In recognition of Bakersfield College’s significant work to advance student completion and workforce readiness, the college has been awarded $3 million in Title V funding to catalyze efforts to address disparities in quality health care access throughout Kern County. Bakersfield College will leverage grant dollars to bolster existing efforts designed to address shortages in the health care workforce made more visible due to the COVID-19 pandemic. By expanding the college’s footprint of health sciences pathways through Early College, transfer pathway agreements, and strong partnerships with health care providers and community organizations, BC will systematically strengthen Kern’s education-to-workforce pipeline while improving health outcomes for local residents.
This award brings Bakersfield College’s total federal grant dollars awarded in the past two weeks to $4.3 million following the recent announcement of the Education Pathway TRIO Teacher Preparation grant.
“Bakersfield College has always had a focus of rising to meet the needs of our community by offering targeted programs which prepare students to be successful, while also giving back to the community we call home. In recent years, the college has focused on improving student efficiency, bolstering support and vital programs, while reducing costs for students and taxpayers,” said BC President, Dr. Sonya Christian. “BC is proud to be a Hispanic Serving Institution serving first generation, Hispanic students, and all who seek higher education. Our BC Renegades of today will be the game changers of education and public health of tomorrow.”
Kern County’s labor market highlights various healthcare professions are among both the fastest and largest growing occupations. Since 2015, our region has experienced a 23.9% growth in the industry. Bakersfield College is well prepared to play a pivotal role in addressing both the community need for more healthcare professionals and the student need for more accessible pathways to degrees that lead to well paying jobs.