Making Fuel From Waste
College Interns Help Produce Renewable Energy
Hands-on Approach and a Rigorous Program Open the Door to Nursing
Popular Rodeo Program Attracts A New Generation
See Our 2013-14 Annual Report
Copyright 2014 by West Hills Community College District. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission prohibited. WEST HILLS MAGAZINE, Fall 2014, Number 3, is published Winter, Spring and Summer/Fall by the Office of Marketing and Public Information, WHCCD. Contact us by mail at the address below, or, by phone or email at: West Hills CCD Marketing Office 9900 Cody St. Coalinga, CA 93210 (559) 934-2132 email@example.com
Advisory Board Frank Gornick Chancellor, WHCCD Carole Goldsmith President, WHCC Don Warkentin President, WHCL
board of trustees Mark McKean, President, Area 5 Nina Oxborrow, Area 1 Steve Cantu, Area 6 Edna Ivans, Area 3 Jeff Levinson, Area 7 Jack Minnite, Area 2 Len Falter, Area 4
EDITOR Tom Wixon Director of Marketing
EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Amy Kessler
WEBMASTER Carlos Posadas
PHOTOGRAPHY Dennis Gallegos, Kelly Peterson Amy Kessler, Tom Wixon
GRAPHIC DESIGN Merili Loucks, Kristi Carlson
Faculty, Staff Make Every Day Special for Our Students
It is hard to believe that this is our third magazine, in which we continue to showcase our many accomplishments as well as the results of some of our initiatives. Reading through the pages of our publication and looking at some of the statistics, one cannot help but feel great satisfaction at the way in which our faculty and staff make every day special for our students. The number of degrees and certificates awarded each year continues to increase, demonstrating that we are assisting students with achieving their educational goals. On a daily basis our faculty is continually involved in honing their craft of teaching, using technology in ways that were not possible 10 years ago. In every facet of our mission, our staff is engaged in and focused on “the relentless pursuit of student success.” In addition to several stories on how our students are learning and excelling, this issue brings you 15 pages devoted to our annual report, our yearly opportunity to both show and tell readers about our key initiatives in the academic year that ended June 30. There is a similar report from the West Hills Community College Foundation, which raises funds in order to help all of our students go to college and achieve their dreams. You can see a list of the topics covered to the right of this column. The annual report begins on page 17. Foundation reporting begins on Page 27. Our Foundation board continues to provide those extra resources that make us a special place for students. The funds that are raised through our events and the donations that are made by our friends and supporters help make that crucial difference between us and other colleges. It is that margin of excellence that helps set us apart. Thank you for your support of our great colleges. Regards,
Frank Gornick, Chancellor West Hills Community College District
In this issue of West Hills Magazine, we’ve included the annual report for both the District and the Foundation at West Hills College. Beginning on page 17, the reader will discover a series of charts, graphs and narratives that demonstrate the results we achieved this past academic year as well as highlights of some of the important milestones that were reached. West Hills Community College District remains dedicated to “the relentless pursuit of student success” in all we do, for the sake of our 6,000 students and the many communities we serve.
Cowboys, Cowgirls, Moms and Dads Come to Ride the Rodeo
West Hills College rodeo has a new coach, an active boosters club, a recently-completed showcase arena and a rich legacy.
annual report 18 19 21 25
Pomp and Circumstance Commencement exercises attract parents, families, and dignitaries such as Joseph Castro, president of Fresno State, who spoke at WHCL’s event.
Apple iPad Initiative Means Collaboration, Innovation New Student Union To Open Spring 0f 2016 WHCCD Puts Tech Bond Issue on November Ballot
District Highlights 2013-14
foundation Harris Ranch Executive, County Supervisor are Newest Board Members Our Generous Donors and Benefactors You Can Help Support the Farm Endowment
Renewable Energy at the Farm
Student interns earn high marks at Red Rock Ranch biodiesel operation in Five Points.
Student Nurses Put It All On the Line It’s a rigorous two-year path to become a registered nurse, but students say it’s worth the sacrifice. They pretty much give up their social lives for 24 months; however, two found time to fall in love.
Cover photo by Dennis Gallegos: The historic Jack Stone’s Barn in Lemoore is reflected in a lovely pond.
Thor W. Hofer’s just carrying on
a family tradition.
The 18 year-old bull rider followed in the footsteps of his father, Thor T. Hofer, when he joined the West Hills College Coalinga men’s rodeo team this past year and finished first in his event in the West Coast Region of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association. The elder Hofer, now 44, accomplished the same feat when he rode for WHCC in 1992. They followed similar paths to get there. The father began riding bulls in rodeo events in high school. The son began earlier, in junior high. Both won state titles while in their teens. Both went to college at WHCC and rode bulls. The father went on to compete professionally, winning several state titles. And now, young Hofer is looking at an opportunity to travel to China to compete in a series of events sponsored by the Professional Bull Riders Association. The family settled in Priest River, Ida., near the Washington border and the city of Spokane. The father was recently named coach of a newly organized rodeo team at Eastern Washington University in Cheney, Wash. Young Thor grew up in that region. He attended the national high school rodeo finals in 2013, where he met former WHCC Coach Bruce Hunt who, of course, remembered his father. That fall, the son followed his father’s footsteps and came to Coalinga. “I had a good year,” he said. “I won the region and was ranked in the top 15 in the national finals, and I was on the Dean’s List. You can’t do much better than that.” He speaks highly of the program. “It’s known nationwide,” he said, “and it has the best facility in the region, by far.” He plans to continue his education only after he explores an opportunity to travel to China with the PBRA. He’s waiting to get the final OK from the organization, which is sponsoring tours in Brazil and Canada and just added China to the list for 2015. “They take cowboys from each country to go to China, and he’s on the list,” said his father. “We’re waiting to see if he gets in. They pay expenses and there’s prize money. It could be the opportunity of a lifetime.”
A Long History of West Hills College offers a wide range of options for its diverse students, from college transfer courses to career technical training to lifelong learning opportunities, as well as a full range of team sports for those who want to test themselves in competition. None is more unique than the rodeo program headquartered at West Hills College Coalinga, home of a new rodeo facility that was officially dedicated in 2013. Rodeo at WHCC has a long history, stretching back more than four decades. The team has produced professional rodeo champions, both men and women, and continues to attract students who come to Coalinga from places throughout California, the U.S. and Canada. It also attracts local talent from Coalinga, Lemoore and other nearby cities.
West Hills magazine
Rodeo is a bit of a hybrid sport at the college level in California. Some colleges have rodeo clubs which, unlike the situation at WHCC, aren’t officially a part of the athletics program. Very few California community colleges even have a rodeo team, but individual students from several of those schools may participate in competition with other colleges. And because there are so few teams, both large and small colleges compete against each other in the West Coast Region of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association. Teams represent small schools such as WHCC and Feather River College in Quincy, as well as larger institutions such as CSU, Fresno and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
In addition to a new arena, the Coalinga team has a new coach this year. Justin Hampton, who starts his first season this fall, is a former professional state champion roper. He rode for the WHCC team in the mid90s and served as assistant coach for the college team from 1996-98. He finished his education at Fresno State and worked as a teacher for the local school district before he was hired this summer as college rodeo coach and instructor. Hampton has some big boots to fill, Coach Justin Hampton
having been selected in a nationwide search to replace Bruce Hunt, who retired in June after riding herd on the WHCC rodeo teams since 1983. His 31 years is the longest anyone has ever coached at this level in California, and perhaps in the nation, Hunt says. Under his tutelage, the program has grown, produced champions, developed an active rodeo booster club, and enjoyed the support of the community. A long list of former WHCC students mentored by Hunt includes: • Luke Branquinho (along with his two brothers, Casey and Tony, all PRCA members). Luke’s a steer wrestler, a four time PRCA World Champion who won back-to-back world championships in 2011 and 2012 and has earned $2 million in rodeo events over the past decade. • Daniel Green, who won the World Timed Event Championship numerous times along with his brother, Chris Green, a NIRA team roper champion. Both have qualified for the NFR as team ropers. • Lee Akin who, prior to being injured in 2007, qualified three times for the NFR and was part of the U.S. Olympic Rodeo Team at the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City where he won the silver medal in bull riding. • One of Bruce’s daughters, Nora Hunt, who is a two-time world champion roper. The rodeo program has been around long enough that it is beginning to attract a second generation of students. See the two related articles about father-son and mother-daughter teams who all rode for the Falcons while in their teens. The 2014-15 fall rodeo season opens Sept. 25-27 at Lassen College in Susanville, and continues Oct. 9-11 at Feather River College in Quincy. A spring season, to be announced, will include a home event at WHCC. Long-time rodeo coach Bruce Hunt (center, below) traveled to Casper, Wyo., for his last College National Finals Rodeo, along with several members of the West Hills College team who qualified for the big event.
West Hills magazine
Rodeo for Generations: Mother-Daughter Duo Have WHC Roots
Like mother, like daughter. The adage applies to Tegan Turner’s family when it comes to rodeo. Turner is a 2014 West Hills College Lemoore graduate who rode for the West Hills College Coalinga rodeo team. Her mother, Deanna Willard, did the same thing in the late 1980s. “In our family, it’s what you do,” said Willard. “It’s not even an option really. It’s just what we do. So the next generation comes, and it’s just what they do.” Turner’s grandma got her first horse at 16, and Turner started competing when she was 8. She has three cousins in rodeo, and even her aunt competed for WHCC. Growing up, Turner attended rodeos with her mother, who says the times traveling with her daughter are some of her favorite memories. In college, Willard and Turner competed in barrel racing and goat tying, and both made it to the College National Finals Rodeo. Willard was the West Coast Intercollegiate Rodeo allaround cowgirl, champion goat-tyer and took third place in the CNFR for goat tying - all in spring 1987. Turner inherited her rodeo skills, ranking second in the region in barrel racing. She also competes in goat tying and breakaway roping. Turner took her classes at WHCL and traveled to WHCC two days per week to train with former rodeo coach Bruce Hunt, who retired at the close of the 2013-2014 season. Her mom kept the same schedule when she went to school at the old Lemoore campus, which was a portable building on Cinnamon Avenue. “My pick for her was West Hills her whole life,” said Willard. “I knew it was a great program already, I knew Bruce, and it was a good stepping block for something bigger.” Now 20, Turner is a junior at California State University, Fresno, with plans to become a veterinarian. She will continue to rodeo at CSU Fresno as a member of the Bulldoggers Rodeo Club. Unlike at WHCC, rodeo is not acknowledged as an official sport, and the club receives no funding to compete. The school support is something Turner says she will miss. At WHCC, she said she was treated “like a real athlete” wherever she went on campus. “Honestly, I think it’s the best program I’ve ever seen,” said Turner. “I’m a little bit disappointed that I’m leaving. I just loved it. There was always so much support. Throughout the whole school, everyone supported you and it was just really amazing.”
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The diverse mission of community colleges in California makes room for a wide variety of learning experiences. Some want transfer credits in a quest for bachelorâ€™s or advanced degrees. Others seek new or additional skills to train for or advance in a career. And many area residents, of all ages, are looking for life-long learning opportunities and just want to take a class or two. Our job is to serve all those needs. Still, nothing says success like a commencement exercise. Caps and Gowns. Diplomas. Pomp and Circumstance. Each May, students and friends flock to our campuses for graduation ceremonies. This year, West Hills Community College District awarded a record 977 degrees and certificates during the 20132014 academic year and celebrated the largest graduating class in the districtâ€™s history. West Hills College Lemoore awarded 535 degrees and certificates, and West Hills College Coalinga awarded 442. The commencement speaker at WHCL was Joseph Castro, president of California State University, Fresno. At WHCC, Fresno County Supervisors Judy Case McNairy and Phil Larson were the guest speakers. WHCC also awarded three honorary degrees to McNairy, Larson and Bill Mouren. Michael Lynch, a theater professor at Modesto Junior College, was honored as the 2014 Alumnus of the Year for his influence in the realm of performing arts.
West Hills magazine
WHCC Helps Paramount Students
Connect Education with Job Training
Above: Middle school students learn the art of welding with a little help from Sharon Freeman, instructor at WHCC’s Farm of the Future, during the Paramount Academy summer camp event. Opposite page: Clint Cowden, interim farm director, emphasizes the safe use of shop equipment to a young learner.
“Why do I need to know this? I’ll never use this in real life.” That’s the complaint teachers hear from students in classes like algebra, where equations such as the Pythagorean Theorem only seem useful for passing the next test. The connection from textbooks to practical application in job training is lost in translation. Information is learned and then forgotten. West Hills College Coalinga aims to change all that through involvement in the Paramount Academy summer camp, sponsored by Paramount Farms, which provides a bridge into the Paramount Agriculture Career Academy for high school students. “A lot of young people are still of the belief that school has nothing to do with what people do,” said Clint Cowden, interim director of Farm of the Future. “The cool part was when they started to see the science meet the vocational side.” A group of 50 incoming 8th graders stayed at WHCC for one week during the summer and made daily visits to Farm of the Future classrooms, participated in hands-on welding activities, listened to guest lecturers on campus and interviewed local farmers at the
West Hills magazine
Coalinga Farmers’ Market. They also learned soil science, agricultural production and global positioning systems (GPS). This is the second consecutive year WHCC opened its campus to Paramount students. Cowden said the students were so focused that the staff was ahead of schedule and able to offer additional activities. One of the big projects students worked on during the week was a trailer hitch with a falcon cover. Students did all of the metal cutting and welding themselves, which gave them something tangible to take home and show their parents. “Welding has always been an important piece in our summer camp,” said Zach Soto, business account specialist at WHCC and coordinator of the summer camp. “Our students had an opportunity to spray paint their falcon trailer hitches, and some even showed potential in fabrication and art.” Cowden met with students and their parents the last day they were on campus, and he overheard some of their conversations. One student and his father, who works as a welder, were drawn closer together because of the welding project he took home. Because his son learned basic welding skills at WHCC, they had something in common to talk about with each other. “It’s really cool to see students bring home a project and have that conversation,” said Cowden. “We had a student who told me, ‘That was so cool. My dad loved the project.’”
‘We have a treasure here and we need to protect it…’ Carole Goldsmith, WHCC President
Other students learned self-confidence and how to excel against the odds. Brian Boomer, coordinator of special grants at West Hills Community College District and one of the summer camp coordinators, said a group of female students decided at the start of the welding class that girls can’t weld. Boomer saw them spending more time doing their makeup and asking boys to work on their projects for them instead of trying themselves. He pulled them aside and encouraged them to try. “These girls, within two or three minutes, were welding much better than the boys who were welding for them,” said Boomer. “When I noted this to the group of girls, they were ecstatic and got enthused about finishing their welding assignments. It was encouraging to see these young ladies attempt something that is traditionally a male career and excel beyond their peers.” Along with learning how to use their hands, students learned safe practices for welding and agricultural careers. Before they were allowed to start working on their project, ag instructor Norman Oilar walked students through safety training. He demonstrated proper welding gear and had students watch several safety videos. The summer camp is a unique opportunity for students to receive hands-on training for potential careers in agriculture. With vocational classes and electives being cut from grade schools, WHCC feels the weight of helping students become career ready by the time they graduate. Paramount students who attend the summer camp get a jump start on preparing for the workforce.
“We are responsible for providing our children with the tools and knowledge so they may thrive in an evolving economy,” said Carole Goldsmith, WHCC president. “Agriculture is an important segment of the California economy and key to the Valley’s success. We have a treasure here and we need to protect it and prepare our workforce to take science-based careers and leadership roles in this industry.” In one week, students learned skills that are generally taught over 18 weeks in junior high and high school shop classes. They had a finished project to take home, and the connection between academics and job training became clearer. “The opportunity presented to these students by Paramount Farms and West Hills College Coalinga is extraordinary,” said Boomer. “Through applied hands-on instruction on campus and at our Farm of the Future facility, students were able to see the cohesive link between education and employment and were able to apply working knowledge to program projects and activities.”
Students Get High Marks Exploring
biochemistry. We didn’t just train them, we explained why we were doing what they’d be doing. This was chemistry, biology, a very complex process.” What did they learn? “It’s a natural way to produce fuel that can produce electrical or energy for transport,” according to Hintz. “This is a path to sustainable energy for the Valley, where we produce lots of organics that have no or little use, and then get energy from it. You are harvesting the energy and you are left with soil amendment, so the waste can still be used for farming. It’s about harvesting the energy and then re-using the raw material.”
‘The interns were mature, committed, and serious…’ - Tom Hintz Hintz gave the college high marks for its help in securing interns. “We will be interviewing another round of interns for the coming fall semester,” Hintz said. “We were happy, the experience was excellent, and the college support was extremely enthusiastic. They allowed us to come in and do a presentation to three classes, gave us the full attention of their engineering faculty member and the administration and support team was exceptionally helpful in making it work. West Hills was just very welcoming and there was little if any red tape. It was all about how can we assist to make this a good experience for the students and meaningful and useful for both the students and for us. It was a team effort.” Hintz went on to say, “I’ve had maybe 50 interns in my life and this is the first school that made it painless. It was, ‘How do we get this done?’ It was amazing.”
Students at West Hills College Lemoore served as interns at Red Rock Ranch in Five Points, part of a statewide network of renewable energy experiments and testing. College and industry executives gathered at the site for a recent tour where they learned how organic materials are used to create fuel to power farms and equipment with waste left over for soil amendment. West Hills interns earned high praise from industry leaders for their ability and performance.
Five Points farm noted for its cutting edge development of on-site biodiesel and alternative fuel production is offering internship opportunities to West Hills College students who are studying science, technology, engineering and math. Red Rock Ranch is owned by John Diener, a pioneer in alternative fuel for farm use, known for his innovative and progressive approach to agriculture. He reached out to the college by working with SeaHold LLC, a business development consulting firm in Riverside County that brings together stakeholders interested in developing biomass
West Hills magazine
projects. Tom Hintz is the senior/managing partner and a renewable energy expert who made a presentation to West Hills College Lemoore professor Jiaxin Zhoa and his engineering and physics class. Several students showed interest in the unpaid internships, and three of them spent the spring 2014 semester working two or three days a week for about two hours a day. According to Hintz, they worked hard and took their assignments seriously. In fact, he said, of all the interns he’s placed from colleges and university of all sizes, the Lemoore students were head and shoulders above the rest. The students were Isaac Campos, Raul Cipriano, and Royce
Coykendall. They were second year students in Zhao’s class last year and are enrolled for additional classes at the college for the fall 2014 semester. “They brought maturity and commitment to the assignment, they were serious, they carried out the work, I had no complaints, zero,” said Hintz. What did they do at the farm? “They were running the system,” Hintz said. “They operated our equipment and used our scientific instruments to study bio-gas activity and operations. The interns were trained to operate and run the chemistry and anaerobic digester and did support for
The Interns The three interns shared their thoughts on the internship: “I thought it would be interesting, and it was,” said Royce Coykendall. Raul Cipriano: “It was pretty cool.” Isaac Campos: “I learned some things.”
Two-year test is not your typical college experience
Pathway to Nursing: Hard Road, Worth the Effort
Keaton Simas didn’t have the typical college experience. Instead of parties, he was at home doing homework. Instead of sleeping in, he woke up early to study before class. Instead of working a part-time job, school was his 40-hour work week. And instead of struggling with the job search, he landed his first fulltime job right after graduation. At West Hills College Lemoore, his story isn’t the exception. It’s the norm. With his eye on success and the support of his instructors, Simas graduated from the rigorous two-year nursing program with a job waiting for him at Saint Agnes Medical Center in Fresno. “It feels pretty good and it makes me feel that I made the right choice by going to West Hills,” said Simas. “I can’t believe I was lucky enough to get a job at Saint Agnes. It really is a great thing.” Going to an institution that hires nurses with potential bachelor’s degrees, Simas was well-prepared with his associate’s degree. While starting work full time, he began an online bachelor’s program through Grand Canyon State University this fall. Simas grew up living in Lemoore. He said he heard nothing but good things about the community college and its relatively new nursing program. The program was approved in 2008, and 87 students were enrolled in the program during 2013-14. Since its inception, nearly 150 students have finished the program and taken the state National Council Licensure Examination for registered nurses. WHCL students have achieved a 92 percent pass rate. “There was quite a bit of word out there saying how much more prepared the nurses are coming out of West Hills than the surrounding schools,” said Simas. “They know that they prepare us for the professional field, and the pass rate for the state boards was phenomenal. I just felt it was a really great institution, and I wanted to be a part of that.” That same attitude spread across California. Simas said some of his classmates commuted from as far away as Sacramento and Paso Robles to study in the program. Many of the students had two to three-hour commutes for classes. While Simas already lived in Lemoore, he did have to commute once a week to Fresno for 12-hour clinicals. He held a part-time Keaton Simas and Bethany Moster are just two of the students who enrolled in a rigorous two-year nursing program at West Hills College Lemoore. Simas finished recently and is now working at an area hospital. Moster has a year left before she graduates. The two met when she began training last year and they later became a couple. The program occupies most of the students’ time and energy, but they also have lives to lead. Over the years, students have gotten married, given birth, raised families, forged new relationships, and still managed to graduate and start a career.
West Hills magazine
job when he first started the program, but he quickly learned he needed to focus solely on school. Some homework assignments would take him 24 hours to complete. “There’s always something around the corner that you’re not expecting,” said Simas. “Because the workload is really heavy you could end up falling behind really easily if you don’t keep up.” Despite the rigorous course load, he still found time for people. He would force himself out of his bedroom and away from his laptop and textbooks to spend time with his family. He would watch a movie or a TV show like “The Voice” before going back to work. “Nursing school is too much to handle on your own,” said Simas. “Even if you don’t have the time, you have to make the time for other people. Because if not, they will suffer and you will suffer.” Not only did he find time to socialize with his family, but he also fell in love. Simas met his girlfriend, Bethany Moster, during the first week of his second year in the program. A first year nursing student, she was the mentee of one of his good friends. Once Simas met Moster, he quickly assumed the role of mentor from his friend. The rest, as they say, is history. While it seems like a paradox that two nursing students with hectic schedules would find time to date each other, they both say it works to their advantage. “We were still able to spend time together and study, and with her being one class below me, I was able to kind of tutor her and it reinforced a lot of what it was I was learning or what I learned,” said Simas. Moster said that’s helpful when she doesn’t have time to socialize. “I think a lot of people don’t really understand what it’s like to be in the nursing program and what it’s like to basically have no life,” she said. “But he knows how it is, so he doesn’t take things like that personally.” The hard work pays off. Simas isn’t the only nursing student to have a job lined up by graduation. Moster earned an unpaid externship at Fresno Community Hospital during her first year. Once it ended, the hospital kept her on as a paid extern. They asked her to register for certifications with the intention of hiring her after she graduates. “People always ask me what I think about West Hills or would I recommended it, and I can’t speak highly enough about it, especially the teachers,” Moster said. In his experience, Simas said he’s noticed how much more job-ready graduates are from WHCL than from other nursing programs in the area. They graduate with a level of experience
“There’s always something around the corner that you’re not expecting,” said Simas. “Because the workload is really heavy you could end up falling behind really easily if you don’t keep up.” that makes them equal to what the hospital expects from nurses with a bachelor’s or master’s degree. Charles Freeman, director of health careers for the West Hills Community College District, said nursing instructors work hard to give their students realworld experience. “Our curriculum stresses that the students learn though a hands-on approach to nursing,” said Freeman. “In the last semester of the nursing program it is required that our students perform at the level of a graduate nurse by taking over the RN’s assignments under their supervision and guidance.” Although quite the rigorous program, the students aren’t complaining. Simas said it shows how well the college prepares nursing students that they are able to transition so quickly from the nursing program to a nursing job at a well-respected hospital. “I just feel very, very fortunate as to all the opportunities that
I’ve been given, not just being fortunate enough with getting good grades and getting into the program, but also what the program had to offer me,” said Simas. “The staff there is just phenomenal and they did present a lot of opportunities for us. As long as you go for it, the opportunities pay off and I was lucky enough to have them pay off for me.” He was so impressed with the program that he continues with his involvement as a tutor even after graduating. Nursing instructor Geri Mahaffey says he is a caring and compassionate nurse with the ability to teach other students. “He is an excellent example of what a nurse should be,” said Mahaffey. “He has volunteered to mentor nursing students and work with the students, even after graduating and obtaining his license. He has the ability to provide education and explain concepts to students in a way that they are able to grasp and apply the learned concepts into the clinical setting. We are so proud of Keaton and his classmates and appreciate their willingness to work so hard to be the best nurses that they can be.” Students completing the nursing program in May 2014 gathered with faculty members on campus for the class photo. The extraordinary group of individuals made numerous personal sacrifices and relied on support from family, friends, significant others, the community and a caring faculty to get through an intensive, demanding course to become registered nurses.
2013-14 WHCCD Annual Report District Demographics Majority of Students Under Age 24, More than Half are Women Statistics from 2013-14 show that the majority of students in the district are Hispanic (54.87 percent or 5,075 students), and 25.21 percent, or 2,332 students, are white, non-Hispanic. More than one third of students were between the ages of 20-24, and female students made up more than half the student body (58.56 percent compared to 39.86 percent).
Unknown/Declined to State
Two or More Races
Hispanic Story by Amy Kessler | Photos by Dennis Gallegos
American Indian/ Alaskan Native
19 and under
20-24 25-29 30-49 50+
Unknown/Declined to State
Unknown/Declined to State 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60%
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West Hills Community College . . . . . . . . District Annual Report
pple iPad Initiative
Bringing Technology to the Classroom
West Hills Community College District is providing students with easy access to new tools to enhance learning and help them become more job-ready by the time they graduate. This is all possible through the new Apple iPad Initiative. Careers today and in the near future require people who can work collaboratively, can teach themselves, are adaptable to change, can communicate well and are technologically adept, according to Stu Van Horn, vice chancellor of educational services and workforce development at WHCCD. “Our goal is to prepare students for whatever challenges they might face in the future.” Prior to the start of fall semester, nearly 300 students signed up to purchase a new Apple iPad Air. They were distributed in late August and more students have expressed interest for the next rollout. To qualify for the program, students must be enrolled in at least 12 units. Payment plans are available, and students can also use financial aid to purchase their device. The price includes an educational discount. The district began the Apple iPad Initiative with the intention of incorporating more technology into the classroom. This initiative follows several others, including the use of BoardDocs to replace paper agendas during board meetings and the introduction of Reg365, which allows students to register for an entire year of classes at once. This new iPad initiative is in accordance with part of WHCCD’s vision statement, “The relentless pursuit of student success.”
Through the use of iPads, students have access to Wi-Fi for homework assignments as well as e-books, which can significantly reduce textbook costs every semester. The district held trainings for faculty throughout 2014 and will continue to provide learning sessions as well as workshops for students in the coming year to help them navigate their new devices. WHCCD encourages students to take full advantage of the resources available to help them succeed in college and prepare for the workforce. Top: Aronne Hauki, student services senior secretary at WHCC, presented ASB President Ashlee Rocha with a new Apple iPad. Bottom: Mary Campa-Robles (left) and Michael Carillo (right) of West Hills College Lemoore are among nearly 300 students participating in the iPad Initiative. WHCL faculty members Eva Jimenez and Lataria Hall (center) were trained to use the devices along with dozens of their colleagues.
For more details and frequent updates on the Apple iPad Initiative at West Hills College, visit westhillscollege.com/tablets.
Lemoore Groundbreaking N ew S t u d en t U n i o n to O p en s p r i ng 2016
Students at West Hills College Lemoore will have a new space to gather and meet, share meals, and buy books and supplies when the campus opens for fall classes more than a year from now. Construction on the new student union building began in May with a groundbreaking ceremony and should be completed by September 2015. Construction on the new student union building began with a groundbreaking ceremony in May and should be completed by Spring 2016. “The Golden Eagle Student Union will give our students a much-needed facility and another venue for college and community use,” said Don Warkentin, WHCL president. “The voters put their confidence in us with their tax dollars and this will certainly make good use of those funds.” Warkentin said the cost is about $13 million. The new building will house the campus bookstore, student government offices and a four-station food court. This area will
West Hills magazine
seat 250 for casual dining and 350 for special banquets and will include meeting spaces for student organizations. The student union will be slightly smaller than the nearby library and will put 23,000 sq. ft. of space under roof, just west of the administration building. The construction is funded in whole by local tax dollars made available from Measure E, a voterapproved bond from 2008 that voters re-authorized in 2012. During the groundbreaking, the college recognized Mardell Pedersen, her late husband, Bob, and her parents, the late Lionel and Lola Semas. In 1998, the two couples donated the land on which the college now sits. WHCL opened its doors in 2002 and has grown substantially. Prior to the ongoing student union construction, the newest building was the Golden Eagle Arena, a sports complex and physical education center which opened in 2011. Future phases are on the drawing board to add another classroom building and fields for athletic play.
West Hills Community College . . . . . . . . District Annual Report
Tech Bond Would Fund New and Upgraded Equipment Voters who reside within the West Hills Community College District in Fresno and Kings counties will vote on a $20 million bond issue on the November ballot. The general election on Nov. 4 will determine whether the college can issue general obligation bonds of about $5 million every five years until the $20 million limit is reached. The funds would be earmarked solely for new and upgraded equipment and technology at the district’s two campuses in Coalinga and Lemoore and at the North District Center, Firebaugh. “West Hills has been a leader in technology for many years,” said Board Chairman Mark McKean. “Passing this bond will ensure that leadership role for the future.”
The board opted to put the question on the ballot after hearing a presentation from Dale Scott, one of the state’s leading financial advisors to school districts. Scott said the timed release aspect of the bond issue would lower borrowing costs to “pennies on the dollar” and allow the district to keep up with the rapidly changing technological advances faced by schools in the modern computer age. “Technology will change, and it’s vital that we keep up,” said Len Falter, the district’s newest trustee, who is a business coach and advisor. He spent 30 years in the telecommunications industry and worked as an instructor and analyst on the Minuteman Missile System for the U.S. Air Force.
Keeping up with new technology is vital for today’s students, such as Rocio Rodriguez (below), who just purchased an Apple iPad, a popular tablet that will open up a world of new learning options for 300 students in a pilot program at West Hills College. Students, like those in the computer lab at North District Center, Firebaugh (left) rely on the college to provide technical training so they can compete for jobs in an ever-evolving technical environment.
Survey Says West Hills College Offers a Good Education While Holding Down Costs West Hills Community College District got high marks in a public opinion survey conducted in Kings and Fresno counties. The poll showed 82 percent of the respondents were familiar with West Hills College Coalinga and West Hills College Lemoore, either because they had taken a class there or knew someone who did. With the prospect of a bond issue question appearing on the November ballot in 2014, voters were “moderately” to “strongly” inclined to vote in favor. The survey showed voter support ranging from 64 percent to 73 percent, depending on the geographic area and the specific projects for which the bond money would be used. The study further revealed that the public has a high opinion of the quality of education offered and feels that the district is a good steward of the public funds entrusted to it.
West Hills magazine
In Coalinga, 69 percent rated the quality of education at WHCCD as good or excellent. In Lemoore, the numbers were even higher: 78 percent agreed. Regarding fiscal responsibility, 68 percent of those in Coalinga rated the college from fair to good to excellent and only three percent rated it as poor; 28 percent didn’t know or were unsure. In Lemoore, the numbers were 73 percent fair, good or excellent, and two percent poor, while 26 percent were uncertain. An overwhelming 90 percent said community colleges are the most important source of job training in their community. The phone survey polled 634 persons in mid-April in the areas where WHCCD has college campuses. The results were included in the mid-term accreditation reports required by the state.
In Coalinga, 234 registered voters were surveyed over eight days while 400 were called in Lemoore during the same time period. DS&C, a San Francisco firm, conducted the surveys and said the margin of error ranged from plus or minus seven percent in Coalinga with its smaller sample, and plus or minus four percent in Lemoore. Those polled said they rely on many sources for news about the local community college. About one third said friends and family were their sources for news about West Hills College. A significant number said the college website as well as email, postal mailings, flyers and local news media provided about half of the information they recalled seeing about the college. District employees were also credited as sources of information and news about the district.
West Hills Community College . . . . . . . . District Annual Report
Students Can Now Enroll for A Whole Year
est Hills Community College District launched a new registration format in April called Reg365. This option allows students to register for an entire year of classes at once if they choose to do so, and enrollment statistics prove student support is favorable so far. As of August, more than 3,200 students district-wide took advantage of Reg365 by registering for the spring 2015 semester. This is an added benefit for students who have educational plans and it quickens the registration process for those who already know which classes they need to take and during which semesters they are offered. “As student body president, and as a student, I think Reg365 is a great thing,” said Jason Loyche, 2013-2014 student body president at West Hills College Lemoore. “It gives students a view of the end game for them and a goal. When that goal is in place, it is easy to reach.” The district implemented Reg365 as a means to keep students on track for graduation. Students have a better chance of getting into the classes they need by signing up early. Now that students have the option to register for fall, spring and summer at the same time, they can begin securing seats in needed classes even earlier, especially if they qualify for priority registration. When students have their college education mapped out, success and retention rates increase. Because of educational plans, graduating within two years is a visibly attainable feat. Students can focus more on passing their current classes to remain eligible for ones they already enrolled in for the upcoming semester. “It’s a good way for students to stay on task and on top of everything they need to do to graduate,” said Kristian Wilson, 2013-2014 student body president at West Hills College Coalinga. “It gives them a better outlook on what exactly they need to do and how to do it.” WHCCD was ahead of other community colleges in implementing educational plans and making them a requirement for priority registration before it was mandated by the state. And now, the district is further ahead by the introduction of Reg365. “Numbers show the work we did in anticipation that the state would move in this direction is paying off,” said Frank Gornick, WHCCD chancellor.
WHCCD Degrees & Certificates Record Number of Degrees, Certificates Awarded in 2014 West Hills Community College District hit a milestone in 2013-14 when 977 degrees and certificates were granted, the highest number of any academic year in the history of the college (founded in 1932).The number of associate’s degrees hit 717, eclipsing the previous record set in 2013 when there were 587 degrees awarded. West Hills College’s relentless pursuit of student success played a big role, with more students than ever using two-year educational plans which have boosted success and retention rates in the past several years (see related bar chart, page 26).
Assoc. of Science for Transfer Certificate of Achievement
Associate of Arts Local Certificate
Associate of Science Grand Total
778 749 672
84 99 33 2008-09
West Hills magazine
West Hills Community College . . . . . . . . District Annual Report
New Vision Statement
In 2014, the WHCCD Board of Trustees adopted a new vision statement to call attention to our focus in recent years on helping students succeed at their educational goals. To that end, the district has adopted educational plans, pioneered year-round registration and opened up new opportunities to bring increased technology to the classroom. The district also teamed up with the Lumina Foundation and Achieving the Dream to train staff in proven techniques for monitoring and improving academic performance. The new vision statement: “The relentless pursuit of student success.”
WHCCD Launches Innovative New Public Policy Series
Essential Elements West Hills Community College District, in the heart of the crop-producing Central Valley, helps prepare students for careers in agriculture. The district recently went a step further to help the industry come to grips with issues affecting agriculture in the San Joaquin Valley. In February, WHCCD launched Essential Elements for the Future of the San Joaquin Valley, a public and private policy series. The event was conceived by Stuart Van Horn, vice chancellor of educational services and workforce development at WHCCD. “Our goal behind development of the policy series was to do what we could to contribute solutions to this unprecedented crisis and the challenges facing the valley,” he said. “We take that commitment seriously.” With two forums already successfully completed, the third forum on trade and logistics of the Panama Canal expansion will close the series on November 6. The first two forums focused on water and energy issues in the San Joaquin Valley. The first forum focused on the water shortage and its effect on agriculture. “The Very Last Drop: Managing Water and Food Production” brought together state and Brian Fiscalini, Fiscalini Farms, told participants how his dairy transitioned to making and selling gourmet cheese.
Len Falter Appointed as Newest Trustee Geoffrey Dewhurst, First Solar, was one of the speakers at the Energy forum in June.
regional government officials, farmers, policy makers and environmentalists. The 110 participants gathered at Harris Ranch in Coalinga to discuss water allocation issues that have long plagued the region and came up with lists of key trends and new proposed strategies to narrow the focus of the dialog taking place throughout the San Joaquin Valley. The second forum, “Energizing the Valley and Generating Jobs,” connected more than 80 state and San Joaquin Valley leaders who gathered to identify and launch immediate energybased climate change mitigation action steps. They discussed everything from solar energy to fossil fuels and how to educate students about energy careers. West Hills College Lemoore PG&E Power Pathways students made a special appearance. Sponsors aside from West Hills College and the WHCC Foundation include Chevron, The Gualco Group, Paramount, Harris Woolf, Westside Institute of Technology, Central Valley Power Connect, Central Mother Lode Region Consortium, Recurrent Energy and Jobs and the Economy.
E ssential E lements S essions
March 27: The Very Last Drop June 12: Energizing the Valley November 6: Trade and Logistics
The West Hills Community College District Board of Trustees appointed Len Falter to fill the vacant seat left by the death of trustee Bill Henry. Falter will serve the remainder of Henry’s term, which ends in December 2015. He was formally seated during the Board meeting Tuesday, Dec. 10. Falter represents Area 4 on the board and is a self-employed business owner from Lemoore. He oversaw the finance committee for the WHCC Foundation from 2009-2012.
West Hills College Coalinga awarded three honorary associate’s degrees in 2014. Those degrees were awarded to Bill Mouren, Supervisor Phil Larson and Supervisor Judy Case McNairy during the May 23 commencement ceremony. Mouren attended WHCC in the fall of 1938 and currently owns a feed lot outside of Coalinga and oversees Mouren Farming. Larson is a Marine Corps veteran who is actively involved in the farming communities of Fresno County. Having worked on the Fresno County Board of Supervisors since 1998, McNairy lives on a ranch in Sanger and runs a bed and breakfast with her husband.
West Hills Magazine Wins Award
The district was awarded first place at the 2014 CCPRO conference for the Winter 2013 issue of West Hills Magazine. The same issue also received an award of merit from the Central California chapter of PRSA. West Hills College launched its new, award-winning
2013-2014 District Highlights magazine last November. It publishes three times per year, both in print and online. Each issue highlights student success stories, district and campus achievements and program updates.
West Hills Community College District launched a brand new registration option in April called Reg365. Students now have the opportunity to register for fall, spring and summer classes at the same time. The district expects to see an increase in student success and retention because of the new program. More than 3,200 students took immediate advantage of reg365.
Apple iPad Initiative
West Hills Community College District coordinated with Apple on a new initiative to bring iPads to both campuses. Beginning with the Fall 2014 semester, students have the option to purchase an iPad for use in the classroom. Faculty will begin integrating apps and technology more fully in the classroom to give students an interactive and engaging educational experience.
Tracey Jaurena Named Trainer of the Year
West Hills Community College Coalinga Athletic Trainer Tracey Jaurena was named Athletic Trainer of the Year by the California Community College Athletic Trainers’ Association in April. Jaurena was nominated after responding to a medical incident during a WHCC basketball practice. According to the incident report, the student stopped breathing during practice and was in a state of seizure. Jaurena responded accordingly and helped the student begin to breathe before the ambulance arrived. Jaurena has been an athletic trainer at WHCC for 15 years.
For more information, visit www.essentialelementsseries.com. 24
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District . . . . . . . . West Hills Community College Annual Report
West Hills Community College . . . . . . . .
District-Wide Success & Retention
Foundation Annual Report
WHCC Foundation Welcomes
Two New Board Members The West Hills Community College Foundation welcomed two new board members within the last year. William Bourdeau, executive vice president of Harris Farms, brings a wealth of employment, business and agricultural knowledge to the board while Supervisor Phil Larson adds county connections along with farming and political expertise.
Course Completion Rate (Retention)
Course Success Rate
‘Ed Plans have led to more student success.’ – Don Warkentin, WHCL President
Students Succeed, Stay in School, Thanks to West Hills College Initiatives The rates of student course success (based on the percentage who earn a passing grade) and retention (the percentage who remain in a course from census date until end of term) continues to climb at West Hills Community College District. That’s in large part because of initiatives such as educational planning. Long before it was required by the state, West Hills College created an educational plan for students to set and follow as they complete their educational goals, whether it’s a certificate, degree or transfer. Students complete their plan working with counselors and advisors, and it’s constantly reviewed over time in order to monitor progress. At West Hills College, our vision statement is simple: “The relentless pursuit of student success.”
Supervisor Phil Larson Joins Foundation Board Supervisor Phil Larson became the newest member of the WHCC Foundation board in August after receiving an honorary degree from West Hills College Coalinga in May. Larson is a farmer and lifelong resident of Fresno County. He retired from the Wilbur Ellis company in 2000. “As a longtime supporter of community colleges and vocational training, I am honored to serve on the WHCC Foundation Board,” said Larson. “I look forward to the opening of the expanded Firebaugh campus with the new Fresno County Library branch. This represents a shared benefit for the entire west side. To further help the district, I hope to build on my relationship with Fresno County agriculture to promote and grow the Farm of the Future program.” His involvement in the Central Valley includes working with school districts and the Fresno County Farm Bureau. He served on the board for the Kerman Unified School District and was also president of the Farm Bureau from 1996-1998. Larson is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps, and achieved the rank of Sergeant E-4.
William Bourdeau Gives Back through WHCC Foundation A Coalinga native, William Bourdeau exemplifies the West Hills College motto, “Once You Go Here, You Can Go Anywhere.” After earning two degrees from West Hills College Coalinga and later his M.B.A. from the University of Nevada, Reno, he now works as executive vice president of Harris Farms. He joined the board to advocate for education and WHC programs. “My time spent as a student and adjunct professor at WHC has had a profound impact on my life,” said Bourdeau. “All my life experiences have shaped who I am, but I can say with great certainty that my educational pursuits have had the greatest impact on my professional success and ability to provide for my family.” Before he became executive vice president of Harris Farms in 2012, Bourdeau served as a councilmember for the City of Coalinga, an adjunct economics professor at WHCC and worked full time as the director of finance at Harris Farms. While in school, he also served eight years in the military and was a sergeant in the United States Marine Corps.
W H C C F o un d a t i o n B o a r d o f D i r ec t o r s William Bourdeau, Community Director Steve Cantu, Trustee Director Katie Delano, Vice President, Community Director Ernie Drewry, Community Director Jeff Garcia, O.D., Community Director Sharon Gordon, Community Director Frank Gornick, Ph.D., Staff Director, Chancellor Fred Harrell, Community Director
Carole Goldsmith, Ed.D., Staff Director, President, WHCC Phil Larson, Community Director Laura Mendes-Moore, Secretary, Community Director Nina Oxborrow, Trustee Director David Silviera, Ph.D., Community Director Ann Stone, President, Community Director Ken Stoppenbrink, Staff Director, Deputy Chancellor Don Warkentin, Staff Director, President, WHCL
Frances Squire, Executive Director 26
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West Hills Community College . . . . . . . .
Foundation Annual Report
President’s Scholars Unique Scholarship for Area High School Achievers The President’s Scholars program continues to grow every year with significant growth over the last two years. For the 2013-14 academic year, more than 100 incoming students were accepted into the program compared to 94 the previous year.
13 18 21 17 31 27 18 23 41 47 48 56 56 94 109
2000-2001 2001-2002 2002-2003 2003-2004 2004-2005 2005-2006 2006-2007 2007-2008 2008-2009 2009-2010 2010-2011 2011-2012 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
A group of President’s Scholars students participated in a commercial shoot for Keller Auto Center and the West Hills Community College Foundation. Jon Keller pledged to a one-month campaign to donate $100 from every vehicle sale to the President’s Scholars program. Left to right: Brooklyn Tuman, Kalvin Conley, Kalia Parker and Jonathan Maravilla.
West Hills College’s Unique Scholarship Program Accepts Largest Class More than 100 incoming President’s Scholars are registered for the Fall 2014 semester, the highest number of incoming scholars in program history. “With college costs rising, the offer of free tuition and $250 a semester for books for four semesters provides an opportunity for many students to attend the first two years of college at almost no cost,” said Frances Squire, executive director of the WHCC Foundation. To qualify for the program, students must graduate from a California high school with a 3.5 or higher grade point average and California Scholarship Federation eligibility. All qualified students are accepted. “This is one of a very few comprehensive scholarship programs in the state or even the nation,” said Squire. “Most scholarship
West Hills magazine
programs are limited in the number of scholarships that they offer, but at West Hills, we are committed to making sure that all top students have the opportunity to attend the first two years of college with very little, if any, out-of-pocket expense, especially if they live at home.” The President’s Scholars program is growing each year, with this incoming class the largest yet. Last year, the program enrolled 94 students compared to 56 for the 2012-2013 academic year. The incoming class in Fall 2007 had 23 students. About one third of the students in the program graduate from Hanford high schools, another third are from Lemoore High School and the remainder are from Coalinga and other rural communities in the area including Avenal, Riverdale, Corcoran, Laton, Mendota, Tranquillity, Firebaugh and Kerman.
The Foundation relies on sponsors and fundraisers to make scholarships possible for these students. The Foundation raised $70,000 from their annual golf tournament in May. In a more recent promotion, Keller Auto Center, run by alumnus Jon Keller and his wife, Valerie, gave the Foundation $100 from every car sale made within July, donating a total of $15,000. Mark and Derek Borba, partners for Borba Farms Partners in Riverdale, are sponsors of the President’s Scholars program. They recently made a $10,000 contribution. “Education is critical for not only personal successes, but for enhancing the quality of our Valley communities,” said Mark Borba. “Retaining the best and brightest is important for our area, and I believe that West Hills increasingly exposes students to not only their individual potentials, but allows them the
opportunities to understand that they can individually succeed in the Valley, and that Valley opportunities abound for them upon graduation.” Most of the students in the program transfer to Fresno State or Fresno Pacific, Squire said, but the list of transfer institutions varies, including most of the University of California campuses and colleges from Oregon to Florida. Some of the major sponsors include Pepsi, EECU, AP Architects, PG&E and Chevron. The Brian and Dixie Welborn Estate also sponsors the program. “Like Mark Borba, our donors understand the importance of an educated workforce in our region,” said Squire. “This program wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of those sponsoring the program.”
West Hills Community College . . . . . . . .
Foundation Annual Report
WHCCF | Donors The following were donors for the 2013-14 fiscal year for all Foundation programs, including Farm of the Future, the President’s Scholars program, scholarships, athletics and general donations. Aera Energy LLC All Star Steel Mr. and Mrs. Jim Allen Alternative Systems, Inc., Jack Ramsey AP Architects Mr. and Mrs. Mark Arce* Robert Arnold Mr. and Mrs. Donald Askew Automatic Office Systems (AOS) Avenal Lumber & Hardware Avenal State Prison Brian E. Avila Azcal Management Company Mr. and Mrs. Tony Azevedo David Babb* Mr. and Mrs. Mike Barabe* James R. Bellamy* Billingsley Tire Service Billingsley Mini Storage Gary C. Birdsong The Boeing Company Mr. and Mrs. David Bolt* Borba Farms Mr. and Mrs. Robert Bowers Laura R. Brogan Mr. and Mrs. Tim Buckley Buckman-Mitchell Inc. Buford Oil Burris Park Foundation Bush Construction C.H. Robles & Associates, Inc Canaday Enterprises Inc. Guillermo Cantu Mr. and Mrs. Steve Cantu** Capitol Door Sales Caruthers Auto Supply Joseph E. Casarez Mr. and Mrs. Royal Cash Maria E. Cavazos* Sandy Cavins* Rebecca F. Cazares* Central Valley Veterinary Clinic Rod Chace Chaney Ranch* John E. Chavez Kari A. Chester Chevron Chevron Products Company Mr. and Mrs. Robert Clement* Coalinga Chamber of Commerce Coalinga Community Foundation Coalinga Elks Lodge #1613 Coalinga Fastrip Coalinga Feed Yard, Inc. Coalinga Girls Softball Cooper’s Petroleum Inc. Linda Correia Maria Costa County Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County Clint C. Cowden* Cricket Wireless Michael D. Curran* Phil Daily Dale Scott & Company, Inc. Steven M. Daniel Ron Danner* Lorna L. Davis* Randall A. Dehart Jacquie Deitz Todd Deitz Mr. and Mrs. Gregory Delano* Amelia Diaz Sylvia A. Dorsey-Robinson* David Droker* Stephanie Droker, Ed.D.*
West Hills magazine
Becky Duncan Dutra Chiropractic Bobbie Eade Stacy Eastman, D.D.S. Beverly Edlund Educational Employees Credit Union Elliott General, Inc. Elliott Investments, Inc. Marty Ennes* eSponsorNow, Inc. Faith Christian Academy Family Healthcare Network Haleh Farnum Bertha F. Felix-Mata, Ed.D* Mary Fernandes M. L. Fernandez Follett Bookstores Donna M. Foletta Food Recovery Network Inc Dr. and Mrs. Don Forth* Foundation for CA Community Colleges Charles Freeman* Friends of Phil Larson Stanley J. Fries Future World Enterprises Marilyn Gabriel Genuine Parts Company Robert R. Gibson, Jr.* Dan Goich Carole S. Goldsmith, Ed.D.* Dr. and Mrs. Frank Gornick* Richard D. Grace Alvin R. Graves, Ph.D.* Paul A. Griffin, M. D. Frederick Griffiths* Griswold, LaSalle, Cobb, Dowd, Gin Mark Gritton* Janice L. Groefsema William Gundacker Guthrie and Castadio, Inc. Guy B Welborn Family Trust Bob Hampton Hanford Community Foundation Hanford Sunset Rotary Club Sandra Hansen Norman H. Hansen Hansen Ranches Nelson Hao Harper’s Home Repair Harris Feeding Co Harris Ranch Inn & Restaurant Harris Woolf Almonds Clayton Haynes Thomas L. Hernandez Ann Hernandez Marcel Hetu, Ph.D.* Barbara A. Hioco, Ed.D.* Ray Hodges Samuel R. Hodges Kaley M. Hook Mary R. Houck Clair Hough* D. J. Howard Natasha Hunt Carmen Inglizian Donna K. Isaac* Mr and Mrs. Nick Ivans** David W. Ivarie James G Parker Insurance Tracey D. Jaurena* Luisa C. Jimenez Cedric D. Johnson D. I. Johnson Walter Johnson Jones Hall, Attorneys At Law Anne M. Jorgens* Jan Kahn Jay Kalpakoff Melvin Kazarian Keenan & Associates Vera Kennedy, Ph.D.* Keller Automotive Group Olga Keough*
Bessie Kercher Dr. Darrell E. Kirby Kiwanis Club of Lemoore Michelle Kozlowski* Ron Kozlowski Mr. and Mrs. Ed Kreyenhagen Tom R. Kulikov Justin T. Kulikov Mrs. and Mrs. Richard Larson* Glynda S. Lee Lemoore Farmboyz Wrestling Lemoore Hardware New, Inc Lemoore Lion’s Club Lemoore Van & Storage Kimberly Leon Leprino Foods William M. Levinson Jeff L. Levinson** Linda L. Lewin Pauline R. Lewis Janie Logoluso Mr. and Mrs. David Lombardozzi* Mr. and Mrs. Clarence “Chico” Lopes LWO Farming Mackey & Mackey Insurance Agency Geri L. Mahaffey* Jay Mahfood Jim Malanca Glenn H. Marcussen Marderosian, Cercone & Cohen Robert E. Martin Ruthie M. Martinez* William H. Matthews Matt’s Quick Lube Saundra J. McGlothlin* Peggy L. McKay Mr. and Mrs. Mark McKean** Vander B. Mel Melmis Company, Inc Faye E. Mendenhall* Phyllis L. Mendes Terry L. Mendes Metropolitan Water District of Southern California Mid State Realty, Tanya Stevens Mid Valley Disposal, Inc. John Miller Mark E. Millett* Moonstone Beach Bar and Grill Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Mary B. Morris Staci D. Mosher* Mountain Oyster Steakhouse National Raisin Company Nelson Hao Paint Service Network for Good Mr. and Mrs. Joe Neves Truc T. Nguyen* Niewkoop Enterprises Inc. Nora Tax Service Ndubuisi C. Obioha Glenda Oliver* Jerry D. Oliver Delfina Ourique Oxborrow Enterprises, Inc.** Oxborrow Unlimited Pacific Ag Insurance Agency Pacific Gas & Electric Packline Technologies, Inc. Delia Padilla* The Pepsi Bottling Group Inc. Andrea R. Picchi* Susan D. Poulson Eugenie S. Pratt* James L. Preston* William Pucheu Quade Agricultural Consulting Reitz Almond Harvesting Inc David M. Rengh* Stephen T. Renton* Resnick Family Foundation, Inc Rob and Rachelle Richardson* Lori Ringeisen, CPA
Phyllis Roberts Mr. and Mrs. Jesus Rodriguez* Veronica Rojas Roll Giving/Paramount Farms Rollin Valley Farms Rotary Club of Coalinga Marlese A. Roton* Ruch Personnel Services, Inc. Julienne L. Rynda David L. Sadler Marie C. Salwasser Monica M. Santino* Sasser Specialties Marc Scott, CPA Dale Scott Gary L. Sedgwick* Sequoia Surgical Specialists Kimberly J. Sheffield* Robert M. Shigematsu John A. Silva Thomas F. Silva David & Jeanine Simas Tina Simas* Lenore D. Simonson* Simply Food Inc James A. Sirman* Marleen E. Smart* Frances Squire* & Ed Wilson Stone Land Company Ken E. Stoppenbrink* Student Insurance Sunrise Farm Labor, Inc. Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino Daniel Tamayo* Bob Tarango Tecogen Frank R. Thompson Tomlinson Emergency Associates Tomlinson Medical Associates Jose A. Torres Tos Land Co. Inc Julio C. Trevino* Thelma R. Trevino* Triple J Ready Mix Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuks Sarah Twinam United Carpet Company, Inc United Way Michael H. Urner Congressman David G. Valadao Stuart F. Van Horn* Olivia M. Vega* Debbie J. Vierhus Yolanda Vreede Walter Wahl* Dustin J. Walker Jeff Wanderer* Don Warkentin* Kathryn M. Watts* Merlin E. Welch* Wells Fargo Bank West Hills Machine Shop West Hills Oil, Inc. Western Growers Foundation Westside Supply Mr. and Mrs. Kevin M. Wilds* Judy Willard Bertha A. Willshaw Scott G. Wilson* Tom & Jeannie Wixon Kandi A. Wojewoda Donna Woodson Woolf Farming Worth Farms Mr. and Mrs. Steven Wright* Mr. and Mrs. Scott Young* Joseph V. Zalasky Mr. and Mrs. Harry Zinser * Denotes employees, former employees & retirees ** Denotes members of the WHCCD Board of Trustees
Robert Tse, a California economic development officer for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, visited Farm of the Future in June. Left to right: Clint Cowden, interim director of Farm of the Future; Tse; Carole Goldsmith, president of West Hills College Coalinga; and Stu Van Horn, vice chancellor of educational services and workforce development.
Help Support Our Farm Endowment During the last decade, the Agriculture and Industrial Science Department at the Farm of the Future at West Hills College Coalinga has focused on developing an academic and applied agricultural program that meets the needs of our students and area grower operations. The Allen family gift of 213 acres combined with $3 million in federal and state grants and some $25 million in state and local general obligation bond funds have been used to construct the foundation of a state-of-the-art modern working agricultural facility. The next step forward for this program is to provide the academic and financial support needed to sustain the training and employment needs of the local production agricultural industry. The college, with the assistance of the West Hills Community College Foundation, has set a goal to establish an endowment fund in the amount of $5 million. This fund will have two purposes: • to support 40 full-time ag students with a scholarship each year, up to a total of 80 full-time students majoring in agriculture and related courses in a given year • to provide operational dollars to the farm whenever state dollars are not sufficient to provide for instruction The students enrolled in these programs will have a clear pathway developed to help them enter the workforce with a certificate, associate’s degree or transfer to a four-year college to complete their baccalaureate degree.
The following degree and certificate programs are already offered at the Farm of the Future: • Agriculture Science and Technology (Degree) • Precision Agriculture • Pest Control Adviser • Industrial Maintenance Technology • Welding Technology The Farm of the Future was started in 2001 with the gift of land in Coalinga. “It’s a natural location,” said Carole Goldsmith, president of WHCC, “The Valley is the most productive agricultural land in the United States. Agriculture is part of the history of our region and home to many of the largest farm operations in California.” The Farm of the Future includes shops, classrooms and a new rodeo arena, with room to grow. Classrooms are equipped with computers, software and simulation equipment to teach students to operate farm equipment and machinery. There’s a modern welding shop and fertile fields of row crops and nut trees, all watered, tended and harvested by students and faculty. A new solar field allows wells to be used for student enterprise projects. Sales of produce raised more than $134,000 in 2013-14 which offset some operation costs. To discuss how you can help, contact the Foundation at (559) 934-2134 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
NONPROFIT ORG. U.S. POSTAGE
FRESNO, CA PERMIT NO. 1920
9900 Cody Street Coalinga, CA 93210
When you support education, everybody wins. Jon Keller is a successful businessman who recognizes the value of education. He attended West Hills College in Coalinga and went on to Fresno State to earn a degree in marketing, then went to work for the family business which at that time was Keller Motors on Elm Street in Coalinga. In 1988, when his father passed away, Jon became the youngest General Motors dealer in the U.S. Over time, Jon saw opportunity in nearby Hanford and purchased the Buick, Pontiac, GMC, Chevrolet, Cadillac, Lincoln and Ford dealerships, which now operate out of 16 acres along Highway 198 as Keller Auto Center. Jon recently offered to donate $100 for each car sold during July to the West Hills Community College Foundation’s President’s Scholars Program. His gift of $15,000 will help local high school graduates attend their first two years of college at virtually no cost. We greatly appreciate the Keller family’s generosity and support of education.
For information on how you can help support education, see our website: www.whcgift.org, or contact: FrancesSquire@whccd.edu 9900 Cody St., Coalinga, CA 93210 (559) 934-2134 WestHillsCollege.com