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Fresno City College is answering the call to action by California Community College State Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley to help fight racism by making a commitment to conduct a deliberate internal review of the college experience for our African American students and other facets of our institution.
On April 22, 2020, several Fresno City College administrators, faculty and staff attended the African American Virtual Townhall which was convened with over 1,000 California community college practitioners, policymakers, and national scholars to discuss financial aid reform, housing, food, technology and transportation insecurities, impacts of COVID-19 on African American students, and policy recommendations to support this student population. Members of the Fresno City College Leadership Response team have responded to this call to action.
During the May 21 FCC Leadership Response Team meeting, it was announced that the college would form several task force groups over the summer to address:
The overall goal is anchored in the tenets of accreditation—to focus on self-examination and effective planning. Additionally, cultural competency and conversations around racial disparities are not new to the college. The college is leaning into the moment to become better, and to look at new ways of teaching and serving our students.
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020–21 state budget development occurred under extraordinarily unusual conditions. This task force’s charge is led by Omar Gutierrez, Vice President of Administrative Services, and will develop guidance for the college as we plan for reductions of the state budget, as well as craft a framework for the use of institutional CARES funding. This critical task force has stake holders from all constituency groups and is pivotal in the planning for re-opening the college in terms of funding, supplies and equipment needed to meet new health protocols.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the college was forced to migrate to remote services and online learning. This workgroup is being led by Don Lopez, Vice President of Instruction, and will focus on the safe re-opening of the campus and restoration of operations. Their charge is to review state and local public health guidance to consider and plan for the phased re-opening of the college. The Task Force focuses on these key issues and recommendations:
The Governance Restructure Implementation Task Force is working throughout the summer to develop a plan for full implementation of a redesigned equity-focused Fresno City College integrated governance structure. Task force members include representatives from all constituent groups including faculty, classified professionals and administration, as well as student equity, guided pathways, program review, and institutional research. It is chaired by Cyndie Luna, Dean, Fine, Performing & Communication Arts and the FCC accreditation liaison officer.
The foundation of the redesign is the result of years of work by the Strategic Planning Task Force alongside college wide constituent groups. The plan is designed to be inclusive and focused on effective and meaningful communication. Special attention will be paid to the experience of adapting governance during the campus closure and how the college’s ability to respond quickly and effectively in a participatory manner. The newly designed governance structure will be grounded in student equity and support the successful implementation of guided pathways while meeting the accreditation standards.
Some taskforce activities include development of draft operating agreements, meeting calendars that allow for greater participation, a governance structure manual, an exit plan for current committees, and a plan for assessing the new structure. The task force will work towards a final recommendation to Dr. Goldsmith in late summer with a Fall 2020 roll out that includes a campus wide communication plan.
The Fresno City College Task Force on the Evolution of the Police Academy Program is part of the college’s ongoing commitment to working collaboratively with our community to enhance the economic and social development of the region. This task force is being facilitated by Dr. Robert Pimentel, Vice President of Educational Services and Institutional Effectiveness.
The primary charge of this task force is to provide recommendations on how the college can improve current procedures and program practices related to the Call to Action issued by State Chancellor Oakley. It is important to acknowledge the internal and external environment as part of the context for our work and recognize the factors that were considered in the development of the charge for this task force. The need to enhance diversity in policing is not new. However, the need to successfully address this issue has never been greater.
This task force will focus on making recommendations on addressing several areas including prevention, education, advocacy, and reporting and response. It will also make recommendations on the continuation of curriculum improvement, addressing the ever-evolving issues of race, discrimination, diversity, and equity in police departments. The 20-member Task Force includes a broad representation of the college, law enforcement agencies, students, social justice leaders, community mentors, and other key constituencies.
The Fresno City College Task Force on Increasing Racial and Ethnic Diversity in the Associate Degree in Nursing Program will be led by Dr. Lataria Hall, Vice President of Student Services.
Fresno City College has the largest community college associate degree Registered Nursing program in California and the second largest program in the nation. It is designed to educate students at the basic technical level of nursing practice, obtain an Associate in Science degree, be eligible to take the NCLEX (National Nursing Licensing Examination) and work in a structured health care setting.
In 2005, the California Nurse Education Initiative was established, and FCC Nursing Program played an integral part in addressing the nursing shortage. The focus of the initiative has been to expand and maintain enrollment capacity, focus on assessment, remediation and retention strategies to decrease nursing attrition rates. The FCC program was one of two programs spotlighted in the 2019 Nursing Educational Programs Report issued by the California Community College Chancellor’s Office. The report provides information on funding for our nursing program, admission criteria, statistics on student attrition and license exam passage rates, among other data.
The need to enhance diversity and expand overall capacity in nursing is onging. In the fall of 2017, the first cohort of student went through the revised multi-criteria screening process. In the 2019 Nursing Educational Programs Report, the findings included that the cohort represented “a younger population of students enrolled in spring 2018 through spring 2019, with an age grouping of 20 to 39 years.” Additionally, “the cohort remained stable with 80% female and 20% male students enrolled.”
The report and supporting data illustrated that “the FCC nursing student have not been disproportionality impacted with the multi-criteria system.” CCCCO Nursing Report
The primary charge of this task force is to provide recommendations to the President on how we may continue to improve our college procedures and practices related to the American Nurses Association (ANA) 2020-2023 “Strategic Goal 4: Enable Transformational Capabilities Through Operational Excellence, Objective 4.2 Promote equity, diversity and inclusion throughout the profession and across the ANA Enterprise to encourage culturally informed care and workplace practices.”
The 20-member Task Force broadly represents the college, nursing profession, students and other key constituencies.