City College welcomes faculty, staff at Convocation

Campus president, administrators share vision for spring

Convocation screenshot

City College President Ricky Shabazz shared themes for the upcoming semester on Convocation live stream. Zoom screenshot

Gabriel Schneider, Managing Editor

San Diego City College live-streamed a spring semester kickoff event on YouTube and shared its plans for the upcoming year.

Convocation is usually a formal event at the start of each semester with a large audience gathered at the Seville Theatre. It was forced to be held over Zoom for the second time due to the pandemic.

President Ricky Shabazz along with other campus leaders gave words of hope and direction for the faculty, staff and students of City College.

“We are going to be okay,” Shabazz said. “We are going to stay true to our core values of community.”

Students are not likely to return to campus for this spring semester but may be able to return for the summer semester, according to Shabazz.

The campus is also trying to address student needs so the administration is establishing a WiFi area near the A building patio, which should be finished by the middle of spring. 

“We are continuing to be committed to social justice, education equity and our students,” Shabazz said. 

Shabazz shared that the San Diego Community College District will receive $2 million for cost-of-living adjustments (COLA) and $1.2 million for apportionment funding for growth from the state.

In addition, former President Donald Trump and Congress approved a second stimulus in late December 2020, for higher education, which will result in City College receiving $5-6 million toward the school and $3 million for student aid. 

During a break from the updates, Denise Whisenhunt, Vice President of Student Affairs, started an open conversation called CityTalks. This allowed faculty to share how they persevered through this pandemic and how they can help their students. 

“I use a couple of apps to get through the day,” Whisenhunt said. “One is Headspace,” adding that meditation is important to her. 

To finish the convocation presentation, City College had a guest speaker, Dr. Enrique G. Murillo, Jr., who described the issues that campuses are facing across the country.

Murillo explains how COVID-19 has been difficult on everyone but it has disproportionately affected minorities in job loss and death rates. He pointed out that education equity has always been a problem but has been exposed due to the pandemic.

“Education is a right, not a privilege,” Murillo said. “It’s (an) economic imperative and the civil rights issue of our generation.”

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