Good morning Bakersfield. It is Saturday, August 5th, and at 5:15 a.m. it is 74 degrees … a beautiful morning, a great week full of community leaders, BC leaders, veterans and congressmen. A great week to be a Renegade.
I had a series of productive meetings this week. The Kern Promise completion coaching community met for the first time and I forgot to take a photo. Darn it. But I might have pictures of some of the individuals in my photo library on word press.
Shanell Tyus with Lisa Kent and Maria Wright. Lesley Bonds
Just a great group of BC folks discussing the students in the cohort to make sure that they are positioned to successfully complete their first milestone at the end of the fall semester — 15 credits of course work. In addition, we are focusing on students completing their college-level English and college-level math in their first year. Jennifer Achan, Director of Financial Aid, did a detailed presentation of the Financial Aid status of each student. Keri Kennedy, the counselor responsible for this cohort, reviewed the courses that these students are enrolled in. We also have a student in the group. Here are some of the faces of the completion coaches for the affinity group The Kern Promise.
Jennifer Achan with Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg. Keri Kennedy.
We also submitted the 2017-2020 Educational Master Plan (EMP) for Board approval. Thank you Dr. Janet Fulks for leading the effort on the EMP work. I love this picture of Janet with her granddaughter.
I thought you might enjoy some excerpts from the President’s letter in the EMP
Bakersfield College (BC) started in 1913 as a vision and a plan for educational opportunity and community service with 13 students in a borrowed classroom on the Kern High School campus. From that hopeful start, BC now provides approximately 30,000 students a year with educational opportunity, serves as a cultural center for its community, and trains the workforce for a vibrant community of industry partners.
BC’s Vision today remains true to that founding vision:
“Building upon more than 100 years of excellence, Bakersfield College continues to contribute to the intellectual, cultural, and economic vitality of the communities it serves.”
The visionaries of 1913 could not have imagined the growth or rapidly changing society, however, they would instantly recognize the individuals today who tirelessly help our students (many still first in their families to go to college) attain their dreams. It is the shared work of college faculty, staff, and administrators, and our community.
BC’s 2017-2020 Educational Master Plan embarks on a systematic Guided Pathways redesign of how we guide students to complete their educational goals. Guided Pathways is built on four pillars:
- Clarifying educational pathways for both Career Technical Pathways and Transfer Pathways.
- Getting students on the path starts by getting 9th grade students to see college in their futures.
- Keeping students on the path calls us to ensure that every precaution is taken to keep students on their educational pathway to degree completion.
- Ensuring learning invites as to develop a learning environment both in and out of the classroom to create adaptive learners who can communicate effectively, think critically, demonstrate competencies, and engage with their communities.
The 2017-2020 Educational Master Plan calls for an approach that better serves BC’s 30,000 students by grouping them into 18 completion communities – 10 meta-majors and 8 affinity groups, which include the identified underrepresented groups in BC’s Equity Plan. Each meta-major and affinity group will be surrounded by completion coaches ranging from 10 to 20 faculty and staff that will form a safety net around their cohort of students. The high-touch, personalized approach of these completion coaching communities combined a with the high-tech data analytics will help coaches to monitor progress and target student communications.
BC History on Facebook
This week, Keith Wolaridge shared a Facebook post with me featuring historical photos of the Bakersfield College campus. The post on Kern County Historical Society’s page was posted by Fatima Al-Bugharin. It’s incredible to see how supportive, interested, and dedicated the residents of Kern County are to BC.
Thank you Keith for your support of Bakersfield College. Here you see Keith with Tom Gelder, being recognized for his leadership role on the Measure J committee. Keith is also a community mentor in BC’s Astep program with Dr. Paula Parks.
In 1913, Bakersfield leadership and the community were visionaries. They knew that higher education was absolutely critical for Kern County and so they created a community college in Bakersfield. In the 50’s, leadership and the community again showed their commitment when they supported BC’s move to have its own campus.
The land was chosen – it was empty, barren, and probably very dusty and it was right there – 1801 Panorama Drive… this 153-acre lot on the China Grade Bluffs. The ground was not yet broken, but the seeds for the future were planted and the location was chosen; this was the place. This was the place where hundreds of thousands of students would make their way “up the hill” to attend college for the very first time.
Sixty years later, many things have changed, but one constant piece remains – Bakersfield is a community that realizes the importance of a college education and undeniably supports Bakersfield College.
Fatima, in her post linked two articles for those interested in learning more about the history of BC and I’d like to share them as well. From The Bakersfield Californian, “History: Growing up and headed for college” and “Bakersfield College Centennial: 100 years of higher education.” Both fantastic articles. Thank you.
Supporting our Veterans
On Wednesday, August 2nd, morning, Paul Beckworth and BC student and US Navy Veteran, Robert Enger were featured in a story on ABC 23 about the Forever GI Bill. Straight from the story, Paul Beckworth said,
It will extend the benefits for stem majors up to one academic year which is indicative of the federal government recognizing we need stem majors and this is a way we can help veterans get those degrees so they can enter the workforce.
Thanks to your loyal support through Measure J, our student veterans will be getting a brand new, state of the art, stand-alone Veterans Resource Center. Thank you Bakersfield, Thank you Kern County! Thank you Congressman McCarthy for your work on the Forever GI Bill and for your continued support of our veterans. Also, a big thank you to all of our political leaders such as County Supervisor Leticia Perez and Assemblyman Rudy Salas. And finally, thank you to all our BC student veterans for trusting us with your education — you can go far and BC is here to support you.
Library of Congress Veterans History Project
On Thursday, Congressman McCarthy was at BC participating in the Veterans History Project.
The United States Congress created the Veterans History Project in 2000 to collect, preserve, and make accessible the personal stories and accounts of American war veterans so that future generations can hear directly from the veterans, in their voices, and better understand the realities of war.
Love this photo — a Manny selfie 🙂
One of the veterans interviewed was Miriam Kann. You see her here with Mary Jo Pasek. Steven Mayer of The Bakersfield Californian did a great story on Kann in the July 27th paper titled Bakersfield woman, on eve of 100th birthday, says she joined up because she was ‘mad at Hitler’. Loved the header…. Here are some excerpts from the article
Then in her mid-20s, Kann joined millions of other American women who participated in the war effort in those dark days when Hitler’s armies had occupied much of Europe and the Japanese Imperial Navy had control of much of the Pacific.
She served in San Francisco and at other locations training new pilots using the Link Trainer, an early flight simulator. Many, she said, credited the training with saving their lives.
Steven Mayer concludes with:
“On the flight, several of the guys were just ga-ga over her,” recalled Kim Whitaker, an Honor Flight volunteer.
But one man, Jack Henslee, asked for her number.
“I met her on Honor Flight in 2013, and we have been seeing one another ever since,” Henslee said. “She’s a lady.”
The joke going around is that Kann is robbing the cradle, as Henslee is a mere lad of 91. But she seems sweetly embarrassed by the suggestion.
And just in case anyone might suggest something untoward is going on, Henslee repeated his admonition.
“She’s a lady,” he said.
She certainly is.
Miriam Kann turns 100 today. Happy 100th birthday Ms. Miriam Kann. We thank you for your service to our country.
The veterans were interviewed at Bakersfield College on Thursday, August 3rd. Dick Taylor, Armando Tuijillo, and Kevin McCarthy did the interviews. Thank you Dick Taylor for your continued support of Bakersfield College. And thank you for bringing the Airforce Band to BC’s outdoor theater. Here is a link to my July 1, 2017 blog featuring the Airforce Band. https://sonyachristianblog.com/2017/07/01/time-flies-when-youre-at-bc/
Here is the list of veterans who participated.
Andrew Perales, Marvin Belcher (WWII), Greg Underwood (Vietnam), Tom Svare (Vietnam), Augustine Flores (WWII), Jessica Brown (Navy 2011-2015), Aaron Coates (Iraq War), Henry Ochsner (WWII), Victor Killingsworth (WWII), Miriam Kann (WWII)
Thank you to all involved with this project, including Mary Jo Pasek, Manny De Los Santos, and John Farrand.
Bakersfield College Students Intern with Congressman Kevin McCarthy
Mary Jo Pasek got this great photo from Robin Lake-Foster.
Included in this group photo, albeit gloomy weather, are college students from the 23rd Congressional District who participated in Congressman Kevin McCarthy’s 2017 Summer Internship Program, where they spent two weeks in McCarthy’s Bakersfield District Office and six weeks in the DC offices, where their time was shared serving three weeks in the Congressman’s congressional office and three weeks in the Office of the Majority Leader.
The students from Bakersfield College are:
Halle Cornejo (left back row, auburn hair and cream blouse)
Austin Machado (kneeling down in front row, white shirt with striped tie
Nicolas Montero-Garcia (to the right of the Congressman, pink shirt, no jacket)
James Priest (next to Nicolas, gray shirt with striped tie)
BC’s Ag Department
BC is located in California’s agriculturally rich San Joaquin Valley and has the history and resources to move Ag students in the right direction. Our Ag program has rich history too, dating back to it’s beginnings in 1915 — making it one of the first community college agriculture programs in the nation. Since then, BC continues to educate students for a career in all ag fields.
This week, a fun email was forwarded to me. Charles Parker, Agriculture Education Consultant shared Ag Teacher Trivia – how many of these did you know?
Charles wrote, “To start of the year, I thought I would provide you with some teacher trivia. Enjoy and let me know if I am missing anyone.”
LeAnn English, Bakersfield College and Matthew Riley, Bakersfield College
Allison Ferry, COS and Charles Abee, COS
Koren Martins, Mt. Whitney and Zach Brown, El Diamante
Courtney Serafin, Golden West and Jared Castle, Hanford
Elizabeth ??, Strathmore and Donald Thornburg, Woodlake
Jenna Villacana, Kern ROC and Jacob Eyraud, Bakersfield
Audrey Bonomi, Sanger and Amy Vivenzi, Washington (Sisters)
Don Clark, Wasco and Vernon Clark, Foothill (Dad and Son)
Alex Gutierrez, Caruthers and Nancy Gutierrez, Reedley College (Brother and Sister)
Erin Hanger, Summit Charter and Robert Hanger, Kern Valley (Brother and sister)
Roz Lopez, Central and Robert Calvert, Selma (Mother and Son)
Charles Parker, Regional Supervisor and Steve Parker, Taft (Brothers)
Matthew Riley, Bakersfield College and Carolee Trimble, Kern ROC (Brother and Sister)
FORMER STATE FFA OFFICERS
Joe Buffington, Bishop (Nevada)
Vernon Clark, Foothill
Amber Cleaver, Delano
Kristi Mattes, Minarets
Natalie Ryan, North
CHILDREN OF AG TEACHERS
Annie Andersen, Hanford and Eric Andersen, Retired
Adam Bullard, Independence and Edwin Bullard, Retired
Robert Calvert, Selma and Roz Calvert, Central
Vernon Clark, Foothill and Don Clark, Wasco
John Coon, Redwood and Bob Cummings, Retired
James Corbett, Monache and Max Corbett, Deceased
Erin Hanger, Summit Charter and Greg Hanger, Retired
Robert Hanger, Kern Valley and Greg Hanger, Retired
Nicole Potstada, Sanger and Leanne Potstada, Retired
Matt Riley, Bakersfield College and Roger Riley, Retired
Glen Sailors, Coalinga and Tim Sailors, Retired
Carolee Trimble, Kern ROC and Roger Riley, Retired
Matt Wenstrand, Caruthers and Gerald Wenstrand, Retired
Brad Wyman, Sierra and Edward Wyman, Retired
LONGEST TENURED TEACHERS
Bill Kelly, Bakersfield College – 51 years
Frank Tebeau, COS – 41 years
Kristi Mattes, Minarets – 40 years
David Caetano, Tulare – 38 years
Charles Parker, Region Supervisor – 37 years
Ralph Mendes, Kern ROC – 36 years
Ken Dias, Clovis – 35 years
Darlene Gilles, Madera – 33 years
Student Affairs Retreat
Bakersfield College’s approximately 30,000 students represent a multitude of individual goals and needs. With a student to counselor ratio of approximately 1000:1, the Guided Pathways structure prompts the development of Completion Coaching Communities, which are the mechanism for ensuring that the individual student needs are more effectively met within the context of meta majors. By assigning a fully-equipped support team to each of 10 meta majors, Bakersfield College is able to address the specific needs of each meta major in a more personalized, more relevant way.
Going a step further, BC has identified eight affinity groups where additional personalized support exist, and has developed completion coaching communities around those groups as well, providing another layer of support and personal resources for students.
Through the development of these structures, Bakersfield College has developed a strategy for applying a very personal, case management approach to helping our 30,000 students stay on the path to success. Thank you to
Completion Coaching Communities will focus their work on supporting students in their progress toward critical milestones in the journey to successful, timely completion:
- Completion of 12 to 15 credits in their first semester of college.
- Completing both college-level Math and English in the first year.
- Completion of 30 credits in the appropriate pathway in the first year.
- Completion of 60 credits in the span of two years.
The photo you see below is of four superheroes in our Academic Support area. They are geared up this year to provide intensive tutoring services for English and math in particular to support students in their courses.
I popped in and out of the retreat in between my meeting schedule. So I caught a few of the discussions that inspired me. Here you see BC’s Financial Aid Director who is a bundle of energy and works with an incredible team in our Financial Aid Office.
Did you know that BC currently has over 45,000 active Financial Aid accounts? I did not. Did you know that students have a window between October 1, 2017 and March 2018 to file for financial aid for the following year. The sooner applications come in the better their chances of getting things squared away. So why wait. Plz complete your applications before the end of October this year!
Go team Financial Aid!
National Endowment for the Humanities Grant
We received an announcement this week that BC has been awarded $100,000 from the National Endowment for the Humanities to complete a three year project titled, “Energizing Humanities in California’s San Joaquin Valley.” Complementing the local legacy of energy production, Energizing Humanities in California’s San Joaquin Valley examines the concept of energy broadly from historical and literary perspectives, as well as the intersection of humanities with music/performing arts. Each year, faculty cohorts will engage critical scholarship within the fields of history, literature, and cultural performing arts. A regional conference highlighting faculty pedagogical innovation, student panels, as well as keynote speakers, will conclude the grant project.
Several other projects receiving grants from NEH will help preserve fragile historical and cultural collections and make them more accessible to the broader public, such as grants to safeguard a collection of Native American and Medieval and Renaissance art at the Philbrook Museum of Art in Tulsa, Oklahoma; for the preservation of Civil War artifacts recovered from the USS Monitor warship in Newport News, Virginia; and new initiatives in Arkansas and Georgia to digitize historic local newspapers for inclusion in the Chronicling America database at the Library of Congress.
Thank you to the National Endowment for the Humanities for your support of BC!
Here are the three faculty who will be the Principal Investigators for the grant. Oliver Rosales, History (lead); Andrew Bond, English; Josh Ottum, Music.
BC Team at CTEOS
The California Community College CTE Employment Outcomes Survey (CTEOS) began as a pilot project with fifteen colleges in 2012. CTE Dean’s, frustrated at the lack of relevant outcomes measures for CTE students, determined to pool resources and to scale up employment outcomes surveys that had been conducted by some individual colleges. The CTE Outcomes Survey has grown to include all 113 California Community Colleges, and several non-credit CTE programs. In the photo, BC’s Team at CTEOS on Aug. 3rd and 4th.
Craig Hayward was a presenter at the event and his talk was titled Accreditation and Calculating Employment in the Field of Study with the CTEOS (CTE Outcomes Survey)
Bloom in Bakersfield — Asha Chandy
The Bakersfield Life Magazine featured Asha Chandy in their July issue “Millennial Voices: Bloom where you are planted.”
It’s an insightful and thoughtful piece commending Bakersfield for the little things that make this town special to those who live here and the experiences that brought Asha to appreciate Bakersfield too. She said after coming back to Bakersfield, that she “constantly recognized faces in passing cars, when shopping or walking downtown.” and “Servers in coffees shops recognize your face and remember your usual order.”
Besides the friendly and familiar faces, Asha explained that quickly after coming back, she “soon met mentors who actually invested time and effort in young people…. millennials who lacked direction but had the potential to thrive.” and she said Bakersfield is the perfect incubator for young professionals.
Asha Chandy worked tirelessly, side-by-side with the fabulous Nicole Parra, to help Bakersfield College pass Measure J…
Of course, how can I forget the campaign dog Bruce.
Thank you Bakersfield for passing Measure J and for being a rock of support for our young people, higher education, and all BC students! Thank you Kern County!! Have I mentioned recently that I am the luckiest and happiest college president ever?
Former Taft College President, David Cothrun
Former Taft College President Dr. David Cothrun wrote a piece in the July edition of the Bakersfield Life Magazine praising the quality of life in Taft, where he’s lived for the last 21 years. I so enjoyed this piece and wanted to share it with the larger community.
Despite being retired from Taft College since 2001, Cothrun has chosen to stay in the area because of the “community that cares and gives back” and non-profit organizations that provide transportation for health care and events while funding scholarships and creating a welcoming atmosphere for students with disabilities.
Cothrun took a moment to highlight Taft College’s important Transition to Independent Living (TIL), a two-year residential program that teaches students with disabilities the skills they need to become independent and able to live alone. The TIL program is one of the only ones of its kind in the United States, and it’s providing amazing opportunities for success that disabled students never had before.
Cothrun has been in the Taft Rotary club for 37 years and the Taft Chamber of Commerce Board for 14 years. He also serves on the Kern County Board of Trade. Read the whole article at Bakersfield.com.
The Chronicle of Higher Education published an interview about the future of career training and vocational education with Van Ton-Quinlivan, the Vice Chancellor of Workforce and Economic Development for California community colleges.
The video, which corresponded with a Chronicle of Higher Education report titled “The Future of Work: How Colleges Can Prepare Students for the Jobs Ahead”, focuses on the plight of stranded workers, an unemployment statistic that’s become a catch-all term for those who don’t see themselves in our future automated economy. After the recession of 2008, work productivity increased even though unemployment increased due to a confluence of technological advances and developments in artificial intelligence and machine learning. Many people looking to return to the economy found themselves without the skills needed to compete for positions in a post-industrial world.
Ton-Quinlivan discussed the numerous paradigm shifts that will have to happen in education to get distressed workers the skills to return to the economy. Where educational institutions once had the luxury of extensively training students before they enter the work force, they now have to scale their educational services to prepare for workers who need to come back to school to keep up with evolving technologies and business practices.
Ton-Quinlivan wants to “modularize delivery of education” with low-impact, 3-6 month Certificates of Specialization that would allow adults to continue education while contributing to the workforce. She also would also like to see the California community college system forge more direct partnerships with employers through apprenticeships and structuring curricula to meet the demands of the labor market.
“The economy is becoming more and more unforgiving to those without skills,” Ton-Quinlivan said. “With apprenticeships, you’re not divorcing the education from the employer needs.”
One way companies are bridging the skills gap is through on-site “maker-spaces”—augmented learning environments where laborers can work directly with expensive new equipment to develop competency.
In addition to maker-spaces, Van Ton-Quinlivan emphasized the role of community colleges in identifying a student’s skill sets and shepherding them into the best education program to utilize and develop those skills. She highlighted a capstone program a few California community colleges conducted for veterans to transition from security work into positions as systems operators or utility workers based on a pre-employment screening. These kind of creative collaboration between counselors, educators and industry leaders can close the education gap in California and transform people’s lives.
It is wonderful seeing California Community College leadership setting the national trends in education. So proud!
Super hero Anna Meyer
As I was heading out from a meeting on wednesday to the Student Affairs retreat, I saw Aaron Kidwell and stopped to talk with him. He raved about how Anna Meyer, who is in payroll in the Human Resources department. Thank you Anna for doing what you did to support Aaron and thank you Aaron for sharing. Here is a photo of Aaron that I snapped when he shared his good news.
Talking about Anna Meyer, there is another Anna who is a superhero in HR, Anna Gonzalez, who was at BC and is now at the District Office. I had the opportunity to work with Anna on faculty recruitment and Jennfer Marden and I had an Anna Gonzalez fan club going.
Tonya Davis at BC
Talking about Human Resources, KCCD has a new Vice Chancellor of Human Resources, Tonya Davis who comes to us from southern California. Here are two photos of Tonya that I snapped on July 18th when she was at BC for a meeting. She specifically wanted to check out the Veterans hub a small space that supports our student veterans. Through Measure J, our first project will be a wonderful Veterans Resource Center. We ran into fabulous Dennis Spencer on our way back to the office. Here you have Tonya with Armando Trujillo, Advisor to the BC student veterans and Dennis Spenser.
Summer Bridge Continues
Some photos from this week’s summer bridge
So what about Neo?
Well….he continues to love to spend time in his mud/sand bed. Here he is Sunday, July 30th sometime mid morning not happy when I directed him to move away from his frolicking activities in the mud.
Then there is the happy puppy mud face on August 2, 2017
And then there is his chew toy.
He is 45 lbs.
That’s all for now.
Until next time.
With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.
the luckiest and happiest college president ever