Bakersfield College

Equity in Action

BC Levan Center; Thu., April 23, 2015

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Bakersfield College was pleased to host a conference on Thursday, April 23, 2015, focused on principles and best practices of student equity, academic excellence, diversity and inclusion. The conference provided a collaborative and unique opportunity for faculty, staff, administrators and the community to put equity into action.

The conference agenda includes deliberate engagement and courageous conversations exploring the definition, application and practice of equity, both individually and collectively. With an emphasis on student success, we will identify how participants and stakeholders can collaborate as a community around excellence, equity, and diversity, which in turn supports inclusion and institutional transformation at all service levels to close achievement gaps among historically disadvantaged and disproportionately impacted students.


Conference Information

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Conference Schedule

» Download Conference Program

8:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. Registration and Continental Breakfast
9:00 a.m. - 9:15 a.m. Opening and Welcome
9:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

Keynote Address: Dr. Dan Arvizu
Topic: Equity and Opportunity in Today's Knowledge Economy
Synopsis: The science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) knowledge divide is both a source and a symptom of the equity gap. This talk explores today's changing workforce landscape and the increasing value of STEM knowledge and skills to a wide range of jobs, including jobs not traditionally understood as STEM. It highlights the opportunities open to those with STEM skills and explores the respective roles of government, education institutions, and industry in enabling and strengthening these career opportunities for all individuals in the United States. In particular, it explores the vital role community colleges and the National Science Foundation can play in redressing the STEM equity gap for communities traditionally underrepresented in STEM.

» Download Dr. Arvizu's Presentation

10:30 a.m. - 10:45 a.m. Break
10:45 a.m. - 12:00 noon

Keynote Address: Dr. J. Goosby Smith
Topic: Community Colleges and Inclusion
Synopsis: As the higher education landscape becomes more competitive, diverse, and complex issues of both diversity and inclusion become even more critical in their importance, Smith will present an evidence-based model of inclusion along with ways that community colleges are uniquely poised to contribute even more meaningfully to society by creating inclusive campus climates and classrooms.

» Download Dr. Goosby Smith's Presentation (Keynote)

» Download Dr. Goosby Smith's Presentation (Book Talk - Wednesday Evening)

12:00 noon - 1:00 p.m. Networking Lunch and Roundtable Discussions; Student Luncheon w/ J. Goosby Smith
1:00 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.

Breakout Sessions

Session 1: Faculty/Staff Panel - Providing Culturally Sensitive Instruction and Services to Students
Odella Johnson, Facilitator
Anna Poetker, Patrick O'Neill, Richard McCrow, Victoria Coffee and David Moton, Panelists
Community College faculty and staff are situated to serve a student population that, some report, will be 95% students of color by 2020.  In order to facilitate student success, we as leaders have an unique opportunity to individually and collectively  identify and share effective practices and/or processes to create an equitable learning experience that is culturally aware, sensitive, and inclusive.  Our panel presenters will focus on sharing effective practices for service and instructional areas.   
Location: Levan Center

Session 2: Micro-Aggressions and Unintended Biases
Corny Rodriguez and Lora Larkin, Facilitators
Identifying and minimizing Micro-Aggression and Unintended Biases in instruction and Student Services. And creating and promoting “Healthy Conversations” on Campus on issues related to Equity and Inclusion.
Location: B4

Session 3: Call It What You Want
Bryan Hirayama, Facilitator
In this workshop, we will explore subtle and blatant labeling practices. The way that students are labeled and categorized and how instructors are labeled by themselves and others potentially affects the college experience. This workshop hopes to expose the importance and dangers of labeling as colleges work to embrace an equity, versus a deficit, mindset.
Location: B5

2:15 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Break
2:30 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.

Student Panel & Application Discussion: The Story of Our Students
Synopsis: Five BC students from various walks of life will share their personal stories of getting to where they are today. In the format of PechaKucha presentation, the students will first share how their upbringing mixed with their identities and their educational careers at BC to help carry them to a brighter future. Audience members will then have an opportunity to ask the students questions regarding their perspectives on diversity and inclusion on the BC campus. 

3:45 p.m. Conference Adjournment



» Download Conference Program

 Dr. Dan E. Arvizu

» Download Dr. Arvizu's Presentation

Dan E. Arvizu has served as the Director and Chief Executive of the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado, and President of Alliance for Sustainable Energy, LLC since January 2005.  He is also an Executive Vice President with MRIGlobal, headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri.  He was appointed by two successive U.S. presidents to serve six-year terms on the National Science Board, which governs the National Science Foundation and advises the President and Congress on science policy.  He is presently serving as Chairman.  He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Public Administration.

Prior to joining NREL, Dr. Arvizu was a chief technology officer with CH2M HILL Companies, Ltd.  Before joining CH2M he was an executive with Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico, leading organizations in energy technologies, material science, and technology commercialization.  He started his career and spent four years at the AT&T Bell Telephone Laboratories.

Dr. Arvizu serves on a number of boards, panels and advisory committees including the American Council on Renewable Energy Advisory Board, the Singapore International Advisory Panel on Energy, the Colorado Renewable Energy Authority Board of Directors, and the Stanford Precourt Institute for Energy Advisory Council.

Dr. Arvizu has a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from New Mexico State University, and a Master of Science and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University.


 Dr. J. Goosby Smith: "Community Colleges and Inclusion"

» Download Dr. Goosby Smith's Presentation (Keynote)

» Download Dr. Goosby Smith's Presentation (Book Talk - Wednesday Evening)

J. Goosby Smith received her M.B.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio and her B.S. in Computer Science from Spelman College in Atlanta, GA.  “Dr. J.” is Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior and Management at Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA. Her research focuses on workplace inclusion. She is co-author of Beyond Inclusion: Workplace Interconnectedness, Energy, and Resilience (2014).

She is also a public speaker and consultant who specializes in face-to-face and computer-mediated education and intervention. She specializes in coaching, small group dynamics, strategic diversity and inclusion retreats, and train-the-trainer program designs. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, American Mensa, National Alumnae Association of Spelman College – Los Angeles, United Negro College Fund Inter Alumni Council of Los Angeles, and the National Society of Black Engineers.

She is a former disaster readiness trainer with American Red Cross of Ventura County and a former board member of Reachable Heights and Interface Children and Family Services, to not for profit organizations.



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Planning Committee

Planning Team:

  • Odella Johnson
  • Corny Rodriguez
  • Oliver Rosales
  • Vikki Coffee
  • Primavera Arvizu

Logistics Team:

  • Tarina Perry
  • Somaly Boles
  • Amber Chiang
  • Kristin Rabe
  • Jason Kobely
  • Mary Jo Pasek
Kern Community College District