Tag Archives: student success

BC students at Fresno State

2014 Trip to Fresno State

2014 Trip to Fresno State

In an effort to encourage and emphasize transfer, the EOP&S/CARE/CalWORKs programs had the opportunity to attend a university excursion to Fresno State University. Improving college awareness and access through university exposure is an essential part of the student success process, so, our team took students to Fresno State so they could fully understand the transfer process and increase their own self-confidence in their ability to transfer.

Many of the participants in Bakersfield College’s EOP&S, CARE, and CalWORKs programs have never ventured out of Kern County or visited a university campus: such is the plight of most first generation, low-income students.

This campus outing was a HUGE success which allowed 35 of our students to participate in a campus tour. In addition, participants were able to develop long-lasting friendships with one another, and preview the best of what Fresno State had to offer. As confirmed by student feedback, our students were genuinely enthusiastic about having the opportunity to visit Fresno State. The event was as eye opening experience which impressed upon our students that education and transfer are POSSIBLE.

Among the many successful components of the university excursion was the following:

  1. Exciting campus tour by well-organized and enthusiastic tour guides
  2. Meaningful and pertinent information obtained about every department and major
  3. Outstanding student panel organized by the Fresno State EOP Program
  4. Amazing lunch buffet at the Fresno State Dining Hall
  5. Incredible team-bonding activities to foster unity and togetherness amongst the students
  6. Excellent educational showings at the Downing Planetarium

But, enough from me. What did students have to say about the trip to Fresno State?

The field trip was an Awesome experience! I got to see what a big university like Fresno State really felt like. I had so much fun I felt like a little kid again as we had the opportunity to travel as group and shown the main attractions of the campus. It definitely pushed and motivated me to transfer to the university level. Thanks to the university trip I have a better perspective on the transfer process. ~Jesus Salazar

This trip was not only fun but it was also educational and insightful. We got a great tour of the campus and learned so much about Fresno State and the best part about the trip was Manuel cracking us all up. Through team bonding activities we all got to bond together and the opportunity to make new friends and relationships. Seeing how wonderful the campus was definitely motivated me to actually apply to it as well. Especially, when our tour guide told us that “English majors can go teach at any part of the world” if they get their B.A. from Fresno. I am an English major so this was like music to my ears. Overall, I had a great time and the Planetarium show at the end made me realize that astronomy is not as horrible of subject that I always made it out to be. I hope that next semester we visit a UC campus and see what they have to offer, especially since that is my ultimate goal. ~ Roshelle Czar 

Going to Fresno State was a memorable and exciting experience. I have never been to a university before. I had the chance to get an insightful tour of their campus, try their delicious food (lunch was amazing), and make new friends. If you were to make another trip like this, I’d definitely go. ~Stacy Vega 

The trip to CSU Fresno was a fantastic day for me! The whole tour was interesting and I really fell in love with the campus. I know it would have been more exciting if my friends came along!!! Hopefully we can go to another great campus soon. Overall, I had a great time! ~ Lliemeles Ortega 

Students Love Our Faculty and Staff – 3rd Edition

I was chairing an accreditation visit last week and was gone from campus most of the time.  So coming back on friday and then spending the Super Pi day in my office and the baseball game just made me appreciate BC so much and the colleagues I work with who are so dedicated to students and the college.  But before I get to the story of my BC colleagues let me pause for a moment on Super Pi Day–March 14, 2015 or 3-14-15 which coincides with the first few digits of pi 3.1415. Pi is the symbol used in math to represent the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter which is about 3.1415926….. check out http://www.piday.org/million/.  So in my household we paused for a moment yesterday at 9:26 a.m. to celebrate pi and again at 9:26 p.m. to celebrate 3-14-15@9:26.

Jeff Chudy watching a baseball game on March 14 2015

Head football coach Jeff Chudy out on Saturday afternoon to support baseball

ann tatum at B&N on March 15 2015

Prof. Ann Tatum at Barnes and Nobles on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. available to her students for weekend support














We won the baseball game against College of the Canyons (yeah!) and had both community folks and BC folks out there to support our students.  Francis Mayer was fabulous announcing the game and AD Sandi Taylor was there making sure that everything was done right.  Faculty from other disciplines came to support students, baseball players who are in their classes–Pam Boyles, Ann Tatum, Janet Tarjan, Jeff Chudy……. just to name a few.

Walking over to the baseball game on this glorious Saturday afternoon, I bumped into Janet Tarjan who was on campus for study sessions for students in her calculus and precalculus classes.  Later in the evening, I was at Barnes and Noble and ran into Ann Tatum available to work with her students. Again on a Saturday.  Just wonderful!

Matthew Garrett

Prof. Matthew Garrett

I do have the best job in the whole wide world–being president of an amazing organization because of the dedicated and passionate folks who work here.  I wanted to take a quick moment to share an email chock full of good things sent by Bakersfield College History professor Matthew Garrett (thank you matt!) to a few of his faculty colleagues. The email recounts a student discussion about class selection, and weighs in on the most important detail to students – what is the professor like. Here is Dr. Garrett’s email to Sung Soo Park, Robert Martinez, Kimberly Chin, and Michael McNellis.

Professors Park, Martinez, Chin, and McNellis,

As is common following the opening of next semester’s registration, students in one of my classes were discussing what courses to take next semester. To my surprise, instead of the typical complaints about who to avoid, half a dozen students stayed after class to boast about the teachers who most inspired them (and encourage others to take their classes). They said these teachers were so passionate and/or so insightful that it “blew my mind” and changed their lives; they went on and on with great detail about classroom management and course content and presentation, etc  I’ve heard individual compliments like these before, but the accolades continued to pour about about these few teachers and went on for some fifteen minutes  I thought you should know how positive an effect you have had on the lives of students here. Thanks for being you.


Who are these amazing professors? See below photos I could get from the web!

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Outreach and Arvin High School

IMG_1699I’ve made no secret of the fact that outreach is essential to Bakersfield College taking information on the importance of higher education into the various communities we serve. I know, as do others around Kern County, that many times, our residents don’t think college is an option – that going to work is their only path following high school.

After screening the movie First Generation last year, we came to understand exactly how important outreach is to making higher education an option for our community. Featuring a Bakersfield College student, the movie showed exactly what high school students go through as they plan the rest of their lives.

Our outreach team has been working hard in the community, at events and high schools, to take information about BC to potential students. I was able to accompany the team, led by Steve Watkin, to a visit to Arvin High School.

If you aren’t from the area, let me tell you a bit about Arvin. This is a small community southeast of Bakersfield. Primarily Hispanic, these residents support the agriculture industry in Kern County. It is a community with the area’s lowest college-going rate, lowest rate of college degrees, lowest unemployment, and lowest household income. We all know that education can change these factors – particularly the unemployment and household income – but when forced to choose between financially supporting the family and going to school, the immediate income benefit outweighs the future earnings potential education makes possible.

Steve and his team are doing a phenomenal job of systematically visiting the high schools in Bakersfield College’s service area. There are more than 30 high schools feeding to Bakersfield College, and Arvin High School supports the communities of Arvin and Lamont.

As I walked into the Library at Arvin High School, I was pleased to see about 100 students listening to one of our counselors, Alex, talk about options at Bakersfield College. Through our multiple measures efforts, a number of these students were already placed in appropriate coursework and has completed their educational plans! I can only imaging how much our student success and indicators will improve as we continue our outreach into high schools.

Steve talks so much about how important it is to bring opportunity into the high schools – to help students where they are comfortable so they can be successful transitioning to college work. I am so proud of the work we are doing to help students be college ready!

I also was able to talk to Cynthia Zamora, a senior at Arvin High School, who will be coming to BC in the fall. Let’s enjoy Cynthia.

Delano: Spring Tutoring Conference


Oliver Rosales

Found this post in my draft folder.  So let’s look at a Delano Campus activity last spring.

Delano Campus’ 2014 Spring Tutoring Conference kicked off with breakfast from Jennie’s Café and a table-top discussion of personal tutoring experiences. After introductions, Dr. Oliver Rosales spoke to the students about what he sees as an invaluable service, peer tutoring. He also shared his personal experiences of working as a tutor, and he explained what he feels the tutors should focus on when tutoring his history students. Finally, Dr. Rosales took questions from the tutors.

Laura Kemph gave a presentation in which she shared with tutors how to change the settings in their BC email so that they could use their personal email account. Then Monica Huyck, the Tutor Coordinator, lead a teamwork activity.

After a break, and a group photo shoot, Trina Goree led the group in a diversity activity. This was followed by a presentation from Raji Rivera and Jake Galo, both BC graduates who are now attending CSUB. They spoke to the tutors about their experiences since transferring, gave advice, and answered questions.

Finally, Jesus Jimenez and Jasmine Gonzalez led the group in creating a poster made up of advice from tutors to future tutors as well as a pledge to help students in the future by lending a hand!

Delano, u rock!

Students Love our Faculty and Staff!

I am always excited when I receive an email from a student celebrating our faculty and staff here at BC.

I wanted to share a few more of the good notes I’ve received lately.


sue granger with shohreh Rahman

Sue Granger with Shohreh Rahman

Sue Granger

Dear Ms. Granger,

In case you don’t remember me my name is Ian Stevenson and you helped me earlier in the semester when I couldn’t make it in to the PHIL B9 class I had registered for. You were instrumental in helping to get me opportunity after opportunity to try and keep the doors open for me. If I had not gotten in to the online ENGL 1600 late start class that you recommended, I would be waiting another year in Bakersfield to take one class to qualify me to apply at UC schools. Well Ms. Granger, I got into that online class and I am doing great. I was accepted to UCSB, UC Davis, and on April 25th i was accepted to the school of my dreams: UC Berkeley. It is largely because of you that I am able to even enjoy such an achievement. I absolutely cannot put into words my gratitude and only have to say that it is great educators like yourself who go the extra mile for their students to make a world of difference. Thank you for being there for me when I needed it the most. I will never forget your help and kindness.


Ian Gene Stevenson


Liz Rozell 3

Liz Rozell

Liz Rozell


I know it’s been a long time since we last spoke, but I wanted to give you an update on my life and to thank you.

In May, I finally graduated from The University of Utah, with a BS in Materials Science and Engineering, as the third generation in my family to graduate from the U.  As you can see from my email signature, I am now a process engineer for the ceramics company at which I have been a co-op for the past 2 years.

As cliché as this may sound, I would to say thank you for believing in me, even when I thought my academic goals had been lost.

You said to me  one day “ Liz, you’re tough as nails”. And that has stuck with me. On the days that felt especially hard, I would remind myself that Liz Rozell, the toughest lady I know, thinks I am as  tough as nails.

I would have preferred to tell you this in person, but I’m not sure when I’ll be back in Bakersfield.

Thank you for everything you have taught me, inside the classroom and out,

From one nail to the other, keep being tough!


Liz Smith

Elizabeth Smith

Process Engineer


Robert Boyles

Robert Boyles

Robert Boyles

To Bakersfield College President Sonya Christian: Hello my name is Martin Martinez, a returning student at Bakersfield College. I would like to commend the teaching abilities and give special recognition and thanks to my physical education instructor, Robert Boyles for all that he has done. I am currently attending his summer co-ed course in physical education, which will be ending on 08/07/14. The class is a pass or fail, worth 1 unit in credit, but worth so much more to me. Instructor Boyles made the class fun, challenging, and interesting, while providing both mental and physical positive results. If I could attend the same class a second time, as opposed to joining a private gym, I would. What I have gained physically from the course is the loss of body weight and fat, an increase in endurance, along with a reduction in core size. All the running and cardio we were exposed to throughout the course is responsible for lowering my heart pulse and increasing my levels of energy. I never missed a day of class, and participated in every drill and exercise, always having an open mind, and eager to face the next challenge Mr. Boyles would present. As a result, I feel stronger mentally and physically, all due to the teachings of Instructor Boyles. He provided the class with exercises that private trainers or gyms should be utilizing but do not. A great deal of the exercises the instructor presented to the class was good old fashioned drills that reminded me of my days in elementary school. Although these drills required work and effort, they would always put a smile on my face and make me laugh.  I also learned a great deal of field exercises, which assisted my core and leg muscles, which help rid of fat and assisted in building strength, balance, endurance, and flexibility. I’m a health conscience individual and being and staying in shape means a great deal to me. It’s no secret that by exercising you decrease the risk of unnecessary illness or disease, and increase the quality of life and lengthen your life span. Being in shape also increases your confidence and makes you a better student in the classroom, and just makes life more pleasant altogether. It takes a distinctive person to be a responsible effective leader and instructor like Robert Boyles. He created an atmosphere of unity and friendship, regardless of being indoors or outdoors, and was always available to assist student with answer to their questions. Being in his role requires patience, understanding, creativity, compassion, passion, and the ability to adapt to a wide range of personalities, and levels of fitness. Instructor Boyles has excellent people skills, and has a personality that is approachable regardless of whom you are. I have already begun to incorporate the workouts I have been exposed to, into my own training, and I will continue utilizing these training methods to maintain my health. Thank you Instructor Boyles for all of your efforts, for being a great coach and trainer, for inspiring and pushing students to achieve a higher standard of physical fitness and knowledge. I took the time to type this letter, because a simple thank you did not seem adequate enough for his contributions and dedication to the students. I can only pray that my instructor gets the fair recognition and praise he deserves for being passionate about his role as a physical education trainer.

Martin Martinez