Tag Archives: Sterling Silver

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 
#DareMightyThings


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.

-sonya
a joyful and grateful Chancellor

#KCCDDaringMightyThings

BC – bold rhythms freely speak…so many riffs

This morning, I thought I would start with a poem from Jack Hernandez:

Take Five

Going through the motions
in and out the same doors
working the usual chores,
life has closed his veins
stopped the blood that pours
like surf on unfamiliar shores.
movement now is confined
to thoughts circling his head
like flies above the dead.
But amid the chattering rhymes
his pulse begins to drum
a jazzy  jazzy   jazzy beat,
bold rhythms now freely speak,
hot sax    cool piano chords
swing him into the jostling street,
so many riffs    so much jive
take five   take five   take five.

It was perfect timing, because just a few days before he sent this, I saw on Facebook that BC Jazz Studies shared their Jazz Combos have been able to start outdoor, in-person rehearsals.

BC Jazz Studies

These steps show that we are slowly returning to normal. Every new update, each part of our lives that we’re able to regain – even if it looks considerably different than last year – brings me such joy. Beautiful music, gorgeous weather, and finally being able to come together: it’s truly wonderful to take five and appreciate how far we have come.

Good morning Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, March 6, 2021 … a great day to be a Renegade.

Sterling Silver on KGET

A little over a year ago – last February – we held our annual Sterling Silver dinner to honor and recognize our generous donors and community supporters. I didn’t imagine that night just how different this year’s event would look. But despite a pandemic and social distancing, our BC Foundation is still able to celebrate those that lift our students by supporting the college’s mission. This year’s event will be broadcast on KGET/Channel 17. Make sure to tune in tonight at 7PM!

This year, honorees include:

Patricia Mettler and Margaret “Peggy” Haight – Individual Philanthropists (posthumously)

Greg & Mary Bynum, Bynum, Inc. – Corporate Philanthropists

Greg Bynum, Sonya Christian, Mary Bynum

Becky Whitson – BC Foundation Service Medal (posthumously)

Becki Whitson

This annual event is usually an elegant dinner with proceeds helping to fund scholarships for students, providing vital opportunities to make higher education a reality for thousands of Renegades. In this unusual time, I hope that you will join me this year in watching the show while eating dinner.

BC Foundation Executive Director Cheryl Scott was on the KGET Sunrise program this week to talk about the event.

And BC Foundation Board Chair Marko Zaninovich penned this Community Voices piece about recognizing Bakersfield College’s supporters – the the important work those donations allow.

“These gifts are reason to celebrate and remind our community of the work required to educate students. Our donors have thoughtfully placed their resources, all to benefit students and our community. They share a pride in the community. The message is consistent: Invest in education today to develop thinkers and problem solvers for tomorrow.”

Thank you Connie Perez-Andreesen, Foundation Board Member, for your generous donation to #SterlingSilver2021.

Thank you Heather Penella for leading the planning effort.

Vaccination Schedule for next week

The Bakersfield College Student Health and Wellness Center is now hosting multiple vaccination clinics for any eligible individuals who meet the COVID-19 Vaccine Schedule per Kern County Public Health. This opportunity is voluntary.  

Tuesday, March 9, 2021 between 10am and Noon. Click Here to register for an appointment.

Thanks to our partners at VIPMD, we have a Moderna vaccine clinic on-campus in Levinson Hall next Tuesday, March 9, 2021 between 10am and Noon. Please note you will need to bring your photo ID, VIPMD registration packet, and your insurance card with you.

Thursday, March 11, 2021 from 2 to 4pm – BCSHWC’s First Clinic. Click Here to register for an appointment.

I am proud to announce that our known BC Student Health and Wellness Center has now been allocated the one-shot Johnson and Johnson’s Janssen vaccines to be distributed on Thursday, March 11, 2021 from 2 to 4pm in Levinson Hall. Please note you will need to bring your photo ID.

Saturday, March 13, 2021 between 10am and 2pm. Click Here to register yourself for an appointment.

Thanks to our partners at Dignity Health, we have a drive-thru Moderna vaccination clinic on-campus at the Stadium Parking lot next Saturday, March 13, 2021 between 10am and 2 pm. Please note you will need to bring your photo ID and be able to drive through the clinic space. The BC Drive-Thru Flow Site Map will provide some guidance as to how the flow will work.

Monday, March 15, 2021 between 3pm and 6pm – Delano. Click Here to register yourself for an appointment.

Thanks to our partners at Dignity Health, we have a Moderna vaccination clinic at the Delano Campus on Monday, March 15, 2021 between 3pm and 6pm. Please note you will need to bring your photo ID.

2nd Annual Jean Fuller Women in Leadership Panel

Bakersfield College kicked off Women’s History Month with a discussion and panel, moderated by Early College champion and Republican Senator Emeritus, Jean Fuller.  The event premiered on BC’s YouTube channel on Thursday, March 4, at 6:00pm.

The Jean Fuller Women in Leadership Panel featured:

  • Dr. Mary Barlow, Kern County Superintendent of Schools
  • Ms. Katie Russell, Superintendent, Panama Buena Vista Union School District
  • Assemblywoman Emeritus Nicole Parra, Manager, California Government Relations, Marathon Petroleum Corp.

If you missed the panel, you can still check it out on YouTube:

And I invited you to read Senator Emeritus Fuller’s Community Voices piece in the Bakersfield Californian about the panel.

“However, women’s leadership and empowerment is not a recent endeavor for BC, but deeply rooted in its history, as the college came to be what it is today under the leadership of a woman named Grace Van Dyke Bird. She first came to teach in 1917 and was appointed as college chief executive, the position now known as president, in 1921. She was among the first to suggest using the term “community college” instead of junior college, arguing that community was more descriptive of the institution’s role.”

The event is part of BC’s month-long celebration of Women’s History Month. Bakersfield College’s Office of Student Life, in collaboration with the Student Government Association, also hosted journalist and activist Elaine Weiss as part of the college’s Distinguished Speaker series on Tuesday, March 2nd. You can watch the video on the BCSGA Facebook page.

Elaine Weiss

COVID-19 Virtual Seminars

This week, we continued the President’s Virtual Seminar Series with two discussions.

Tuesday’s discussion featured updates from the Student Information Desk and BCSGA. Thank you to Gian Gayatao, Dan Hall, Zav Dadabhoy, Jenny Frank, and Tina Johnson for participating.

Then on Thursday we discussed the BC Vaccination clinic, results of a college-wide survey, and vaccinations and higher education. We heard a vaccine clinic update from Nicky Damania, as well as information from Craig Hayward, Jennifer Johnson, and Kimberly Nickell.

As always, thank you to Todd Coston, Nicky Damania, and Earl Parsons for all the work you put into producing these seminars.

You can see videos from all the President’s Virtual Seminars on the COVID-19 website.

California Community Colleges Women’s Caucus Meeting

The California Community Colleges Women’s Caucus (CCCWC) is celebrating International Women’s Day with their second official business meeting on March 8 at Noon. CCCWC is excited to welcome Eleni Kounalakis, California Lieutenant Governor and BOG Member as the guest speaker. Register for the CCCWC March 8 meeting.

Express Enrollment Events This Week

Bakersfield College will hold two special virtual Express Enrollment Events for new and returning students on March 10, 2020 from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. and March 13, 2020 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Educational advisors who assist students in the affinity groups for African American students, Latinx students, and Veteran students will also be available for these events. Counselors and support staff will be available to assist students with their registration process, placement, enrollment, and financial aid.  

RSVP for Express Enrollment

Commencement Virtual Celebration

Mark your calendars for Sunday, May 16, 2021, when we will celebrate the Bakersfield College Class of 2021 with a special televised virtual commencement event! It will air on KGET as well as streaming online — bringing the celebration to your home while maintaining safety precautions. I hope you will watch with the rest of Bakersfield as our graduates’ images brighten your television screen as their names are read aloud. 

BC Graduates must petition for graduation and opt-in to participate in the celebration. For more information and to sign up, visit Bakersfield College Commencement.

Health Science Virtual Outreach Event

On Thursday, February 25th, we hosted our first Health Science Pathway Virtual Outreach Event. This event was to provide the opportunity for current BC, high school, and perspective students to learn more about each of our health science programs and have the chance to explore them with us.

There were over 170 attendees and a faculty representative from 11 programs and Early College! Breakout rooms were very interactive and we received many great questions and comments from students. As one student stated “I loved everything about the presentation and how everyone had a chance to direct their questions to people directly instead of waiting for a pending email.” In the survey provided after the event, 95% of students indicated that they are more likely to register for late start and/or summer classes due to the information learned at the event.

Thank you to our phenomenal Health Science team for all of their work and time to make this event successful! Keep your eye out for more Health Science events in the future! #WeAreBC

Outreach & Early College Host Bring Your Stuffed Animal to Work Day

The Outreach & Early College Team had some special guests in their morning meeting this week. The team had a Bring Your Stuffed Animal to Work Day. Team members brought 1 (or more) of their trusted, tried, and true stuffed animals to the morning zoom meeting and shared the stories behind them. In the picture you can see that some team members really got into the spirit with an assortment from dogs, to narwhals, to Disney characters, and even a mood reflecting octopus!

Spotted on Social Media

Abel Guzman shared this throwback to a workshop with BC Dreamers about writing personal statements:

The Renegade Room shared these amazing photos of the delicious food they’ve been creating for takeout service:

Mary Jo Pasek shared some photos from her garden:

And Mindy Wilmot shared a new Renegade in her family:

Athletics

Renegade Spring Sports Update

Starting Friday Renegade Athletics are back in the following sports for the Spring I season (March-April): Men’s Soccer, Volleyball and M/W Basketball. Be sure to head to GoGades.com to check schedules. While fans are not allowed in-person at games right now, you can still keep up with the teams on social media and watch live-streams when available through this link. Click the link below to follow the official Renegade Athletics social media accounts.

De La Cruz Headed to William Jessup University

Congrats this week to women’s tennis student athlete Grecia De La Cruz as she signed to continue her athletic and academic career at William Jessup University. In the 2019 season she was the women’s tennis #1 player when she went 5-3 as the Renegades #1 singles player. We are excited for Grecia and wish her the best!

That’s all for now.
Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.
sonya –
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Life at BC is all about living life fully

Good morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, April 2, 2016.  Just a wonderful day to be a Renegade!

I have been awake the last two hours just reading and thinking about the week, and as I started working on this blog I realized that maybe I needed to break it into two posts.  Certainly a good problem to have….

Let me start with a memorial service I attended during the week where the remarks of several speakers have stayed with me, and I suspect will continue to stay with me for a long time.  The service was held in a beautiful hilly area and there was a strong breeze that rustled thought the tent-like pavilion as the story was told of the one who had passed.  A story of courage, love, beauty, resilience, commitment and action. Not one of indifference. During the service,  one of the speakers introduced the Old Testament story of Ester, considering the question of who is the real villain of the story.  The speaker explained that the traditional response to this question is Haman, guilty of genocide. However, one could argue that the “indifferent” Ahasuerus was probably more of a villain than Haman. The collective damage of indifference is greater.( This reminded me of Martin Luther King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” where he says of racism that “Lukewarm acceptance is more bewildering than outright rejection” of racism.) The speaker concluded that the person who passed was the antithesis of Ahasuerus, for she had lived her life fully in action, overcoming her difficulties to fight for the right thing.

I experienced that one hour as if I were cocooned in another world, and the story of her life has inspired me to shift and live life just a little bit more.  Here is a poem that I received from a friend on Monday, 3/28, that epitomizes her life.

Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.

Life is beauty, admire it.

Life is a dream, realize it.

Life is a challenge, meet it.

Life is a duty, complete it.

Life is a game, play it.

Life is a promise, fulfill it.

Life is sorrow, overcome it.

Life is a song, sing it.

Life is a struggle, accept it.

Life is a tragedy, confront it.

Life is an adventure, dare it.

Life is luck, make it.

Life is too precious, do not destroy it.

Life is life, fight for it.

Speaking of living life fully, BC has a magnificent choir and choir director, Jen Garrett.

Jen Garrett April 1 2016.JPG

Friday night I attended the our choir’s spring concert A Celebration of Folk Songs.  The evening was magnificent. The concert was sold out and ended with a standing ovation from the audience.  Jen had included guest performers, the West High School Chamber Singers and the group Wrenwood Sessions.  Now Wrenwood Sessions has been a great partner and has performed with the BC choir on more than one occasion.  Thank you Wrenwood Sessions.  Check them out at http://www.wrenwoodsessions.com/.  Here is a blurb from their website:

Wrenwood Sessions was formed in 2010 when five musicians playing in church discovered their mutual love for Irish and Scottish folk music – the traditional “Celtic” music of the Isles. Today, the group consists of six members: David Barringer (keys, accordion, vocals), Jeff Cram (whistles, bodhran), Anne Grogan (vocals, fiddle), Valerie Lewis (harp), Steve Lewis (guitars, octave mandolin), and Jeremy Swanson (fiddle, mandola). Based in Bakersfield, California, the ensemble performs at festivals, gatherings, private functions, weddings, churches, and restaurants.

Jen Garret and choir April 1 2016.JPG

The concert featured folk songs from around the world and each piece was introduced with a little bit of history and culture.  I loved all the pieces and here is one:

Tshotsholoza a traditional South African song that featured soloists Christian Caraveo, Mason Edwards, George Gutierres; and percussionists Maria Albares, Michael Juarez, and Ron Kean.  Sample the song from this video excerpt from my iphone.

And this morning I read a Facebook post from Jen Garret.

I am constantly amazed by the power of prayer and priesthood blessings. Yesterday I had a terrible flare up and by last night I was a mess. It was the worst flare I’ve had in over a year. I came home and got a blessing from Matt and my Dad asked Chamber Singers to pray and/or send happy thoughts. I do not ever bounce back this fast so I know it was a miracle. I am so grateful to everyone that was so supportive. What a concert!

Miracles happen every day!  Jen, BC is fortunate to have you.

Two events bookended March 31st — breakfast with pastors from our community, and the Sterling Silver appreciation dinner.

Pastors Breakfast March 31 2016

Hayward Cox, Oscar Anthony, David McGee, Marisa Banks, Martha Johnson, Steve Watkin, Sonya Christian, June Charles, Toure Tyler, Anthony Culpepper, Zav Dadabhoy

We had a great breakfast discussion with the pastors on how BC could partner with them and their churches to promote the value of higher education to our community.  The ideas circled around, starting early with getting students to think about college, creating a path for students that has guides along the way to make sure that they are moving along and not getting stuck or dropping off, and reaching out to families to include them in this network of support.  Pastor Hayward Cox, Pastor Oscar Anthony, Pastor David McGee, Pastor Toure Tyler, Pastor Martha Johnson, and Marisa Banks, thank you for taking the time to connect with us at BC.

Here is a sneak peak at BC’s eight annual Sterling Silver.  I am waiting to get the photos and will publish a dedicated Sterling Silver blog in the next few days.  So stay tuned.  Two posts in one week!

MaryPrezMrsMusser March 31 2016

Mary Trichell, Sonya Christian, Carla Musser

Some additional highlights from the week.

This week Nicky Damania was awarded the  Outstanding Professional Award from ACPA.  Way to go Nicky!  I am so glad you are at BC.  Working hard and doing wonderful things for our students, our campus, our community.

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BC’s Drumline Shines:

WGI 1.jpg

Bakersfield College Drumline at WGI

Our Drumline students took First Place this past Sunday, March 27th, at the WGI competition. The Western Guard International (WGI) Sport of the Arts is the world’s premier organization producing indoor color guard, percussion, and wind ensemble competitions. It is called the Sport of the Arts because it brings music to life through performance in a competitive format. Last year, there were more than 36,000 participants at the regional level, and more than 12,000 participants at the Sport of the Arts World Championships.  The numbers for this year are not yet posted on the website.

BC took 1st place in prelims, advancing us to finals on Sunday where we were again awarded 1st place by an entirely new (double) panel of judges with a score of 88.425. Winning this show is a milestone for our program, and with nearly a 10-point jump from last year.

https://www.wgi.org/events/static_scores/2016/scores_Western_Perc_Finals.php

First-Look-Tim-Heasley-and-Francis-Mayer

Tim Heasley and Francis Mayer with Scott Cox

The weekend overall was a success, from our outreach performance and clinic with students from the California City HS band followed by a productive rehearsal, to our prelims and finals performances at CSU San Bernardino. But it’s icing on the cake that we can also say that we’re the number one open class drumline in the western states!

 

Informally ranked number one overall in our division right now, the focus is on WGI World Championships coming up this April 14-16. Time Heasley and the coaching staff are maximizing the show and their remaining practice time, as well as  working on the logistics of getting the drumline and the equipment to Dayton, OH and back.   The entire group is working hard both on and off the court to prepare for this huge opportunity.

https://goo.gl/photos/1g5CeTPn4jxQVaMK7

 

Thank you Tim Heasley for setting the bar high for our students and for dedicating countless hours to BC’s drumline students.

BC’s Prelaw Program

Commissioner Cynthia Loo

BC’s Pre-Law students with Commissioner Cynthia Loo

Lisa Green, District Attorney

BC Pre-LAw students with Lisa Green, District Attorney

The Multi-Cultural Bar Alliance of Kern County invited our Pre-Law students to their Women’s History Month event on March 21st. Four students attended the event; Princess Herrera, ShaQuia Jones, Brian Prieto, and Amritpal Kaur. The students were  treated as special guests of Cynthia Loo, Commissioner for the Superior Court of California County of Kern.  They had the opportunity to meet and network with local attorneys, judges and other individuals in the legal system. They were all inspired by the panelist and their stories.

Thank you Manny Mourtzanos for leading this program pathway and Pearl Urena our Pre-Law Educational Advisor.  BC is celebrating a milestone this year…our first graduates from the BC Pre-Law pathway! We are hosting our first annual reception in honor of our students’ accomplishments on April 25th at 5:30 p.m.

Life at BC is living life fully.  It is a good time to be at BC!

 

BC Faculty and Staff in the news

Sonya B&N Feb 8 2015 after Sterling Silver

Sonya Christian at B&N the morning after Sterling Silver. Feb 8, 2015

What a grand event last night at the Sterling Silver dinner. It was a spectacular event.  Red carpet, amazing music, great food, great students….. We had an incredible internal and external team that made it happen.

Internal Team: There were many, but let me highlight Tom Gelder, Angie Paquette, Mary Jo Pasek, Amber Chiang, Lisa Kent, Kristin Rabe, Manuel de Los Santos.

External: Marlene Heise who led the team. David Gay and Rick Kreiser who co-chaired and co-hosted the event.

After Sterling Silver I headed out to the Hispanic Chamber annual dinner where Corny had a BC table to support KCHCC. Every moment of yesterday I had people just tell me how BC had helped them or a family member or….. I am so glad to be back as BC’s 10th president.

 

This morning, here I am at Barnes and Nobles savoring some Earl Grey with honey and just at peace with the world, enjoying the wonderful, generous, talented, smart folks that make up BC.

Jennifer Garrett and Kyle Carter Feb 7 2015

Kyle Carter & Jennifer Garrett accommodating the photographer (moi)

 

One comes to mind in particular, Jennifer Garrett who tirelessly played on the harp and piano the whole night.  And she facebooked how tired her arms were.

Here is a “copy and paste” of an article in the Bakersfield Californian on Dec 17, 2014 by Russ Allred.  Sit back and enjoy Jennifer Garrett and enjoy our BC colleagues.

 

BY RUSS ALLRED For The Californian

The term is over, finals are graded, it’s dark in the Bakersfield College parking lot, but a light is shining in one of the classrooms. The BC Chamber Singers are warming up for another gig, still polishing their tone and perfecting the phrases. They all started practicing before the semester started and they’ll be singing Christmas carols for another two weeks.

How does one motivate a team of college kids who receive no compensation? It’s only logical to look to their leader for answers. She’s Dr. Jennifer Garrett, all 4’4″ and 82 pounds of her. She needs cooperation from a class of crooners. An unlikely looking leader, but one who could teach lessons to small business owners and corporate executives, hence her mention here.

Let’s dissect this dynamic group and see what leadership lessons we can learn to the count of ten.

1. Garrett hand-picked her choir based on their skill and what they could contribute. Most great leaders have tryouts for their team. You might want to rethink the players on yours.

2. Garret set a goal for the choir to sing in Rome Italy, June 2015. A grand objective with a time limit that is shared by the group is generally motivating. You should set lofty, objectives for sales growth within time constraints.

3. Each member receives regular communication from the leader. A good leader informs the team what they are planning. There are written daily goals and follow up on performances.

4. Garret expects the best performance, every time. The boss should never be satisfied with mediocrity.

5. As a musician, Garret offers tools and processes for improvement. It’s not enough to demand performance; you must show the way.

6. Individual problems are addressed privately. If someone is detracting from the group’s performance, it is never good to point it out in public.

7. Those who haven’t practiced, don’t perform. In business you must cut the slackers.

8. Garret works just as hard behind the scenes, preparing the practice, practicing her directions, and directing the supporting team. You’ve got to walk the talk.

9. She assigned section leaders to enhance practices with their individual parts. You must delegate duties to get everything done.

10. Most importantly, Garret shows her appreciation for performance and progress. Simple things like treats or notes or public acknowledgement move individuals to do more than expected.

Find the article at: http://www.bakersfieldcalifornian.com/business/x945008030/RUSS-ALLRED-What-leaders-do-to-motivate

Feb 1, 2014. Oh What a Night!

Neeley and Lisa Feb 1 2014

Neeley Hatridge and Lisa Kent at the Sterling Silver

If you’ve not been to the Bakersfield College Foundation’s Sterling Silver event – where have you been for the pas six years?!

The Sterling Silver takes place each winter, and brings together fine dining and fine wines for one amazing fundraising event. I attended my first Sterling Silver dinner last year…just weeks into my presidency at Bakersfield College…and was amazed at the talent we have right here at home!

Each year, the Bakersfield College Foundation welcomes Executive Chef from Playboy Mansion West William Bloxsom-Carter to campus, where he works with Bakersfield College Culinary Arts students and Food Services staff to create an amazing meal. Retiring Bakersfield College Foundation executive director Mike Stepanovich selects wines to pair with each course, and the night is finished with a delectable dessert designed by Chef Ray Ingram from the Petroleum Club (and proud Bakersfield College graduate!).

In addition to the amazing meal is a silent and live auction with experiences like no other. The entire event comes together to create a single fundraising experience where the guests are as excited as those students who will eventually receive financial support for their education.

Neeley Hatridge, of Bakersfield College Centennial Gala fame, was the event coordinator. Tarina Perry, our resident facilities and operations guru provided logistics support. Amber Chiang worked the live and silent auctions like she has every year. These three amazing women were supported by a crew, and I want to give special thanks to Lisa Kent, Debbie Zuech, Margaret Head, Miriam Valenzuela, the Agriculture Ambassadors, Sally Sterns, Chef Pat Coyle, Chef Alex Gomez, Chef Suzanne Davis…and the list goes on.

There’s a gallery of photos from Bakersfield College American Sign Language professor and resident photographer Tom Moran. Take a look…you’ll want to attend Sterling Silver next year!

You’ve all heard the saying it takes a village and I can tell you, Sterling Silver takes a village. Let’s hear from the villagers!

Neeley Hatridge – Event Coordinator

Neeley Hatridge late on Friday afternoon before Sterling Silver

Neeley Hatridge late on Friday afternoon before Sterling Silver

The Sterling Silver dinner has become a staple event for Bakersfield College. Our staff has become accustomed to executing quality and our community has come to expect great things. This presented me with some big shoes to fill when Hannah resigned. Coming in as a rookie, I had lots of big ideas and dreams and then the old pros brought me down to reality, such as draping fabric from our cafeteria’s 50 year-old ceiling, which I am still scheming to accomplish one day. However, having so much of the staff familiar with this event really helped prevent potential problems, even with some of my new ideas.

Whether I am designing a space for a home or an event, I take inspiration from everywhere. I do things like visit rental companies and flip through swatches of fabric (i.e. how I chose the linens), or do research online; you’d be surprised how resourceful Google images can be. These things give me ideas and then they need to be tailored to meet our specific needs. One major thing that helped me with this event was to walk around The French Quarter, a local Bakersfield store. I would see items that I knew I had to use and then create a way to incorporate them into the design. For example, the table lamps that were used behind our check-in table. They fit the aesthetic of the event, perfectly, and HAD to be utilized. Of course, the decor and our experienced staff weren’t the only things that made this event possible.

The purpose of the event is to raise money and showcase Bakersfield College’s outstanding Culinary Arts program. To make that happen, we need people to enjoy themselves as guests. BC’s Foundation Director, Mike Stepanovich, and Playboy Mansion’s Executive Chef, William Carter, were essential in accomplishing this. Mike Stepanovich led our committee in securing sponsorships and enticing auction items for our bidders. Chef Carter and our Culinary department orchestrated a dinner that would have mass appeal, without sacrificing quality and originality. The success of this year’s annual Sterling Silver dinner was achieved because each and every player was equipped with expertise, open-mindedness, and was hardworking. Now, we just have to figure out a way to top it next year!

Tarina Perry – Logistics/Planning Coordinator

Set Up for Sterling Silver Getting UnderwayThe event was well planned out and organized. Everyone knew their role and assigned tasks, as well as, the overall vision- so we supported one another as necessary by sharing opinions and picking up additional duties without hesitation. Because of this, it was actually one of the more productive events I have been involved with in years. As far as timeline is concerned, we were always one step ahead, which allowed execution to run safe and cost effective.  We also had fun with some of the decorations and were able to express our personalities with them-that was nice.

I would like to mention that I really enjoyed working with the students from Garces Memorial, Highland High School, and Bakersfield College agriculture – they were a HUGE help and it was enjoyable teaching them all about the event history!!!

Thank you for making it possible to have a second Custodial Supervisor on staff. I believe that is one of the reason the event went as well as it did. To have this support when it is needed is invaluable and since that need is constant, it was truly a life saver! Our TEAM will greatly benefit with this improvement.

Amber Chiang – Auctions Coordinator

Guests look at the auction itemsSterling Silver is an event I look forward to each year. I have so much fun watching all our guests come in, dressed to the nines, ready to enjoy their evening. I have even more fun watching the quiet little battles play out over the silent auction sheets, particularly with items of popularity. The live auction is even more exciting, and that is when we roll out special experiences that are not often found at special events. My favorite item had to be the “Last Chance Dinner” – or “Last Supper” – as our auctioneer extraordinaire Paul Paveltich called it. This dinner was the last chance to have Bakersfield College’s own celebrity chef, Pat Coyle cook dinner for you and five of your closest friends. As Chef Coyle is retiring this May, this was one of the last opportunities to enjoy his amazing cuisine. Of course, it wouldn’t really be a Bakersfield College special dinner if we didn’t call on our resident wine expert Mike Stepanovich to design pairings for the dinner. As Mike too is retiring this Spring, it will be the last chance for this dynamic duo to match wits.

I have to say thank you to my darling daughter Ming-Li. It was her third year helping me set up for the auction, and she was adamant I wasn’t to leave home without her. Life is much more pleasant when you listen to the 10-year-old who wants to volunteer! I’m so happy to say that the auctions combined raised more than $27,000 for scholarships for Bakersfield College’s deserving students. Thank you to all who attended the event and donated the auction items. We couldn’t have done it without you!

Sterling Silver Feb 1 2014

Sonya Christian. Very pleased after a successful Sterling Silver. Feb 2014

 

 

Thank you Bakersfield for all your support for our College and our students.