City of Arvin pushes for satellite campus

Marcus Castro, Contributing Editor

A Bakersfield College satellite campus is in discussion, and Arvin City Council Member and BC graduate Jose Gurrola believes it will benefit the South Kern.

“We need more access to higher education, and more access means we need an actual facility and an institution in South Kern,” said Gurrola.

The idea of having a BC satellite campus came from Building Healthy Communities. Gurrola explained that they believe an institution of higher education would greatly benefit the South Kern.

Gurrola said that he hopes that it will become more of a reality rather than an idea.

“I think that it’s something that needs to move forward because there’s a significant population in South Kern that may be able to take advantage of this. They’re not being serviced as well as they can be by the college district,” said Gurrola.

According to Gurrola, there are the right people in place on the city and community college district side to make a satellite campus happen.

Gurrola also credits the community support for making the possibility for a satellite campus a higher vision than it once was.

According to Gurrola, the addition of a BC satellite campus in Arvin will promote a college-growing culture, not just in Arvin but in all of South Kern.

He explained that very few people in South Kern get degrees or get jobs that pay enough to start a family. He said that the potential for a community that has a college-growing culture can change that.

Gurrola said that the satellite campus would improve all of the other educational institutions in Arvin and the South Kern (elementary, middle and high schools).

He explained that the economy will improve as well.

“It’s going to improve the local and South Kern economy. It’s going to help with economic development through the workforce,” said Gurrola.

People in the community can become more marketable with the addition of a satellite campus.

Gurrola said, “It’ll give anybody in South Kern an opportunity to learn new skills, get a new degree or trade to make themselves more marketable to employers.”