Tag Archives: Los Angeles Community Colleges District

Happy Retirement for Abbie Patterson

24 Jun

abbie pattersonOn Saturday, June 20, 2015, in the penthouse ballroom overlooking the south bay–at the Doubletree Hilton in Torrance, California–family, colleagues, and friends of Abbie Patterson celebrated her 37 years in education.  Corey Rodgers, dean of admissions and records of Harbor College was the master of ceremonies.  Pastor Charles Williams from Grace Chapel gave the invocation and Dr. Adriana Barrera, Los Angeles Community Colleges District (LACCD) Deputy Chancellor, gave greetings from chancellor, Dr. Francisco Rodriguez.  Dr. Otto Lee, president of Los Angeles Harbor College welcomed the guests, and LACCD Trustee, Mona Field, brought greetings from the Board of Trustees.  Susan McMurray gave a presentation from the Los Angeles Harbor College Academic Senate.   Dr. Regina Smith, vice president of student services at Los Angeles City College shared her experience working with and being mentored by Abbie and gave a wonderful dedication on behalf of the chief student services officers of the LACCD.  Other vice presidents, including Kaneesha Tarrant from Los Angeles Trade-Technical College, joined Abbie on stage in a warm tribute.

There was a modern dance performance by Bria Briggs and a lively song tribute by the Supreme Three:  Dr. Yasmin Delahoussaye, retired vice chancellor of LACCD; Leige Henderson, retired LACCD administrator; and Alaina Patterson, Abbie’s daughter.  They shut the house down in their metallic gold cocktail dresses.

Mercy Yanez gave words from the Teamsters Local 911 and Marco Marrufo gave a moving tribute to Abbie on behalf of the Harbor College Associated Students Organization.  Dr. Linda Cole and Paulette Bailey from Los Angeles Trade Technical College presented Abbie with a Lori Hunter custom-made card and gave greetings from Trade Tech.  Dr. Cole also recited the nine fruits of the spirit that Abbie exemplified.  Dr. Ayesha Randall, interim vice president of the LACCD Black Faculty & Staff Association, thanked Abbie for her years of service to the district and for her past and continual mentorship.

Abbie, the ninth child of twelve, had many of her siblings in the audience who also shared loving tributes to their sister.  Her daughter, Alaina, read a poem dedicated to her mother and Abbie’s husband, Rodney, gave a warm tribute to his wife and shared the story of how the two met.  The audience was treated to a special video presentation by the Delahoussaye family that highlighted Abbie’s life through pictures and music.

Abbie ended the evening by recognizing many of the special guests in the audience and sharing little anecdotes of each.  The evening ended with music and dancing.

Biography of Abbie Patterson

Since 2003, Abbie Patterson has served as the vice president of Student Services at Los Angeles Harbor College in Wilmington, California.  She has worked in education for over 37 years, beginning in 1977 as an assistant recruitment coordinator at California State University, Los Angeles.  In 1978, Abbie was hired as a counselor for the Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOP & S) office at West Los Angeles College.  In 1984, she became the director of the program.

Abbie’s administrative career began with her selection as an assistant dean of Student Activities at Los Angeles Trade Technical College in 1987.  Over the next sixteen years, Abbie steadily moved up the administrative ranks at Trade Tech, becoming an associate dean of Admissions and Records, senior dean of Student Services in 1991, and later receiving a title change to Vice President of Students Services in 1999.  Abbie was very active for seven years in the Chief Student Services Officers (CSSO) statewide association as the past president, president, vice president, and region representative.

Abbie enjoys working with community college students, especially first generation college students and those who have been given a second chance to complete their career goals.  She also admires the thirst for knowledge from these populations.  As a vice president, Abbie was able to provide students with access to services, including admissions and records, counseling, financial aid, accommodations for students with disabilities, athletics, math and English assessment, orientation to college, and the student heal center.  In addition to serving the needs of Harbor College students, Abbie served the college community in her role as senior manager where she reviewed campus policies and procedures, budgets, and planning for completion of new campus buildings funded by bond monies.

After graduating from Los Angeles High School Abbie completed her bachelors of arts degree in psychology in 1975 from Pomona College.  In her senior year at Pomona, Abbie won the Honnold Graduate Fellowship, which she used to attend the George Peabody College of Education in the Vanderbilt University Graduate School located in Nashville, Tennessee.  In 1977, Abbie received an MS in Human Development Counseling.

Abbie has been married for over 31 years to her husband, Rodney, who is a retired community college political science instructor and former academic senate president.  They have three adult children–two sons and a daughter.  In Abbie’s spare time, she enjoys participating in community activities, reading novels, and traveling with her family.

California Community Colleges’ Smooth Pathway to HBCUs

20 Mar

HBCU PhotoIt has been a hard and long road to ensuring that students have a smooth transition from community colleges to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).  In 2008, led by Dr. Yasmin Delahoussaye,  previous president of Southwest College and former vice chancellor of the Los Angeles Community Colleges District, and under the guise of the African American Outreach Initiative (AAOI), created 9 articulation agreements for the following HBCUs: Albany State University, Clark Atlanta University, Fort Valley State University, Hampton University, Howard University, Morehouse College, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical University, Paine College, and Savannah State University.

More recently, Helen Young, Transfer Center and Honors Director at West Los Angeles Community College was part of the committee of the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office that worked over the past 18 months to form state-wide articulation agreements to form a pioneering Historically Black Colleges and Universities Transfer Admission Guarantee Program with the following 9 HBCUs:

Because of this hard work, students will now have two pathways to these HBCUs.  They can either complete :

  1. Thirty (30) CSU/UC (Cal State University/University of California) transferable units with a minimum 2.5 GPA
  2. An ADT (associate degree for transfer) degree with min. 2.5 GPA  (IGETC/CSU GE Breadth Certification) 

Because these agreements are intended for all 112 California Community Colleges (CCCs), they have been kept simple to ensure easy pathways for students. These agreements do not replace any specific articulation agreements (course-to-course or program) that a CCC might have with a HBCU currently.  Both Young and Delahoussaye who attended the signing ceremony in Sacramento, discussed the need to work on updating LACCD’s HBCU articulation agreements.   The AAOI has already begun working on that undertaking scheduled for this spring.

For more information, visit the California Community Colleges website here:  http://extranet.cccco.edu/HBCUTransfer.aspx.  You can download a flyer here:  http://extranet.cccco.edu/Portals/1/SSSP/HBCUTransfers/HBCU_Handout.pdf.  Also, go to extranet.cccco.edu/HBCUTransfer/Resources.aspx for information and instructions on how to download buttons and promote this new agreement to students on your website.Download this document about effectiveness of HBCUs on student success: http://www.usccr.gov/pubs/HBCU_webversion2.pdf.

2014 LACCD Black Graduation Celebration

4 Jun

blackgrad2014-2On Tuesday, June 3, 2014, the 2014 Los Angeles Community Colleges District Black Graduation Celebration took place at Cougar Field at Los Angeles Southwest College (LASC). This year’s theme was “A Cultural Celebration of Academic Achievement.”

This year’s committee was co-chaired by Dr. Tangelia Alfred and  Chauncine Stewart.  All nine of the Los Angeles Community Colleges District (LACCD) campuses were represented.  Los Angeles Southwest’s interim president, Dr. Yasmin Delahoussaye and LACCD interim chancellor, Dr. Adriana Barrera, welcomed the audience.  

The celebration began with the Dembrehrah West African Drum Ensemble leading the processional to Cougar Field.  Rhodesia Jackson, an LASC student, gave the libation.  Linda Cole, chaplain of the Los Angeles Community Colleges District Black Faculty and Staff Association (LACCD BFSA) gave the opening prayer.  Actress, performer, director, writer and activist, T’Keyah Crystal Keymah from In Living Color and That’s So Raven, led the Negro National Anthem.

Dr. Lawrence Bradford, LASC Vice President of Academic Affairs, spoke about the purpose of the Black Graduation Celebration.  There were words from LACCD Trustee, Mike Eng and ASO president and future LACCD student trustee, LaMont Jackson.  Dr. Ayesha Randall from Los Angeles Trade-Technical College introduced the keynote speaker, Dr. Corliss Bennett-McBride, the director of the Center for Black Cultural and Student Affairs at University of Southern California, who gave a spirited talk encouraging graduates to prepare for the next chapter of their lives. Continue reading

Juneteenth 2012 at Trade

21 Jun

Juneteenth is an annual observance on June 19th to remember when Union soldiers enforced the Emancipation Proclamation and freed all remaining slaves in Texas on June 19, 1865. This day is an opportunity for people to celebrate freedom and equal rights in the United States.  The Los Angeles Trade-Technical College Black Faculty & Staff Association (LATTC BFSA) celebrated its first annual Juneteenth event with a campus-wide potluck luncheon.  Over 90 faculty, staff, and administrators fellowshipped together over delicious soul food ranging from homemade dishes and store-bought favorites like fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, homemade soulful coleslaw, chili, catfish nuggets, and chicken salad.  For dessert there were favorites like red velvet cake, banana pudding, sweet potato pie, chocolate cake, peach cobbler, pineapple upside down cake, and fresh fruit.  Admission & Record’s Carolyn Walker even blessed the event with down home pork dishes like grilled pig feet, chitterlings (aka “chitlins”), collard greens and cabbage, and hot water cornbread!  Many of the guests remarked that once in a while, this kind of eating was acceptable.  But of course, with the high rates of chronic diseases in the African-American community, this kind of eating can’t be an everyday occurrence.  So guests were also talking about ways to burn off the good eats.  In preparing for her upcoming nuptials, Lori Hunter of EOP & S and other staff members amended their daily stair exercise workout to two trips up and down, instead of one trip.  Another guest suggested following his meal with some ginger and citrus fruit.  And to burn off more calories, guests danced to golden oldies deejayed by Dean Derek Majors.

The Trade-Tech Black Faculty & Staff Association organized the event with the leadership of Linda Cole, VP of LATTC BFSA and Toni Johnson, Secretary.

The event took place in the TE conference room and was decorated with United States and Juneteenth flags.  At each table, there was a bottle of red punch, the Juneteenth flag, and a laminated History of Juneteenth leaflet, a keepsake for guests.  During the event, several short Juneteenth videos played and a compilation of photos from early 1900s to the 2012 LACCD Black Graduation Celebration ran on the big screen.

“This is the kind of camaraderie that strengthens the ties between the faculty, staff, and administrators, and creates a wonderful and harmonious working environment,” Ayesha Randall, SLO Coordinator, remarked.  “This was a beautiful event.  This is the foundation of a unified team environment–something that definitely supports and indirectly positively affects our students’ success.”  For more photos from the event, visit this link.

The Etymology of “Picnic”

18 Jun

Several LATTC BFSA meetings ago, some members were concerned about using the term, “picnic” in describing our Juneteenth celebration.  Etymologists dismiss the claim that the word picnic derived from events in which blacks were lynched, and online sources like Snopes and Urban Legends support those claims.

However, the response from Dr. David Pilgrim, sociology professor and curator of Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia at Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Michigan, describes a different perspective.  He said that although “etymologists smugly dismiss the claim” that picnic began with the lynchings of black Americans, there is some truth in it, “as the lynchings of blacks often occurred in picnic-like settings.”  Read the whole response at  http://www.ferris.edu/jimcrow/question/jan04.htm and visit their archives for more interesting readings.

So, should we or should we not use the term?

Father’s Day at Trade

17 Jun

LA Trade Tech’s culinary arts graduate, Roosevelt Johnson, a GAIN/CalWorks participant and father of 4 sons, was the student speaker for the LATTC graduation, emcee for the Black History Month Village, and was featured on NBC on Friday, June 15, 2012 as one of their Fathers’ Day success stories.  Thanks to Linda Cole, LATTC GAIN/CalWorks director and LATTC BFSA vice president, who was instrumental in helping to bring light to this resilient individual.  Visit this link for the write up and the inspirational video.

Below, see the video that Ayesha Randall dedicated to all of the BFSA fathers:

 

 

2012 LACCD Black Graduation Celebration

7 Jun

On May 31, 2012, Los Angeles Trade-Technical College hosted the 2nd Annual Black Graduation Celebration.  Over 500 attendees came out to LACCD’s 2nd Annual Black Graduation Celebration held this year at LA Trade Tech College.  The Black Graduation Ceremony is a pre-commencement celebration to honor African American students who through unyielding determination have successfully completed their Associate’s degree from a college within the Los Angeles Community Colleges District.  The event recognizes their accomplishment and provides an opportunity for graduates to honor significant people who have helped them achieve their goal. Students are honored together in one setting, and their families also get the opportunity to celebrate their hard work and dedication. The ceremony reinforces the bonds of scholarship and extends the sense of community. The intimate ceremony is representative of African and African American culture and begins with a scriptural reading, libation ceremony, the singing of the Black National Anthem, and culminates with a Kente Stole drapings and certificate presentations.

This year, the Black Graduation Ceremony was held at Trade, but it was a district-wide gathering that encouraged the celebration of the black graduates throughout all campuses. Dr. Yasmin Delahoussaye, Vice Chancellor for Educational Programs and Institutional Effectiveness represented the district as graduating students were recognized and draped with kente stolls. Administrators, faculty, staff, and students were on hand to make the day even more special.  LA Trade Tech counselor Deborah Campbell was honored for her commitment to the LATTC Black Student Union and the 2012 Black Graduation, as well as her daily work on behalf of students.  The LACCD Black Faculty & Staff Association gave over $1,000 to selected graduates. Finally, everyone exited to the grassy area near Magnolia Hall for great food, fellowship, and jazz.  For more photos from this event, visit this link.