STAFF EDITORIAL: We no longer have one of us
April 18, 2012
Filed under Opinions
Bakersfield College is a school deep-rooted in tradition and loyalty. We are a community – a collective of people from all walks of life – all believing that education is of the upmost importance.
That is why we must all take notice at what is going on in the administration sector of our school.
That loyalty and tradition will not be found in the president’s office these days. Now that former BC president Greg Chamberlain stepped down, and interim president Robert Jensen took over, we no longer have someone making critical decisions with the BC community at heart.
Jensen has been brought in during one of the most gloomy economic times in our school’s history, and unlike a permanent president, will be able to wipe his hands clean after this semester without worrying about the consequences of his vital decisions.
There is no way one can tell us Jensen wasn’t brought in to make critical decisions on what to cut, knowing full well he wouldn’t be around when those cuts start to take affect.
Kern Community College District chancellor Sandra Serrano said in a March 21 interview with the Rip that Jensen, “was brought in to provide an assessment of what we’re seeing as what must be done within the next 18-25 months.”
We know exactly what this means. This means that Jensen is their sitting duck. He was brought in to make the tough decisions and not worry about the storm.
The budget is obviously the main problem for BC at the moment, but don’t forget there is a major debate going on at BC about on-campus tobacco use.
The BC family recently voted for a 100-percent smoke-free campus, and the power is all in Jensen’s hands to carry out such a policy.
There might be a few that think this is good for BC, but we are not part of that group. To have the head of our college making these monumental decisions on the budget, and on-campus tobacco use, without regard for the future, is scary. We all need to take notice of this situation and speak out against it.
At the moment, there doesn’t seem to be a clear solution to this problem, and very little people are even aware that this problem exists.
Jensen says all the right things, as most administration leaders do, but keep this in mind: when we are all dealing with the larger classroom headcounts, the small number of classes on the schedule and the hardship that higher fees and less financial aid will bring, Jensen will be gone; he will be back to his retirement.
This is the master plan our administration is working out, so that when the student body finally stands up, there will be no one on campus to blame.
Maybe this is a safeguard for the new president coming in – to make all the major cuts before he or she steps onto the hallowed BC campus – but there is no real way for us to know.
The way we see it, president Jensen is wrong for BC, not because of his ability to lead, or his ability to make smart decisions, but because he will make narrow-sighted decisions without worries of the repercussions of the future.