A Promise…..College Futures Foundation, Kern Education Leaders Talk Student Success, Community Partnership

 

Hello from San Antonio…..It is February 5, 2016.  A good day to be a Renegade.

BC Team 3 Pathways Institute 1 Feb 5 2016 cropped

Zav Dadabhoy, Lesley Bonds, Nan Gomez-Heitzeberg, Kimberly Bligh, Sonya Christian

 

Bakersfield College is one of the 30 colleges nation-wide selected to be part of the three-year AACC Guided Pathways Initiative.  Long days at the Pathways Institute ….. visionary and detailed work all at once.  There are two other colleges from California as part of the Pathways initiative — Mt SAC and Irvine Valley.  The goal of this initiative is to get students from High School to degree completion in the shortest amount of time while improving the quality of the learning.

The pathways work with AACC is very much aligned with what is happening in Kern County under the leadership of Kristen Barnes, CEO of the Kern Community Foundation (KCF).  With the support of the KCF, BC faculty and staff have been working with other educational leaders in Kern County on the Kern County Access Initiative, to explore issues of college access countywide.  Together, we’ve had ongoing meetings with representatives from virtually every level of education in the county, all aimed at finding opportunities to boost degree completion. Smaller work groups have continued looking for even more avenues for alignment and collaboration as well as ways to bridge cultural disconnects and engage businesses in the educational process.

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With those goals in mind, Bakersfield College hosted a KCF event on campus to introduce College Futures Foundation to the key Kern County educational partners.

College Futures Vice President of Programs Jackie Khor and Senior Program Officer Shawn Whalen kicked off the morning’s activities by sharing what has impressed them most about Kern County.  Jackie called Kern County “a beacon of innovation and entrepreneurial spirit,” while Shawn noted Kern’s “collaborative commitment to our students”.

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Alyse Braaten, Lesley Bonds

We were happy to have KHSD Superintendent Bryon Schaefer, KCSOS leadership Rob Arias, Taft College President Brock McMuray and CSUB Vice President for Enrollment Management Jacqueline Mimms at BC for this event.  All great leaders.  All great partners.

And I always enjoy having the fabulous Vickie Spanos, Director of Instruction for the Kern High School District with us.  Vickie tirelessly moves the student success agenda in Kern County.  She does not shy away from difficult conversation; particularly those that highlight the dismal educational attainment rates in Kern county.  Rather, she uses this information to spur the community to work together and find ways to get students to be college and career ready. Thank you Vickie!

Dr. Jacqueline Mimms offered some encouraging news, sharing that CSUB has seen an increase in transfers from around 650 to over 900 in the past two years, with the vast majority coming from BC.  That’s a promising sign for the bachelor degree attainment rate in Kern County.

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Jackie Khor, Odella Johnson

College Futures expressed appreciation for the work happening here in Kern County, and the level of credibility, trust, and courage among the partners. Indeed, it’s a great time to be at BC! and a great time to be in Kern County.

Thanks so much to Janet Fulks, Lesley Bonds, Steve Watkin, Odella Johnson, Paul Beckworth, Richard McCrow, Gustavo Enriquez, Liz Rozell, Cindy Collier, Henry Covarrubias, Karla Young, and others for your diligence in advancing this important work as a part of the Kern County College Access Team.

We are…..BC!

Engaging in Our Community: MLK Breakfast

BC_Group_Photo

Photo by Karen Goh

Good Morning Bakersfield.  It is Saturday, January 30, 2016…..a good day to be a Renegade.

Martin_Luther_King_-_March_on_Washington

Picture from Wikipedia

We all have our traditions.  One of mine is listening to Martin Luther King‘s I have a Dream speech (about 14 minutes long) on Martin Luther King day–this year on Jan 18th.  Take a moment to listen to the speech and read his words here:

http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/mlkihaveadream.htm

Let us not wallow in the valley of despair, I say to you today, my friends.

And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of “interposition” and “nullification” — one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight; “and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together.”2

This is our hope, and this is the faith that I go back to the South with.

With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith, we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

 

Early in his 1963 speech, Dr. King harkens back to Five score years ago, 1863, and Abraham Lincoln‘s short and powerful Gettysburg address.

Here it is:

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate, we can not consecrate, we can not hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

 

 

In Bakersfield there are several events that occur during Martin Luther King Day. More than 350 people poured into Bakersfield’s MLK Community Center Jan. 18th to honor the life and legacy of Dr. King, and further his message.  Among those assembled, proud BC Renegades gathered to celebrate with local community leaders, and to offer support in striving for equity and justice.

The focus of the 10th annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Award Breakfast was “enriching our millennium with future foot soldiers.”  And that desire to stand shoulder to shoulder and further a noble cause was in full display during this wonderful event.

Fitzgerald Graves

Marcus Duarte Smith and Fitzgerald Graves. Photo by Karen Goh

Following Mayor Harvey Hall’s opening proclamation, a unified rendition of the National Black Anthem and an incredible solo performance, Senior Pastor Reverend Dr. Vincent Karl Jones of the historic  People’s Missionary Baptist Church of Bakersfield addressed the audience in a thought-provoking and inspiring speech.

Rev. Jones led the group to first grapple with the challenging political landscape that exists for many today, and then to reconcile those challenges with a call to action.  The solution to the problems of today, he said, is oneness.  With unity, communication, and love, Rev. Jones believes that even the most divisive of issues can resolve to a place of peace and understanding.

In closing, Rev. Jones refocused on Dr. King’s legacy of action and service.  “It is our challenge,” Rev. Jones reminded the crowd, “to lead this nation beyond picking up trash in the community, but to a place where we stop trashing our community.”  He exited the stage to a standing ovation and roaring applause.

Clarence Stephens

Clarence Stephens, Photo by Karen Goh

The planning committee recognized several local community leaders for the work they do in the spirit of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Multiple awardees are BC alumni, and we are fortunate to call awardee Clarence Stephens, a volunteer Assistant Coach for the BC women’s basketball team, one of our own!  Clarence was recognized for his support of young athletes in the community.

 

Martin Luther King concluded his speech in the following way:

And this will be the day — this will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with new meaning:

My country ’tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing.

Land where my fathers died, land of the Pilgrim’s pride,

From every mountainside, let freedom ring!

 

And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true.

And so let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire.

Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York.

Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania.

Let freedom ring from the snow-capped Rockies of Colorado.

Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California.

 

But not only that:

Let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia.

Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee.

Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi.

From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

 

And when this happens, and when we allow freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual:

Free at last! Free at last!

                Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!

I am proud of our work at Bakersfield College, working with the community of Bakersfield, in our own way, letting freedom ring from Panorama Bluffs, through education and our work together, for we are speeding that day called for in Dr. King’s stirring words.

Let me wrap up with a Youtube video of My County Tis of Thee

 

 

Spring 2016 Opening Day: The Force is With…BC

Good morning Bakersfield!  It is Saturday, January 23, 2016…..a good day to be a Renegade.

It’s been a wild week here at BC.  Of course, every time we start a new semester and welcome thousands of ready-to-roar Renegades back to campus, it’s a time of excitement, activity and barely contained chaos.  We have approximately 7% more Full-Time Equivalent Students this spring compared to spring last year.  It is a good time to be at BC!

Almost a month ago, on December 27th I did a blog on the new Star Wars movie, The Force Awakens http://bcpresidentblog.com/2015/12/27/a-holiday-blog/.  

That led to a series of texts to Manny De Los Santos and Francis Mayer followed by phone calls to the creative team. 

 

Did you spot the Sriracha?

So, the Creative Team made it all happen as fluidly as J.J. Abrams himself.  From an idea fleshed out by Shannon Musser, Dylan Wang and Francis Meyer, BC’s videographer extraordinaire Manny de Los Santos, with his newly acquired drone, shot an amazing 3-minute short film to kick off Opening Day, bringing the entire world of Star Wars to the Bakersfield College campus.

Watch the Millennium Falcon take off and circle over 1801 Panorama Drive, the Imperial stormtroopers and R2-D2 strolling around campus, and the roar of Zav Dadabhoy aka Wookiee Chewbacca.

 

Put all that together — and you’ve got Spring Opening Day 2016.  Looking out at the collected BC family in the Simonsen Performing Arts Center theater last week made it one of the best semester kickoffs we could have imagined.  I received several emails appreciative of Opening Day.  Here is one from Gayle Richardson or should I say Darth Richardson:

What an amazing start of a new semester! This is the start of my 69th semester at BC and I am a proud Renegade as I am certain you must know.

Kudos to those who magnificently presented the best Opening Day I have ever seen!  I am hoping the live stream will be saved to a land not so far away in order for faculty to take bits and pieces to energize students.  Big Smile!

Many years ago I was named “Darth Richardson” by students in 4 consecutive classes.  It is a story, Sonya, that I would love to share with you in person.

As a new Star Wars fan, I can’t tell you how much fun it was to sit in Han Solo’s captain’s chair and fly the ship that made the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs with my incredible crew — even if it was all just movie magic shot in our BC studio!  But truly, all the work we have accomplished in such a short period of time is magic indeed.

Our Star Wars theme carried over as members of the BC team talked about some the amazing accomplishments we’ve achieved together in recent months.  Here are the three videos:

Video 1:

 

Video 2:

 

Video 3:

 

Putting all the fun of droids and Jedis and Death Stars aside, Spring 2016 Opening Day also stands out for another important reason: the soft launch of The Renegade Promise.  Mark your calendars, on April 29th, BC led by our SGA President Clayton Fowler will be ready to make the Renegade Promise officially to our community.

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SGA Prez Clayton Fowler leading the Renegade Promise Team at Spring 2016 Opening Day

Students come to BC to expand their educational opportunities and turn that new-found knowledge toward a broader, more lucrative employment future. What often goes without saying is that our students and their families want the process to happen YESTERDAY and as President Fowler stated on Opening Day, he does not want to spend 6 years at BC to get a doctorate.

Well, we feel like it’s time to SAY it — we want you to move on too!  As much as we love each and every BC student, Bakersfield College is committed to fulfilling the new Renegade Promise — assuring that every BC student attains their educational goals, graduates, or transfers as quickly as possible.  All this without compromising the quality of learning that is our hallmark….the development of creativity, critical thinking and problem solving.

As a collective, the BC family is making the Renegade Promise a pledge to position students on a path to reach graduation or transfer requirements within our promised 60-credit window.  Can this be done in two years?  Of course this could happen if the responsibility is shared by BC and the student.  BC by ensuring that the courses are available with the necessary academic support and the student committing to 15 credits per term.  Now, if the student instead chooses to take 12 or 9 credits per term (remember, most of BC’s students work), it will mean the extension of the timeline for 60 credits from 2 years to perhaps three.  Still a huge improvement. Now, should this “shared responsibility” extend to the community as well. Absolutely!  The community has done an incredible job supporting education though providing internships and scholarships to help our students prepare for the workforce and quickly make progress on their educational pathways.

The Renegade Promise is a simple pledge…yet not always as simple to pull off as you may believe.  Any number of delays, both personal and scholastic, can push a student off-course.  Under the Renegade Promise, we’re all taking an active role in trying to foresee those delays for each student and chart pathways around those obstacles.

Top to bottom, Spring 2016 Opening Day was a tremendous day.  Huge thank yous go out to several people, including my fellow presenters — SGA President Clayton Fowler, BC Campus Chair Ed Borgens, CSEA President Tina Johnson, Management Association President Sue Vaughn, Academic Senate President Steve Holmes.

Also major thanks to the ushers, the logistics team and M&O team members who made the day happen so seamlessly!  Francis it was such a treat to work with you.  You have talent!  and thank you to the fabulous red, my Obi-Wan Kenobi, R2D2, and Yoda–Princess Jennifer.

 

 

To wrap up, I’d like to share my concluding remarks from Spring 2016 Opening Day:

Colleagues, we’re all instrumental in keeping Bakersfield College at the vanguard of local intellectual, cultural and economic vitality.  As we continue to be accountable, and as we move the dial on student success, let us not forget that what makes life wonderful, rich and expansive is the little somethings that are not rational. It is the pure lightness that fills our hearts when we see the mountains at the far edges of the valley when the air is clear.  Or the vibrations we feel when our drumline students perform in the gym. It is the excited text from Cindy Collier after the Deputy Sector Navigators visited our CTE program and her sense of pride in our faculty.  Or what I experienced watching Liz Rozell at a breakfast keynote speaking about her life.  It is hearing Nan talk about how we got the colors on a building wrong, or lamenting that the beautiful oleander bushes should not be trimmed down to resemble miniature poodles.  Or noticing that my mentee from Shafter high who was stuck to me through the whole fall term is now a promising professional.  It is the pride of Chef Sabella and team as they prepare a wonderful meal.

This is the essence of who we are as “humans in community.” This is the essence of BC.   We impact each other in all we do.  When we create the conditions to make our days rich with little somethings, we create the best environment for ourselves, for our colleagues, and for our students.  This is the essence of our work to be accountable; but “little somethings” are the fundamentals of excellence.

I received an email from Matt Garrett on November 15, 2015.  He wrote:

 

In 1945 Grace Bird’s message to the student body began by claiming the tune “You can be Better Than You Are” as the school theme song, and explained:

“Your College–your faculty and your student leaders–bring you opportunities to develop skills and enrich understanding. We ask you to bring your minds and your hearts. ‘In preference lies the root and essence of all excellence.’ Among the multitude of activities opened to you during the year, chose wisely.” –Grace Bird

 

Matt added that Grace Bird was quoting George Santayana’s essay “Value Irrational” found in his book titled “Little Essays” (1921), which prompted me to read this little gem.  All three pages of it.

 

Here is an excerpt from the final paragraph that for me captures the little somethings that define our lives because they come from a deeper place of being:

Values spring from the immediate and inexplicable reaction of vital impulse, and from the irrational part of our nature. The rational part is by its essence relative; it leads us from data to conclusions, or from parts to wholes; it never furnishes the data with which it works. If any preference or precept were declared to be ultimate and primitive, it would thereby be declared to be irrational …

 

So colleagues, here’s to Spring 2016.  A term of great rationality…. a term of data, and moving the dial, …… all this sprinkled with a great deal of irrationality and the little somethings that differentiate BC from the rest.

The Force is with…..BC!

We are….BC!

Check out the 12-minute photo roll video that Shannon put together as everyone was gathering in the indoor theater for Opening Day

BC Delano’s Coffee with a Cop: Bringing Police and Community Together

Right before opening day Jan 15 2016

Jennifer Marden, Dylan Wang, Sonya Christian, Shannon Musser, Francis Mayer. Opening Day. Jan 15, 2016

Good morning Bakersfield.  It is January 16, 2016.

We have launched another great semester at BC!  Will blog about Opening Day next weekend after all the photos and videos come in.  So make sure you tune in.

I’m recalling Spring 2015 when our opening day was at the Delano campus.  It was just a wonderful event.  Thank you Delano for the big white tent, the warm heaters and the amazing food.  We also had two incredible leaders join us: Lynda Resnick and Guardie Banister.  Thank you Trustee Romeo Agbalog for attending.  Check out the photos gallery at

https://www.bakersfieldcollege.edu/president/spring-2015-opening-day

Speaking of Delano, let me showcase a recent event where our campus partnered with the Delano Police Department.

This is a difficult time to be a police officer.  Regardless of where you stand on many of the complex issues and events that have pushed policing into the forefront of American conversation in recent months, it’s impossible not to have sympathy for the overwhelming majority of the men and women who serve and protect.  They perform a vital service in an increasingly hostile and dangerous environment with a rapidly dwindling margin of error.

SAM_7441With law enforcement so under the microscope these days, the best way I can imagine to help soothe anger or distrust between police and their community is also the simplest — basic one-on-one communication.  If you can help remove the fear, anxiety, power divide and amplified emotions that can happen when a cop and a community member interact, you’re really just left with two people talking as equals, the best grounds possible for mutual understanding and respect.

SAM_7445So it should come as no surprise that I was thrilled with the “Coffee with a Cop” event held on BC’s Delano campus a few weeks ago.

Coordinated between Delano Police, BC’s Rural Initiatives Program Manager Gustavo Enriquez and Delano campus Director Rich McCrow, Coffee with a Cop was just what it sounds like — a chance for BC Delano students and staff to grab a cup of coffee and a donut and speak casually with a handful of engaged, open and community-minded Delano police officers.

There were no speeches or big presentations and nothing by way of a structured agenda.  For two hours, students and faculty simply streamed into the campus’ main lobby area, enjoyed a morning pick-me-up and got a chance to meet and really talk with four of Delano Police’s finest in a casual, informal setting.

SAM_7432Attendance was great and everyone involved said they were very appreciative for the chance to just get together, hang out and talk on a personal level to these fine young men.

We all know that coffee and conversation isn’t by itself a quick fix for concerns that people may have. But any single step, even a modest one like Coffee with a Cop, is progress toward building trust. Toward building community.

A huge thank you to Delano Police Chief Mark DeRosia and his fine cadre of officers as well as Gustavo and Rich for pulling this fantastic event together! Delano Rocks! The Fore is with…BC!

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Our community partners and CTE programs

Jess Nieto and Sonya Christian Jan 9 2016

Sonya Christian with Jess Nieto Jan 9, 2016

I got back home late on Friday (Jan 8th) night after spending almost an entire week in Sacramento at the Accreditation Commission meeting.  Was happy to wake up in my own bed and start the day slowly and quietly with a cup of coffee and a bagel and this blog post.  Headed out to my usual 9:30 a.m. exercise class on Saturday morning and when I stepped out for a drink of water, I heard someone call out to me….I turned to see Jess Nieto, one of many community members who care so much for this community.  It was wonderful hearing Mr. Nieto talk about his work in Bakersfield as well as Bakersfield College.  He spoke with enthusiasm about how he believed that the leaders in our community should be invited to mentor our students.  He also spoke very highly of John Collins, former president of Bakersfield College.  And I completely agree with him on both counts.

Michael Carley

Michael Carley with Kati Haycock April 3 2014.

Michael Carley, our Institutional Researcher from Porterville College sent me this link to the Californian’s story about the passing of a great Renegade, Red Simpson who pioneered the Bakersfield Sound http://tinyurl.com/huq56op.  Thank you Michael for sending this my way.  I did tweet the link and thought I would include it in my blog as well.  Your email caused me to youtube some old country music songs which my grandpa Arthur used to play when I was growing up.  

Today, I also came across this great poster of Amgen that our local community brought to Bakersfield. For those of you who may not be familiar with Amgen Tour of California, this is an international  professional cycling race started in California in 2006.

Jay Rosenlieb worked with a team that brought Amgen to Bakersfield in 2010 and again in 2012.  Kerry Ryan, owner of Action Sports, was part of the core group that made this event possible.  At the Board of Trustees meeting that Rosenlieb and Ryan attended, Jay described Kerry as being key to pulling off the event– “Without his knowledge of professional cycling and connections to the local cycling community, this event would not have been possible.”  The third member of the core team was Jim Cordle, a CPA, who acted as the business manager. It was a great team and during the years that they were in operation they were able to grant about $70,000 back to the community and BC was a recipient of their generosity. Jay, could BC partner with you and your team again to bring this magical moment back to Bakersfield?

Talking about the community and partnerships, what comes to mind are the Career Technical Education (CTE) programs at BC.  Each and every CTE program has an advisory committee comprised of individuals from business and industry.  Let me share with you some pieces of information that I received from Cindy Collier and Liz Rozell.

DSC00065Not long ago we were happy to welcome to campus members of the Central/Mother Lode Regional Consortium and our area Deputy Sector Navigators (DSN), both to see our Career Technical Education (CTE) coursework firsthand, as well as to talk with us about how that training can better serve the employment demands of regional industries.

The Central/Mother Lode Regional Consortium (CRC) is a collaboration of community college faculty and staff with regional workforce and economic development organizations that serve the Central and Mother Lode region. The CRC supports regional economic growth by facilitating development of college training and educational programs to meet the needs of regional businesses and industries.

Deputy Sector Navigators convene advisory groups in each of the region’s primary industry sectors; provide outreach and partnership support to the community colleges; facilitate the endorsement of new credit Career Technical Education programs; and serve as a connection between local colleges and business.

DSC00075Obviously, their input not only channels valuable communication between colleges like BC and the area’s largest job providers, but more importantly, it makes sure our CTE programs are helping students become as employable as possible the minute they graduate with their degree.

It was a large group of dedicated individuals, including Karri Hammerstrom, Regional Chair; Nora Seronello, Center of Excellence – Central Valley region; Valerie Fisher (Health); Lorinda Forrest (Small Business); Shelley Attix (Retail/Hospitality); Jeanette Benson (Global trade and logistics); Dennis Mohle (ICT/Digital Media); Gurminder Sangha (Advanced Manufacturing); Bob Hawkes (Regional SB 1070 Director); and David Teasdale (Prop. 39 Dir., Energy and Efficiency).

After introductions, our BC CTE representatives talked about their programs and courses, highlighting changes they’ve made to curriculum in response to industry needs and labor market changes, including new digital media, commercial music, automotive, public health sciences, paramedic and baccalaureate programs.  They also highlighted the collaborative work going on with the CCPT1/CCPT2 and C6 grants and the growth in Kern County’s rural communities, especially highlighted in the ongoing growth and development of BC’s welding, agriculture and health programs.

In addition, job development specialist Stephanie Baltazar and faculty shared information regarding all the varied internships, job placement programs, career connection events and “soft” skills (resume development, interview techniques, etc.) that they are providing students.

BC’s Health Care group highlighted their phenomenal employment rates of 95% or greater.

Meanwhile, auto and welding faculty shared that most of their students had jobs before they completed the programs.

IMG_9372Right now, the Bakersfield College Automotive Technology program provides a wide range of training for automotive technicians with an average of 250 students each year participating in the program. Through the guidance and feedback of an active Automotive Advisory Committee, the program serves the community well by responding to the increasing needs of industries in Kern County.

The newest Automotive Technology faculty member Andrew Haney gave the visiting CRC group a guided tour of Vic Posey’s engine repair and machining, electrical, and smog testing labs. Andrew and Vic, along with their colleagues Dan Johnson and Justin Flint, showed how they provide a dynamic, hands-on learning environment preparing students for employment as automotive technicians, smog test technicians, engine repair technicians, engine machinists, transmission repair technicians, alignment specialists, suspension specialists, brake system specialists, tire service technicians, air conditioning technicians, electrical diagnostic specialists, onsite/field repair technicians, heavy duty equipment technicians, service writers and consultants, parts sales persons and more.

We’re so proud of BC’s automotive program, a true standout among such programs in the state and a shining positive example of the college’s commitment to student success.  The auto dealerships in Bakersfield have been just wonderful in supporting our program.  Thank you!

As for BC’s welding program, it’s strategically designed to easily adapt to the economic fluctuations of local industry and increased student support needs.  Student success is enhanced with online instruction, embedded remedial skills, innovative technology, and engaged faculty, who continuously seek improvement via professional development.

Welding faculty member Josh Ralls provided an excellent overview of the program to our visiting DSNs, briefly describing the stackable organization of the curriculum.  In 2014-2015, the welding program experienced a 9% growth increase to 364 students.  This was primarily due to an expansion of the program to the Delano campus, facilitated by Professor Mike Komin in partnership with the Delano Joint Union High School District.  Additional growth is expected through faculty participation in the California Career Pathways Trust grant initiative to develop a successful dual enrollment program with our local and rural high schools.

 

IMG_9678We also can’t forget Electronics Technology, one of the fastest growing programs in the Engineering and Industrial Technology Department.  Currently, ET is at an incredible 32% growth in headcount during the last academic year.

The Electronics Technology program at Bakersfield College provides electronics training for a wide variety of technicians, including automation, instrumentation, consumer electronics, radio/telecommunications, installation and electronic systems fabrication.  In addition, Electronics Technology is the lower division feeder program to Bakersfield College’s new Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Automation, to begin in Fall 2016.

DSN guests were given a tour of the Computer Integrated Manufacturing lab, where they learned more about BC’s innovative industrial automation program of study within the Electronics Technology program. Electronics faculty member Manny Fernandez provided an overview of this rigorous and technically challenging program and related employment opportunities within the various industry sectors utilizing industrial automation and electronics preparation.

These are just some of the highlights from the DSN visit, which also included presentations from other notable BC programs, including FACE (Leah Carter and Corny Rodriguez), Culinary (Suzanne Durst and Alex Gomez), Child Development (Danell Ward, Jo’L Jackson and Bernadette Towns), Agriculture (Lindsay Ono and Corny Rodriguez), Horticulture (Lindsay Ono), Plant Science, Performing Arts (John Gerhold and Manny Mourtzanos), Commercial Music (Josh Ottum), Digital Art (Kris Stallworth and David Koeth), Nursing/Allied Health (Jennifer Johnson) and Rad Tech (Nancy Perkins).

A big thank you to our gracious DSN’s, to the wonderful CTE faculty members who took the time to present their stellar educational work and to Cindy Collier and Liz Rozell for the exceptional information they provided to me on  a wonderful visit and invaluable day.

Check out my Nov 30, 2013 blog on Allied Health and CTE Dean Cindy Collier:

http://bcpresidentblog.com/2013/11/30/bc-featured-collier-talks-health-care-needs-with-assembly-committee/

Also check out my April 29, 2014 blog on Liz Rozell, Dean, Engineering and Industrial Technology which includes our new baccalaureate program in Industrial Automation:

http://bcpresidentblog.com/2014/04/29/liz-rozell-presented-teaching-award/

 

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