Tag Archives: Steven Holmes

Celebrating 2018-2019

Good morning, Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, May 11, 2019… A great day to be a Renegade.

Closing Day 2019

The last day of the 2018-19 academic year began with Closing Day, where all of BC’s faculty and staff take the opportunity to recognize each other’s accomplishments.

BCSGA President Ashley Harp
BCSGA President Ashley Harp delivers the opening address for Closing Day.
Sonya Christian
Announcing the President’s Leadership Awards.

BCSGA President Ashley Harp started with an overview of everything that student government has done to support our students this semester, including bringing four Distinguished Speakers to campus and putting the transportation fee proposition on this year’s BCSGA ballot. She also encouraged faculty to continue nominating students for BCSGA.

bc Assessment Team
The Assessment Team wins a 2019 President’s Leadership Award.

After Ashley’s speech, I was honored to present this year’s President’s Leadership Awards, honoring 9 groups of people on campus for their outstanding accomplishments.

bc Completion Coaching Team for the Business Pathway
The Completion Coaching Team for the Business Pathway receives a 2019 President’s Leadership Award.
Eric Carrillo and Dylan Wang and sonya christian
Graphic designers Eric Carrillo and Dylan Wang receive a 2019 President’s Leadership Award.

I started with recognizing the BC Assessment Team for all of their work with reconfiguring what placement at BC looks like in the wake of AB 705. Our Completion Coaching Team for the Business Pathway won a leadership award for all they do to support business students, which includes organizing the Business Pathway and Career Expo this spring. I also recognized graphic designers Eric Carrillo and Dylan Wang from our Marketing and Public Relations Department for maintaining the integrity of the Renegade brand while making beautiful graphs and charts for all of our public presentations.

bc Accessibility Team
The Accessibility Team is presented with a 2019 President’s Leadership Award.
bc Dual Enrollment Team
The Dual Enrollment Team receives a 2019 President’s Leadership Award.

Our accessibility team deserved a special shout out this year for all they’ve done to ensure that our disabled students are able to receive the highest possible quality of education, and the Dual Enrollment Team underwent a tremendous amount of work to launch Early College programs in Wasco, McFarland and Arvin. The exponential growth of enrollment over the last six years has put a tremendous strain on our Admissions and Records Team, and I also recognized them for everything they do to onboard our students.

bc Admissions and Records team
The Admissions and Records team receives a 2019 President’s Leadership Award.
Paul Beckworth and Armando Trujillo and sonya christian
Paul Beckworth and Armando Trujillo receive a 2019 President’s Leadership Award.

Paul Beckworth and Armando Trujillo were recognized for making the transition to civilian life easier for our veteran students, and retiring Vice President of Instruction Liz Rozell earned a President’s Leadership Award for her decades of service to BC.

Liz Rozell is presented an award from the Management Association
Liz Rozell is presented an award from the Management Association
liz rozell and management association
Liz Rozell with the Management Association.
sonya and liz
sonya and liz

Finally, Helen Acosta won a Leadership Award for her work as the Department Chair of Communications, as well as her support of our LGBTQ+ students.

Along with the Leadership Awards, representatives from across the campus spoke to put a ribbon on the 2018-19 academic year. Vice President of CSEA Bernadette Martinez took the stage to give an overview of classified staff negotiations for this year and to encourage participation in CSEA negotiations starting next fall. Departing CCA President Tom Greenwood reminded faculty that increased participations in union negotiations with the district gives strength in numbers toward advocacy for faculty issues.

Bernadette Martinez
Bernadette Martinez gives an updates an CSEA negotiations.
Tom Greenwood
Tom Greenwood encourages faculty members to participate in CCA.
Stephen Holmes
Stephen Holmes gives an update on Academic Senate and announces the retiring faculty for 2019.
Manny Mourtzanos
Manny Mourtzanos gives an update on the Management Association, with Stephen Holmes.
wrought iron bench
Stephen Holmes presents Bill Kelly with a wrought-iron bench as a retirement present.
Stephen Holmes presents Liz Rozell with a stop sign.

Stephen Holmes provided a brief update about the Academic Senate and announced the faculty members who are retiring this summer. Holmes gave retiring Agriculture professor Bill Kelly a wrought-iron bench as a parting gift, and Liz Rozell received a red stop sign to help her park. Liz also announced the BC faculty who received tenure in 2018-19.

Reggie Williams
Reggie Williams announces the Levan Summer Grant recipients.
bill kelly
Retiring Agriculture professor Bill Kelly.

Levan Center Director Reggie Williams announced the recipients of the Levan Summer Grants, which include Chris Doyen from the English Department, Sarah Baron from Public Health Sciences, mythology professor Rae Ann Kumelos, and adjunct instructor of Communication Brenda Valadez. He also thanked myself, Norman Levan, Jack Hernandez, Miriam Valenzuela and Teresa Tovar for making the Levan Center a welcoming place to host 35 to 50 events attended by thousands of people throughout the 2018-19 academic year.

Regina Hukill and Helen Acosta receive the Shirley Trembley Teaching Award.
Regina Hukill and Helen Acosta receive the Shirley Trembley Teaching Award.
John Gerhold
John Gerhold announces the Margaret Levinson Faculty Leadership Award.

Becky Head announced that Helen Acosta and Regina Hukill were the winners of this year’s Shirley Trembley Teaching Award, and John Gerhold announced Kimberly Nickell as the winner of the Margaret Levinson Faculty Leadership Award.

I found this picture from last year. Kim Nickell, Kimberley Bligh, Pam Boyles
Susan Pinza
Susan Pinza announces the winner of the Levan Faculty Colloquium.

Susan Pinza closed out the event by recognizing Bernadette Towns as the recipient of the Levan Faculty Colloquium. Faculty and staff are invited to watch Towns give a presentation about child development in the Levan Center on October 19. Pinza is stepping down as the chair of the Levan Faculty Colloquium group, and Erin Miller will be taking over for next year.

I’d like to thank everyone for attending and participating in this year’s Closing Day, as well as our Closing Day team for organizing the event.

Celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the Chicano/Latino Pre-Commencement Celebration

This past Friday on May 3, Bakersfield College celebrated the 25th Anniversary of the Chicano/Latino Pre-Commencement Celebration on campus. Since the inception of the event in 1994, this pre-commencement event has celebrated the academic accomplishments of hundreds of students for the past two decades and has welcomed their families, friends, and their community to the campus.

Chicano Latino pre commencement celebration
man speaking to large audience
three people getting food from trays
male and female at the buffet line holding spoons

Jael Rivera, as seen in the picture below, is leader of the danza, drummer, flute player, and current BC student.

Chicano Latino dancers
Chicano Latino dancers

Graduates and faculty shared a meal together and lined up to make a grand entrance into the Outdoor Theatre.

one long line of people
two lines of people

Vibrant colors and decorative props surrounding the Outdoor Theatre provided a Latino friendly atmosphere, while DJ Escandalosa played upbeat music to get the audience engaged.

Chicano Latino audience
Chicano Latino audience
Chicano Latino dancers on stage
Chicano Latino dancers on stage

Each graduate received a colorful serape stole, commemorative medallion, and a Chicano/Latino Pre-Commencement Celebration one-of-a-kind shirt.

colorful stole
si se puede

Student leaders from LUPE/Conexiones graciously provided a warm welcome to the audience and assisted in reading the graduates names as they were called up to center stage to receive their serape and deliver their acknowledgements.

Chicano Latino anniversary group

At the end of the 25th Anniversary, the planning committee honored the man that started it all in 1994, Dean Cornelio “Corny” Rodriguez. Dean Rodriguez was recognized as an individual who has always advocated for equal access and equality for ALL BC students and was presented with a plaque of appreciation for his contributions to the BC campus and the Chicano/Latino community at large.

Chicano Latino brothers

Check out some more CLCC fun photos on SmugMug!

Thank you to all the BC departments who contributed to this amazing event. Special thanks to: Bakersfield College Foundation, Office of VP Student Affairs, Student Life/SGA, Maintenance & Operations, Communications and Community Relations, Department of Public Safety, Food Services, Graphics Center, Scheduling & Events, Loma Linda Restaurant, Rubio’s Coastal Grill, Jasmin’s Bakery, Banderas Burgers, and Kern Schools.

Thank you to BC staff from the various departments: EOPS/CARE, CalSOAP, Adult Ed/Job Spot, Delano Campus/Rural Initiatives, Counseling Department, Academic Support Services, Foster Youth Kindship, Foreign Languages, and CTE.

Last but not least, MUCHAS GRACIAS to the student leaders of LUPE/Conexiones who spent countless hours decorating the Outdoor Theatre and volunteered throughout the entire event.

Retiree Reception

On Tuesday, the BC Archives and Foundation got together to honor the retiring members of the Renegade family at its annual reception in the Levan Center.

Two men talking and smiling
group of people chatting and smiling

We have 19 members of our faculty and staff retiring at the end of the 2018-19 academic year, and they’ve served our students for a combined 474 years. Their tireless efforts are what makes this institution a beautiful place for people in our community to begin their journey in higher education, and we will miss them dearly.

man and woman smiling
elderly man signing paper on table

Among our administration, Liz Rozell over 29 years has been a professor, dean, and interim Vice President of Instruction, and was an instrumental part of establishing our Bachelor of Science Degree in Industrial Automation. Sue Vaughn has been at BC for 22 years, and her work with the Child Development Center makes education a possibility for thousands of Central Valley parents. Shoreh Rahman served our International Students as a counselor for 33 years, and Fred Smith has been working with our Renegade student athletes for 34 years.

eldery man using walker entering room
two men in black shirts talking

Our Agriculture Department is losing two of its most distinguished staff members this year in William Kelly and Sally Sterns. Kelly’s abundant patience and kindness has developed the next generation of agriculture professionals in Kern County for more than 37 years, and Sterns started the first Gardenfest at BC, which has become the premier spring gardening event. She retires as a horticulture lab technician after 13 years of service.

two people in pink shirts talking
three women smiling

Other notable retires include biology professor Janet Fulks, whose research has been crucial for the success of Guided Pathways at BC, and Richard Darke, a physics professor of 29 years who won this year’s Trembley Teaching Award.

group of retirees eating at table
female student smiling

A full list of retirees is below:

  • Steven Barrett – Grounds Equipment Mechanic, Maintenance and Operations – 8 years, 9 months, 22 days
  • Richard Darke – Professor, Physics/Engineering – 29 years, 8 months
  • Michael Einhaus – Professor, Philosophy – 20 years, 10 months
  • Janet Fulks – Professor, Biology – 24 years, 8 months
  • Patrick Fulks – Professor, Biology – 27 years, 7 months
  • George Gentry – Associate Teacher, CDC – 7 years, 6 months and 10 days
  • Patrick Harrison – Athletic Complex Manager, Maintenance and Operations – 20 years, 10 months, 29 days
  • Regina Hukill – Professor, Mathematics – 17 years, 11 months
  • William Kelly – Professor, Agriculture – 37 years, 3 months
  • Penny Loos – Food Service Assistant III – 26 years, 9 months, 14 days
  • Rebecca Mooney – Professor, English – 29 years, 8 months
  • Sung Soo Park – Professor, Engineering – 28 years, 4 months
  • Shoreh Rahman – Counselor, International Student Affairs – 33 years, 6 months
  • Theresa Rodriguez – Department Assistant III, Food Service – 26 years, 3 months, 20 days
  • Liz Rozell – Interim Vice President, Instruction – 29 years, 4 months
  • Bernard Scanlon – Professor, Mathematics – 24 years, 8 months
  • Dean Serabian – System Support Specialist II, Information Technology – 21 years, 21 days
  • Fred Smith – Athletic Trainer/Program Director – 34 years, 5 months, 12 days
  • Sally Sterns – Horticulture Lab Tech, Agriculture – 13 years, 8 months and 12 days
  • Sue Vaughn – Interim Program Director, CDC and FKCE – 22 years, 4 months

Dream Revolution Concert

On Thursday, May 2, hundreds of students and community members gathered at the Bakersfield College outdoor theater to celebrate the “Dream Revolution” at Bakersfield College.  Sponsored by the Catalyst Fund Immigrant Rising grant at Bakersfield College and South Kern Sol, this event brought Las Cafeteras to campus. Described by National Public Radio as “blending Mexican and American” cultural elements in their music, Las Cafeteras joined local band Velorio in providing a wonderful end-of-semester cultural and musical celebration on our campus.

three women in floral prints smiling
women standing and smiling at cesar chavez booth

The event featured art booths before the concert, showcasing the work of our very own faculty Diego Gutierrez Monterrubio and his students. Registered guests were able to enjoy a wonderful meal plate from our campus food services, including Mexican street tacos, rice, and beans.  Among attendees were a number of students from Arvin High School’s dual enrollment program. Thank you Abel Guzman and Endee Grijalva for coordinating this opportunity for our South Kern students.

two females at womens march 2019 booth
three people posing and smiling

Special thanks to South Kern Sol executive director Reyna Olaguez for helping coordinate this event, as well as the student speakers.

man blowing on trumpet with authority
four latina women singing on stage

Norma Gaspar from our local Telemundo station also served as emcee for the evening, introducing the speakers, bands, and reminding the community of the importance of the event in both English and Spanish.  Gaspar was also one of the first to hit the dance floor as the music of Velorio and Las Cafeteras gave everyone a chance to dance and celebrate together as a community. Everyone was especially pleased that Dolores Huerta made an impromptu appearance on the dance floor.  At 89 years old, she is a community blessing and so impressive in her strength and determination to keep fighting for social justice.

KCCD 2019 Leadership Academy

Last month on April 5, I attended the graduation ceremony for the 2019 KCCD Leadership Academy, where I had the pleasure of hearing the four group presentations for projects that had been worked on all year.  The KCCD Leadership Academy is a year-long program that began in September and concluded in early April. This year, there were 21 participants from each college and the district office, which included faculty, classified professionals, managers, and administrators.  Presentations were made by four groups to a panel consisting of Chancellor Tom Burke, Cerro Coso Community College President Jill Board, Porterville College President Bill Henry, Chief Financial Officer Debbie Martin, and Vice Chancellor of Human Resources Tonya Davis.

The graduation awards at the graduation ceremony were presented by Chancellor Tom Burke, President Jill Board, President Bill Henry, Vice Chancellor John Means, and myself.

kccd leadership academy group shot

If interested, applications for the 2019-20 KCCD Leadership Academy are now being accepted.  Applicants can contact John Means at jmeans@kccd.edu.

kccd leadership academy group shot

Here is the full list of the 2018-19 KCCD Leadership Academy Participants:

Bakersfield College (4)

Debra M. Anderson – Outreach & School Relations, Main Campus

Jacqueline Lau – Admissions and Records Technician 2

Araceli Navarro-Gomez – Foster and Kinship Care Education Program-Program Manager

Paula L. Parks, Ph.D. – English professor/Umoja Community lead

Cerro Coso Community College (7)

Kathryn A. Bachman – Director, Outreach Services

Chad Houck – Dean of Instruction – Cerro Coso Community College

Jessica R. Kawelmacher – Admissions & Records Technician II

Jessica Krall – Program Manager, Child Development centers

John McHenry – Athletic Director

Caroline Sanderson – Campus Manager, Eastern Sierra College Center

Julianne (Juli) Maikai – Alternative Media Specialist-High Tech Center

Porterville College (3)

Dustin Acres – Mathematics Professor

Levern Butler – System Support Specialist I

Anne VanDerHorst – College HR Manager, Porterville College Human Resources

District Office (6)

Mary Barnes – Administrative Assistant, Human Resources

Rafaela Cisneros – Accounting Coordinator, Facilities

Jennifer R. Dunn – Enterprise Resource Planning Analyst I, Information Technology

Genevieve Horton – Administrative Assistant, Economic and Workforce Development

Enrique Heredia – Accounting Coordinator, Business Services

Nicholas Hernandez – Construction Project Manager, Facilities

Jazz Combos and Commercial Music Concert

The Jazz Combos and Commercial Music Ensemble presented a combined concert on Monday night in the Indoor Theater, closing out a busy inaugural year for the new Jazz Studies program led by Professor Kris Tiner. Jazz Combo B opened the show with music by students Abigail Wilson and Kal Nolan, as well as a funky take on Freddie Hubbard’s “Mr. Clean” (check out the Facebook video below).

ensemble performance
Commercial Music Ensemble
jazz combo A
Jazz Combo A

The Commercial Music Ensemble directed by Professor Kyle Burnham performed next, with original songs by students Muhammad Ashter, Quentin Singleton, Gabriel Delgado, and Marcos Hernandez Delgado, alongside covers by Bill Withers, Stone Temple Pilots, and Arctic Monkeys. Jazz Combo A closed the show with an all-original set featuring music by students Izzy Foster and Zach Taylor. Proceeds from the concert will benefit the third annual Panorama Creative Music Summit coming up on September 16-19.

jazz combo B
Jazz Combo B

Check out Jazz Combo B’s performance on Facebook!

Concurrent Enrollment Registration Event

Last Thursday, our Welcome Center hosted a Concurrent Enrollment Registration event for our local high school and home school students. Students from grades 9 through 11 came in to get assistance with their registration steps. Each student was able to register for Summer 2019 and/or Fall 2019 courses, which they will take at one of our BC campuses or online.

kylie swanson helping family with registration
concurrent enrollment registration event

A large portion of the attendees were from Inspire Charter Schools, an organization that serves many home school students in Kern County. To aid with course selection and form approval, counselors from Inspire Charter Schools attended the event and met with their students prior to them registering for classes. As our high school and home school students continue to seek opportunities to get an early start on their college education, we are excited to plan more events such as this one to serve the needs of this growing population.

ROC Partner Appreciation

In recognition of the commitment Bakersfield College has made to Kern High School District’s Regional Occupational Center (ROC), faculty members Justin Flint, Manny Fernandez, LeAnn Riley, Matt Riley, Suzanne Tangeman and Career Education Director Tony Cordova attended the ROC Partner Appreciation Dinner.  We learned about the new programs that are getting built at the ROC and Career Technical Educational Center (CTEC), as well as some great student success stories about students completing their programs at ROC and continuing their education at BC.

roc partners appreciation group shot

I’d like to give a big thank you to ROC Principal Brian Miller for his hard work and collaboration with Bakersfield College.

BC SouthWest Video

BC SouthWest had an amazing year!  More than 150 sections were offered and hundreds of students were served.  Here are some images captured throughout the year by Program Manager Fernando Lara.  They highlight BC getting “keys” to the River Run building and the work done by faculty and staff from both BC and the District Office.

After three years of co-locating with Fresno Pacific University, BC SouthWest took over the lease on April 1, 2019.  The key in the video marked “BCM 1” is the first official key made for the site.

Additional images show Chelsi Womack, Department Assistant III.  Chelsi was hired in late April.  Her hiring signifies the growth we are experiencing at BC SouthWest.  Also captured are Officer Mark Sifuentes, Professor Janet Tarjan, Professor Silvet Holcomb, and student-employee Jasmen Taylor.

Another highlight of this past year is when BC SouthWest students Elizabeth Jacobs, Aliyah Gonzalez, and Noah Hinson addressed the KCCD Board of Trustees at the December 2018 meeting.  They each spoke about the benefit of having a BC center near them. There is an image in the video of the future site of the BC SouthWest Center (located at 9400 Camino Media).  The future is looking bright for all BC students!

Industrial Automation Corporate Tours

Industrial Automation students, faculty and BC staff had the pleasure of touring four distribution centers and processing facilities recently. We toured the Target Distribution Center, Ross Distribution Center, Bolthouse Farms, and the Wonderful Company. The scale and innovation these companies incorporated into each facility to serve their global customer base was amazing! We were very pleased that these companies took the time to make our experience quite memorable.

group of industrial automation students
group of industrial automation students
group of industrial automation students
tour group sitting at conference table

ASL-English Interpreter Training Program

The first cohort of students in the Bakersfield College ASL-English Interpreter Training Program have completed their course of study. Each student took a turn to share his or her experiences and received a certificate. As each student spoke, one of the classmates interpreted. Several of the students interpreted remarks by Tom Moran, Jaclyn Krause, and our VP of instruction, Liz Rozell. Our wonderful Stephanie and Jessica in Career and Technical Education put together a wonderful celebration, complete with hors d’oeuvres, a beautiful banner, table runners, and cool pens.

A full house for the ITP Celebration
A full house for the ITP Celebration
Tom Moran and Jaclyn Krause stand behind the ITP info table
Tom Moran and Jaclyn Krause at the ITP info table
Liz Rozell signs to the audience
Liz Rozell signs to the audience
Tom Moran signs to the audience
Tom Moran signs to the audience

Early College Rural Initiatives

Forty bright-eyed and eager Early College Arvin students attended the Dream for Social Justice event Thursday, May 2 and had the opportunity to see the Panorama Campus, many for the first time. The desire of the Rural Initiatives/Early College Team is to add cultural enrichment opportunities to the Early College program, which is taking the work to the next level.

early college students on bc hedges
Arvin Early College Students

Honors Donor Appreciation Dinner

The Bakersfield College Foundation hosted the Honors Donor Appreciation Dinner on Friday, May 3 at Hodel’s with a crowd of nearly 200 in attendance. The annual dinner provides a chance for the Foundation to honor Scholarship Donors, while providing an opportunity for donors to have the chance to meet our wonderful students and hear firsthand how their support impacts the students’ success. There were more than 40 unique scholarship funds represented at the dinner by either donors or recipients. The group was treated to entertainment provided by the Bakersfield College Jazz Ensemble, led by Professor Kris Tiner.

group of bc foundation donors
group of bc foundation donors
group of bc foundation donors

The Foundation, in collaboration with Financial Aid, will award nearly half a million dollars in scholarships and awards for the 2019-20 academic year and it would not be possible without the continued support from our generous donors. If you are interested in establishing a scholarship fund, please contact Heather Pennella, Alumni and Donor Relations Manager, at heather.pennella@bakersfieldcollege.edu.

Fun Photos

My weekend routine…….In the backyard with my laptop working.  And look who is by my side…

sonya on computer with dog lying next to her

BC received the Impact Award: In the midst of all the commencement chaos, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that BC was selected as a finalist for the 2019 Ellucian Impact Award, which recognizes the many ways educational institutions use technology to enhance the student experience.

impact award

Ellucian works with 2,500 colleges and universities on developing Banner and other software to meet their students’ needs.

“This year’s Ellucian Impact Award recipients are transforming both the student experience and institution-wide operations by leveraging modern cloud solutions,” Ellucian President and CEO Laura Ipsen said. “We are honored and humbled to partner with such powerful innovators who are using technology to transform the higher education experience around the world.”

It is these kinds of accolades that make me proud to be a Renegade.  We are BC!

Emails Worth Sharing: Chelsea Esquibias

I received this wonderful email from Chelsea about her being awarded the “Faith, Inspiration, and Resilience: A Pathway to Higher Education” award. Congratulations, Chelsea! So proud of your work! And thank you for all your contributions to BC’s Inmate Ed Program

chelsea esquibias

 I’m forwarding the attachments to you as Bakersfield College was at the center of my speech.     

I received the “Faith, Inspiration, and Resilience: A Pathway to Higher Education” award.  I was awarded with Ms. Pamela Hayes, VP of Board of Governors and Dr. Yvette Gullatt, Vice Provost of University of California, Berkeley.  I spent much of my presentation time discussing the Inmate Scholars Program and the innovative work being done at Bakersfield College.   

It was the Silver Anniversary Gospel Celebration and the students of Los Medanos College shared their beautiful musical talent.  Dr. Henderson nominated me and he has held state academic positions.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve students on campus and working with the Guided Pathways team has been fantastic.

Baseball Post-Season Awards Announced

The Renegade Baseball team wrapped up the 2019 regular season with a 26-14 overall record and 15-5 in conference and as back-to-back Western State Conference North Champions. As the regular season has concluded, the team has racked up a number of post-season conference awards:

  • 2019 Western State Conference South Coach of the Year – Tim Painton
    • Coach Painton finishes his 24th regular season with back-to-back conference titles and a 26-14 overall record.
  • 2019 Western State Conference South Pitcher of the Year – Alejandro Murillo (Fr, Stockdale HS)
    • Murillo pitched a total of 80 innings in 14 games for the Renegades this season with a record on the mound of 10-1. He finished the regular season with 68 strikeout and an ERA of 2.46.
  • 2019 1st Team All-Western State Conference South
    • Hector Ruvalcaba, Inf. (So., Western HS), Ashanti Ross, OF (So., Western HS), Kamron Willman, Inf. (So., Ridgeview HS), Nate Ortiz, Starting Pitcher (So., Centennial HS) and Alejandro Murillo, Starting Pitcher (Fr., Stockdale HS)
  • 2019 2nd Team All-Western State Conference South
    • Gabe Ulloa, Reilelf Pitcher (Fr., Delano HS), Hunter Adams, Inf. (Fr., Independence HS), Lane Cowan, Starting Pitcher (So., Centennial HS), Sage Voda, OF (So., Tehachipi Christian Academy) and Trey Harmon, DH (So., Foothill HS)
  • 2019 Western State Conference South Honorable Mention
    • Matt Patton, Utility (Fr., Liberty HS), Ryan Dickerson, C (So., Bakersfield Christian HS) and Zach Williams, 1B (So., Liberty HS)

Softball Post-Season Awards Announced

The Renegade Softball Team wrapped up the 2019 regular season with a 24-16 overall record and 16-0 in conference and as back-to-back Western State Conference North Champions.

As the regular season has concluded, the team has racked up a number of post-season conference and state awards:

  • 2019 Western State Conference North Coach of the Year – Casey Goodman
    • Coach Goodman completes her second season leading the Renegade softball program as a two-time conference coach of the year award winner. In her two years the team has won back-to-back conference championships and made post-season appearances in the CCCAA playoffs.
  • 2019 Western State Conference North Pitcher of the Year and CCCAA All-State Selection – Kylee Fahy (Liberty HS)
    • This is the second year in a row Fahy has received the conference pitcher of the year award. At the conclusion of the 2019 season, Kylee pitched 225 innings resulting in a state leading (for the second year in a row) 275 strikeouts and an ERA of 1.49. She also collected two no-hitters this season  (2/21 vs. SBCC & 3/26 vs. SBCC).
  • 2019 Western State Conference North Player of the Year and CCCAA All-State Selection – Natilee Parrish (Arroyo Grande HS)
    • Natilee appeared in all 40 games for Coach Goodman this season collecting 12 home runs (5th in the state), 35 RBI’s and 36 runs scored.
  • 2019 1st Team Western State Conference North
    • Alex Venegas (Liberty HS), Alexis Lopez (East Bakersfield HS), Alantis Rede (Centennial HS) and Savannah Gonzalez (Delano HS)
  • 2019 Western State Conference North Honorable Mention
    • Ashley Hernandez (Centennial HS), Aviana Campos (Highland HS) and Lysette Castro (Mira Monte HS)

Men’s and Women’s Swimming Post-Season Awards

The Renegade Men’s and Women’s Swimming team wrapped up the 2019 regular season with both teams placing 3rd at the WSC Conference Championships.  At the CCCAA State Championship, the women placed 13th and the men 17th. As the regular season has concluded, both teams have racked up a number of post-season conference awards, listed below.

Men’s Swimming

  • 2019 Western State Conference 1st-Team:
    • Tanner Lopes – 100 Breaststroke
  • 2019 Western State Conference 2nd-Team:
    • Benjamin Hunter: 100 Backstroke/200 Backstroke
    • Tanner Lopes: 200 Breaststroke
    • Andrew Martinez: 400 IM/200 Fly
    • Bronson Pearce: 100 Free/200 Free
    • Esteban Robles: 50 Free/100 Free/100 Fly
    • Kenneth Rodriguez: 100 Backstroke/200 Backstroke
    • JR Santamaria: 100 Breaststroke

Women’s Swimming

  • 2019 Western State Conference 1st-Team:
    • Daran Towns: 100m/200m/500m Free
    • Bailey Pike: 500m/1650m Free
    • 800 Free Relay: Bailey Pike/Daran Towns/Blaire Williams/ Alexis Gallardo
  • 2019 Western State Conference 2nd-Team:
    • 200 Medley Relay: Alexis Gallardo/Blaire Williams/Ingrid Villanueva/Daran Towns
    • Alexis Gallardo: 100 Backstroke/200 Backstroke
    • Bailey Pike: 200 Breaststroke
    • Ingrid Villanueva: 100 Fly/200 Fly
    • Blaire Williams: 100 Breaststroke/200 Breaststroke
    • Nina Wilson: 1650 Free

Roundup of Athletics Events this week

We had many Renegade athletic teams wrap up their seasons this last week. Highlights from the week include (click for the story on GoGades.com):

Stay Connected to Renegade Athletics

Be sure to stay connected with Renegade Athletics by following us on social media.

  • Facebook, find us under ‘Bakersfield College Athletics’
  • Twitter – @GoGadesGo
  • Instagram – @gogadesgo
sonya christian


That’s all for now.

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.

sonya-
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Let’s celebrate women

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

Women in Leadership

Five women sitting and talking

To celebrate the kickoff of Women’s History Month at Bakersfield College, yesterday I hosted a panel discussion on Women in Leadership.  California Senator Emeritus and Early College champion, Jean Fuller served as the guest moderator while four esteemed panelists shared their stories, accomplishments, challenges, and more. Thank you to guests Shannon Grove, Republican State Senator, 16th Senate District;  Blanca Cavazos, Taft Union High School District Superintendent; Cynthia Giumarra, Local Attorney and minister;  and Rosalina Rivera, Delano Union Elementary School District Superintendent for participating on the panel.

The fabulous Manny De Los Santos recorded the event and I hope to have many photos and videos for you in next week’s blog. Stay tuned!

One on One with Robert Price

On Wednesday afternoon, I enjoyed being a guest on One on One with Robert Price, @stubblebuzz . The Bakersfield Californian is a great resource for this community with engaged reporters, like Joseph Luiz who visits BC often and always ensures he has the right info to create the best report possible for the people in our community.

Thank you, Robert, for having me on the show to share with our community the latest on Measure J, BC Southwest, Early College, and education transforming the Central Valley.

Check it out: One on One with Robert Price: Guest Bakersfield College President Sonya Christian.

Bob Price, Sonya Christian, and Joseph Luiz
Robert Price, Sonya Christian, and Joseph Luiz

Behind the Scenes

One on One Behind the Scenes Video

Some fun pictures of behind the scenes. For more, visit the One-on-One photo gallery.

2019 Diversity Champion Award

Bakersfield College received the 2019 Diversity Champion Award from the California LAW Pathway for its excellence in building the Community College Pathway Program.  The awardees were chosen at the California LAW Board of Directors meeting in November and winners were announced to the to the California State Bar and the CPA Advisory Council. Deans Corny Rodriguez and Manny Mourtzanos, and Pre-Law Advisory Council Member Yinka Glover accepted the award on behalf of BC at the Omni Hotel on February 22, 2019.

Bakersfield College is honored to receive the award.  I would like to thank the California LAW Pathway for the recognition, as the Pathway to Law Program at BC was designed with innovation and creativity in mind in order to keep Bakersfield College Pathway Students engaged and inspired to achieve success in the law.  Congrats to our Pathway to Law program and to our amazing prelaw team including Corny Rodriguez, Christian Zoller, Edward Borgens, Charles Kim, Marilynn Sanchez Avila, and Pearl Urena! I would like to recognize Foothill College President Thuy Nguyen for her statewide leadership in establishing this program.

Finally thank you to the Pathways to Law advisory committee chaired by David Torres. Thank you David for your unwavering commitment to Bakersfield College and our students. Here is the list of the committee members — Adeyinka Glover, Steven Katz, Jeannie Kraybill, Courtney Lewis, Cynthia Loo, James Maddox, Rebecca Murillo, Bathany Peak, Brett Price, H.A.Sala, Robert Tafoya, David Torres (Chair), Alekxia Torres-Stallings.

Cal Law Diversity Champion Award
Manny Mourtzanos, Yinka Glover, Corny Rodriguez, and President Thuy Thi Nguyen with BC’s award

Celebrating Black History Month

In conjunction with the community organization Harlem and Beyond, Bakersfield College was honored to have Dr. James Chaffers, Professor Emeritus of Architecture at the University of Michigan. Dr. chaffers was the Senior Design Juror for the Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial statue in Washington, D.C. See the Bakersfield Californian Article: Bakersfield College celebrates Black History Month.

BC students and staff with Dr. James Chaffers

Gades Grub Grand Opening

Food Services celebrated the launch of the Gades Grub food trailer with a grand opening event in the Gym Huddle on Wednesday, February 27, 2019. The event featured a live DJ, free samples of some of the delicious food that Gades Grub has to offer, and other giveaway prizes. Students were eager to try some of the delectable options that will now be available to them from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday through Thursday.

BC at Startup Grind Global Conference

BC was represented by Professors Rudy Menjivar and Valerie Robinson at the Startup Grind’s Global Conference in Silicon Valley. This is for startups everywhere, especially the who’s who of the Silicon Valley startup scene. With more than 8,000 individuals, mostly entrepreneurs, venture capital investors, and professional service providers attending the two-day event, the conference provided an environment unlike anything else – a community coming together for invaluable education, connection, and inspiration.  The event had a roster of world-class speakers and thousands of entrepreneurs looking to build relationships, and it was great to see that BC was well represented.

Fox Theater Marquee
Fox Theater Marquee
Professor Rudy Menjivar and Professor Valerie Robinson
Professor Rudy Menjivar and Professor Valerie Robinson

Culture of Power

On Valentine’s Day, Daniel Rios, a Ph.D. student in Ethnic Studies at UC San Diego and a BC graduate, shared his passion for researching communities of color in East Bakersfield with BC students and staff. Rios presented research at A Culture of Power: Race, Youth, Labor and Sound in East Bakersfield, 1966-1974, in the Levan Center. The event was organized by commercial music professor Joshua Ottum as part of the Energizing Humanities in California’s San Joaquin Valley grant.

Daniel Rios talks about labor and music in East Bakersfield during the 1960s.
Daniel Rios talks about labor and music in East Bakersfield during the 1960s.

Rios’ presentation began with an overview of race and labor relations in Bakersfield in the early-to-mid 20th Century. Communities of color in Bakersfield were locked into low socioeconomic status via discriminatory housing practices that persisted until the 1970s and forced into low-level employment as farm, sanitation and domestic workers. In 1966 and 1972, black, Chicano and Latino sanitation workers in Bakersfield went on strike to fight for unionization and protest unhealthy working conditions and the dehumanizing way they were treated by white property owners. Protesters were met with heavy resistance by police and organizations such as the White Citizens Council.

Daniel Rios plays music from Kern County Soul and R&B artists from the 1960s.
Daniel Rios plays music from Kern County Soul and R&B artists from the 1960s.

At this same time, an often-overlooked music scene was booming around dance halls frequented by communities of color across East Bakersfield. While many music historians have documented the local country music scene known as the Bakersfield Sound, the contributions of doo-wop, soul and R&B groups are rarely discussed in academic circles. Groups from Kern County such as the Paradons, the Montereys, and Little Ray Jimenez were recording Billboard Top 40 hits while performing in local venues such as Salon Juarez and Fraternity Hall.

Billy Haynes from the Original Souls and Johnny Gomez from the Paradons perform in the Levan Center.
Billy Haynes from the Original Souls and Johnny Gomez from the Paradons perform in the Levan Center.

The majority of the groups, such as The Original Souls, were multicultural, composed of a mixture of Filipinos, Latinos and blacks. In 1969, the Original Souls beat out country and psychedelic rock bands to win a Battle of the Bands competition at Lake Ming attended by approximately 4,000 people.

Daniel Rios, Billy Haynes and Johnny Gomez answer audience questions in the Levan Center.
Daniel Rios, Billy Haynes and Johnny Gomez answer audience questions in the Levan Center.

After Rios’ presentation, Johnny Gomez of the Paradons and Original Souls bassist Billy Haynes, who went on to perform with Tina Turner and Lou Rawls, performed a few songs in the Levan Center and talked about their history in what is commonly referred to as the East Bakersfield Sound. “There was a lot of oppression in our town back then,” Haynes said. “We made people feel proud of our community.”

Thank you Daniel Rios for sharing his important research on the intersection of labor relations and music in Kern County, as well as Joshua Ottum and the Energizing Humanities cohort for organizing this event and Reggie Williams for the use of the Levan Center.

The Girl who Smiled Beads: Clementine Wamariya

Clementine Wamariya
Clementine Wamariya

On Thursday, Distinguished Speaker Clementine Wamariya gave several speeches in the Levan Center, sharing the powerful story of traveling through 9 different countries as a refugee to escape the Rwandan genocide.

Wamariya read from her memoir The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After, which was written during a major crossroads in her life. She was several years removed from the traumatic experience of fleeing the genocide with her sister at the age of 6, living in refugee camps and illegally crossing borders to seek freedom in the United States before being reunited with her parents on an episode of “Oprah”. In 2014, she had returned to Rwanda to attend an event in a soccer stadium where the history of Rwanda and the genocide was being re-enacted and memorialized, and she was so triggered by the memories that the re-enactment brought out that she had to immediately leave and fly back to the United States. She listened to Nina Simone’s cover of “Here Comes the Sun” by the Beatles on repeat and cried the whole way home, and the message of that song inspired her to write her memoir.

Clementine Wamariya speaks emotionally with hand gesture.
Clementine Wamariya speaks emotionally with hand gesture.

“I had lived opposite lives,” Wamariya said. “I had everything and nothing. I could stay anywhere in the world, but I didn’t have a home.” She continued, “I felt like that song was burning me, but I realized that if I could bear the sun, and my people could bear working in the sun, that it could be a source of strength.”

Wamariya spent five years researching her life and past with an investigative journalist to write “The Girl Who Smiled Beads,” which became a New York Times bestseller upon its release in 2018. The book talks about the lessons that she learned as a young child from her mother, a devout Catholic who imparted the value of sharing everything, never taking more than what you need, and having reverence for fruits, plants and the Earth. To this day, Wamariya likes to ask the question, “What fruit are you?” The answer reveals a lot about where someone comes from and how they view themselves, and driving through the farms of the Central Valley helped her relate to this area as a place of sharing, where fruits and vegetables are spread across the world.

When the genocide happened, Wamariya went to live with her grandparents and eventually ended up in a refugee camp, where people had to wait in line to eat corn and walk six hours for water. When she eventually decided to flee and cross the first of 8 borders to escape the horrors of war, she thought that she would have to jump over a chasm in the ground to get from one country to the other. Instead, time and distance passed and she didn’t even realize that she was in another country. Borders aren’t even real,” Wamariya said with tears in her eyes. “The Earth is the only thing that’s real, and everything else is made up.”

Clementine Wamariya smiles with hands on hips in front of the lectern.
Clementine Wamariya smiles with hands on hips in front of the lectern.

Wamariya pleaded for attendees of her presentations to be motivated by joy and not by fear, for when someone is motivated by joy, they realize that they don’t have to take someone else’s joy to experience it for themselves, and they’ll never believe that they have to take someone’s life to maintain their joy.

Since her appearance on “Oprah” in 2006, Wamariya has gone on to receive a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Comparative Literature from Yale University and serves on the boards of Women for Women International and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Thank you Olivia Garcia, History Professor, for coordinating Clementine Wamariya’s visit as part of the Distinguished Speaker Series, and to the Office of Student Life, the BC African-American Initiative Committee and the BC Women’s History and Awareness Month (WHAM) Committee. See more events for Women’s History Month.

Faculty Diversification Meeting

The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges held the Spring 2019 Hiring Regionals at Bakersfield College on Thursday, February 21, 2019. Faculty diversity is a critical component in the support of student success, and each California community college has a responsibility to develop a workforce that reflects the diversity of its community and is best prepared to serve the college’s specific student populations.  The event presented important considerations for faculty hiring, including ways to diversify and expand hiring pools and reshape search processes to focus on candidates who understand and are committed to our students.

Thank you Dr. Janet Fulks and Prof. Steven Holmes for bringing this statewide event to BC. Thank you Tarina Perry for coordinating the event with the graceful touch that is so you!

BC's Faculty Diversification Meeting
BC’s Faculty Diversification Meeting
Corny Rodriguez at the Faculty Diversification Meeting

See more photos in the ASCCC Faculty Diversity Regional @BC Gallery.

Question, Persuade, Refer

Eric Lord, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, therapist and adjunct instructor at CSUB, taught a program known as “Question, Persuade, Refer,” or QPR, which demonstrates how to recognize when someone may be suicidal, persuade them to seek help, and refer them to the proper authority that can save their life. Lord was invited to give the QPR presentation by the mental health interns at the Office of Student Life, who work closely with the Student Health and Wellness Center to assist students dealing with serious mental health issues.

Lord speaking to the crowd from the lectern.
Lord speaking to the crowd from the lectern.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death on college campuses, and 31 percent of college students have considered committing suicide, Lord said. These are preventable deaths, and all it takes is the courage and empathy to ask the right questions when students are suffering, help them realize that there are people who love them and want them to succeed, and help them find the resources they need to get their lives back, whether it’s a mental health professional, or in more extreme cases of suicidal ideation, law enforcement.

Lord compared being suicidal to being locked in a house that is on fire, and suicide appears to be the only doorway to escape. “When somebody wants to die and not be around anymore, there’s a lot that leads them to that moment,” Lord said. “If we can use the power of our words and our relationship to folks, we can open up another door.” Suicidal ideation is related to a number of systemic issues, such as the loss of a job, the ending of a relationship or the death of a loved one, and some ways to recognize that someone may want to commit suicide include recently acquiring a gun, putting personal affairs in order, chronic drug and alcohol abuse, or saying things like “I just can’t go on” or “I won’t be around much longer”.

QPR Suicide Prevention Presented by Eric Lord, LCSW on a slide behind Lord.
QPR Suicide Prevention Presented by Eric Lord, LCSW on a slide behind Lord.

It’s important that when you recognize some of these symptoms, you talk to the person in a blunt and direct, yet caring way. Don’t be afraid to use words like “death”, “kill”, and “suicide.” In the moment that you ask the question, make eye contact with them and say, “Have you thought about killing yourself?” or “Are you going to commit suicide?” Never phrase the question as, “You’re not going to commit suicide, are you?” because it makes the other person feel like you don’t actually care and they shouldn’t be honest with you.

When you find out that the person in question may want to end their life, persuade them that it’s not the answer and show them that you and others care and want them to live. Get other people in the individual’s life involved, such as family, friends, doctors, or clergy members. Then, refer them to a group such as BC’s Students of Concern Team or a mental health professional and follow up with them via a personal visit or phone call to establish a connection and ensure that they won’t be punished for seeking help. If you think that they won’t receive help and they’re going to follow through, contact Public Safety or law enforcement. You can find more information about suicide prevention from the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and share their number 1-800-273-8255.

Thank you to the Office of Student Life’s mental health team for inviting Eric Lord to campus for this important professional development opportunity. Thank you Dr. Nicky Damania.

BCSGA Power Lunch with Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg

Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg
Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg

When Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg enrolled in college as a sociology major, she had no idea that she would embark upon a journey that would lead to being elected on the Board of Trustees for the Kern Community College District. But at every stop along the way of her 35-year career in education – whether it was as an art professor, a preschool teacher, or one of BC’s longest-serving administrators – Nan’s faith in her ability to prioritize and solve problems propelled her to success in every new endeavor to which she applied herself.

Nan spoke to BC students and staff in the Levan Center about her journey in education and her plans for the Board of Trustees during Monday’s Power Lunch organized by the Legislative Affairs Department of BCSGA. All three Vice Presidents and I were in attendance to hear from a woman that inspired all of us so immensely and continues to inspire us today.

While she has accomplished many things during her career, Nan says that her students have kept her humble and put things into perspective. The first accomplishment Nan has been able to celebrate during her short stint on the Board of Trustees was the approval of BC’s new Southwest Center to be constructed on the CSUB campus. “The part that made it so sweet was that I knew how much work that was done to make it happen,” Nan said.

Liz Rozell speaking with Nan at the front table.
Liz Rozell speaking with Nan at the front table.

While she has attended many Board of Trustee meetings as a BC administrator, it is surreal for her to be sitting at the other side of table and balancing the concerns of students, constituents and instructors, as well as her fellow board members, she said. However, she feels up to the task of continuing to be aware of everything happening in Kern County education in order to position the District to best serve Area 1 of the KCCD. “It’s not the paperwork that makes you get up every day,” Nan said. “It’s knowing that you’re going to do something that helps someone out.” She said, “That feels like a big deal to me most days.”

I’d like to thank Mustapha Barraj and BCSGA for organizing Monday’s Power Lunch. I know we’ll be hearing a lot more from Nan in the future.

Sonya and Nan.
Sonya and Nan.
Sonya videoing Nan with her phone.
Thank you Earl Parsons for this photo
Nan speaking
Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg

Congratulations to Laura Luiz

The American Library Association (ALA) is recognizing BC reference librarian Laura Luiz for her outstanding contributions to student learning and community engagement with the BC Get Out The Vote program.

In a press release on Wednesday, ALA, in conjunction with the Association of College and Research Libraries, announced Luiz as the winner of the 2019 Community and Junior College Libraries Section EBSCO Community College Learning Resources Program Award, which includes a $750 award and a plaque that will be presented to Luiz at the ALA’s annual conference in Washington, DC.

Get Out the BC Vote was a campaign that helped BC students on the Panorama and Delano campus get registered to vote in the 2018 midterm elections. There were also workshops and online resources breaking down every candidate and initiative on the midterm ballot and helping students to properly discern fake news and disinformation.

ALA award chair Laura Mondt of Northern Essex Community College had effusive praise for Luiz and the Get Out the BC Vote campaign. “Laura Luiz’s efforts with Get Out The BC Vote allowed the library to connect with the Student Government Association to help students become informed voters and promote news literacy,” Mondt said.

Luiz and the library have plans to expand the Get Out the BC Vote program for the 2020 midterm and presidential elections.

Lincoln Dinner

I was fortunate to attend the Kern County Republican Party Lincoln Day Dinner on February 22, 2019, as the guest of Senator Jean Fuller. The featured keynote speaker was newly elected Congressman Dan Crenshaw who has an incredible story as a former Navy SEAL who lost his eye in an IED blast.

Last November, Dan also appeared on Saturday Night Live and bits of this skit were referenced last Friday evening. This is a “Must watch.”

It was great to see CSUB President, Lynnette Zelezny at the event, as well as KCCD Trustee Romeo Agbalog and his wife, Lilly. I unfortunately did not snap a picture of many of the community leaders who support education who were there — JP Lake, David Bynum, …..

STEM Truck

On Tuesday, February 19, 2019, representatives from the US Army visited the BC campus to show off various military robotics technologies to students in the Renegade Food Court area.

Both KGET and KERO featured the US Army STEM Truck in its afternoon broadcasts, and soldiers demonstrated all of the innovative technology the Army uses to save lives every day.

A simulation of the Search and Rescue Automation Hardware (SARAH) system is displayed inside the US Army STEM Truck.
A simulation of the Search and Rescue Automation Hardware (SARAH) system is displayed inside the US Army STEM Truck.
A cameraman from KERO gets ready to interview a US Army soldier on the air in front of the STEM truck parked in the Renegade Food Court area.
A cameraman from KERO gets ready to interview a US Army soldier on the air in front of the STEM truck parked in the Renegade Food Court area.

Inside the truck, students could participate in a simulation of the Army’s Search and Rescue Automation Hardware, also known as SARAH, which uses aerial and ground drones to locate missing persons. Students also had the opportunity to check a drone created by the iRobot company for remotely disarming explosives. Above the iRobot drone, there were videos demonstrating various robotic prototypes developed in conjunction with Boston Dynamics, including the infamous “Big Dog” robot and another robot that can jump up stairs and run 28.3 miles per hour, which is slightly faster than Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt, the world’s fastest man.

An iRobot drone used to remotely disarm explosives is displayed inside the US Army STEM truck.
An iRobot drone used to remotely disarm explosives is displayed inside the US Army STEM truck.

Thank you to the Army for inspiring our students to pursue careers in STEM, as well as everyone who worked to make their visit possible.

Wendale Davis Foundation 11th Annual Leadership Conference

The Wendale Davis Foundation is an intervention, prevention, mentoring foundation with a mission to educate, motivate, and rehabilitate at-risk youth. On Friday, February 22, 2019, a series of workshops were held at BC with topics such as HIV/AIDS Awareness, Gang Intervention, Life/Coping Skills, and more. It’s a great day any time BC invites young people to campus to learn and embrace a healthy and successful future.

Steve Watkins claps to get the audience's attention
Steve Watkins claps to get the audience’s attention
A full auditorium listening to Wendale.
A full auditorium listening to Wendale.

Juvenile Justice Employers

The Criminal Justice, Public Health and the Career Education Department collaborated to host the first Juvenile Justice Employer Panel on February 27, 2019. The primary focus of this event was to inform students in the Public Safety Pathway, Public Health Science, Psychology and/or Sociology majors about the different career paths they can follow after completing their education. Each panelist discussed their role working on prevention and intervention with troubled youth and tools they use to reduce criminal behavior. With over 100 students and special guest, Ricardo De Hoyo a District Representative of Senator Melissa Hurtado, in attendance, employers answered questions related to educational background, past and current work experience and employer expectations.

A full audience for the panel with Juvenile Justice slide behind them.
From Left to Right: Pat Smith, Criminal Justice Professor, Dr. Dixie King from Transforming Local Communities, Liz Gonzalez from Bakersfield City School District, Sgt. Nicole Anderberg from BPD, Officer Joshua Deutinger from BPD, Deputy Bobby Sherrill from Kern County Probation Department, Leticia Limon from Kern County Superintendent of Schools and Nichol Ruiz from Kern County Behavioral Health & Recovery.

Dean and Adah Gay Reading Room Refurbishment

If you haven’t been in the Grace Van Dyke Bird Library recently, check out the refurbished Dean and Adah Gay Reading Room.  The Gay family created an endowment back in 2007 to help maintain the room but until recently the goals of this endowment were not fully realized. New chairs, lamps and plants have been added, plus additional electrical outlets to assist students in recharging their electronic devices.

BC staff with the Gay's in the Reading Room.
BC staff with the Gay’s in the Reading Room.

David and Catherine Gay, Andreas, Emily (Gay) and Eva Dauner joined Kirk and Stacey Russell (Library), and Heather Pennella, Tom Gelder and Dana Heins-Gelder (Foundation) to rededicate the space last Saturday evening, February 23, 2019.  The new furniture arrived last Friday just before noon and the students began enjoying it immediately.

Kirk and Stacy Russell in the Reading Room.

From Earth to the Universe Planetarium Show

Last week Dr. Nick Strobel held one of his amazing planetarium presentations called From Earth to the Universe.  Community Relations Manager Tamara Baker brought her parents to the event, excited to show off the beautiful William M Thomas Planetarium, which boasts the largest dome in all of the Central Valley!  Tamara said that Dr. Strobel delved into the evening stars, and showed attendees how to identify different constellations and how to find true north. Tamara said that she and her family cannot wait to go star gazing up at their cabin.  Thanks Dr. Strobel for always putting on such great and informational presentations for our local community!

Degree With a Guarantee

Near the end of last year, I participated in an interview with Gary Stern for an article focused on Degrees with a Guarantee at California Community Colleges. Check it out the Hispanic Outlook Article: Degree Guarantee.

Public Health Program in Case Study

Sarah Baron and BC’s Public Health Sciences program were featured in a case study published by the Community College Journal of Research and Practices. The report published on February 19, titled “Practical Lessons in Public Health Program Implementation: Perspectives from the Field,” was co-written by Baron and discusses the way BC’s program offers a health navigator certificate and a general transfer degree developed with support from the Society for Public Health Education. Our Public Health Sciences program is creating the next generation of advocates for healthy communities, and I’m confident that their work will make the San Joaquin Valley a happier, healthier places for thousands of people.

Lisa Caputo is talking to students about internships in public health ambassadors and STI Peer Health Educator.  Thanks to the support of The California Endowment and Kaiser Permanente for making the startup of these programs possible. 
21 interns and Sara Baron

What has everyone a-twitter?

Trustee Romeo Agbalog appeared on the radio show Money Wise.

Kern Citizens for Sustainable Government thanking everyone.
Kern Citizens for Sustainable Government thanking everyone.
Aaron Resendez thanking everyone.
Aaron Resendez thanking everyone.

Speech Intramural Competition in Delano

Last Saturday, the BC Delano Campus hosted a speech intramural competition featuring Panorama and Delano students, as well as Arvin High and homeschooled Early College students.

Sarah Baron, Cris Cruz-Boone, Abel Guzman, and Lesley Bonds

There were close to 80 people in attendance for the speech intramural, which featured BC communication faculty and student judges evaluating students in a number of different speech competitions, including informative speech, persuasion, special topics, and impromptu speaking. Christine Cruz-Boone, a communication professor at BC and one of the judges for the event, said that Arvin High freshmen swept all top three places in the informative speech category, and homeschool student Samantha Craig earned second overall in impromptu speaking. Delano Campus student Itzel Hernandez won first place in the persuasion competition, and Panorama students Gloria Sanchez, Mandy Canada, and Lindsey Brackett also placed in various categories. The diverse group of BC participants got the opportunity to test out communication skills that they learned from BC instructors in a practical environment.

Abel Guzman, who attended the final round and awards ceremony of the competition, was impressed by the students who participated and compiled a series of emails about the intramural for entry in this week’s blog. As our Early College program continues to grow, I’m excited to see the ways that our Early College kids interact with the more traditional student population.

Renegade Report

If you missed watching the Renegade Report live this last Thursday at 11a, check out the segments from this week’s show. This week’s highlights included segments with BC Men’s Tennis Head Coach, Noel Dalton and BC student athletes Conrad Dalton, Luis Aceves and Moses Jimenez. 

Renegades of the Week

This week’s (2/17-2/23) Wells Fargo Renegades of the Week:

Kylee Fahy and Tanner Lopes.
Kylee Fahy and Tanner Lopes.

Kylee Fahy, Softball – Pitched 26 innings (1 no-hitter) with a .269 era, 41 strikeouts, six hits, one run, one earned run in helping softball go 4-0 for the week.

Tanner Lopes, Men’s Swimming – The only Renegade individual event winner at the Mt. SAC Invite last weekend, taking the 50 breaststroke and also getting two other top-ten finishes. He was part of two top six relays and was the highest scoring male swimmer from BC helping the men finish 6th overall.

Men’s and Women’s Basketball Post-Season Awards

BC Wester State Conference All Conference, sketch photo effect.
BC Wester State Conference All Conference, sketch photo effect.
BC Wester State Conference All Conference, sketch photo effect.

Huge congratulations to our men’s and women’s basketball student athletes who received recognition from the Western State Conference. Renegade Men’s Basketball student athletes Anieus Medrano and Shahadah Camp were been named to the 2018-2019 Western State Conference All-Conference team. Marcus Jones was also recognized as the Co-Defensive MOP for the conference. Renegade Women’s Basketball student athletes Jasmyn Rodriguez, Dasia Wandick and Brianna Mendez were named to the 2018-2019 Western State Conference (WSC) All-Conference team. Congrats! And way to represent BC!

BC Western State Conference All Conference of the 3 women in action poses, sketch photo effect.

Roundup of Athletics Events this week

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


That’s all for now.

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.

sonya-
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

Creativity, Talent, and Inspiration Runs Deep at Bakersfield College

Good morning Bakersfield.
It is Saturday, September 29, 2018….. A great day to be a Renegade.

The creativity, talent, and scholarship among BC faculty and staff is abundant and oh so inspiring.  Let me start with Wednesday, 9/26, in the evening.  I walked over from my office to watch Coach Carl Ferreira and his fabulous volleyball team win big time against Citrus. Then, walking back to my office, I stopped by the recently launched Renegade Roundtable hosted by the new director of the Levan Center, Reggie Williams.  The four faculty presenters Michael Harvath, Neal Stanifer, Steven Holmes and Erin Miller did a fabulous job approaching topics with different lenses.  I was overcome with pride at seeing faculty, staff and students sitting outside on the grass listening to these great faculty speakers.  The whole scene felt like a liberal arts college and I could imagine Norm Levan smiling and being content.  As was I.  You see this is why I am the luckiest and happiest college president.

Here are a few pictures that I discretely snapped.

  

Panorama Music Summit

The Panorama Creative Music Summit returned to Bakersfield College on September 21-22 at the Simonsen Performing Arts Center Indoor Theater on the Bakersfield College Panorama Campus. Presented by the Jazz Studies and Commercial Music Programs, the summit is an annual showcase for acclaimed visiting artists, local performers, and BC faculty, students, and alumni performing original music and exploring a broad range of styles and creative approaches across the jazz-pop continuum. Thank you Kris Tiner and BC Performing Arts!

This years event was a true hit. Susan Scaffidi wrote a piece for The Californian titled, “All jazzed up for bC music summit” and Ja’Nell Gore of the Renegade RIP covered the event in a piece titled “Panorama Creative Music Summit hosts composer along with student performers.”

Doug Wimbash visits BC

f18wimbish07-x3

Doug Wimbash

Bassist Doug Wimbish of the alternative rock group Living Colour visited BC on Monday to discuss his career as a studio musician on some of the most influential recordings in the history of hip-hop before leading students and staff in an improvised jam session at the Indoor Theater.

Wimbish, who’s worked with the Rolling Stones, Depeche Mode, Joe Satriani and Mos Def, started his career as a session bassist at All-Platinum Records as a teenager in the early ’70s. Label founders Sylvia and Joe Robinson launched a subsidiary label called Sugar Hill Records in 1979 and pressed the single for the Sugarhill Gang’s hit “Rapper’s Delight”, bringing hip-hop from its humble beginnings in the South Bronx across the globe, where it has eclipsed rock and pop as the world’s most popular music genre almost 40 years later. Wimbish was hired as the house bassist for Sugar Hill Records, playing on the recordings for “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, as well as other seminal recordings in the history of hip-hop.

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Kyle Burnham, Reggie Williams, Doug Wimbash, Josh Ottum, and Kris Tiner

Wimbish attributes his success in the music industry to the individuals who recognized his potential and gave him opportunities throughout his career, from the local musicians who mentored him in his hometown of Hartford, Connecticut to the studio executives who gave him his first professional recording gigs. Wimbish even called a few of his mentors and colleagues on the stage, including Sugarhill Gang emcee Master Gee and legendary audio engineer Chris Lord-Alge.

“I’m not the architect. I’m the recipient,” Wimbish said. “Your attitude will take you to the right altitude.”

After playing a few of his solo songs with accompaniment by jazz studies professor Kris Tiner on trumpet, Wimbish was very friendly and accommodating to the audience and performers who participated in the jam session, running across the stage to adjust the microphones for the brass section and assisting musicians, playing his bass connected to an array of modulation pedals.

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Doug Wimbash with attendees

Alongside students in the jazz studies and commercial music programs at BC, several faculty and staff participated in the jam, including English professor Andrew Bond and graphic designer Eric Carrillo. Eric recorded the following video to share. 

I’d like to thank Levan Center Director Reggie Williams, Kris Tiner and commercial music professor Josh Ottum for organizing the event, and I hope Doug can come back to campus next year and bring a few guests with him.
See all the photos by Earl Parsons at BC’s Smugmug.

Thank you California Community Colleges Board of Governors!

Bakersfield College has been selected by the California Community Colleges Board of Governors as one of 29 community colleges to be awarded a share of $4.9 million to further expand and bolster the College’s Veterans Resource Center. These grant funds go directly to assist the hundreds of veteran students as they work to achieve their academic goals and degree completion at Bakersfield College.

Over the past five years enrollment of student veterans at the College has grown tremendously. In 2013-14, the College served 565 student veterans while this year enrollment numbers have reached 717. The top three academic pathways for currently enrolled student veterans at BC are Business, STEM, and Nursing.

Kay Meek and Lee Caldwell unveiling the future VRCSonya and Group at VRC

Last November, the College revealed plans for the newly designed Veterans Resource Center, made possible by the passing of Measure J in 2016, and this year the College is set to break ground on construction. THANK YOU KERN COUNTY FOR SUPPORTING BC! On Monday, November 5, 2018, the Veterans Resource Center Groundbreaking Ceremony is scheduled to take place on the Panorama campus at 10:00am. More details to follow, but reserve Nov 5 at 10am on your calendars now!

KBAK was one of the first media outlets to pick up the story in their piece, “Bakersfield College, Porterville College getting money to bolster veterans services.” Thank you!

Renegades at the Fair 2018

renegades at the pavillionIn partnership with the Kern County Fair, the Office of Student Life hosted Renegades at the Fair for the fourth year in a row this last Thursday night.

Renegades engaged with the Bakersfield Community with games, photo opportunities and valuable information about our beloved Bakersfield College!

Thank you to all who participated. I especially loved the photos of Dr. Terri Goldstein with the incredible fair food!

Renegade Athletics Report

If you missed watching the Renegade Report live this last Thursday at 11a, segments are available on YouTube from this week’s show. With our football game theme this week honoring our Bakersfield community first responders, we highlighted a few of our BC athletics alum first responders. Be sure to head to Bakersfield.com at 11a each week to watch the show live.

 

 

Renegades of the Week

Congrats to this week’s Wells Fargo Renegades of the Week! Sydney Crawley, Women’s Golf – shot a personal best 75 (even par on the front 9) last week at Kern River GC to place 3rd overall and help the team to a 3rd place finish as well.

And Jeremy Mass, Wrestling – placed 1st in his weight class (185 lb.) at the West Hills Duals helping the team to a 5th place finish overall.

Renegades of the Week - Sydney Crawley and Jeremy Maas

SAAC at the Mission

Our athletics Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) organized a trash pick-up on Saturday 9/22 at the Mission at Kern County. We are proud of the student-athletes who devote their time, amidst a very busy schedule, to help better our community.

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Roundup of Athletics Events this week

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

 

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Must Read on Coach Carl Ferreira

Spotted the incredible Coach Carl Ferreira in action. Jon Mettus of the Californian published a piece titled, “Carl Ferreira believes this year’s Bakersfield College volleyball team could be his best yet.”

The fabulous Coach Ferreira

Coach Carl Ferreira and the Renegade Volleyball Team

It’s always great to see faculty, staff, and administration at our BC Athletics events cheering on and supporting BC students. This week, Sandi Taylor, Director of Athletics, Michele Bresso, Dean of Instruction, and Klint Rigby, Engineering and Industrial Technology Department Chair were spotted taking a selfie while cheering on the Renegades.

Supporting our student athletes.

Sandi Taylor, Michele Bresso, and Klint Rigby take a selfie

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

Renegade Athletics Social Media

Dual Enrollment Team attends statewide Early and Middle College Conference

Dr. Bryan Reece of Norco College

Dr. Bryan Reece of Norco College

Did you know that high school students who complete two dual enrollment courses are 12% more likely to earn a college degree?  Dr. Bryan Reece, president of Norco College, shared that tidbit and so much more in an empowering message about the transformative power of dual enrollment and early and middle college.

The Bakersfield College Dual Enrollment team including Dr. Anna Laven, Abel Guzman, Raquel Lopez, Steve Watkin and Fernando Lara, gained helpful information from Dr. Reece and others when they attended the California Coalition of Early and Middle Colleges (CCEMC) 5th annual conference in Sacramento on September 21, 2018.

Local high school partners, Cerro Coso administrators and the district office were also in attendance, including Dr. Ben Sherley of KHSD, Justin Derrick of McFarland HS, Nicole Griffin and Lisa Stephens from Cerro Coso, Cindy Collier, Dr. Bonita Steele, and Diane Baeza from our District Office.

Started as a grassroots organization of educators, CCEMC is a coalition dedicated to the belief that California students deserve the opportunity to experience college courses during their high school career.  When K-12 school districts and community college districts work in partnership, we have the ability to help students grow, experience early success, and become college and career ready as they become the new workforce for our state, explains CCEMC president Dr. April Moore.  Attendees enjoyed sessions ranging from the use of data for evaluation to the use of early college to improve persistence for historically underrepresented students.

BC Attends Kern EDC SLO Innovation Tour

Community Relations Manager Tamara Baker joined Kern EDC for its SLO Innovation Tour earlier this week, where they visited the SLO HotHouse Incubator, Cal Poly Technology Park and SLO MakerSpace.   This was a part of Kern EDC’s Kern Alliance for Talent and Innovation (KATI) initiative designed to support the creation of a regional center of innovation.  BC joined 30 other Kern County partners to see what SLO is doing, and to consider ideas and projects that can be implemented here in our backyard.

Kern County's partners at the Cal Poly Technology Park

Kern County’s partners at the Cal Poly Technology Park

Supporting our Vets

Armando Trujillo and Paul Beckworth met over lunch with Vet Center Manager Jenny Frank and Superior Court Judge Louie Vega discussing the Veteran Justice Program. This important program was founded by Judge Vega, Attorney Randy Dickow and the late Vernon Valenzuela, in whose honor the program is named.

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Kern County Silkies Hike

BC faculty, staff, and Renegades participated in last Sunday’s Kern County Silkies Hike, walking more than 15 miles to bring awareness to the 22 veterans who die by suicide every day. The fourth-annual event, which made stops at Temblor Brewing, Casa Tequila and other locations for veterans and their supporters to hydrate and eat, is also designed to bring veterans in the community together and let them know that they don’t have to face their struggles alone. Members of the BC community who participated in the Silkies Hike include Rodolfo Rascon, Armando Trujillo, William “Billy” Nuckles, Raquel “Rocky” Barraza, Tommy (Col.) Tunson, and Tanyabet Mendez.

Kern County Veterans Silkies Hike

AB 540 Students at BC

Eloy Oakley keynoting at the Leadership SummitIn an effort to improve equity and access for all AB540 students across the state of California, the amazing Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley and the California Community College Chancellor’s Office sent out a survey to all 114 Colleges in the state regarding current services offered to undocumented students on each of their respective campuses. The Chancellor’s Office has tasked the Foundation for California Community Colleges to create a Statewide Advisory group to review the results of the survey data to make recommendations to the CCC Chancellor’s Office in order to increase access and support our Dreamers across the state.

Our very own Educational Advisor/AB540 Liaison Pedro L. Ramirez has been invited to participate in this Statewide Advisory Group, which will be tasked to make these recommendations to the Chancellor’s office to create systemic change across all 114 California community colleges. The Chancellor’s Advisory Group held its first meeting this past Monday, September 24th at the Foundation for CCC in Sacramento and will be holding successive Regional Meetings in Berkeley on October 9th, Mt. San Antonio October 26th, San Diego on November 6th, and Fresno on November 14th.

AB540 Advisory Group

Although only 60 community colleges have completed the survey regarding services offered to undocumented students, preliminary data shows that Bakersfield College is at the forefront when it comes to services offered to undocumented students. While most community colleges are being reactive to serving undocumented/dreamer students, Bakersfield College has been taking a proactive approach. Take for example the following data snippets that show the increase in enrollment of first-time/new students, as well as demographic information and pathway information.

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The significant growth of our AB540/Dreamer students could not have been possible without the work of the AMAZING Dreamer Completion team. Special thanks to: Lisa Robles, Jacky Lau, Gina Hunter, Manuel Rosas, Jeannie Parent and Elizabeth Rodacker from the EMLS department, and Manuel Muralles from Outreach. In addition, a special thanks to our Cal-Soap team and our community partners Youth 2 Leaders for their continued collaboration and support.

Pedro L Ramirez was also recently on the 103.9 The Beat’s radio show with Danny Morrison. If you missed it live, check it out on YouTube.

 

BCSW welcomes the Healthcare Community

On September 23, Bakersfield College Southwest hosted Mercy Hospital, Mercy Southwest Hospital, and Bakersfield Memorial Hospital for a public meeting. State of California Deputy Attorney General Wendi Horwitz listened to comments and statements from stakeholders and community members. Thank you to Fernando Lara, Mary Jo Pasek, and Leah Prendez who made sure all the details were handled the BC way!

Hispanic Chamber Golf Tournament

Corny Rodriguez, Tony Cordova, Adam Alvidrez, Heather Pennella, and Tom Gelder

Corny Rodriguez, Tony Cordova, Adam Alvidrez, Heather Pennella, and Tom Gelder

Not known for their golfing prowess, the BC participants in the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce’s golf tournament/fundraiser Monday at Bakersfield Country Club distinguished themselves by taking third place in the “Net Score” category.  Headed by Dean Corny Rodriguez, Team BC members Tony Cordova of CTE fame, and Heather Pennella and Tom Gelder from the BC Foundation pulled out their victory with a last-minute surge.

The Hispanic Chamber Golf Tournament raises money for scholarships and benefits approximately seventy high school students each year for each of the last several years. Bakersfield College has a close relationship with the Chamber and its leadership President Jay Tamsi and Board Chair Adam Alvidrez.

BC represented at the Hispanic Chamber Golf Tournament

BC represented at the Hispanic Chamber Golf Tournament

It’s time to Apply for Scholarships!

A4M Sept PP SlideThe BC Foundation and Financial Aid Department have been working together to inform students and faculty regarding the many scholarship opportunities available specifically for Bakersfield College students. The online scholarship application will open on Monday, October 1st and remain open through February 1st, 2019.

Please encourage all BC students, current or incoming to go to bakersfieldcollege.edu/Apply4Money and complete the FAFSA/Dream Act application AND the BC Scholarship application. There are over 270 scholarship funds at BC!

Emails Worth Sharing

Eileen Pierce, who is a dedicated program manager for BC’s Supplemental Instruction program sent an email earlier this week to share a graphic called “Semester Cycle for the Typical BC Student.”

Semester Cycle by Eileen Pierce

Via Arte Bakersfield

via arte from bmoa websiteVia Arte is coming back to the Market Place shopping center on October 20th. Bakersfield College and the Levan Center are proud sponsors. Learn more at http://www.viaartebakersfield.com/2018sponsors/

The Artwork of Diego Gutierrez Monterrubio

The Artwork of Diego Monterrubio

ISER Training

Isabel Castaneda shared photos from Sarah Baron and Alisha Loken‘s ISER training session on Friday morning for our Title V Extend the Classroom and Summer Bridge Peer mentors. Dr. Kimberly Bligh shared with me that “we wanted to make sure they had Accreditation training and requested help.” They even played a quiz game! I wonder who won?! 🙂

GRoup Photo learning about the ISER

Fun Photo from Leadership Academy

Dean Billie Jo Rice shared this pic of future Renegades from the Leadership Academy being held on our campus Friday. She said:

“I am the proud aunt of the young lady that is in the second position from the left. Her name is Jordyn”

Leadership Academy Students

Next Week’s Accreditation Visit

From October 1 to October 4, 2018, Bakersfield College will be visited by evaluators from the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC), conducting interviews with faculty, staff, students, and college groups. If you happen to be on campus, please extend a warm welcome to our visiting team. Feel free to engage with them to share our Renegade story. #WeAreBC!

Thank you to the planning and logistics team who has worked hard over the past few weeks to prepare the details for the visit.

Sonya Christian 3 at Finish in 4 May 7 2018That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

BC is Booming with Activities!

Good morning Bakersfield….. It is March 17th, St Patrick’s Day and Neo’s first birthday. 

 

Another week of booming activity at Bakersfield College and each activity so rich and profound in its impact on our students and our community.  Let me start this week’s blog with the Sydney Bound Concert to send our choir to Australia and as Bill Thomas said, get them back.

Sydney Bound Concert

Trustee Kyle Carter and Sonya ChristianI want to recognize Trustee Kyle Carter first and foremost for his support of BC’s choir.  When I approached him a few weeks ago and asked for his help to strategize how we could bridge the gap in funding to get our students to Australia to perform at the Sydney Opera House, he immediately went into action and the result was the March 10th concerts (one at 5:00 p.m. and the other at 7:30) with two amazing musicians Monty Byrom and Lydia Ranger, who performed pro bono alongside the BC Chamber Singers to raise the funds.  Kyle opened up the Bakersfield Music Hall of Fame venue for this event and along with his wife Kim McAbee-Carter pulled off an incredible concert.

Next I want to thank Monty Byrom who brought out his band to support our students. He also traveled from Fresno to attend the Sterling Silver dinner to promote the March 10th event and then turned around the next day and traveled back.   Just extraordinary.  And then there is the woman with the best voice ever…Lydia Ranger.  When Kyle Carter reached out to her, she unhesitatingly said yes.  And you have got to check out the video at the end of this section of Lydia belting out Bridge Over troubled Water…..  just amazing.

Lydia Ranger, Monty Byrum, Sonya Christian, Jen Garrett

I also want to thank our major sponsors for the evening.

  • Kern Schools Federal Credit Union
  • Deborah & Philip Rosenthal, MD
  • Klein, DeNatale, Goldner Attorneys At Law
  • Rick & Lorie Kreiser & Guitar Masters
  • Ken & Pam Byrum
  • An anonymous donor

These two pictures were taken at the Sterling Silver.  Steve Renock of Kern Schools and Ken and Pam Byrum.

Here are photos of Debby Rosenthal,  Jay Rosenlieb of Klein Denatale Goldner, and Rick Kreiser.

And to the anonymous donor…..

 

Bakersfield College itself was in full force at the concert. This incredible evening was full of great music, friends, BC family, and fun. Thank you to all who came out to support our talented BC Chamber Singers in their dream to perform at the Sydney Opera House. Bakersfield is a community that makes dreams a reality! What an incredible and fun way to make this happen for our students.

Debby Rosenthal, Steven Holmes and Meg Stidham; Grace Comisso, Maria Wright and Jamal Wright.

Thank you to the BC team who worked to make this happen: Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, Manny Mourtzanos, Jennifer Garrett, Jerry Ludeke, Michelle Pena, and Tom Gelder.

Thank you Tonya Davis and her husband, Chris and Nancy Hine, John and Julie Means from the District Office for coming out to this BC event.

Thank you to the deans who should up in full force.

Steve Waller and Andrea Thorson; Sonya Christian and Steve Waller

Was happy to see my friends Arlene and Lauro Braganza who love music and support our BC Chamber Singers; Karen Thompson and Pat Thompson who are strong supporters of BC.

Steven and Lori Holmes, Khushnur and Zav Dadabhoy, Bob Allison and Manny Mourtzanos

Steve and Lori Holmes, Khushnur and Zav Dadabhoy, Bob Allison, Manny Mourtzanos

Michelle Pena helped with selling the tickets and here she is with her whole family

 

Some more pictures….

 

Love this picture of Lydia Ranger, Monty Byrom and Jennifer Garrett rehearsing.

Lydia Ranger, Monty Byrom, Jennifer Garrett

Endee Grijalva snapped this great pic of our Early College Program Students from Arvin High School. Equity paid for their attendance and transportation to the event. We also had a group of Adult Ed Students able to attend via equity as well. Abel Guzman, Director, Delano Campus and Rural Initiatives said “This was a huge team effort, including Arvin HS. Ed Watts, the Principal, has been extremely supportive of the early college program.”

Sydney Bound - Early College Program

Steven Daniels, professor at CSUB uploaded beautiful photos from the evening on his facebook. Check them out here!

Jill Burdick performing Ron Kean’s Carry me Home

Monty Byrom, Lydia Ranger and the BC Chamber Singers did a phenomenal job with Bridge Over Troubled Waters

Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah is one of my favorite songs.  Composed in the late 1980s when I first got to the United States as a foreign student the song was not an immediate hit but then gained popularity later.  Beautiful blend of rock, pop and gospel music….. I love it.  Let’s listen to Monty Byrom and Ken Burdick perform it.

 

Dolores: Rebel. Activist. Feminist. Mother.

s18huerta01-x2To celebrate the upcoming television premiere of the documentary “Dolores: Rebel. Activist. Feminist. Mother”, Dolores Huerta and her family came to the Levan Center on Monday night to answer questions about the work she’s done as a community organizer for over 50 years. BC’s Olivia Garcia and Tina Mendoza gave a brief introduction about the Huerta family before hosting a screening of “Dolores”, which premieres on PBS’ Independent Lens March 27th.  (Btw, doesn’t Olivia look absolutely gorgeous and happy in this picture?)

The Levan Center was so full that many audience members had to sit on the floor to enjoy the documentary, which is executive produced by Carlos Santana.

Dolores

“Dolores” tells the story of how Huerta co-founded the United Farm Workers with Cesar Chavez to advocate for the rights of immigrant laborers, rekindling a nationwide sense of pride and identity in the American Latino community in the process. The film goes on to discuss Huerta’s history with the feminist movement, being beaten and hospitalized by a police officer in 1988, repairing the fractured relationship with her 11 children, and eventually leaving the UFW to help found a non-profit foundation in her name.
After the film, Dolores and four of her children walked into the Levan Center to a standing ovation, answering audience questions about the film and the Foundation’s current work advocating for Latinos in rural Kern County. Some of the Foundation’s recent successes include winning a lawsuit to redraw Kern County’s voting districts to secure a second Latino-majority district on the Board of Supervisors, as well as using the Foundation’s youth programs to develop political leaders from the local Latino community, including Jose Gurrola, the 23-year-old mayor of Arvin.

left to right: Emilio Huerta, Juanita Chavez, Dolores Huerta, Camila Chavez and Lori de Leon

left to right: Emilio Huerta, Juanita Chavez, Dolores Huerta, Camila Chavez and Lori de Leon

Other participants on the panel included Emilio Huerta, a lawyer who ran for Congress against David Valadao in 2016; Camila Chavez, Executive Director of the Dolores Huerta Foundation; Lori De Leon, Business Manager for the Dolores Huerta Foundation; and Juanita Chavez, Communications and Media Coordinator for the Dolores Huerta Foundation.

Dolores Screening
Dolores’ children didn’t get to spend much time with their mother growing up since she was so busy traveling around the country as a political activist, but they all said that they now understand the value of the sacrifices they had to endure in order to provide opportunities on behalf of all Latinos, and they’re inspired by their mother’s determination every single day.

Dolores and Olivia Garcia
Several BC faculty and staff were in attendance at the documentary screening, including Dean Cornelio Rodriguez, who shook Dolores’ hand at the end of the event, as well as nursing professor Noelia Citialin, who is Dolores’ granddaughter. I loved seeing Jay Tamsi in the room as well.

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I’d like to thank PBS, the Levan Center, Olivia Garcia, Tina Mendoza and everyone who helped organize this event.  Happy to see Jay Tamsi in this picture.  Dolores Huerta needs to be well known even outside of the San Joaquin Valley, and hopefully this documentary spreads the word about one of the greatest labor organizers of the 20th and 21st centuries.

See all the photos at BC’s SmugMug.

 

Spring Serenade Concert Band/Orchestra

Dr. Kathryn Kuby and the BC Concert Band/Orchestra held their Spring Serenade concert last night. This amazing concert featured ensembles performing music of varying styles and five very talented student soloists performing solo works with orchestral accompaniment. The following student soloists performed:

Sebastian Lee & Cheyenne Toussaint, Double Cello Concerto in G minor, RV 531, I (Vivaldi) Jaison Miles, Clarinet Concerto No. 3 in B-flat, I (Stamitz) Aflredo Ramirez, Clarinet Concerto No. 2 in E♭ Major, Op. 74, J. 118, I (Weber) Matthew Rose, Concerto in One Movement for Tuba and Orchestra (Alexey Konstantinovich Lebedev, Arranged by Allen Ostrander)

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Admin Council

The work of the college is continuous and inspirational. On Monday, Admin Council gathered to recap and update each other on important campus happenings such as Testing and Placement Program Review, led by Kalina Hill and upcoming Registration Days, led by Steve Watkin.  A wonderful presentation was given by  Dr. Maria Wright on BC’s Academic Support Services highlighting all that we’ve done in previous years and where these services are headed.

National Walkout Day

While high school students around the country took a stand on Wednesday to raise awareness of gun violence, several BC students also held a short march on campus in solidarity with them. The march was held for 17 minutes, each minute representing a life that was lost during the Parkland, Florida school shooting in February.

Emmanuel Limaco of BC’s M.E.Ch.A. organization gave some brief remarks before leading the group through a triangular march between the Campus Center, Center for Student Success and Science and Engineering building. Each point represented Bakersfield, Sacramento, and Washington, DC, respectively.

“Our parents did not raise us to be afraid of going to school,” Limaco said. “We should never have to live in a world where school shooting is a reality.”

Pi Day

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Computer Science professor Eddie Rangel hosts a booth about BC’s Computer Studies program during the Pi Day celebration in the Science and Engineering Courtyard.

The Bakersfield College STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) Completion Coaching Team and the BC Math Club partnered in the first STEM Celebrates Pi Day event on March 14, 2018 (National Pi Day). The event celebrated the number Pi, 3.14159…. with free pizza Pi and fruit Pi for more than 200 students who attended. Students visited tables with various STEM-related activities to earn tickets towards prize drawings for BC swag, graphing calculators, and (of course) pies!

Pi in the Face Group 2

At exactly Pi 3/14 1:59 pm, faculty devoted to Pi got a pie in the face: (from left to right) Dr. Scott Peat (Biology), Dr. Joe Saldivar (Biology), Mr. Arnie Andrasian (Math). Dr. Kenward Vaughan (Physical Sciences), and Dr. Jon Brown (Math Club Advisor). It was a fun event with lots of useful information for students about tutoring services, supplemental instruction, counseling, and financial aid. The team is now back to planning more STEM events for this year and next year!

Dr. Joe Saldivar even has a fantasatic video on his twitter @DrJoeBio! Check it out here.

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Global Connections

The International Student Organization (ISO) hosted several booths at the lawn in front of Counseling on Tuesday, educating students about all of the different cultures represented at BC.

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Booths at the ISO’s Global Connection event were hosted by students and featured information about each of their home countries. Students played acoustic guitar and electric drums in the lawn, and several women wore traditional Mexican dresses while handing out chips and salsa.

The ISO also held a special dinner on Tuesday evening in the Fireside Room honoring the faculty and staff who work every day to make BC an inclusive space for international students. And the fabulous Manuel DeLosSantos took a beautiful photo of the food provided by BC Food Services.

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Shafter Learning Center

David Franz, Shafter Education Partnership Director, gave a presentation to the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday morning talking about the Shafter Learning Center’s classes at BC.

During a discussion about the success of the Shafter Learning Center as part of the Supervisors’ series of informational sessions about education and workforce development, Franz mentioned the addition of psychology and sociology courses at the Shafter Learning Center, which is located inside the Shafter library. KCCD Trustee Romeo Agbalog, representing the organization Kern Citizens for Sustainable Government, also gave a public comment at the meeting praising the intergovernmental approach Franz has adopted with the Shafter Learning Center, bridging partnerships between local government, school boards and BC to provide tutoring and education to Shafter residents. Agbalog was also excited about the reduced commute that classes in Shafter offer for people in Wasco, who otherwise might have to drive to the Delano Center for classes, as well as Northwest Bakersfield residents who live closer to Shafter than the Panorama campus or BC Southwest.

Dr. Fontes Presents

Fontes Presentation 3

Dr. Patrick Fontes presents in Delano

On Wednesday, March 14 the Bakersfield College Delano Campus hosted Dr. Patrick Fontes of CSU Fresno.  Dr. Fontes earned his PhD in History from Stanford University and visited the Delano Campus to offer a presentation on his oral history project, “Chicano Legacy of Fresno County,” funded by California Humanities. A fourth-generation Fresnan, Patrick’s presentation offered students and faculty an overview of Mexican American history in Fresno county, as well as highlighted oral history interviews with local Mexican Americans involved in the Chicano civil rights movement in Fresno since the 1960s—including Dr. Lea Ybarra of John Hopkins University and the Smithsonian Center for Latino Studies.  Other highlights from the presentation included the history of the Ku Klux Klan in Fresno County, as well as the process of doing archival research and oral history.  Delano Faculty member Dr. Chris Cruz-Boone attended with her Communication students and will be designing place-based pedagogy and assignments dealing with local history in Delano and the surrounding rural communities.  “The overall goal of Digital Delano,” remarked History Professor and NEH Project Director Oliver Rosales, “is for students and faculty to examine more closely the rich histories of the San Joaquin Valley.

Fontes Presentation 2

More information about Dr. Fontes’s project can be found at www.chicanolegacy.com.

This event was sponsored by Digital Delano: Preserving an International Community’s History, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), Cultural and Historical Awareness Program (C.H.A.P.), and Social Justice Institute of Bakersfield College.

Fontes Presentation 1

Pictured above is Dr. Oliver Rosales, Professor of History, Coordinator, Social Justice Institute at Bakersfield College, and Project Director, Digital Delano, Dr. Patrick Fontes, Lecturer of History at Fresno City College and Fresno State, Elisabeth Sundby, MLIS, MBA Adjunct Librarian at BC Delano and Project Co-Director, Digital Delano, and Dr. Christine Cruz-Boone, Professor of Communications at Bakersfield College.

KCHCC Spotlighted in Renegade RIP

The Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (KCHCC) is looking for high school and BC students to apply for their annual Energy and Agriculture Academy. Student reporter Miranda Defoor of the Renegade Rip wrote about the Energy and Agriculture Academy in an article published last Sunday. BC is hosting all five sessions for the academy, which is a partnership between KCHCC, Aera and Chevron to prepare students for careers in STEM and Agriculture. Such great news about incredible partnerships in the community!

Renegade Softball

REnegade SoftballThe Renegade softball team is one of the ten best in the state, according to an article published Thursday by Jon Mettus in the Bakersfield Californian.
The team is 17-4 going into today’s double-header against LA Valley College, on the heels of a six-game winning streak. Three of their losses are against the top-ranked College of San Mateo and Cypress College, as well as seventh-ranked Santiago Canyon College.
The Renegades’ success is propelled by the arm of freshman pitcher Kylee Fahey, who leads all California community colleges in strikeouts, and McKenna Valencia, who leads the team with a .448 batting average and 21 RBI.

Check out “Bakersfield College softball ranked Top-10 in state” at the Bakersfield Californian.

Also check out “BC jumps out early, hangs on late in win over LA Mission” at the Bakersfield Californian. 

Save the Date – Air Force Band

We’re excited to announce that the United States Air Force Band of the Golden West will be performing at BC once again on June 26th. Stationed in Travis Air Force Base in the Bay Area, the USAF Band of the Golden West has performed for an estimated 1.5 million people, according to their website, playing an exciting brand of marching band music for air force bases, recruiting squadrons, Bay Area sporting events and NASCAR races.
We’ll be serving dinner in the Fireside Room that evening before the USAF Band of the Golden West performs in the Indoor Theater. Seeing this extremely talented band is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and we’d love everyone in the community to be a part of it. Stay tuned for more information about this event as we get it finalized.

Last years event was a true hit!

Achieving the Dream Team

This week, we hosted Achieving the Dream in the BCSGA Boardroom on Wednesday to have a conversation with BC leadership about how we can improve educational access for our students and close the achievement gap. Achieving the Dream is dedicated to finding data-driven solutions to serving low-income students, students of color and other historically underrepresented student populations. BC has been a member of the program since 2013, and we’ve used their guidance and framework to initiate programs such as Summer Bridge, Multiple Measures and the Student Financial Empowerment Project.

Truth: Objective, Invented, Esteemed? – Gadfly Cafe

It was nice to see around 100 students, staff and faculty attend this month’s Gadfly Cafe. Everyone was invited to bring their lunch to Levan Center on Wednesday, March 14, for a lively round table discussion on timely issues.

Thank you Reggie Williams, Philosophy Faculty, for leading this lively discussion and raising the question of what is truth, and how we verify it. Seeing the students engage about their “true” beliefs and discovering that they may not be true, struggling to define the tangibility and verifiability of truth, and critically thinking about the impacts on religion, society and their own beliefs and morality is a testament to Reggie being the well deserved recipient of the 2017 Shirley Trembley Distinguished Teaching Award.

Gadfly1It was also nice to see Jerry Ludeke, Archives, Andrew Bond, English Faculty, Pete LeGrant and Anna Poetker, Philosophy Faculty, in attendance. We are truly fortunate to have such valuable learning experiences on our campus. The next Gadfly Cafe, Beauty: The Pursuit, Privileges, and Pressures will be held on Wednesday, April 11 at 12:30 in the Levan Center.

Greenfield School District

I shared photos in last weeks blog about the work some BC faculty and students have been involved in with Greenfield School District. You can read more about it in my post “Inspirational Speakers, Visitors, and Guests on Campus.”  Chris Benker gave a skateboard demo this week and next week, they’ll visit the Planetarium. Thank you to Chris Benker, Daniel Ahn, Steven Tavoni, Deborah Rosenthal, and Kenward Vaughan.

Economic Summit

The Kern County Economic Summit is an annual program featuring economists and business leaders who provide valuable information designed to educate and broaden perspectives on international, national, and regional economies. This week, BC was well represented. Photographed below is Mayor Karen Goh with BC’s Billie Jo Rice, Anthony Cordova, and Jason Dixon. 

Kern County Economic Summit

Patricia Flores

One of our BC graduates with an AA in Human Services sent a small write up detailing her experience interning with Human Services. Patricia Flores received the National award of “2017 Dementia Care Professional of the Year”  with ADAKC .  Her recognition is quite impressive and such an honor for our past student-intern and graduate.  In her note, she said

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Patricia Flores with DCPA Award

My name is Patricia Flores. I have been working in the human services field for 13 years. I currently work for Alzheimer’s Disease Association of Kern County (ADAKC). I was honored to receive a national recognition of 2017 Dementia Care Professional of the year from Alzheimer’s Foundation of America.

My journey started at Bakersfield College Human Services Internship Program. It was during the internship experience that I realized my strengths, weaknesses, and desire to find a passion in my career.

The Human Services internship helped me to narrow my career selection in Human Services field. At first I thought that I wanted to work with children. During one of the human services classes, a professor showed the class pictures of neglected children that gave me sad feelings and realized my weakness of being incapable to with neglected and abused children. I returned to class feeling that I needed to research other careers in the human services field. My first internship was in 2004 at ADAKC assisting with the daycare program with clients affected with Alzheimer’s Disease and related Dementias. First time working with Seniors and enjoyed it very much. My second internship was assisting in the payee program from Around The Clock. Being close to graduating and finishing up the internship, I was offered a job at the Payee program. After 4 years, applied in a case manager position at Around The Clock to get experience in Social Work while attending CSUB.

IMG_3405It was during my job as a Social Worker that I realized I had a passion to work with seniors. While working as a full time Social Worker, I completed my Bachelor’s in Science at University of Phoenix with a more flexible schedule. In 2011, I was hired at ADAKC as Director of Family Services Program assisting seniors, early on set clients, caregivers and family members in the journey of Alzheimer’s Disease and related Dementias. It was then that I also realized that I returned to my first internship and it has been 7 years working a ADAKC.  ADAKC continues to be a site for students from Bakersfield Human Services Internship Program to complete internship opportunities. Having the experience in completing the Human Services Program, I am able to give back to the program in assisting and training students in the skills they need for their Human Services Career.

I am very grateful to my professors from the Human Services Internship Department. I hope that my journey and experience may assist and encourage students in the field of human services career to find their passion in their jobs. Because working in the career of your desire with passion you will all find success and happiness.”

Loved reading her story and I’m so proud to share it with you. Thank you Patricia for your service to others. #WeareBC!

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Renee Hernandez. Past BC intern and now employed with ADAKC, Lynn Knaggs, BC Human Services Program Coordinator, Jacqueline Hernandez, Current BC Human Services Intern, Patty Flores, Director of Family Services at the Alzheimer’s Disease Association of Kern County, Maria Silva, Current BC Human Services Intern

Jack Hernandez

It’s always a joy to see Jack Hernandez in the Community Voices section. You can also read it online here.

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ACCJC Commission Development Workshop (CDW)

I spent much of the week in San Diego at an ACCJC meeting.  The commission meets once a year in development and we bring in individuals from the field to work with us during some of the sessions.  This year we had President Kindred Murillo and Chancellor Constance Carroll join us for the opening session of the CDW.  You see them here is the picture along with Raul Rodriguez, Chair of ACCJC, Richard Winn, President of ACCJC, and Gohar Momjian, Vice President.

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Sonya Christian, Kindred Murillo, Raul Rodriguez, Richard Winn, Constance Carroll, Gohar Momjian

 

Then we had a “student achievement” data presentation and discussion with Darla Cooper and Craig Hayward.  It was very informative.

Loved this picture of Jared Spring, Jessica Dreier, and Cheri Sixbey.

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And this picture of Gohar Momjian and Stephanie Droker.

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I am so glad that I managed to squeeze in time to walk the waterfront that is oh so beautiful.

San Diego

Sonya Christian Dec 11 2017

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever

 

 

Celebrating Special Days, Friends, and BC Family!

Good morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, March 3rd…. on a long flight this morning to chair an accreditation site visit ….

Where do I begin? With Nan of course!

Celebrating her retirement with Nan …. not really retiring, or at least not completely – I see her continuing her service to BC and KCCD… just wondering what that next role will be?

Nan with wand

Nan says “Make it so!”

“Be the first one to arrive and the last one to leave. I never did figure out that first one, but I’ve got that last one down pat.” Anyone that’s been at BC for any length of time will tell you that, evening after evening, a few vehicles would remain in those expansive (and soon to be resurfaced) parking lots. Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg’s was always one.

The Bakersfield College that you see, read about, and experience today, would not be the same Bakersfield College without her graceful touch and bold leadership. Many of the changes and things you see around you, from the colors of countless BC publications to securing Measure J funds, were expertly transformed by what must have been her magic wand or sparkling fairy dust. Or maybe it was just years of wisdom, a knack for instinctual transcendence, and many, many evenings of a lone vehicle in that parking lot while work was being perfected here on campus.

So this past Wednesday, our Executive Offices prepared a celebration day for Nan, and what an adventure! Picture it: Zav, Don, Jennifer, Wendy, June, Somaly, Tarina, Chris, Zach, and myself huddled in Nan’s office minutes before she arrived. The floor, lush with multicolored roses, we covered our faces with the photos of various Nans (yes, even the “bob cut years”), lined the decorative “The Legend has Retired” balloons, and waited. Until…

Nans CelebrationNan said, “You guys!” And I think her face says it all!

From there we, we prepared a (nearly) all vegetarian lunch in A5, just how Nan likes it. There was falafel, Liz Rozell’s fruit salad, Flame-N-Skewers’ hummus, and this delicious treat Chef Sabella calls a Vegetarian Napoleon.

Tom Burke, Nan, and Danielle Hillard-Adams, Executive Assistant to Tom.

Tom Burke, Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, and Danielle Hillard-Adams

Trustee Bill Thomas stopped by to say hello

Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg and Bill Thomas Feb 28 2018

Being surrounded by friends and her work family really brought a unique radiance, even for Nan.

But with that the afternoon was far from over. Nan requested a flash mob… so you remember her wand?

See more photos from the afternoon at BC’s Smugmug.

Passing the Torch

Liz passing the torch to Jason

Liz passing the torch to Jason

We also celebrated the promotions of Liz Rozell, new Interim Vice President of Instruction, and Jason Dixon, who will be taking Liz’s place as the dean in charge of the Engineering and Industrial Technology and Business Management and Information Technology departments.

Liz has been an ambitious leader for her department, which oversaw the implementation of our Baccalaureate Degree in Industrial Automation during her tenure. Her effervescent personality and inspirational words of guidance brought the best out of everyone on her team, and BC has been lucky to have her, but I’m confident that Jason will be able to fill her shoes and continue the tradition of excellence that Liz has created over at Engineering and Industrial Technology.

Mary Webb and the Industrial Tech department  hosted a dinner for Liz and Jason’s respective promotions, and Liz passed a literal torch to Jason after Mary said a few words congratulating them both. Moments like this reminds me why I’m the luckiest and happiest college president ever.

Liz and Nan

Liz and Nan

Sterling Silver

The 10th Annual Sterling Silver Dinner was held on campus on February 24th. The library was a beautiful setting for the 200 guests that attended to mix and mingle during the reception, while enjoying hors d’oeuvres. The Jones Art Gallery was open for the evening with a collection of student art on display for guests to view. The Archives Department expertly curated a variety of artifacts from BC’s past for attendees to enjoy.

It was great to see friends, supporters of BC, and our Trustees Romeo Agbalog and Bill Thomas at the event.

Romeo Agbalog, Sonya Christian, Bill Thomas

The Bakersfield College Drumline did a fabulous job of calling guests to make their way to the gorgeous tented dining area. The focus of the evening was to celebrate three benefactors of Bakersfield College and Nick James – KGET Sports Reporter, served as emcee for the evening.

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Marko B. and Theo Zaninovich were honored as the Outstanding Individual Philanthropists of the year and they shared the importance of education and the reasons they support BC.

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Kern Schools Federal Credit Union received recognition as the Outstanding Corporate Philanthropist, and Steve Renock – President/CEO of KSFCU, spoke to the long history of partnership between Kern Schools and BC.

Tom Gelder, Sonya Christian, Steve Renock

Tom Gelder, Sonya Christian, Steve Renock

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Tom Gelder, Sonya Christian, Kenneth Byrom

The BC Foundation honored Kenneth M. Byrum with the inaugural Bakersfield College Foundation Service Medal. Ken has been on the Foundation board since its inception in 1975 and continues to serve and support Bakersfield College. The Byrum family came in full support for the evening with members coming to town from coast to coast.

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Thank you all who were generous in sponsoring the 2018 Sterling Silver which was a sold out event.

Thank you Senator Jean Fuller for squeezing the Sterling Silver event into your busy calendar

BCSterlingSilver Sonya Christian and Jean Fuller

Thank you Mayor Karen Goh, Cathy Abernathy, Jay Rosenlieb, Mary Jo Pasek and Tom Pasek.

Jay Rosenlieb, Karen Goh, Sonya Christian, Cathy Abernathy, Mary Jo Pasek, Tom Pasek

Jen Garrett and Matt Garrett.  Lily Agbalog and Trustee Romeo Agbalog

The fabulous John Gerhold with the beautiful Wendy Gerhold

Two academic senate presidents — Corny Rodriguez (now dean) and Steven Holmes (current academic senate president)

Jerry Cook and Lauraine Cook.  Olivia Garcia and Heather Penella

With the fabulous Monty Byrom who traveled back from Fresno just to support Dr. Jen Garrett and our BC choir for their trip to Australia.  So happy to be standing by this talented man.

BCSterlingSilver Sonya Christian and Monty Byrom

Love having Mayor Goh at these events.  Here we are with three of the awardees for the evening – Ken Byrum and Marco and Theo Zaninovich.

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And thank you for our students who were helping out driving carts during this very cold evening.  #WeAreBC

BCSterlingSilver Sonya Christian and Student Workers

 

 

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Sterling Silver DesertThe expertly prepared four=course meal and wine pairings were a highlight of the evening. I must say that I tend to avoid desert most evenings, but the desert at Sterling Silver was to die for. Stars of local cuisine such as Chef Thomas Chairez of Bakersfield Country Club, Chef Eric Sabella of Bakersfield College, Chef John Pilling of Trilogy Resort, and Chef Stephanie Caughell-Fisher of Gimmee Some Sugar worked together to plan the evening’s menu, and guests were treated to a delicious feast.

See all the photos by April Massirio at BC’s Smugmug.

BC Choir in Sydney Opera House

If you have not bought your tickets yet for this event, do so now.  Monty Byrom, Lydia Ranger, BC Chamber singers all in one evening — March 10th at 7:30 p.m.  Tickets are $100 each.  Email me now please or call the BC Foundation or purchase tickets directly from the Music Hall of Fame.

 

Tarina Perry was out this Sunday helping Kyle Carter and Lydia Ranger sell tickets to the March 10th concert at churches.

Thank you Trustee Kyle Carter for all your support of this event!

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Black History Month Parade

“Staying Connected to Preserve Our Heritage” was the theme of this year’s Black History Parade in downtown Bakersfield. Bakersfield College was proud to participate and march in the parade last weekend.

Black History Month Parade

Great to see BC’s Cheer Team with Heather Foss and the Drumline with Tim Heasley.

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Staff brought out their children and students.  Here is Endee Grijalva with her daughter Ava and Prof. Ish Kimbrough with his daughter.  Love this selfie with Kimbrough’s two students Destiny and Michael.

 

BC’s Drumline performed at the parade and even took home first place trophy! Congratulations!!!!

See all the pictures at BC’s Smugmug.

Special Day of United Worship

Last Sunday, familiar faces gathered at St. Peter Restoration Community Christian Ministries for a morning of prayer, worship, connecting, and honoring one another. Part of the day was to Honor Dr. Horace Mitchell for all that he’s done for our community. The Master and Mistress of Ceremony were Steve and Kimberly Watkin. 

Steve and Kimberly Watkin

It was a beautiful celebration, with so many friends and supporters of education and BC in our community. Among the friendly faces, I saw Chief Lyle Martin, Brenda Lewis, Ramon Hendrix, Ronda Williams, Dee Slade, and more. Dee shared with me information about icanaffordcollege.com which is a campaign by California Community Colleges to make sure Californians know how affordable community colleges can be.  Dee was a true supporter of Measure J and she is a true supporter of local community colleges.  What a gem for our community.

Sonya Christian and Dee Slade

Sonya Christian and Dee Slade

Sonya Christian at St Peters with Chief Lyle Martin

Dr. Horace Mitchell Shares his Story

BC students and faculty got the opportunity to hear CSUB President Dr. Horace Mitchell reflect on his 50-year career in higher education in the Fireside Room on Tuesday, and to ask him a few questions before he retires in June.

The African-American Initiatives group invited Dr. Mitchell as the last speaker for our Black History Month programming in February, and he talked extensively about how he worked to create safe spaces and a welcoming atmosphere for minority students throughout his career as a university administrator, which included stints at UC Irvine and UC Berkeley before he became the first black president of CSUB, a position which he’s held for the last 14 years.

Dr. Horace Mitchell and BC's Team

Dr. Horace Mitchell and BC’s Leadership

Dr. Mitchell has had the opportunity to shatter many barriers in academia. While studying his Ph.D. In Counseling Psychology at Washington University in St. Louis, Mitchell got his first job in college administration when he was selected to be the associate dean of arts and sciences. During that time, Dr. Mitchell recognized the advantage he had over his peers in understanding the needs that are specific to students of color, and in academia, he saw the ways that traditional psychological studies of the time were blind to structural biases facing people of color. He was persistent in his advocacy for university policies that reduce the difficulties students of color face while promoting more diverse hiring of faculty to reflect the diversity of the student body.

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Attendees listened to Dr. Mitchell

“Throughout my career, it has been about increasing student potential,” Dr. Mitchell said. “We push our students to define what is important to them, then work to see how we can make it a reality.”

Dr. Mitchell went on to become the first African-American vice chancellor and the first non-physician to become a dean of medicine at UC Irvine on his path to becoming the Vice Chancellor of Business and Administrative Services at UC Berkeley. Despite working in the administration at one of the most prestigious universities in the country, Dr. Mitchell was excited to take the president’s job at CSUB because he recognized the opportunity he had to transform the community here and expand CSUB’s diversity outreach.

During Dr. Mitchell’s tenure, CSUB has reformed general education requirements, expanded to Division I athletics, added programs in engineering and agriculture business and a doctoral degree in educational leadership in response to the community’s needs. He’s also expanded partnerships with industry leaders, the Kern High School District, and with BC, helping us add CSUB counselors at the Panorama campus to assist our Renegades in smoothly transferring to become Roadrunners.

Dr. Horace Mitchell and BC Students

Dr. Horace Mitchell and BC Students

During the Q&A session with students, Dr. Mitchell stressed the importance of following the Associate Degree for Transfer programs closely in order to successfully transfer and graduate with a baccalaureate degree in four years.

“Look at what you need, be clear about what you need to do, and stay focused,” Dr. Mitchell said.

KernPromiseEven-042817s Karen Goh Sonya Christian Horace Mitchell

Thank you, Dr. Mitchell for sharing your time with BC’s students. More photos are available at BC’s Smugmug.

Women’s History Month

March is Women’s History Month and Bakersfield College Women’s History and More (WHAM) committee is hosting numerous events. Anita Hill will be lecturing on Reimagining Equality: Inclusive Communities in Post-Obama America on Thursday next week. We will also be showing the film Dolores: Rebel. Activist. Feminist. Mother. followed by discussion with Delores Huerta and some of her adult children on Monday, 3/12. Later in March, there will be a Frida Kahlo painting event and Dr. Lydia Otero will discuss her work as part of our Distinguished Speakers Series. During all of March, Grace Van Dyke Bird Library will feature the display Local & Widespread Female Activism on the main floor with various titles from the library that focus on female actives in California and specifically in Kern County, prepared by Faith Bradham, Reference Librarian. You can see all of the details for the events on BC’s Women’s History Month.

I would like to thank all of the faculty and staff involved in organizing and holding these events on campus including: Erin Miller, Olivia Garcia, Tina Mendoza, Jessica Flores, Faith Gradham, all of the members of WHAM, Nicky Damania, and Jack Hernandez.

Our own Olivia Garcia, History and Journalism faculty, wrote an article published in Wednesday’s Bakersfield Californian. She details what to expect from a few of the events including why we are so fortunate to have activists Anita Hill, Dolores Huerta and Dr. Lydia Otero at BC.  Read “BC celebrates Women’s History Month with series of events.”

Womens History Month - Californian

Cindy’s New Digs

I was at the District for the accreditation subcommittee meeting and popped in to check out Cindy’s new digs. Though we miss her, she’s not far away.

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Cindy Collier in her new space at the District Office.

Bakersfield Lifestyle Magazine

What a treat to see artwork by Duane Anderson, Architecture faculty on the front cover of Bakersfield Lifestyle Magazine. On his website, www.duaneandersonart.com, he says:

Twenty-five years ago my love of painting led me to leave architecture, my chosen profession, to focus on architectural illustration. That proved to be a rewarding decision as I was able to blend my love of painting with my interest in architecture.

Thirteen years ago I had the opportunity to pursue another dream – to teach at my Alma Mater, Bakersfield College. I am presently a tenured Professor of architecture. I teach perspective drawing and presentation graphics. When not in class, I enjoy teaching drawing and watercolor workshops whenever the opportunity presents itself.​

Seen on Twitter

Thank you to Reyna Harvey @ReynaHarveyB, weekend anchor at KBAK for this tweet!

Reyna Harvey

An Evening with Laura Bush

Laura Bush was at the Kern County Fairgrounds last Tuesday in support of the Boys and Girls Club of Kern County. She discussed the importance of literacy and education in advancing opportunities for America’s youth, and in fostering healthy families and communities. I was fortunate to be Jean Fuller‘s guest for this lovely dinner event. See the article “Boys & Girls Clubs of Kern County welcome Laura Bush to Bakersfield” on 23ABC.

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Get Focused, Stay Focused

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Dr. Lauren Wintermeyer

On Monday morning, some of our counselors got the opportunity to learn about a program that teaches students how to prepare for the career of their dreams.

Dr. Lauren A. Wintermeyer Ramirez, a counselor at Ventura College, broke down the components of “Get Focused…Stay Focused!”, an initiative she co-founded to teach high school students and college freshman about how to choose the right career based on their interests, and how to develop the financial literacy, education and job skills necessary to reach that career.

After working closely with English language learners as a high school teacher, Wintermeyer Ramirez was inspired to create “Get Focused…Stay Focused!” when she realized that many of her students were picking their college of choice without thinking about the career opportunities that college could provide. Using guided pathways as a framework, Wintermeyer Ramirez helped develop a course dedicated to career and financial literacy that could be offered during each year of high school for college credit, or as a 3-unit course for college freshmen that would be transferrable to a CSU or UC.

The first part of “Get Focused…Stay Focused!” involves pinpointing three potential careers that each student would be interested in, which involves a series of budget and financial planning exercises to help students identify a career that could support their lifestyle, as well as psychoanalytic frameworks such as Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs or Myers-Briggs Personality Types to clarify students’ strengths.

The financial planning portion of “Get Focused…Stay Focused!” is the largest and most eye-opening part of the curriculum, Wintermeyer Ramirez explained, since many young people have never lived on their own and often aren’t familiar with the basic costs of living.

Once students have the three careers that they’re interested in, Wintermeyer Ramirez has each student visit the Career Center at her college. She then assigns students with contacting someone in the community with one of those careers for job shadowing, in which the student follows that person around for a day to learn the ins and outs of their career. These job shadow assignments have led to internships and job opportunities for several of Wintermeyer Ramirez’s students, she said.

Letty Garza and Marisa Marquez

Letty Garza (left), the Curriculum and Technical Support Advisor for Academic Innovations, LLC, goes over the workbook for the course created by the “Get Focused…Stay Focused!” initiative with BC counselor Marisa Marquez.

By the end of the course, each student in “Get Focused…Stay Focused!” picks one career and creates a ten-year plan outlining how they’ll reach and sustain their goals. They’re able to plan out what classes they’ll need to take in each semester of college, and other skills they’ll need to develop to impress their future employers.

Students can give their ten-year plans to counselors and educational advisors at the end of the course, and examining the aggregate data gathered by students’ ten-year plans can help institutions make decisions about developing new programs of study that match up with their student population’s interests and community needs.

“Get Focused…Stay Focused!” is primarily integral for the first two pillars of guided pathways—helping to clarify the best educational pathway for each student and giving them the information they need to enter that path with the right college courses—but the ten-year plans also give students the motivation they need to stay on the path and do the work required of them to ensure learning. Dr. Davis Jenkins, a senior scholar with the Community College Research Center who wrote the book on guided pathways, is currently looking at “Get Focused…Stay Focused!” as a case study, Wintermeyer Ramirez said.

I’d like to thank Dr. Wintermeyer Ramirez—as well as Curriculum and Technical Support Advisor Letty Garza from Academic Innovations, LLC—for taking the time to teach our counselors about this important program. We’re looking into how we can incorporate elements of this program into our curriculum, and we hope that something similar can be enacted at the high-school level along with our multiple measures and dual enrollment partnerships.

FIELD Institute at BC

The FIELD Institute held a meeting at Bakersfield College in the Levan Center this week to move forward work related to The Career and Technical Education Initiative. I attended the announcement event back in December and shared it in my blog post, “Busy Between Semesters at BC.

Thank you David Villarino for your leadership in pulling together this consortium of colleges and universities. You have been always been committed to providing opportunity and family-wage jobs for the most under-served populations.

Pictured below are leaders and supporters of this initiative including,
David Villarino, FIELD; Dr. Stephen Schoonmaker, President Siskiyous College District
Dr. Horace Mitchell, President CSUB, Liz Rozell, VP Instruction BC, and Dr. Sean Hancock, President of Palo Verde.

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Guided Pathways Workshops

In last week’s blog, I highlighted Julian West’s participation in the Guided Pathways workshops hosted by the CCCCO. This week, both Grace Commiso and Maria Wright presented in the Fresno and Oakland workshops. Grace and Maria highlighted the success that Bakersfield College has experienced through the Guided Pathways efforts. A larger group including Billie Jo Rice, Brent Burton, Erica Menchaca, Janet Fulks, and Eleonora Hicks participated in the Fresno workshop. The presentation included some of the following highlights:

  1. The number of students successfully completing the matriculation steps has increased over the past couple of years. Specifically, the follow-up services have doubled from 30 to 60 percent since the 2014-2015 Academic Year.
  2. Bakersfield College has documented a 34.4 percent growth rate in the last five years.
  3. The number of students successfully completing an associate’s degree has increased by 450 in the last six years.
  4. The number of students successfully completing a certificate has increased by 476 in the last six years.

BC Awards

In addition, Grace and Maria hosted plenary sessions on the development of early steps and the importance of incorporating the student voice through Guided Pathway efforts.

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Beat Goes On at BC!

BC’s Music department was highlighted by Susan Scaffidi in The Bakersfield Californian. See the online article here. 

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Twice a Year Budget Forum

Budget Forum 2018

On Monday, we had our first of two all campus budget forums for 2018. Teresa McAllister, Budget Committee Faculty Co-Chair kicked off the informative session. Other speakers included myself, Don Chrusciel, VP of Finance and Administrative Services, and Steven Holmes, President of Academic Senate. 

The purpose of these biannual all campus  forums  is to give a high-level status report. This second forum is coming up within the following months.  Thank you to Somaly Boles for coordinating the event. 

Teresa McAllister

Teresa McAllister

 

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College Council

On Friday, College Council met to address college-wide issues through a collaborative, integrative approach, promoting greater communication that is accessible to the college campus at large, and to facilitate timely and effective decision-making efforts. The fantastic Lesley Bond presented on Guided Pathways and the Innovation Award Proposals.

Leadership Academy at BC

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Cindy Collier, Liz Rozell, John Means

Special guests on campus Friday were members of this years KCCD Leadership Academy. The day started with a welcome to our guests by KCCD Vice Chancellor, John Means. An overview of the BC campuses, centers, and our programs was given by Deans of Instruction, Rich McCrow and Corny Rodriguez. The next activity was an overview of the Program Mapper led by Jennifer Johnson and Mark Osea. Other activities included learning about BC’s Baccalaureate Program, Industrial Automation led by Manny Fernandez, Guided Pathways by Lesley Bonds, and Dual Enrollment by Anna Laven, Corny Rodriguez, and Cindy Collier, Strong Workforce by Anthony Cordova, and last but not least, a facilities update by Bill Potter. 

The Kern Community College District is committed to supporting professional development that informs employees’ leadership abilities. Hence, the Kern Community College District Leadership Academy works to develop classified, faculty and management employees to prepare for leadership roles at every level of the organization. Through experiential learning opportunities in day-long workshops from September through April each school year, the KCCD Leadership Academy offers employees the opportunity to interact with district executives, KCCD trustees, state-level education leaders and others. Participants generate a greater understanding of our geographically expansive district and build cross-district relationships with co-workers. The program includes workshops held at each of our college campuses, conference travel, and team projects that address goals identified in the KCCD Strategic Plan. .

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Corny Roriguez and Cindy Collier

A full campus tour by cart was offered, thanks to our drivers, Chris Glaser and Wendy Lawson. 

BC Ag Advisory

On Thursday, Eric Garcia spoke at BC’s Ag Advisory.  Eric is Advisory Chair, works at Discoll, and is a Bakersfield College Alum.

 

Ag Advisory (1)

 

Sonya Christian at Sterling Silver Feb 24 2018

 

That’s all for now.  

Until next time.

With much Renegade Pride and Collegiality.  

sonya —
the luckiest and happiest college president ever