Bakersfield College receives accreditation for the next seven years

BC’s main entrance lawn.

Katalina Quintanilla, Editor-in-Chief

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Bakersfield College went through a week-long process during the fall 2018 semester in order to receive accreditation for the next seven years. President Sonya Christian received news that BC passed the accreditation.

The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) acknowledged BC with three Commendations and one Commendation for the District. There were no compliance and improvement recommendations.

“To ensure quality, California community colleges must meet a set of standards set forth by the ACCJC. We prove we meet these standards by writing and submitting an Institutional Self-Evaluation Report which contains our narrative response to each standard and hundreds of items of evidence that prove we actually meet the standard in practice,” Director of Student Success and Equity Lesley Bonds said.

According to the AAJC’s Reaffirmation letter, BC earned three Commendations for exceptional leadership and active engagement to student’s learning, proactive outreach to its students in the rural portions, and exemplary professional development initiatives. The district also received a Commendation for its establishment of fiscal stability and financial transparency.

Bakersfield College developed new strategies with institutional leaders to help create an environment that provides resources for student’s success. The Guided Pathways was a framework that BC prepared for students. The objective was to build an outreach relationship with local high schools, producing completion coaching teams and data coaches to support student success.

Through the Rural Initiatives program, BC extended its outreach to the rural portions of its 5,000 sq mile service area. Communities like McFarland, Arvin, Wasco, Shafter, and Delano will benefit from the Initiatives with classes and support services at the sites to help build a foundation for college-bound


Finally, BC also earned praise for offering a variety of training for students, scholarships for employee attendance at conferences, and providing on-hands streamed workshops guarantee maximum accessibility.

A team of faculty, staff, and administrators from other community colleges read the report, reviewed the evidence, and then visited the campus to interview people.

“As a department chair and member of the Assessment Committee I was asked to prepare to be interviewed on three occasions during the Accreditation visit,” said Communication department chair Helen Acosta.

“They were coming to BC to learn about how we serve students so they could take our best practices home with them and help us in any areas where we need help,” Acosta said.

“At the conclusion of our peer evaluation visit, the team submitted to the Commission a report with three commendations to the college, 1 commendation to the Kern Community College District, and no recommendations for compliance or improvement,” explained Bond, “Not only is this a rare feat in education, it means that Bakersfield College will not need to submit another report or participate in another peer evaluation visit for seven years because we adequately demonstrated that we meet the high standards set forth by the Commission.”