold Tournament: Last Saturday a KCCD team supported CSEA at their annual golf tournament.  It looks like a rough day at work, but someone’s gotta do it!

Vice Chancellor Tonya Davis and her husband along with Fernando Lara and Tony Cordova

Ceramics Sale: Here are some fun photos of the amazing ceramics created by our very own BC students this year. They held a sale earlier this week where people could purchase the items created in the Spring 2019 semester.

Ceramics Sale board
Student ceramics for sale
Student ceramics for sale

It was great to see Bakersfield College featured in the Engine Professional magazine. Make sure to check out the Aera Tech Skills Conference hosted by BC on May 19th.

BC's ad in Engine Professional magazine

Memorial Stadium: I love this shot that Brandon Urry took this week of the Memorial Stadium construction!! WE ARE BC!

Memorial Stadium construction

Renegade Report

If you missed watching the Renegade Report live this last Thursday at 11:00 am, check out the segments from this week’s show from the links below. This week’s highlights include segments from BC Men’s Golf program and Athletic Trainer Mike Medeiros.

Renegades of the Week

Renegade Athletics is proud to announce this week’s (4/21-4/27) Wells Fargo Renegades of the Week:

Renegades of the Week photo

Penelope Zepeda/Morgan Townson, Beach Volleyball – The pairs team finished 4th in the WSC “Pairs” conference championships and qualified for the CCCAA SoCal Regional “Pairs” Championships this Friday May 3rd at Irvine Valley. They will be attempting to qualify for the CCCAA State “Pairs” Championships May 10th and 11th in Chula Vista at the Olympic Training Center.

Justin Frando, Men’s Track and Field – Justin ran a personal record time of 1:55.59 in the 800m at the WSC Finals at Santa Barbara City College which placed him in 2nd place and qualified him for the SoCal Finals. He currently ranks 5th in the state in the 800m.

Renegade Athletics End of the Year Awards

Each year we are very proud of how hard our Renegade student athletes work — both in the classroom and within their respective sports. At the end of each academic season, we like to award those student athletes who have been key parts to their teams and lifted those around them. Below are the winners of each category of award for the 2018-2019 season:

Athletes of the Year

Female – Gabby Lugo, Cross Country/Track & Field

Male – Carson Olivas, Football

Career Achievement

Female – Kylee Fahy, Softball

Male – Jacob Whitby, Track & Field

Newcomer of the Year

Female – Daran Towns, Swimming

Male – Justin Harrington, Football

Individual Performance

Female – Kayleen Sanchez, Women’s Tennis

Male – Zach Williams, Baseball

Grit Award

Female – Brooke McDonald, Women’s Soccer

Male – Justin Solario, Men’s Swimming

Weight Room Warrior

Female – Jessica Merante, Women’s Volleyball

Male – Zach Hartsfield, Football

Roundup of Athletics Events This Week

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

Stay Connected to Renegade Athletics

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


That’s all for now.

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.

sonya-
the luckiest and happiest college president ever