Latino Life: Fresno City College offers new opportunities off campus

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- You can take college courses without leaving your neighborhood. Fresno City College is now offering Neighborhood Campuses at Edison High School and Sunnyside High School.

Fresno City College President Dr. Carole Goldsmith and Fresno City College Public Information Officer Kathy Bonilla were recent guests on Latino Life. They sat down with host Vanessa Vasconcelos and shared details on exciting opportunities at Edison and Sunnyside. They also welcome the community to attend two upcoming events on the Fresno City College campus.

Neighborhood Campus classes at Sunnyside begin August 27, 2018, and classes at Edison begin on August 28, 2018. Registration at Sunnyside High is Monday, August 20, 5:00-7:30pm. Registration at Edison High is Tuesday, August 21, 5:00-7:30PM. Get more information here.

Vanessa: Tell us a little bit about these Neighborhood Campuses. I mean, where are they, and what's the purpose behind them?

Dr. Carole Goldsmith: Well, the purpose -- it's really extending the vision that we've had for the last 100 years, and that's to serve our community.

We believe that partnering with our community and our students, we can really transform lives through education. So, we've been excited about working with Bob Nelson and all

the good folks at Fresno Unified. So, we're expanding our offerings to two very prominent high schools --Edison High School and Sunnyside High School, as well as we have an exciting

partnership with Fresno Pacific University, as well, in North Fresno.

Vanessa: Wow. Now, can anyone sign up for these classes?

Kathy Bonilla: Yes, classes are open to anybody, and that's the reason why we're out there, is for the neighborhood people to really feel welcome to come and attend a Fresno City College class.

That way, they don't have to come all the way to the campus if they don't want to, but it's right there in their own neighborhood.

And we're offering unique classes to each site. So, for instance, one class might have a hip-hop dance class. The other would have a folklórico dance class. So, there are a little different

offerings at each location, to give them a good variety of classes to attend.

Vanessa: And let's get into that variety, though. What kinds of classes will be offered?

Carole Goldsmith: Sure. Well, at Sunnyside High School, we're offering a little bit of everything. So, we want to make sure we have career technical offerings, as well as general education and

just some fun, college-level classes. As Kathy talked about, we have hip-hop dance. We also have graphics and a photography class, intro to both health careers and intro to business.

And I believe we also have a communications and an English class, as well. I know there's gonna be a counseling class there, as well.

>> So, some of those classes will be at the other site, as well, but at Edison we're also gonna be offering guitar, human-resources classes, intro to health careers.

And so it's a little of each at the campuses, but then something unique.

Vanessa: That's exciting, I mean, a big step forward. How does it feel kind of getting this all in motion for this upcoming school year?

>> It's exciting. When you step on campus, I mean, you can really feel the excitement and the electricity in the air.

It's really a magical time of year. And we're so excited about offering these classes in our community.

Especially with, you know, the new West Fresno campus coming on a couple years, we want to start having those classes in the community now, and this is a great first step.

Vanessa: And CityFest is coming up. I know it's a lot of fun 'cause I've emceed it a couple of times. Tell our viewers a little bit about what they can expect this year.

Carole Goldsmith: Well, we've been doing it for four years, and Kathy knows a lot about it. She's been sitting on the committee for four years.

Kathy Bonilla: So, it's really exciting. It's a lot of festivities. There's food and there are drinks. There will be wine and beer companies there -- vendors there

showing off their wares. Dancing -- this year, we have '80s tribute band Max Headroom, a local band. They'll be providing the music for the dancing.

And so you get a souvenir cup to take with you. Tickets are only $35, and it's on September 21st.

>> And the best part about it -- you can come and have a great time, support your local breweries, support your local wineries, but also support local students.

So, this is going towards scholarship, as well. So, it's a great time, and it's a wonderful event.

Vanessa: And I'm seeing the video right now. It's a beautiful backdrop, Old Administration Building. Let's talk about just using that, you know, the backdrop to have

this party.

>> Well, the Old Administration Building is a jewel at Fresno City College. It's over 100 years old. So, we renovated it about 10 years ago, and so now we want to

show it off as much as we can. And in the evening, with the lighting and just the festivity, it's a beautiful campus, a beautiful part of the campus to

come and enjoy this kind of event.

>> And so many people fell in love there, too. I mean, we hear it every year, where people will come back and visit, you know, their alma mater and talk about the time

they came to Fresno City College. So, so many people started their careers there and fell in love, so we encourage them to come back.

Vanessa: Actually, I did meet a couple last year that actually have that exact same story. Something that I love about that, though -- you get a little

taste of what going to Fresno City College is like. You also have an open house, though, coming up.

>> We do. We're really excited about it. And it's on October 13th. And this is gonna be an opportunity for the entire community to come and see what's

going on at Fresno City College. We'll be able to have any of our buildings open. They'll be able to meet with the faculty.

There will be some live demonstrations. The Old Administration Building, of course, will be open. Our library will be open. And a few other things.

Kathy: We'll have live demonstrations. Academic departments will be there. We also have a special musician coming, Patrick Contreras, who

is an FCC alumnus. And so he'll be performing. And it's really -- Our past open houses have been really concentrated on high-school students.

This one is we're opening up the whole campus for everybody, the community, parents, anybody who has any interest in coming to visit the campus.

And you were talking about the Old Administration Building. And when you come onto our campus and you see buildings like that and our library, you

get that feeling of a real old-time university. And it's just epic to see and to be part of.

>> I think it's important for viewers to know -- and I know you know this fact -- but Fresno City College is California's first community

college. So it's really where the innovation started. And we're incredibly proud of it. And I think everybody in the valley should feel proud of that

the institution, as well. So, we're opening up the doors. We hope all your viewers will come and visit us. We know that an event in Fresno would not be the same without

some taco trucks, so we're gonna have some food vendors. Many of them are Fresno City College alumni, as well, so we're pretty excited about that.

Vanessa: Well, thank you.

>> Oh, I was just gonna add that the event is free to attend, and those who come in the morning can get free tickets to our football game that afternoon.

Vanessa: Ah, fantastic! Well, thank you both so much for joining us.
Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.