Courtesy of Gavilan College President Kathleen Rose:
Flag Day in the United States commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States on June 14, 1777 by resolution of the Second Continental Congress. At Gavilan College, Flag Day was very quiet, but as I walked across campus for a meeting, I noticed our flag and thought about how important it is that we have it displayed proudly each day, along with our California flag at a central location on campus. Earlier this year you may remember that we also displayed the rainbow flag for a few hours on National Coming Out Day, and as a result, are creating a policy for when we can display symbolic flags in the future on campus. It is important that all groups have the opportunity to be recognized, just as it was in 1777 when the US flag was adopted.
June 17 is the start of Summer Session at Gavilan College. As summer begins, I wanted to share some impressive information about our graduating class of 2019 and how we contributed to the statewide numbers of students who earned degrees or certificates. Here at Gavilan 1478 degrees and certificates were awarded this year. California Community Colleges Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley this week noted that more than 142,000 students expected to earn a degree or certificate this academic year, pushing the college system toward a new record for the number of students earning credentials.
“This is a testament to the tremendous talent of our diverse students and the hard work and dedication of faculty and staff at our colleges. This further demonstrates that the community college system is the most powerful force for social and economic mobility in California,” said Chancellor Oakley.
Put in perspective, the number of students earning credentials this year is the largest of any system of higher education in the country and is roughly equivalent to the number of people who live in the city of Fullerton.
Increasing the number of students who earn a credential is a key goal of the California Community Colleges’ Vision for Success. The strategic guide lays out ambitious goals for increasing transfer to four-year colleges and universities, closing achievement gaps for historically underrepresented students, and increasing the number of students who gain jobs in their fields of study.
Students who complete an associate degree more than double their annual pre-degree earnings after two years in the workforce and nearly triple their pre-degree earnings after five years in the workforce, according to data from Salary Surfer, a California Community Colleges’ online wage tracking tool. About 48 percent of students who graduated with an associate degree annually earned at least $56,000 five years after receiving their award. Students who complete a certificate nearly double their pre-degree earnings after five years in the workforce. And, about 44 percent of students who graduated with a certificate annually earned at least $56,000 five years after graduating.
All reasons to again celebrate Gavilan’s graduates and welcome our students back this summer who continue working towards their academic goals. For those of you considering a degree or certificate at Gavilan…it’s not too late! Classes are available this summer and fall, check out our class schedule information online and see a counselor for more information today. Enjoy your summer and I look forward to seeing you on campus.