Tag Archives: Rudy Salas

Kern CCD Daring Mighty Things Oct 2022

This week we announced the soft launch of the California Renewable Energy Laboratory (CREL)

Thank you Assembly member Rudy Salas, the Governor and other political leaders in California for the $50 million to help establish CREL.

We are creating the future; committed to developing the workforce, creating grid resilience, clean transportation, and leading Kern County in energy innovation. CREL is just the beginning of a promising future in a changing energy landscape, and we are so thankful to have the support of our State and local leaders.

Good morning, friends.
It is October 8, 2022.
The sun shines bright over Kern CCD.

Porterville College

PC Continues Celebration of Hispanic Heritage with Visit from Author Gary Soto

Porterville College continued its celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month with a visit from author, filmmaker, and poet Gary Soto this week.  The author joined students, faculty, and community members in the Porterville College Theater to talk about his works and to share stories from his VERY colorful life and career as a writer.   

Gary Soto was born and raised in Fresno, California. He is the author of thirteen poetry collections for adults, most notably NEW AND SELECTED POEMS. He has received the Discovery-The Nation Prize and the California Library Association’s John and Patricia Award [twice], in addition to fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts [also twice], and the Guggenheim Foundation.

Soccer returns to Jamison Stadium after a 20-year absence

A surprisingly large crowd for a Tuesday afternoon watched the return of Pirate Soccer to Porterville College this week as the Woman’s Soccer team hit the field at Jamison Stadium for the first time in over 20 years. 

It was uncertain at the beginning of the semester whether the team would be able to play on-campus this year due to delays in the refurbishing project at the stadium.  The campus was alerted that the stadium project would be complete by the first scheduled home game in the nick of time and the program was able to return home on time.  If Tuesday’s attendance was any indication, it seems like fans are excited to come out for Collegiate soccer in Porterville. 

The team, headed by head coach Amber Hernandez, put up a strong showing, despite being shut out by the Fresno City College Rams in their debut. Regardless of the score, we can’t wait to see what the Pirates bring to the field this year and in years to come!

PC Law Enforcement Academy Hits the Range

Administration of Justice Professor Jeff Jacobs (@theUSinjustice) Shared some photos of our Law Enforcement academy hitting the Porterville Police Department firing range last weekend as part of their training. 

Cerro Coso Community College

Cerro Coso proud sponsor of Inaugural Women’s Leadership Conference in Tehachapi

Cerro Coso Community College was a sponsor for the inaugural Women’s Leadership Conference in Tehachapi on September 28. 

The event included an immersive day of hands-on workshops, panel discussions and inspiring conversations with entrepreneurs, industry leaders, and change-makers making an impact in business and the community. 

Cerro Coso faculty and staff in attendance were Vonetta Mixson, Saya Novinger, Denise Allen, and Nicole Griffin. 

Cerro Coso also formed and participated in a Fellows Program, which awarded 8 students in the community free admission to the event. The Fellows awardees were Lauren Willis, Justice Anderson, Kristen Roghair, Jocelyn Botello, Emily Soto, Imanni Brar, Angelina Flores, and Mia Flores. 

It was a wonderful and inspirational event for women in STEM and across multiple industries.

Transfer Awareness Week October 10-14

Transfer Awareness Week will kick off on Monday, October 10th with a workshop on Preparing to Transfer from 12:30 to 1:30 pm in MB 350 B and via Zoom.  Topics will cover the transfer process, Cerro Coso programs, and timelines.  

On Tuesday, October 11 from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. is a CSU Application Workshop in MB 318 and via Zoom.  This is a great workshop for students planning to transfer to a CSU and wanting help filling out the CSU application. 

A UC Application Workshop will be held on Wednesday, October 12th from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in MB 318 B and via Zoom.  Want to get a jump start on your UC Application?  This workshop will help students get started and show them the process of filling out the UC application.  

A UC Questions Workshop will be held on Thursday October 13th from 12:30 to 1:30 pm in MB 318 and via Zoom.  This workshop will provide guidance on how to answer, “Personal Insight Questions?”  What UCs are looking for and what to consider while answer the questions will be covered.

A Transfer Resources Workshop will be held on Friday,  October 14th from 11 am to 12 pm in MB 318 and Zoom.  This workshop is designed to provide students with more information on transferring.  Information and useful transfer resources like Cerro Coso’s COL C131: Making Transfer Easy course.  

College employees are encouraged to participate by wearing their alma mater gear and being prepared to share the highlights.

Registration is required to attend any of the workshops via Zoom.  Links and information available at https://www.cerrocoso.edu/studentservices/transfer-center/transfer-awareness-week-2022

Tehachapi Campus hosts Hocus Pocus Movie Night Oct. 28 

The Tehachapi campus of Cerro Coso (SGCC) invites the public to enjoy a unique viewing experience of the popular 90’s classic Hocus Pocuson Friday, October 28, 2022 at 6:30 pm in the quad.  

Join them in the quad for an outdoor fun, free, spooky, Halloween movie night.  

Drive-in movies are virtually a thing of the past – movie goers are encouraged to bring their family, friends, blankets, and lawn chair to enjoy a unique experience.  

Hocus Pocus is a 1993 American fantasy comedy film that follows a villainous comedic trio of witches (Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy) who are inadvertently resurrected by a teenage boy (Omri Katz) in Salem, Massachusetts, on Halloween.  The film is directed by Kenny Ortega and written by Neil Cuthbert and Mick Garris.  

Free popcorn and treats, just bring a bowl.

Wear your favorite costume or come just as you are.

The first 30 people to attend will receive a ghoulish goodie bag.  

Kawelmacher Named New Director of Admissions and Records

Congratulations to Jessica Kawelmacher on her new position as Director of Admissions & Records.

Kawelmacher is a Ridgecrest native that managed to move out of Ridgecrest for a few years and experience other places after her high school graduation. She found herself back in Ridgecrest in 2011 with her two older daughters and soon after met her husband Kenneth.

She started working at Cerro Coso in 2015 in the Financial Aid office and moved to the Admissions & Records Department in 2016.

A Cerro Coso alumna, Kawelmacher holds an AA in Liberal Arts: Social and Behavioral Sciences (2019), and a BS in Management from Bellevue University (2021).  She is also a 2019 graduate of the KCCD Leadership Academy.  She has plans to go back to school in the spring to earn a teaching credential with the hopes of becoming a CC adjunct professor in the next few years, while also managing the A&R office, of course. 

For fun, Kawelmacher loves to camp, hike, create crafts with her Cricut, paint, work with wood, read, and play The Sims.  

A very reputable motto that Kawelmacher lives by is, “The only time I set the bar low is for limbo.” –Michael Scott (from “The Office”).

Congratulations to Jessica on her new leadership position at Cerro Coso Community College! 

Koiyan Now Director of Financial Aid

Congratulations to Victoria Koiyan on her new position as the Director of Financial Aid.

Also known as “Tori”, Koiyan has over 12 years in Financial Aid and worked with Bakersfield College for 6 years before moving to Cerro Coso Community College.  

She grew up in Delano and eventually moved to Bakersfield when she started high school.  She lived in Bakersfield for 18 years before moving to Ridgecrest this past year.

Koiyan holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Ashford University.   

For fun, Koiyan likes to dance, sing, do random monologues for her family, occasionally fish, and as it cools down, she will get back into hiking. 

Her motto in life is “Your happiness is worth the risk!” 

Cerro Coso welcomes Tori to her new role as the Director of Financial Aid.  Congratulations!

Bakersfield College

Ribbon cutting held for 2nd Peace and Learning Garden 

This week BC held the ribbon cutting for the second Peace and Learning Garden on campus – the Gandhi Peace and Learning Garden. Thank you Ravi and Naina Patel for helping create this beautiful space for our students and community.

Check out more photos at: https://bakersfieldcollege.smugmug.com/Campus-Photos-and-Galleries/2022-Peace-and-Learning-Garden-Ribbon-Cutting/

Men’s and Women’s Track and Field Takes 1st at WSC Preview

The Renegade Cross Country team traveled to LA Pierce for the 2022 WSC Preview for their fourth meet of the season on Friday, September 30th. A total of 10 teams were ready to compete and see where they would stand in the Western State Conference.

The Men finished 1st with a total time of 1:52:28 on the four-mile course. The highest men’s finisher was BC freshman Francisco Felix finishing on top (1st) with a time of 21:30.

The Women finished 1st with a total time of 1:40:46 on a 5k course. The highest finisher was BC sophomore Rain Gomez finishing on top (1st) with a time of 18:25, a personal best. 

Gandhi Alliance for Interfaith Harmony Conference

Last weekend BC hosted the in-person return of the 25th Annual Gandhi Alliance for Interfaith Harmony Conference to our Renegade Ballroom. In partnership with Bakersfield College’s Distinguished Speaker Series, the event welcomed Reverend James Lawson and several other esteemed guest speakers from various faith backgrounds. The event brought together students, staff, faculty, and the community to discuss the role of faith in promoting peaceful co-existence and non-violent action as a feasible response to modern civil transgressions. The conference allowed for thoughtful dialogue between panelists and audience members to foster a new generation of leaders who can continue engaging in this work. Mayor Karen Goh presented the conference a Certificate of Appreciation for the event’s commitment to  “promoting a message of interfaith harmony, increasing appreciation and respect for diverse faith traditions, and fostering peace and non-violence.”

BC Transfer Pathways Collaboration

Bakersfield College Transfer Pathways continues to prepare prospective transfer students for the upcoming fall application season. Various in-person and Zoom workshops for the California State University and University of California have begun, and will extend through the month of October and November at the Main, Southwest, and Delano campuses. Details of the workshops and participant sign-up may be found on the Transfer Pathways webpage, www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/transfer.  

Highlighting a most recent collaboration for transfer pathways, on September 26th, UC Santa Cruz Admissions Representative Jenny Moreno partnered with the BC Transfer Pathways team to host an in-person UC Transfer Admission Guarantee workshop (UC TAG). UC prospective students anticipated for the fall 2024 class joined at the Fireside Room and received valuable early insight, preparation, and guidance in applying to the UC.


This week, we had a new submission in the KernCCDTALEBlog – “Entering A Brave New Metaworld: VR and Education.

Porterville College English Professor Rachel Tatro-Duarte shared her experience using virtual reality to reach students and share virtual experiences.

Perhaps it’s time for us to — not say goodbye to what learning in the classroom used to look like pre-Covid — but welcome VR, the newcomer, into our brave new post-Covid educational world.

In the News

Bakersfield College Second Peace and Learning Garden

KGET aired this video about the newest Peace and Learning Garden at BC:

Steven Mayer also wrote this piece for The Bakersfield Californian about the garden.

“These peace gardens are a place for students, faculty, staff and community to reflect, to grow, to find inspiration and to practice engaging others with compassion and tolerance,” said Krista Moreland, chair of Behavioral Sciences at Bakersfield College.

Read more: https://www.bakersfield.com/news/bc-opens-second-of-five-peace-gardens-planned-for-its-panorama-drive-campus/article_ea0408d8-4371-11ed-88b1-5f7cc213f317.html

Fun Photos & Spotted on Social Media

BC Academic Technology wished Pam Rivers a happy birthday on October 7:

Nicole Parra shared this photo with NaTesha Johnson and Rudy Salas:

Porterville High School shared photos of the PC team on the PHS campus for College Day:

BC Rural Initiatives shared this post from the Delano Street Fair:

“2022 Delano Chamber of Commerce-Street Fair. It was great to see so many of our community members walking around after a couple of years of having this event cancelled. it was a great success, we had several families stopping by our table, getting information about returning to in-person classes. Bakersfield College did an amazing job representing we had two tables our Rural Initiatives team as well as out Bakersfield College CTE partners. Providing information about our programs and services we offer to our students is what we do best.”


In August, I was the invited speaker to the DKG, AAUW and League of Women Voters event celebrating Women’s Equality Day. I wanted to leave you with a video of my remarks:


That’s a wrap for now.
See you next Saturday!

The future is bright at KernCCD.

a joyful and grateful Chancellor


Being vigilant about not hurting each other

Coolio passed away at age 59. His biggest hit, one of my favorite songs, Gangsta’s Paradise, was released in 1995.

“Tell me why are we, so blind to see
That the ones we hurt, are you and me?”

The song was featured in the film “Dangerous Minds,” a movie based on retired U.S. Marine LouAnne Johnson’s autobiography “My Posse Don’t Do Homework.” In 1989, she took a teaching position at Carlmont High School in Belmont, California, teaching a class of mostly African-American and Latino students from racially segregated and economically disadvantaged East Palo Alto. Her students are disengaged and involved in drugs and gangs, and she utilizes unconventional teaching methods to reach and inspire them.

The song, which was released just days before the film, relies heavily on biblical themes – starting with the opening lyrics “As I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,” a reference to Psalm 23:4. Choral background vocals add to this religious imagery. It is perhaps a surprising juxtaposition – a Grammy-winning Rap song that starts by quoting a Bible verse.

And while the rest of the song diverges sharply from the Psalm’s tone and message, it does come to a universal message –

Tell me why are we, so blind to see
That the ones we hurt, are you and me?

On Wednesday night, the Kern Community College District held the first annual Jack Hernandez Phronesis Award & Jack Hernandez Lecture Dinner. Award recipient and Bakersfield College professor Nick Strobel gave the lecture, titled “The virtue of humility in science, religion and freedom of speech.”

In his section on humility in religion, he discusses the importance of humility in our interactions with each other, and the importance of loving one’s neighbor. He quotes Paul’s letter to the Romans:

“Consider everyone as equal, and don’t think that you’re better than anyone else. Instead, associate with people who have no status. Don’t think that you’re so smart.”

And from Paul’s letter to the Phillippians:

“Don’t do anything for selfish purposes, but with humility think of others as better than yourselves. Instead of each person watching out for their own good, watch out for what is better for others.”

You can view his entire lecture here:

What do we lose when instead of humility and love for one another, we focus only on our own selves with no regard for our neighbors?

“Tell me why are we, so blind to see
That the ones we hurt, are you and me?”


Good morning, friends.
It is October 1, 2022.
The sun shines bright over Kern CCD.

Porterville College

Janice Ledgerwood: “Campus Cuties: Trophy Wives Prep Program” Exhibition Comes to the PC Gallery on October 3rd

The public is invited to see our latest exhibition at the PC Art Gallery, Janice Ledgerwood: “Campus Cuties: Trophy Wives Prep Program”.

  • DATES OF SHOW: October 3 – 27, 2022
  • GALLERY HOURS: Monday – Thursday from 12 – 2 pm and 4 – 6 pm

Janice Ledgerwood’s work as an artist embraces both established and emergent technologies while examining the places where feminist philosophy and theory, political ideologies and theories, popular cultural production, personal experience, and narratives (both fictional and real) intersect.

The Campus Cuties, as named and produced by Marx Toys in the mid-twentieth century, are two series of six-inch figurines of women in contemporary clothing of that time. Since Ledgerwood’s discovery of this toy series, it has been a focus of her work.

For this exhibition, the artwork explores the confluence of contemporary political discourse with history, pop culture, and women’s roles, status, and participation within Western society. The sculptures in this exhibition are 3D-printed mid-century figurines that are hand-painted and displayed on pedestals designed in Photoshop and produced with a laser cutter.

Ledgerwood has exhibited in both group and solo exhibits throughout the United States as well as in France and the Netherlands.

Ledgerwood earned her BFA at Mount St. Mary’s University in Los Angeles, CA, and her MFA at California State University, Fullerton. Prior to her tenure at the State Center Community College District, Ledgerwood lived and worked in southern California as an adjunct professor at USC and various community colleges, as an art museum director, and as a community art gallery director where she organized and curated a variety of exhibitions. Ledgerwood is currently a tenured art and multi-media professor at Clovis Community College.

PC VP of Student Services Delivers Keynote for CSUB Scholarship Ceremony

Porterville College Vice President of Student Services Primavera Arvizu delivered the keynote address at the 39th Annual Hispanic Excellence Scholarship Fund (HESF) Awards Program at CSU Bakersfield on Friday, September 23.

The fund recognizes academically excellent students with awards and scholarships. Since 1984, HESF has supported over 1,800 outstanding students from our community.  It seeks to increase access to a college education for academically excellent financially deserving underrepresented students who demonstrate leadership potential. 

Arvizu, who is a former recipient of an HESF award, delivered the keynote address to a room of over 20 scholarship recipients, including three recipients from the Kern Community College District. Frank Ramirez, PC’s Director of Student Services, was also in attendance at the event.  He had the following to say about Arvizu’s Address, “Primavera inspired the recipients of the California State University, Bakersfield Hispanic Excellence Scholarship. The biggest moment [for me] was when she dropped the African Proverb about a Gazelle. Read it and let it sink in on how it relates to the journey that all first-generation college students and first-generation professionals face every day.”

The proverb used in her address follows: 

Every morning in Africa a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle or it will starve to death. It doesn't matter whether you are a lion or a gazelle. When the sun comes up, you better start running.

Next CHAP Event Explores the Claim, “We Are All Romans”

Jay Hargis (Pictured at a prior CHAP event)

The Porterville College Historical Awareness Program (CHAP) continues its celebration of 20 years and this semester’s theme of The Anthropocene with our next presentation, “We Are All Romans”.

The event, presented by PC Professor Emeritus Jay Hargis, will explore our understanding of our historical roots.

Join us on Thursday, October 6th from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm in the PC Theater for this discussion on heritage, history, and where we all come from.

Professor Jay Hargis has offered classes in history at Porterville College since 1991 – first as an adjunct and then as a full-time history professor. He retired from PC earlier this year.  Areas of historical interest that he has explored in 23 previous CHAP and other topical presentations over the years have included Mexican and Mexican American history, the Cold War, US politics of the ‘60s and ‘70s, our Islamic heritage, medieval history, 19th-century European conflicts, the legacies of World War I, the US in the Middle East since the 1940s, fictional history in the works of J.R.R. Tolkien, and other topics. 

For more information on the CHAP program, you can visit https://www.portervillecollege.edu/chap.

Cerro Coso Community College

Star Party and Barbecue Draw Big Crowd to Cerro Coso

Cerro Coso understands the public’s fascination with the night sky and goes the extra mile to welcome and accommodate guests that are keen to stargazing at their annual Star Party and Barbecue.

For the first time in two years the annual Star Party and Barbecue was held on Friday, September 23, 2022 in the fountain area of the Ridgecrest campus. 

After an evening a good food, great music, and raffles, participants stayed to enjoy the spectacular night sky at the Dr. Alex Shlanta Astronomical Observatory.

Special thanks go out to this year’s event Sponsors: Desert Valley’s FCU, Henzel Phelps Construction Company, Ridgecrest Regional Hospital, Toyota of Ridgecrest, 760 Fitness, The Swap Sheet, T.J. Frisbee, and Sylvia Sotomayor. 

The China Lake Astronomical Society joined Astronomy Professor Dr. Scott Cameron in educating party goers on the impressive objects in the sky.

The event drew kids of all ages to the college for a variety of fun activities, games, and viewing of the beauty and wonder of the night skies. 

Thanks to the Maintenance and Operations team for their hard work in setting up and bringing new and creative ideas to this year’s event, and to the many volunteers that contribute to the success of this year’s event.

The Cerro Coso Community College Foundation held this fundraising event in support of Cerro Coso programs, students, and staff. It is estimated between 350 and 400 people were in attendance.

Hands on with science and astronomy – educational and fun for the whole family!

Cerro Coso to participate in Relay for Life

Relay for Life is the American Cancer Society’s signature fundraiser, bringing communities together to honor and remember loved ones and take action for lifesaving change in the fight against cancer.  Cerro Coso will be participating and invites all to be a part of their team.   

The event will be held on Saturday, October 8, 2022, at the Leroy Jackson Sports Complex from 9 AM to midnight.

The goal of participating in this event as a whole college is to recognize and honor those individuals and support the cause to raise funds to fight against cancer.  The more people who participate in Relay for Life, the more money can be raised to support breakthrough research, 24/7 support for cancer patients, access to lifesaving screenings, and much more.

Will you join us to help raise money for the American Cancer Society? To walk, simply Click here to view the TEAM page for Cerro Coso Community College

Purchase a Luminaria: https://secure.acsevents.org/site/SPageServer?pagename=relay_luminaria&PROXY_TYPE=21&PROXY_ID=102622&fr_id=102622&search=event  Click that link and find the team name Cerro Coso Community College you can donate and purchase a luminaria in honor of someone you love.

Banned Books Week

The Cerro Coso Library celebrated the freedom to read during Banned Books Week, September 18th-24th, with displays encouraging students to #resistthepurge on social media or by reading books that have been banned from libraries across the country – titles that include To Kill a Mockingbird, The Diary of Anne Frank, and the Harry Potter series.”

Banned Books Week has been an annual nationwide campaign led by the American Library Association since 1982. It draws attention to the problems of censorship and highlights the value of open access to information.

For more information, check out https://bannedbooksweek.org/

Bakersfield College

Delano 50th Anniversary

On Monday, September 26th, I joined the Bakersfield College community, Kern CCD Trustees Romeo Agbalog and Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, and Assembly Member Rudy Salas to commemorate 50 years of Bakersfield College supporting Renegades in Delano.

It all began when the Kern Community College District voted to build a second campus for Bakersfield College in downtown Bakersfield in the mid-1970s, Delano’s leaders clamored for their own dedicated campus in Delano. That led in the fall of 1977 to the construction of a new facility on Randolph Street where 50 courses were offered to 850 students. Now, BC continues to grow and looks forward to the opening of the newest Learning Resource Center facility on the BC Delano campus. Special guests in attendance at Monday’s event included Julio Segura, Trustees Romeo Agbalog, Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, and Assemblymember Rudy Salas.

6th Annual Panorama Creative Music Summit

The Panorama Music Summit kicked off this week at Bakersfield College for the 6th time. During week one, students were invited to participate in special workshops throughout the day and concerts were held for students and the community in the evening. 

Luke Temple gave an Improvisation talk on Wednesday, and spoke about his own sources of inspiration. As a child he enjoyed listening to punk rock and later found an interest in jazz, though now his favorites also include The Beatles and Elliott Smith. His songwriting career began with folk music. One student asked Mr. Temple, “What distinguishes pop music from the other genres?” Temple responded, “Well, pop stands for popular, so the primary thing that distinguishes pop music from the others are simply the numbers.” Temple later went on to say that songwriting is meaningful to him because he sees it as a form of self-discovery and expression. 

For information on next week’s activities, visit bcjazz.org.

Bakersfield College RN – Mercy Hospital Recruitment

Another of our many partners, Mercy Hospital, hosted our upcoming graduating class of Registered Nursing students at the beautiful Stockdale Country Club this week. Future RNs had the opportunity to meet with department managers and ask questions about each department and their individual culture. Fifty-six of our soon-to-be graduates took advantage of learning detailed information from Mercy’s various departments to determine if they are a good fit for that team. Thank you, Mercy Hospital.

2022-23 Basketball Media Day

The Bakersfield College Athletics Department would like to invite the campus to attend the 2022-23 Basketball Media Day. The 2022-23 Basketball season is upon us and BC Athletics is extending a warm welcome to join the Renegades in kicking off the season with the 2022 BC Basketball Media Day on Thursday, October 6th at 11:00AM at the Gil Bishop Sports Center. The event will take place on the top floor of the main front entrance. A full list of speakers can be found below and more to come.

The event is free to the public. Attendees are encouraged to park in lot P7, off of Mt. Vernon.  

Fun Photos & other news spotted on social media

Subscribe to Kern CCD TALE blog todayhttps://kernccdtaleblog.org/

The Teaching-and-Learning Experiences (TALE) blog provides a virtual space for faculty, instructional support staff, former faculty, and others within KCCD to contribute original blog posts that describe their insights and ideas rooted in their experiences in the classroom or working with our students, their implications for ensuring that learning occurs with intentional outcomes, and their relationship to faculty engagement and innovation, and student success. 

BC Industrial Automation shared this post:

“Thank you AeraEnergyLLC for your internship presentation and for creating an Automation Internship opportunity for our students locally.”

The Cerro Coso Learning Assistance Center created this video to help students access their Math & Writing Lab:

And check out this great video by Jonathan Hernandez at Porterville College:


hat’s a wrap for now.
See you next Saturday!

The future is bright at KernCCD.

a joyful and grateful Chancellor


Sterling Silver 2022

Last weekend, the Bakersfield College Foundation’s 14th Annual Sterling Silver event returned to in-person, after last year’s televised recognition celebration.

The annual benefit dinner recognizes exceptional support and service to the BC Foundation, and to the college, with proceeds from the evening going directly towards the Renegade scholarship program and supportive services. The sold out event took place Saturday March 19th, 2022 at the Panorama Campus.

Thank you to the top Sterling sponsors

Joel and Connie Perez-Andreesen–Reception Sponsor

Ordiz Melby Architects–Sterling Level Sponsor

Chevron–Sterling Level Sponsor

Corporate Philanthropist Award: Bank of America

Individual Philanthropist Award: The Contreras Family

BC Foundation Service Medal: Assemblymember Rudy Salas

Lifetime Achievement Award: Congressman William “Bill” Thomas

Check out this 2-minute photo roll of Bill Thomas

I loved the impromptu remarks made by four of our trustees, led by President Romeo Agbalog. It was the cherry on top of the icing of a wonderful evening.

Bill Thomas with Kern CCD Trustees Kay Meek, Yovani Jimenez, Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, and Romeo Agbalog

Executive Director of BC’s Foundation, Cheryl Scott said, “Sterling Silver is one of our favorite times of the year because we’re able to recognize the thoughtful generosity and long lasting contributions of leaders who have stepped forward to make a difference in the lives of students. These individuals are creating a legacy of positive growth and inspiring bright futures through expansions, education, and support.”

BC’s brand new event space, located on the 3rd floor of the newly constructed Campus Center building hosted the special evening.

Here are a some photos:

More photos

Fabulous culinary students

Good morning, friends…
It is March 26, 2022.
The sun shines bright over KernCCD.

This week, the Pirates, the Coyotes, and the Renegades continue to 

Porterville College

PC Writer & Poet Speaker Series Returns with Helena María Viramontes

PC has announced Helena María Viramontes as the next speaker in the PC Writer & Poet Speaker Series.  She will join the PC community on March 31st at 12pm – 1pm via zoom at: https://cccconfer.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJcqfuysrjopGtQdfBym9zfAGULd_IIWTzia

Viramontes is the author of The Moths and Other Stories (1985) and two novels: Under the Feet of Jesus, which bears witness to the struggles of a makeshift family of migrant farmworkers in California, and Their Dogs Came with Them (2008), a masterful depiction of the lives of the dispossessed, the working poor, the homeless, and the undocumented of East Los Angeles, where Viramontes was born and raised.

In the 1980s, Viramontes became co-coordinator of the Los Angeles Latino Writers Association; later in the decade, Viramontes helped found Southern California Latino Writers and Filmmakers. In collaboration with feminist scholar Maria Herrera Sobek, Viramontes organized three major conferences at UC-Irvine, resulting in two anthologies: Chicana Creativity and Criticism-Charting New Frontiers in American Literature (1988) and Chicana Writes: On Word and Film (1993).

You can find more information on Viramontes via her Cornell faculty page and register for the event at https://cccconfer.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJcqfuysrjopGtQdfBym9zfAGULd_IIWTzia.

Getting to Know the PC ASPC in 4 questions:
ASPC Marketing and Publicity Representative Brayan Quevedo

At Porterville College, we believe that one of the keys to student success is a complete student life experience.  The Associated Students of Porterville College (ASPC) plays a large part in shaping student life on campus. 

We recently had the chance to connect with the Associated Students of Porterville College (ASPC) Marketing and Publicity representative Brayan Quevedo who shared about the journey to PC, studies and areas of interest, and future plans:

Can you tell us about your life before you came to PC and your journey that led you here?

My life’s a wild story. More specifically, before PC I lived in Oregon. I graduated last June (2021) from Sprague High School with a diploma in STEM. I knew I wanted to further my education through college but didn’t really know where to attend. What I did know was that I loved Computer Science and Mathematics, so I applied schools in Oregon and California that specialized in STEM.

During the college application process, some of my family members got sick and needed to be cared for so my mother and I moved. Since I was between two states, college admissions got extremely tricky as it’s quite uncommon to be moving during the final weeks of school, so I was charged out-of-state tuition for all the schools I got accepted to. What really motivated me to attend PC as opposed to other colleges were the cost, location, and small class sizes. Having just moved to the Central Valley, college costs were extremely worrying as it felt like I was spending money left and right, but Porterville College was extremely affordable – even as an out-of-state student. Instead of seeing $70k cost of attendance bills, it was only a few thousand, which made attending the school an obvious choice. Furthermore, they also helped me through the financial aid process to minimize my bill as much as possible!

Finally, the class sizes. One of my biggest concerns with going to a state school were the 200+ class sizes in huge auditoriums for an introductory level class, taught by a professor who couldn’t recognize one student from the next. At Porterville College, every instructor knows me by name, and genuinely wants me to succeed in their class. It’s such a welcoming environment that no state school could match.

What are you majoring in at PC and what career path do you have in mind?

As mentioned previously, I’m currently studying Mathematics and Computer Science. I chose these majors for their difficulty and their impact. I love tackling a hard problem and spending hours seeing what the most efficient solution is. Furthermore, you can use these tools that you learn in my majors to create REAL impact on the world! You could design the next biggest app, create infrastructure that millions of residents use yearly, help the human race reach intergalactic travel – truly the applications are limitless!

What are your hobbies and interests outside of school?

Besides just academics, I’ve been known to be a tree hugger for my love of nature and running. I spend any time possible at Sequoia or Yosemite. The entire experience of scaling a multi-thousand-foot mountain with your friends while messing around and enjoying yourselves brings me genuine joy and happiness that calls me back, one weekend after the next. I believe everyone should experience nature as often as possible, so they can see how beautiful the planet they live on is!

What are your plans after you finish at PC?

After graduating from Porterville College, my plans are to transfer to a UC to continue my study of Computer Science/Math. I aspire to get a Masters in one of these fields to push the bounds of what’s possible. After this, I hope to work in Silicon Valley to create products and services that better our lives!

PC Announces in-person Commencement, first Grad Fair for class of 2022

The last in-person commencement at PC’s Jamison Stadium was held in 2019.

Porterville College has announced that the commencement ceremony for the class of 2022 will once again be held in-person after a two year hiatus due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. In a letter from PC President Dr. Claudia Habib to graduating students, she states “I am delighted to report that this year, we will be honoring you and your families in an IN-PERSON Commencement Ceremony for the first time since 2019! The 2022 Commencement Ceremony will be held on Friday, May 13th, beginning at 7:00 pm inside PC’s Jamison Stadium. I can’t wait to see you all walk across that stage and become graduates!”

Due to the construction and upgrades project currently happening at the stadium, there will be limited seating for spectators this year. To accommodate this and ensure that everyone is able to invite family members, the college will provide six (6) spectator tickets to each graduate for guests to attend the event.

This year, PC will also hold the first “PC Grad Fair” on Wednesday, April 13th from 11:00am to 1:00pm. Scheduled to be held in the campus quad, this event will be a one-stop shop for all things commencement. Graduates will be able to order their cap and gown, take graduation portraits, pre-order event photo packages, and more.

Cerro Coso Community College

Coyotes Participate in Little League Opener

Little league – the opportunity for a community to create a local youth baseball program, built on life lessons, socialization, and sportsmanship that benefits the children and the adult volunteers who support those efforts.

Now practicing for several weeks, the Indian Wells Valley (IWV) Little League officially kicked off the baseball season on Saturday, March 13th with a fun and full day of festivities, including a complete slate of games.  Not even the threat of wind could dampen this first class show.

In a parade of players and coaches and a crowd of camera-clicking moms and dads the, Cerro Coso Baseball team was on hand to congratulate the players and wish them a successful season as they passed through the gauntlet of Coyotes.  Each team from every division was introduced, the players and coaches tipping their caps in proud acknowledgement before taking their place on the apron of the infield.    

It was a great day for parents too.  “It’s great to see everyone getting out and enjoying the fresh air and sports again,” said Outreach Director Katie Bachman.

Little League is a place where kids can have fun, and learn important life lessons.  It provides a sense of connection across generations, common ground between parent and child, and a reminder of what binds us together as a community and the source of our strength as a nation.  Cerro Coso plays an important role in serving as both mentors and supporters. 

What Do You Want to Be When You Grow Up?

A teacher.  A nurse. A rock star. An astronaut.  As a child your career aspirations are the stuff dreams are made of.  Secure in the knowledge that when you grow up you can be anything you want  to be.

To explore the intriguing connection between childhood career aspirations and adults’ chosen occupations, Cerro Coso participated in the Trona High School Career Day on March 18th.   The goal of Career Day is to help students understand the curriculum as it relates to specific, real-life job opportunities and a rewarding future.  The event provides students the opportunity to start thinking about their future, broadens their perspectives, and further motivates them to pursue productive careers.

Professor Vivian Baker, CTE Counselor Teri Hack, and Outreach Director Katie Bachman shared their job experiences and passion for the work they do.  The objective was to provide the students a relatable link to the real world, hands-on expertise, and concrete examples of how academics relates to future educational and occupational opportunities. 

A total of 29 organizations participated, and students, grade 5 through 12th, were able to listen to six different presentations.  Presenters included the following occupations: banking, law enforcement, probation department, veterinary care, nursing, heavy equipment operations, utilities technicians, teaching, fire program, photography, journalism, science and technology, EMT, and social services.

“Our students and staff really enjoyed having presents at our school.  I have been getting a lot of positive comments from students, staff, and parents,” said Ruth Soto, Trona High School counselor. 

What do you want to be when you grow up? The answer is right here in your own community, at CCCC the possibilities are endless.   

CCCC 48th Annual Commencement

Cerro Coso Community College will be hosting an in-person graduation in the gymnasium for the first time since 2019 on Friday, May 13th at 11 a.m.

Last year’s event was a unique scaled-down celebration, balancing safety and tradition.

This year Cerro Coso graduates will once again walk across the stage in the Gymnasium at the Raymond A. McCue Athletic Complex to receive their degrees in front of friends and family. 

“Throughout the pandemic our college community has come together to adjust and adapt our plans to prioritize the health and safety of our communities, and the same is true for commencement,” said President Sean Hancock.  “We have remained committed to honoring the achievements of our graduates, the Class of 2022, in person, on the campus many call home.”

The college’s Eastern Sierra College Center will hold their own in-person ceremony on Friday, May 6th in Bishop. 

The decision to host in-person events comes after the college considered current CDC and local health department protocols.

Bakersfield College

BC and CityServe Celebrate 13 Graduates of the Project HireUp Program

Bakersfield College and CityServe celebrated the graduation of 13 participants who successfully completed the program, earning one of three certificates in either Basic Office Skills, Basic Employability Skills, or Life Development. This is the 5th graduating cohort to successfully complete the Project HireUp program since its launch in 2020. 

Project HireUp is an innovative program combining community-based efforts, free education, and internship style employment, giving those in need the resources to change their lives. BC and CityServe launched Project HireUp alongside the County of Kern, the Mission at Kern County, M Street Navigation Center, and Adventist Health, with a pilot cohort of over 20 students. The students embarked on a 8-week journey to rediscover life skills, learn new ones, and engage in developing on-the-job-skills with entry level employment.

BC Professor Dr. Paula Parks Receives Prestigious Award

Dr. Paula Parks, Professor and Coordinator of the Umoja ASTEP Community, has been selected to receive the 2022 Stanback-Stroud Diversity Award by the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges. This award was created to recognize an individual that is exceptional in their contribution to the advancement of intercultural harmony, equity and campus diversity at their academic institutions.

Dr. Parks will be honored at the 2022 Spring Plenary Session in April.

Congratulations Dr. Paula Parks on being recognized for your hard work and efforts that contribute to making Bakersfield College a positive academic environment for all students, faculty and staff. We are proud to have you as part of our BC team.

Valley Strong Energy Institute Hosting Energy Education Webinar

Join us for the next webinar in the Valley Strong Energy Institute’s Ag/Water/Energy Education Series, which is dedicated to keeping Central Valley residents informed on natural resources infrastructure and its impact on our daily lives. For this session, we’ll be talking about microgrids, which are self-sustaining energy systems designed to power large facilities using renewable energy. 

Featured speakers for this session include California Energy Commission Vice Chair Siva Gunda, Mojave Air and Spaceport CEO Todd Lindner, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory engineer Cecilia Klauber
To participate in this webinar, visit the registration link at bit.ly/AWEWebinar6.

Renegade Athletics Update

Over the last weekend, men’s tennis hosted the first annual Pfister Tournament.

Swimming competed at the WSC #2 meet this past Saturday at Cuesta College. The women finished 2nd overall while the men finished in 4th.

Softball won against College of the Canyons 2-0 on Tuesday and 10-1 against Glendale on Thursday. Currently, the team is 16-5 on the season and will be playing at home tomorrow (March 22nd) at 2:30PM.

Beach Volleyball competed in the conference opener and went 2-1. BC defeated Glendale 5-0 while Moorpark defeated BC 3-2.

Women’s History Month

As Women’s History Month comes to a close, I wanted to share with you a piece I had published in EdSource: “Heroic students who are also mothers deserve more support.

Community colleges are ‘success incubators’ for the marginalized. Seeing our student mothers and their needs clearly through data, through stories and through our commitment to meeting our basic goals indicates that investing in our student mothers, and especially student mothers of color, will produce great benefits to our society as a whole.

And to close out Women’s History Month, the Kern Community College District is hosting the third annual Women in Leadership forum, moderated by Senator Emeritus Jean Fuller and featuring panelists Martha Flores, Porterville Mayor; Wendy Avila, Kern Superior Court Judge; Brenda Lewis, CA Board of Education Member; and Karen Goh, Bakersfield Mayor.

The forum will be at 11:30 am at the Weill Institute on Tuesday, March 29 is sold out. However, you can join the livestream at bit.ly/WomenInLeadership2022.

In the News

Research continues on Artemis moon missions

Bakersfield College Astronomy Professor Nick Strobel‘s recent article in The Bakersfield Californian discussed the ongoing research into NASA’s Artemis program, which hopes to get humans back to the surface of the moon in the next 3-4 years. Currently, they are analyzing lunar samples brought back 50 years ago during the Apollo program.

“In an example of foresight uncommon today, NASA set aside a small amount of the samples for future research 50 years later, with the assumption that future generations of scientists and engineers would have developed more sophisticated analysis techniques and technology.

Nick Strobel

Green Side Up to kick off Castle Fire Restoration project

The Porterville Recorder published this article about the upcoming Castle Fire Restoration project. The “Green Side Up” project is hosted by the Rotary Club of Porterville, the Porterville Breakfast Rotary Club, the Rotary Club of Woodlake and Foothill Rotary of Lindsay in partnership with the Sequoia National Forest, Porterville College and CAL FIRE. On April 30, volunteers will plant trees and kick off the Castle Fire Ecological Restoration project.

Celebration of life set for Bakersfield College professor Jack Hernandez

Jose Franco published this piece for KGET about the upcoming Celebration of Life planned for Jack Hernandez. Jack passed away in November. He was an English and philosophy professor and the Dean of Students at BC, before serving as Vice Chancellor of the Kern Community College District. He was also the founding director of the Levan Center.

A celebration of life is scheduled for April 1 at the Bakersfield College Campus Center Conference Room. Doors open at 4 p.m.

Sonya and Jack Hernandez.

Fun Photos & Spotted on Social Media

Cerro Coso College posted about their Coyote Cupboard:

BC Rural Initiatives shared this post:

Congratulations to our amazing ENCORE Educational Advisor, Vikki Coffee, on being recognized today by Kern Behavioral Health and Recovery Services for her work and dedication to youth in our community.

Vikki was also previously recognized in February by the Transnational Aged Youth (TAY) Collaborative. #WeAreBC

I loved this throwback from BC Cheer about when they performed at Robobank with New Kids on the Block:


That’s a wrap for now.
See you next Saturday!

The future is bright at KernCCD.

a joyful and grateful Chancellor


It’s March – Celebrating Women

On Tuesday – International Women’s Day – the California Community Colleges Women’s Caucus gathered virtually for a panel discussion about Student Parents, the second in a three-part series co-sponsored by the Caucus and California Competes.

I wanted to share this short video highlighting some of the inspirational women who have broken new ground for women in higher education, as well as some photos from the Caucus’ first 1 1/2 years. #WomenInspire

Talking about inspiring women, here is one of my favorite people – T Johnson doing what she does …..

Bakersfield College Launchpad welcomes the Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce “Leadership Bakersfield” Class of 2022 for “Education Day” hosted by Kern County Superintendent of Schools. Participants toured the Launchpad and learned about the resources and educational workshops for entrepreneurs to help start and grow businesses in our community.  NaTesha “T” Johnson presented to the leaders on the importance of supporting entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses throughout Kern County.

Good morning, friends…
It is March 12, 2022.
The sun shines bright over KernCCD.

This week, the Pirates, the Coyotes, and the Renegades continue to 

Porterville College

Porterville College names Women’s Soccer coach, looks to start new program in Fall

We’re excited to announce the appointment of PC alum Amber Hernandez as the Head Coach for the new PC Women’s Soccer team. #WomenLead

Ms. Hernandez has spent the better part of her life playing soccer, jokingly saying that she has “been a soccer player since the moment I could walk”. She brings valuable experience starting up new soccer programs, having served as assistant coach for the first soccer team fielded at Reedley College.

Amber was a member of the Women’s Mexican National Soccer team, she also played semiprofessional soccer with the Seattle Reign. She’s coached younger recreational soccer players for over 9 years, having worked with the South Valley Chivas Academy and the Porterville Soccer League. She comes to PC directly from her position as an assistant coach for the WPSL Fresno Freeze women’s soccer program.

As a graduate of Porterville College and a Porterville resident, Ms. Hernandez looks forward to making a difference in the lives of players in our community. She is particularly excited to start recruiting new players from the area. “For far too long talent here has been kept a secret and hidden, now is time to showcase all that hidden talent! This program will encourage so many young girls, female athletes, and women of all ages to dream big and use their talent to help open doors to their fullest potential.”

PC Athletic Director Joe Cascio is excited about the addition of both Hernandez and the new program. He says, “We are very fortunate to have Amber in charge of reviving women’s soccer at Porterville College. She has an extensive soccer background, strong ties to the community, and a genuine passion for student-athlete success. I’m excited to see her hit the ground running.”

This mother of two holds her bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary studies from National University and a teaching credential in Multiple subjects. She already has big plans for the program in its first years, “My plan is to create a program where female athletes can strive and be successful both on and off the field.”

Scene on Campus: Student Life Club Rush Event

The PC campus continues its “spring back to life” this week as the student life office presented the latest Club Rush in the quad.  Interested students met with club members and advisors to learn about the variety of clubs available on campus.  The event showcased a wide range of cultural, service and interest clubs offered on campus. 

It is also nice to see students gathering in the quad again and taking advantage of events as the weather begins to improve and some of the limitations of the pandemic begin to subside.  According to Vice President of Student Services, Primavera Arvizu, “It is great to see the clubs, students, and club advisors engaging in Student Life again”. #WomenLead

Student artists provide artwork for new Presidents Exhibit

Some Porterville College art students are getting to show off their talent in a new location on campus, thanks to the recent addition of the first “President’s Office Student Art Exhibit”, located inside the PC President’s Office.  The exhibit of student works was created to highlight several pieces of student art on a rotating basis in our administrative offices.   #WomenLead

Dr. Habib thought it would be a wonderful way to highlight student’s incredible talents and show off their artwork to community guests and others that visit the President’s Office on a regular basis.  Thank you to Art Professor Dr. James Entz for organizing this showing of student art.  Feel free to stop by and check out the student’s incredible work the next time you are on campus!

Cerro Coso Community College

CC Holds Virtual Military and Veterans Aid Workshop

Cerro Coso Community College is offering a virtual Military and Veterans Aid Workshop on Friday, March 18th from 12 to 1:30 p.m. viz Zoom. 

The college strives to support, empower, and assist military and veteran students through military-connected transitional challenges; increase student veteran retention and completion; foster the development of skills needed to succeed in their educational goals; and create an awareness of military culture and how to support veterans on campus. 

This workshop will provide a review of military and veteran education benefits such as Tuition Assistance, GI Bill®, MyCAA, and the CalVet Fee Waiver.  Other topics will include academic and Financial Aid resources to ensure students are well prepared or the upcoming term. 

Cerro Coso employees Adeline Windsor and Jessica Kawelmacher, Admissions & Records and Military & Veterans Services; Katie Bachman, Director of Outreach Services; and Alfonso Guzman, Counseling and Military & Veterans Services will be on hand to provide their expertise, direct discussion, and answer questions.   

For more information on Military and Veteran Services at Cerro Coso Community College call 760-384-6291.

Virtual Parent Night March 23

Parents who have questions about their child’s path to college success are invited to attend an upcoming Cerro Coso Community College virtual Parent Information Night and see firsthand what CCCC offers. From career-training programs that include Nursing, Welding, EMT, and Cyber Security, to Associate Degrees for Transfer, and Associate Degree programs, CCCC provides the education and training students need for success in rewarding, high-demand career fields.

Helping parents navigate the college planning and enrollment process, Cerro Coso’s Parent Information Night will enlighten parents of prospective students on college costs and how to pay for college—including financial aid and scholarship availability. Representatives will share details on available resources, enrollment process, transfer requirements, vocational programs, and information on how high school students can earn college credit through dual and concurrent enrollment classes.  Time will be allotted for questions and answers.

Cerro Coso’s Virtual Parent Night will be held on Wednesday, March 23, 2022 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. via Zoom.  Reserve your spot at https://www.cerrocoso.edu/event/virtual-parent-night-all-sites .

All Cerro Coso Community College campuses are now OPEN.  Contact your local Cerro Coso Community College Counseling Department for assistance. 

Coso Baseball Back at the Dawg Yard

After a week on the road, the Coyote Baseball team returned to the Dawg Yard for some IEAC action on Tuesday as they took on the Chaffey Panthers.   

The Panthers enter the contest with a 1-2 IEAC record, but are traditionally regarded as a top performer in the conference. After a long battle on the ball field, the Coyotes lost to the Panthers with a score of 13-16. 

The Coyotes look to get back to their winning ways against some stiff competition this week, after squaring off with Chaffey on Tuesday, they will travel to Mt. San Antonio college in a non-conference matchup and then return home to host San Bernardino Valley College on Saturday (12:00 noon first pitch). 

#CoyoteSpirit – Go Coyotes!

Bakersfield College

Amazon Presents Check to BC Foundation in Appreciation for Student Assistance in Marking Catalytic Converters

Students and faculty from BC’s Automotive Technology program teamed up with the Bakersfield AMAZON distribution team at Motor City Quick Lube lanes in the Auto Mall to mark and label approximately 150 catalytic converters on AMAZON employee’s vehicles.

Amazon employee vehicles were being vandalized and catalytic converters were being stolen from them at their distribution warehouse. AMAZON was looking for a way to try to reduce the number of thefts that were taking place when they heard about a partnership between BC Automotive Technology students, faculty, BPD, and the District Attorney’s office.  They reached out to BC and found a way to coordinate similar events and provide scholarship opportunities for students working the event.

During the one-day event, students interacted with AMAZON’s security management to learn more about employment options with the company.  

In appreciation for BC’s help, the company provided AMAZON gift cards to the students, the company donated $10,000 to the BC Foundation and each student was given a $150 AMAZON gift card.

Andrew Haney, BC Automotive Professor, stated that the most important experience for students was the opportunity to work with others in the community.  “The skill most learned from this event was the students realizing the benefits of community service, building relationships and the accomplishments that can be achieved when a community works together for a greater cause of good.” 

Groundbreaking Ceremony for Expansion of BC’s Delano Campus

On Friday morning, BC held a groundbreaking ceremony for a new facility at our Delano Campus. Construction on the new building is thanks to $14 million in state dollars secured by Assemblymember Rudy Salas.

The Delano campus has experienced significant growth of students attending 15 hours of classes per week since 2015. This increase in attendance and engagement created a need for an additional building. The hope is that the new building will be finished and operational in the Fall of 2023.

The program, emceed by Jaime Lopez, was brief with a nice line up of speakers.

Dr. Zav Dadabhoy and Dr. Jessica Wojtysiak talked about the significance of the new building for the community of Delano.

Trustee Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg spoke on behalf of the KCCD Trustees beautifully narrating the history and growth of the Delano campus. #WomenLead

I was also really happy that Trustee Yovani Jimenez attended the event.

Our student Marcus Mateo brought it home that he and many of his family members would not have attended college if it was not for the Delano Center. #WeAreBC

The man of the hour, Assembly member Rudy Salas, who brought in the matching $14M for the project concluded the program with heartfelt remarks about his hometown.

More photos

BC’s Community Partnerships Framed by Adult Education, Credit and Noncredit Programs

Bakersfield College is hard at work engaging with community partners to support economic growth and upward mobility. Through our Adult Education and Noncredit education, we are providing high-touch, comfortable environments where adults can walk in, skill up, and reach their potential.

Last fall, BC pioneered a partnership with Chick-fil-A to provide employees with a dedicated, noncredit program of study to develop office and business skills. The sixth cohort of students will graduate soon from BC’s Project HireUp, providing a pathway from homelessness to successful employment. The number of programs and pathways available through this unique partnership with CityServe continues to grow, now including welding, core construction/industrial skills, and occupational safety and risk management. Adult students can also access courses through our JobSpot partnership with the Kern High School District.

In non-credit, our immediate focus has turned to the development and launch of several summer academies. This summer, students can complete Career Development and College Preparation (CDCP) certificates in a wide range of areas. Currently, Bakersfield College offers almost 20 noncredit programs, and nearly 150 courses in 23 subject areas!

BC’s Expanding List of Community Partners includes:

  • Bakersfield City School District – Parent University
  • City Serve & Project HireUp
  • Wonderful Training Academy
  • Farmworkers Institute Education and Leadership (FIELD)
  • JobSpot
  • Edible Garden at the Main Campus/Regenerative Garden at the Delano Center
  • Greater Bakersfield New Car Dealership
  • Education Partners Throughout Kern County

BC Celebrates Women’s History Month

Women’s History Month and More (WHAM) at Bakersfield College has organized an array of programs and special events to celebrate the historical accomplishments of women. 

This year, WHAM chose to emphasize the positive change women can make in the lives of each other and in broader society. This year’s events include a film screening, guest speakers, discussion panels, and much more.
Visit the Women’s History Month information page for a list of all the events and resources.

Renegade Athletics Update

Women’s basketball hosted their first playoff basketball game in seven years against Long Beach City on Thursday evening, March 3rd, in front of a large crowd. Unfortunately, the Renegades came up short and ended their season but Coach Paula Dahl and the entire team wanted to send out a big thank you for the community’s support this season! #WomenLead

Softball has been on a roll! This week the team went against College of the Sequoias and won 11-1. Pitcher Talia Nielson had 10 strikeouts and only one run on Saturday, March 5th. 

Remembering Fernando Alaniz

This February, McFarland High dual enrollment instructor Fernando Alaniz passed away. On Wednesday, a memorial service was held for the popular teacher and girls basketball coach. Steven Watkin, Alma Feathers, and Kylie Campbell were in attendance, and I wanted to share some of the words that Kylie prepared:

“Without the contributions of Mr. Alaniz to the Early College program at McFarland High School, there would have been hundreds of students who did not have the opportunity to get college credit while in high school.

We are grateful of the time and the hard work that Mr. Alaniz dedicated to his students and to this program. Fernando Alaniz Ochoa was a true Cougar Renegade, and the team at Bakersfield College will hold his memory close to our hearts as we continue the work that he helped us begin just a couple of years ago.

On behalf of Bakersfield College, we extend our condolences to Mr. Alaniz family, to all students and staff and McFarland High, and to the community of McFarland. We would also like to present these flowers to Fernando’s wife as a thank you for the mark that Fernando left on the McFarland High Early College program.”

Getting to Know: Melanie Jeffrey

This week, we are getting to know Cerro Coso English Professor Melanie Jeffrey:

For Cerro Coso English Professor Melanie Jeffrey, community college isn’t just where she works. She says it also saved her life.

Growing up in Los Angeles, her family was poor and on welfare most of her young life. In high school, she attended a regional occupation program in cosmetology which landed her a job working in a hair salon straight out of school, which was her first career. 

Fine out more about Melanie Jeffrey on the Kern CCD website.

Fun Photos & Spotted on Social Media

Marlene Heise sent me this beautiful photo from her visit to Wisconsin:

2 degrees in WI right now.  Sunrise …. no water, only ice in the bay, still beautiful and peaceful!

The KernCCD and BC team was out in full force at the Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce installation this week:

Cerro Coso updated their Facebook cover photo – check it out:

New dad Nicky Damania had a warm welcome back to BC:

BC Rural Initiatives Program Director Jaime Lopez was installed into the Greater Lamont Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors:


That’s a wrap for now.
See you next Saturday!

The future is bright at KCCD.

a joyful and grateful Chancellor


This is our community. Make it. Protect it. Pass it on.

October 2, 1967, 54 years ago, Thurgood Marshall was sworn in as the first Black Justice on the US Supreme Court.

He had been nominated four months prior by President Lyndon B. Johnson. He had been at the forefront of legal battles for Civil Rights and the destruction of Jim Crow segregation. From 1938 to 1961, he served as the NAACP’s chief counsel, arguing more than a dozen cases before the U.S. Supreme Court – including a victory in 1954’s groundbreaking Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka case.

Marshall’s placement on the highest court in the land was as an important milestone in the still-continuing march for racial equality and peace in this country.

Where you see wrong or inequality or injustice, speak out, because this is your country.
This is your democracy. Make it. Protect it. Pass it on.
Thurgood Marshall

Good morning, friends…
It is October 2, 2021.
The sun shines bright over KCCD.

This week, the Pirates, the Coyotes, and the Renegades continue to 

Porterville College

PC Receives $1.7 million grant to help prepare local students for college

Porterville College has been awarded a $1.7 million grant from the US department of Education as part of the Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs, or GEAR UP, partnership program.

GEAR UP provides six-year and seven-year grants to develop partnerships that provide services at high-poverty middle and high schools. GEAR UP partners, such as Porterville College, serve an entire cohort of students beginning no later than the seventh grade and follow the cohort through high school.

This award will fund a seven-year project at PC to increase the number of low-income students within our service area who obtain a High School diploma and are then prepared to succeed in college.  The program will achieve this goal by meeting the following objectives for 400 students per year for the duration of the project:

  • Increase the academic performance and preparation for post-secondary education for GEAR UP students.
  • Increase the rate of high school graduation for GEAR UP students.
  • Increase the number and percentage of students and parents demonstrating knowledge of post-secondary education options, financial aid options, cost of college attendance, and how to acquire financial aid.
  • Increase the number and percentage of GEAR UP students entering college after high school.
  • Increase the number and percentage of GEAR UP students persisting to the second year of college.

Matthew S. Hopson-Walker Brings “A Tower of Ashes Built” to PC Art Gallery

The public is invited to an exhibition, of the work of Matthew S. Hopson-Walker starting Monday, October 4.  His exhibition, entitled “A Tower of Ashes Built”, will show at the Porterville College Art Gallery from October 4th to the 28th.  Gallery Hours are Monday – Thursday from 12 – 2 pm and 4 – 6 pm. 

Matthew S. Hopson-Walker’s work is based on self-investigation within the context of American popular culture. As Hopson-Walker says, “The difference between the drawn mark and the appropriated image is a metaphor for the conflict between reality and ideology that many of us experience. I try to create a sense of uncomfortable visual tension by blending thoughts and images that do not fit together. I am influenced by narratives and characters found in contemporary entertainment, which often centers on themes of dystopia and unresolved conflict. I want my work to record and document specific times and places, suggest the selfish motives that lurk beneath socially acceptable behavior, and reference the surface qualities and rich graphic aesthetic in the history of printmaking.”

Born and raised in Fresno California, Matthew Hopson-Walker grew up reading comic books and dystopian science fiction novels. During a formative age he was exposed to movies such as Mad Max, Total Recall, Escape From New York, Blade Runner, and The Omega Man, and many themes from these movies show up in his work.

After working as a janitor for several years, Hopson-Walker matriculated to the Kansas City Art Institute and received his BFA in Printmaking in 1998. After graduating he and a friend opened their own gallery and screen-printing business. To support himself and his heavy metal bass playing “career” he worked as a print technician at his alma mater, did construction, bounced and bussed at various bars, delivered mail and cashiered at liquor stores. These jobs influenced his generally misanthropic outlook on humanity and the images he made as an artist. In 2002 he completed his MA followed by his MFA in 2003 from the University of Iowa. In 2006 he was recipient of the prestigious James D. Phelan Award in Printmaking given by the San Francisco Foundation and administered by the KALA Institute. He has been included in 222 juried or group exhibitions and 14 solo shows since 2006. Matthew Hopson-Walker is now Assistant Professor in Printmaking at Fresno State University.

PC Welcomes a new Enrollment Services director to the Pirate Team

Jonathan Miranda has been named the new Interim Director of Enrollment Services at Porterville College. His bachelor’s degree is in Philosophy from UCLA, and he is currently finishing his master’s degree in Higher Education Leadership from Sacramento State University.

Jonathan has worked in higher education for 10 plus years in the Los Rios and State Center community college districts.

He is a first-generation college student who began his journey as a Federal Work Study student and worked his way up to Financial Aid/A&R Manager. 

Jonathan has dedicated his work to creating programs that grant equitable access to all student populations. His efforts have helped many students achieve academic success and excellence. To this end, he is excited to begin serving the students and community of Porterville College.

In his free time, he enjoys playing music on his saxophone, which he has been playing for over 25 years, and playing frisbee with his two Australian Shepard furballs, Merlin and Casper. 

Cerro Coso Community College

Dave’s Scholars Brunch

The Mammoth Lakes Foundation held their Dave’s Scholar brunch outside on September 17th. After a year of connecting virtually it was a beautiful morning to connect in-person with returning and new scholars. One of the goals at the MML Foundation is to help Cerro Coso students plan their next steps after community college.

Deanna Campbell, Director of the Cerro Coso Community College Eastern Sierra College Center, shared information on the UC Transfer Admission Guarantee (TAG) program. 

The Mammoth Lakes Foundation Scholarship program was launched in 2003 to encourage Mono County residents and high school graduates to take advantage of local education opportunities through Cerro Coso Community College’s Mammoth Campus and has since awarded more than 750 scholarships.  Support for an individual scholarship ranges from $800 to $1,000 each semester and covers tuition and books.  

The Dave’s Scholar Transfer Scholarship represents a significant undertaking and financial investment by the MML Foundation to further their mission of supporting higher education and cultural enrichment.  Recipients must demonstrate a capacity to excel in their continued studies and understand that they represent the MML Foundation locally and in the wider world. 

Each Dave’s Scholar has a unique story to share as they pursue their dreams at CCCC. Some are the first to attend college in their families; some are returning to college after a hiatus; and others are seeking a certificate or degree to help them with their business.  Every donation made to the program changes lives. 

Meet Our CCCC Ambassadors

Meet the Cerro Coso 2021-2020 Student Ambassadors: (l to r) Geraldine Valdez, Aden Ostash, Nicole Harper, Taylir DeStefano, Sara Orlando, Abigail Wright, and John McHenry.  All of these students attend full-time and are Cerro Coso Promise students, three are moms, and three are Coyote athletes, and all have committed to serving as emissaries for the college. 

Student Ambassadors demonstrate their wiliness to share Cerro Coso’s goals and vision with college visitors, new students, and the community.  Participation in the program is an opportunity for current students to show pride in their school while making an impact on the lives of individuals who are planning for a college education. 

Being a Student Ambassador is a challenging and rewarding educational opportunity with a truly positive and memorable experience. These are the faces of Cerro Coso that set an example for other students and incoming freshmen. They have a passion for the college and represent Cerro Coso at community and on-campus events, accompany recruitment personnel on high school visits, lead campus tours, assist with new student orientation, participate in focus groups and student discussion panels, speak to groups regarding special interests at the college, and participate in mass media projects.  

In return these students develop leadership skills, participate in extracurricular activities to add to college and scholarship applications, develop skills that will transfer to other employment opportunities, and interact with students and faculty in weekly meetings. CC Ambassadors are here to help!

What’s On Our Walls

Painting barren hallways can dramatically change a campus’ atmosphere. In November of 2018 College Council developed a task force to discuss what should be displayed throughout the main building at the Ridgecrest campus and in what manner the information should be exhibited.

The task force was not identifying specific locations for displaying things or identifying specific products for those displays. Membership on the task force included representatives from Student Government, classified staff, faculty, and administration. The task force met throughout the spring of 2019 and in the spring of 2020 some “conceptual” images were developed and shared with stakeholders based on the recommendations of the task force.

They were not intended to be accurate or definitive, merely a way of investigating and communicating design principles and aesthetic concepts. Staff, faculty, and students were given the entire semester to provide feedback.  The goal of the task force was to employ strategic uses of color for wayfinding and delineating spaces in a way that warmed up the sterile long hallways and created a sense of belonging and pride in the institution utilizing school logos, colors, and motivational words. In 2021 Cerro Coso began the first phase of implementation. 

It is exciting to see the hard work of the task force being executed creating an environment that communicates the college’s core values and improves the college experience. 

Bakersfield College

BC to Receive $14 Million in State Funding for New Delano Campus Building

Bakersfield College and Assemblymember Rudy Salas announced the construction of a new two-story building for the BC Delano Campus, thanks to $14 million in state funding advocated for by Salas in the most recent budget cycle.

The announcement was made on Tuesday, September 28, 2021, during a press conference at the BC Delano Campus in an outdoor area near the vacant land where the structure will be built. The new 40,000-square-foot Learning Resource Center will include classrooms, office space, a library and designated spaces for student services to help accommodate and support a growing population of students throughout Delano and North Kern. Construction is expected to begin in January and will take about 22 months to complete. The funding for this project also includes funding from Measure J. Thank you Assemblymember Salas, and to Kern County residents for voting yes on Measure J. Read the entire press release.

Emma Gallegos, Sonya Christian

And I loved Emma Gallegos‘s front page story in the Bakersfield Californian about the announcement. #FrontPageAbovetheFold

Rudy Salas and Sonya Christian

Webinar on Future Impacts of Technology and Water Resources on Farming

Join Bakersfield College’s Energy Technology Transfer and Workforce Development initiative on Tuesday, October 5th, at 3 p.m., for its second webinar in the Agriculture/Water/Energy (AWE) Education Series, featuring a panel of local stakeholders and national researchers sharing their perspectives on the impacts of technology and water resources on farming.

Panelists will include: John Moore III, Former President of the Kern County Farm Bureau, Owner of Moore Farms and White Wolf Potato Co.; Dr. Joshua Viers, Professor, Water Resources Management, UC Merced School of Engineering; and Dr. Helen E Dahlke, Associate Professor, Integrated Hydrologic Sciences, University of California, Davis. RSVP for the Webinar

BC to Host Livestream of the Unveiling and Opening of First BC Peace Garden

The Bakersfield College Peace Initiative will host the grand opening of the first peace garden on the BC campus at 10 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 4.

The event will feature short speeches by local peacemakers and partners, and will be the first garden in a series of gardens on BC campuses. Additionally, the garden will feature “Peace Poles,” provided and paid for by local Bakersfield Rotary Clubs. Speakers will include: myself, Krista Moreland, Professor of Anthropology, Naina Patel, The Ravi and Naina Patel Foundation, and Edith Mata, BC Student Government Association President.

I invite you to watch this livestream event this Monday Oct 4 at 10:00 on the BC YouTube Channel. Complete information is in this press release.

Check out this video about the Peace Garden, with footage from BC’s Opening Day 2020 and the Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Peace Garden:

Thank You Cindy Collier!

On Monday, Bakersfield College recognized Cindy Collier for her 28 years of dedicated service to the college and the Kern Community College District. Cindy retired this summer. Her illustrious career at Bakersfield College began when she became a nursing faculty member in 1993. She became director of the nursing program in 2001. She also held a number of administrative roles – Executive Director of Student Health, Dean of Instruction, Associate Vice Chancellor of Economic and Workforce Development for KCCD, faculty director of the Inmate Scholars Program, and Director of the Student Health and Wellness Center.

Here are my closing remarks from the event:

You can see the whole recording on Bakersfield College’s YouTube channel.

Poetry Corner

Please enjoy this poem from Jack Hernandez:

The Desert        

The moon rise
over the desert
is no longer surprising,
he had not foreseen
living in its barren canvas
painted in his later years.

Until this time his life
scurried like an ant
seeking    always seeking,
now he sits grasping
for nothing more
than silent truth
in silver light.

UN International Day of Peace

Last week, I shared a few videos from Bakersfield College’s celebration to honor the UN International Day of Peace on September 21st. 

Today, I am sharing two more videos from that production.

Bakersfield Mayor Karen Goh’s remarks:

The Bakersfield College Chamber Choir’s performance of “Light of a Clear Blue Morning”:

Quick Tips for Teaching Success

This week, Porterville College continued its Quick Tips for Teaching Success series. The live presentations are open only to Porterville College faculty and run on Wednesdays at 12 pm. However, the recorded presentations are available to anyone and are a fantastic resource for all our educators.

Check it out at QUICK TIPS FOR TEACHING SUCCESS – Resources (weebly.com).

Wednesday’s session was called “A Deep Dive Into Teaching Controversial Issues.

“Do you teach a course with subject matter some consider controversial? Do you wonder how to best ensure students learn about sensitive topics without getting lost in heated emotions or a refusal consider other views with an open mind? Have you ever found a class got off track when something controversial inadvertently entered the conversation? The ‘Quick Tips’ team has, and we’ll share our stories, experiences, and techniques for managing these delicate situations while ensuring students learn new ideas and perspectives and remain respectful to others in the classroom – and the world around them.”

Check out the recording online

Thank you to presenters Dustin Acres, Rebecca Baird, Joy Lawrence, Melissa Long, Ian Onizuka, Elisa Queenan, and Robert Simpkins.

In the News

Hogan, longtime Folkloric dance instructor, to be honored

I saw in The Porterville Recorder this story about longtime Folkloric dance instructor Maria Antonietta Hogan Abrego (Mrs. Hogan). She taught at schools throughout Porterville, including night classes at Porterville College. She will be moving to Idaho and her family held a Bon Voyage party for her this week, allowing the countless students whose lives she touched a chance to wish her well.

“She molded us in such a way to be citizens of the world. We were just all good kids,” Elva Beltran said. “We will always be grateful for that. This is our chance to come and hug her and send her off with love.”

Community Voices: The Veil of Ignorance

Jack Hernandez penned this piece for the Bakersfield Californian that looks at philosopher John Rawls’ idea of the veil of ignorance, and how we must use that veil to better show compassion and empathy for one another.

“Thus, he asks us to do what is difficult for all of us: to put on the veil of ignorance and imagine ourselves in the shoes, in the lives, of others, especially those who suffer. We live in a society that tends to ignore the role fortune, luck, plays in our lives. The myth of success is that all that happens is because of our effort, and if we are not successful we have simply not worked hard enough.”

Fun Photos and Spotted on Social Media

Here’s the KCCD Team at the Hearts of Hope event to benefit Casa Esperanza:

Cerro Coso Military And Veterans Services invited all military and veteran students, alumni, staff, faculty, spouses, dependents, and community members to submit a photo for the Wall of Courage 2021. Submissions begin Monday. The Wall of Courage will be displayed in person on the Ridgecrest campus throughout the month of November. it will also be featured on the Cerro Coso website.

The submission link will be sent out via student emails, social media, and the Cerro Coso website beginning Monday, 10/04/2021.

At BC, Student Life Program Director Nicole Alvarez spent the morning with the L.U.P.E club recruiting new members:

Porterville College professors Jonathan Hernandez and Jeff Jacobs shared these photos of Administration of Justice Professor Jacobs joining Professor Hernandez’s Intercultural Communications class to discuss issues on social justice, equity, and empathy.

And check out Porterville College in coaching sessions with Dr. Al:



That’s a wrap for now.
See you next Saturday!

The future is bright at KCCD.

a joyful and grateful Chancellor