fire itnernship

Victorville Fire Department launches internship program with VVC

fire interns

Less than one year after coming online, the Victorville Fire Department has established a Fire Internship Program with Victor Valley College aimed at developing the next generation of firefighters to serve the Victorville community.

Graduates of Victor Valley College’s Firefighter I Academy are eligible to compete for six, one-year-long internships where they will work side-by-side with Victorville Firefighters.

The inaugural class of Victorville Fire interns includes Joey Dowling, Chase Dowty, Nick Farina, Duncan Harriman, Steven Odein, and Brandon Pound. All six interns enter the internship program as state-certified Firefighter I’s after graduating from the Victor Valley College Accredited Fire Academy.

fire intern

They will gain valuable hands-on work experience while continuing to earn college credits. Interns who successfully complete the program will be certified as Firefighter II making them more competitive for jobs in the fire service.

“We are proud of our Victorville Fire Department for delivering on its promise to develop this fire internship program, and we are grateful to Victor Valley College for partnering with us to ensure a pipeline of homegrown talent is available to serve our community as Victorville firefighters,” said Victorville Mayor, Gloria Garcia. “Programs like this not only strengthen our fire department, they help us build a strong Victorville.”

In the coming weeks, Victorville Fire will launch its Fire Explorer Program for high school students.

fire itnernship

“Victor Valley College Fire Technology is honored to partner with the Victorville Fire Department to enhance the career pathway for our Firefighter I Academy Graduates. The Fire Internship Program will ensure that the legacy of providing highly trained fire service professionals for our hometown fire department is carried well into the future,” said Heath Cohen, Victor Valley College Fire Technology Program Director.

Victorville Fire Explorers will be given an opportunity to learn about fire service careers, train with Victorville Firefighters, develop leadership skills, and participate in community-related events. Applications will be available at local high schools and City Hall in March. High School students and any applicant ages 15 to 21 are welcome to compete for 30 Fire Explorer positions.

fire intern

Victorville Fire personnel also mentor students through the Victorville Police & Fire Activity League (PFAL), which promotes fitness and discipline through its boxing league. PFAL plans to add additional sports like soccer and mixed martial arts in the coming months.

For additional information about the Victorville Fire Department and its various training programs, call Battalion Chief Washington at (760) 951-8722.

ribbon cutting

Community celebrates grand opening of VVC Student Services Center

ribbon cutting
Photo by Fabian Guillen

By Brian Woods

Victor Valley College celebrated the grand opening of the new, state-of-the-art Student Services Center on February 7. 

An audience of more than 300 attendees gathered outside the building’s entrance for the ribbon-cutting ceremony and plaque unveiling. The center previously had its soft opening on January 23. 

Grand opening
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Vice President of Student Services Dr. Karen Engelsen provided the opening statement, welcoming students, guests and distinguished speakers to the event. 

“This building celebrates our students,” Engelsen said. “VVC is your college … It’s the place where anybody with a desire can start.”

The Board of Trustees were seated on stage, alongside VVC Foundation members, the President’s Cabinet and Associated Study Body President Gabriel Kelvin. 

Grand opening
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Community leaders and elected officials were also in attendance, including San Bernardino County First District Supervisor Robert Lovingood and the mayors of Adelanto, Apple Valley, Hesperia and Victorville.

“It is the greatest honor of my entire career and life to be in this position … When I arrived here in January of 2019, this was just ground that had been broken… We watched this structure go up and become the beautiful building it is today,” said Superintendent/President Dr. Daniel Walden. “It is now the face of our college and this community.”

grand opening
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Former VVC Trustee Joe Range attended the event, receiving an honorary plaque in recognition of his years committed to the College. Range served from 2003 until 2012 and was a key advocate for the development of a “One-Stop” center. 

“He always had a vision” VVC Foundation Director Kirk Riding said of Range, before presenting him with an inscribed plaque on stage.

The 27,000-square-foot “One-Stop” center houses many departments in one convenient location, enhancing the student experience and streamlining essential services. Departments now located in the building include Admissions and Records, Assessments, the Bursar’s office, Counseling, EOPS, Financial Aid and the Transfer Center, among others.

SSC
Photo by Julio Manzo

The “One-Stop” features an open air environment, modern architecture and interactive, user-friendly technology available for student use. 

Representatives from the building’s design firm, DLR Group, also attended the ceremony. Touted as the new structural and symbolic “front door” to the campus, the building acts as an inviting entry plaza and central hub for students and visitors.

SSC
Photo by Julio Manzo

“From the very beginning of this project, our aim was to enrich the user experience on campus,” DLR designer Matthew Streed told the Victor Valley Daily Press. “Our design facilitates increased efficiencies related to the way students access services, and promotes opportunities for better collaboration… between students and staff members.”

The grand opening concluded with a closing statement from Walden and the ceremonial ribbon cutting by Range.

Grand opening
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Following the ceremony, Range’s wife, Cherie, thanked the college for making it “a very special day” for her husband.

“It was a vision that he worked on for years … a place that the students could go to for the beginning of their journey at VVC,” Cherie Range said. “This is a beautiful well-planned building.”

After the ribbon was cut, guests were then given guided tours of the new facility by VVC Rambassadors, student employees who assist, mentor and recruit students. A barbeque banquet and social mixer was also provided by the VVC Restaurant Management program. 

The Student Services Center is now entirely open and operational, in time for the start of the Spring semester which begins February 18. 

SSC
Photo by Julio Manzo
SSC
Photo by Julio Manzo
Students using laptops on campus

Spring into action: Find a last-minute class at VVC

Students using laptops on campus

By Brian Woods

The spring semester is in full bloom at Victor Valley College, but the windows of opportunity to enroll in last-minute classes are soon coming to a close. 

Many students are still making schedule adjustments and searching for available credits ahead of the first week of the new semester, which begins February 18. 

Whether looking to enroll in a course that either fulfills your requirements, helps you remain full-time, replaces any waitlist you may be stuck on or simply sparks your interest — VVC has a class that’s right for you. 

The college’s main campus has a diverse offering of courses that meet General Education (GE) requirements for many degrees. GE courses include College Algebra (MATH-105), English Composition and Reading (ENGL-101), Personal and Community Health (HLTH-102) and Introduction to American Government and Politics (POLS-102). 

Notable niche programs still enrolling include Automotive and Construction Technology, which provide students with immersive learning experiences specific to those trades.

Art meets technology in the Animation program, with the Principles of Animation (ANIM-50-74763) and 3DS Max Fundamentals (ANIM-160-74768) still available to add. 

Students pursuing a certificate in Paralegal Studies can still enroll in Introduction courses (PAL-100), Conflict Resolution and Negotiations (PAL-207-74338) or Immigration Law (PAL-208-75774).

The Adapted Physical Education department is offering a variety of controlled exercise classes, including Advanced Physical Fitness (ADPE-41A-73496) and Hawaiin Dance (ADPE-90-73499). For those interested in developing photography skills, there are a handful of photo classes available, including Beginning Digital Photography (PHOT-111-74362) and Introduction to Photoshop (PHOT-52-74367).

If interested in joining a skill-enhancing, team-building environment, the Athletics department is actively recruiting potential student-athletes.

Men’s Varsity Baseball (ATHL-120-75448) and Tennis (ATHL-128-73676) are available. Women’s Varsity Basketball (ATHL-122-73668) and Sand Volleyball (ATHL-144-73683) are also enrolling. 

Many students also seek alternative education options that may be closer to the comfort of their homes. Fortunately, courses are available at convenient locations across the High Desert, including Hesperia and Serrano High School campuses.

Courses available at Hesperia High School include English 101, along with its’ corequisite course English 81. Health 102, History 117 and Math 105 are also available at this location.

At Serrano High School, classes still enrolling include Introduction to Physical Anthropology (ANTH-101-75758), American Sign Language I (ASL-122-75762), Child, Family and Community Development (CHDV-106-75788) and Introductory Psychology (PSYC-101-74430). 

A variety of other online, off-campus and hybrid courses are available for students to enroll in before the spring semester begins. To confirm academic progress and class requirements, students are advised to meet with a counselor to develop or update their Educational Plan. 

VVC Counselors are on site weekly in the Student Services Center (Bldg 23). To browse further course availability, visit www.vvc.edu/schedule/.

CARP grads

Rams complete Construction-Apprenticeship Readiness Program

CARP grads
Photo by Fabian Guillen

By Brian Woods

Victor Valley College’s Construction-Apprenticeship Readiness Program (CARP) celebrated its Winter 2020 class completion ceremony on February 12. 

Twenty-nine students successfully completed the six-week accelerated program, which prepares graduates to become certified in the Core Curriculum of the National Center for Construction Education and Research.

CARP is a grant-funded initiative aimed at helping students become competitive assets in trade apprenticeship opportunities, such as carpentry, masonry, steelworks and other building and construction industries. 

Superintendent/President Dr. Daniel Walden provided the opening statement, sharing his insight and personal experiences in the industry. 

CARP
Photo by Fabian Guillen

“Having grown up in this world, and learning the carpentry trade … I have a deep appreciation of this work. I still love the smell of fresh cut sawdust to this day,” Walden said. “I love what you do and I’m proud of you for going into this very valuable trade.”

The students were provided a luncheon banquet ceremony in VVC’s Student Activities Center, joined by program officials and representatives from the San Bernardino-Riverside Building and Construction Trades Council. 

Over the six-week course, students learned from Construction Technology Department Chair Anthony Bonato and adjunct instructor Bruce Painter. They completed 150 hours of training, in subjects ranging from CPR and First Aid certification, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) training, multi-core craft curriculum (MC3), power tools, reading blueprints and more. 

CARP
Photo by Fabian Guillen

“This journey doesn’t end tomorrow… It begins today,” Bonato told students. 

As a main project during the course, the students built a 24-by-15 building behind the Automotive/Welding Vocational Complex on campus.

construction
Photo by CARP graduate Cornelius E. King

They constructed the building, which will serve as a storage shed for the Welding department, from the ground up, pouring the concrete, putting the walls up and building roof rafters all in six weeks.

building
Photo by CARP graduate Cornelius E. King

During the ceremony, select students also shared their testimonials, with their peers encouragingly cheering each speaker on.

Mary Dellavalle, one of four women who completed the program, said she initially joined the class in an attempt to renovate her own house. 

CARP grad
Photo by Fabian Guillen

“I joined this program shortly after I retired … I thought I would never work another day again,” Dellavalle said. “But throughout this process, I learned valuable skills and learned about myself … I realized, I have a better bad day here with you guys, up on a roof, swinging at nails, than on a good day at home.” 

Dellavalle, a retired environmental scientist at the Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board, says she hopes to use this certification to join a Carpenter’s or Engineering union one day. 

CARP
Photo by CARP graduate Cornelius E. King

Similarly, CARP graduate Jerold McQueen says that completing this program is his first step toward achieving a promising career in a union.

“This semester, I learned that we’re all a team here,” McQueen said. “Our attitude and our work ethic are lessons we need to learn in life. Victor Valley College is teaching us that.”   

CARP grad
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Students were presented with certificates of completion following the ceremony, marking the first day of their future careers in the construction and building industries.

The next program will begin in summer 2020, with the Introduction to Construction course (CT-90) and corequisite Lab (CT-91) offering students college credits and pre-apprenticeship certifications.

For more information, visit www.vvc.edu/academic/construction or reach out to Lilia Aguirre at Lilia.Aguirre@vvc.edu or (760) 245-4271 ext. 2154.

operation confidence

VVC Veteran Services collaborates on ‘Operation Confidence’

operation confidence
Operation Confidence Meet and Greet in the Yasuda Center (YC) at California State University, San Bernardino on Thursday, Jan 30, 2019. Photo by Robert A. Whitehead/CSUSB

Story by Brian Woods

Victor Valley College participated in a regional installment of “Operation Confidence,” an ongoing nonprofit initiative which seeks to empower disabled veterans across the state. 

The event took place at California State University San Bernardino (CSUSB) on January 30 and included a presentation, panel discussion and representative meet and greet. 

“Confidence” was a collaborative effort between the CSUSB Veterans Success Center, Los Angeles Mission Community College Veterans Resource Center and VVC’s own Veteran Services. 

The event served as an “introduction to San Bernardino” and aimed to provide county veterans with employment opportunities and other supportive services. 

VVC Superintendent/President Dr. Daniel Walden attended the event, representing the college on the Confidence Advisory Board. 

Walden spoke among a panel of other community leaders, discussing future workforce development plans and emphasizing the importance of building Veteran-community relationships.

CSUSB President Tomás Morales welcomed other guests and officials to the Yasuda Center, including San Bernardino County Supervisor Robert Lovingood. 

Lovingood, a United States Air Force veteran, continues his ongoing efforts to provide veterans with outreach opportunities. This includes the annual High Desert Veterans Resources Fair held every spring.

“Confidence” Executive Director Consuella Mackey provided the event’s closing remarks, thanking guests and reiterating the fundamental principles that drive the grassroots, nonprofit organization. 

“We are honored to have your participation,” Mackey said. “Our mission is to assist disabled homeless veterans by empowering them … and making a difference in the lives of our forgotten, most deserving American heroes.”

To learn more about Operation Confidence, visit www.operationconfidence.org. To learn more about VVC’s Veteran Services, visit www.vvc.edu/veterans

operation confidence
Kip Thorne

Nobel Laureate Kip Thorne brings ‘Warped Side’ to Victor Valley

Kip Thorne
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Story by Brian Woods

Victor Valley College presented the fifth installment of its annual lecture series with world-renowned theoretical physicist and 2017 Nobel laureate Kip Thorne. 

Thorne discussed black holes, gravitational astronomy, relativity and more in a lecture entitled “My Romance with the Warped Side of the Universe.”

The event was held on January 31 at the First Assembly of God in Victorville. The lecture was free and open to the public, drawing crowds from across Los Angeles, San Bernardino, San Diego and Santa Barbara counties. 

Kip Thorne
Photo by Fabian Guillen

“When I was a student, long ago, there were only speculations about the existence of the warped side of the universe,” Thorne said. “Today, 57 years later, we have observed black holes, gravitational waves, and the Big Bang … Three ‘warped side’ phenomena. They are very much real.”

Thorne’s hour-long lecture went on to discuss his observations and research in black hole activity, star collision, wormholes and more. This included Thorne’s own published smart phone application “GW Events,” through which users can “map” black holes using predictions of gravitational wave periods.

The multimedia presentation also took audience members on a “trip through a wormhole,” which displayed how light and matter appear when in contact with black holes or other negative energy. 

Thorne is the co-founder of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO), a nearly half-century long astrophysics experiment which aims to expand our knowledge of dark matter. LIGO detected the first-ever observation of ripples in the fabric of space and time, known as gravitational waves, in 2015.

Kip Thorne
Photo by Fabian Guillen

In 2017, Thorne and two of his colleagues, Rainer Weiss and Barry Barish, were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for “decisive contributions to the LIGO detector and the observation of gravitational waves,” according to the Nobel Foundation. 

“One of the things that my students and I worked on was building a vision for what you might be able to do with gravitational waves, in terms of exploring the universe,” Thorne said. “This is the beginning of … a revolution in our understanding of the universe.”

The “Taking Your Family To” Lecture Series is an ongoing partnership between VVC’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Division, the VVC Foundation, Edison International, The Lewis Center for Educational Research and the VVC Bridge Program. The series aims to provide local students with opportunities to hear from notable STEM researchers from around the world. 

Kip Thorne

“These lectures celebrate the thrill of scientific achievement,” VVC astronomy instructor Linda Kelly said. “We applaud our founding sponsors and recognize what an amazing opportunity this is for students of the entire region.”

After the lecture, Thorne answered questions from curious children and local STEM students regarding astrophysics, dark matter, and anything ”warped side.” Randomly selected audience members also had the opportunity to take an on-stage selfie with Thorne.

Kip Thorne
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Following the event, Thorne said he’d like to advise students interested in physics to stay informed about the ever-changing field and to not “lose track of the ultimate goal of understanding and contributing to advancements of science.”

“I send my thanks to you and everyone else involved in the event last night, for your great hospitality,” Thorne said.

To read more on Thorne’s career and contributions, visit https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/physics/2017/thorne/lecture. For more information on the College’s STEM Division, visit http://vvc.edu/academic_programs/stem

panel

Poverty Awareness Month brings panel to VVC

panel
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Story by Brian Woods

In support of National Poverty Awareness Month, Victor Valley College partnered with San Bernardino County to host an informational screening and panel discussion calling attention to intergenerational poverty and discussing strategies to combat it.

The event, held on January 23 in the Student Activities Center, was a collaborative effort between community partners, county representatives and VVC staff. The panel sought to provide information and resources on combating homelessness and poverty both on and off campus. 

panel
Photo by Fabian Guillen

County Departments of Behavioral Health, Child Support Services, Public Health, Transitional Assistance and Veterans Affairs were present, as well as the 2020 Census Bureau and local entities such as High Desert Homeless Services.

VVC Superintendent/President Dr. Daniel Walden began the event with a message about community and support.

“I think most, if not all of us, have food on our table and a bed to lay in at night… but there are people who do not have enough.. This makes this kind of event so much more important,” Walden said. “Some people just don’t quite have the height to reach the apple sitting atop the tree. We need to provide that lift for them.”

Shortly after, a CBS News Sunday Morning segment entitled “Homeless College Students: Out in the Cold” was screened, which highlights the severity, statistics and real-life testimonies of homeless college students across the country. 

According to the segment, college students are the fastest growing demographic impacted by poverty today. An estimated 68,000 students claim to be homeless on their FAFSA, according to Federal Student Aid reports. 

During the panel discussion after the screening, county department representatives spoke on their current efforts and overall missions to combat homelessness. Recurring topics included campus outreach programs, child care, housing initiatives, nutritional education and transitional assistance. 

panel
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Focus then shifted to the different networks on campus meant to provide stability, support and resources for at-risk or low-income students. This included the Extended Opportunities Programs and Services, Next-Up foster youth program, Veterans Resource Center and “The Peak” food pantry.

“We were able to open (the food pantry) with the help of departments across campus … We are giving away around 140 packs of food a day,” Homeless Youth Liaison and Financial Aid specialist Elaine Navarrete said. “It’s open to all students who are enrolled… It’s something they really needed.”

The discussion concluded with representatives emphasizing the importance of risk prevention and resource education, including behavioral, mental and nutritional health. A Q&A portion followed, allowing audience members to engage with county representatives regarding community concerns and ways to strengthen support on campus. 

To learn more about resources available both on and off campus, students can contact Elaine Navarrete at elaine.navarrete@vvc.edu. More information on resources available through San Bernardino County programs can be found by visiting www.SBCounty.gov.

SSC

Victor Valley College opens doors to Student Services Center

SSC
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Victor Valley College’s long-awaited Student Services Center was bustling with activity and excitement throughout its first day open to the public on Thursday, January 23. 

While the Grand Opening Ceremony is planned for February 7, the building is now officially open to students, and those who have already visited are sharing positive reviews.

SSC
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Sienna Bullock was the first student to be served in the new building, showing up before it opened at 8 a.m. to visit the Bursar’s Office.

“It was a really good environment. People were welcoming me, (the Bursar, Jolyn Harvey) was congratulating me. It felt good,” said Bullock, a biology major in her third semester at VVC. “I loved the modern look, the lighting — even the color scheme. It’s so big and pretty.”

SSC

The 27,000-square foot center serves as the “One Stop” for student services, including Admissions & Records, Assessment, ACCESS, Bursar’s Office, CalWORKS, Career Center, Counseling, EOPS, Financial Aid and the Transfer Center. This enables the departments to increase efficiency in helping students.

“It’s been a lot easier to have everyone in one building,” said Student Services Specialist Hazina Williams, explaining that before, she’d often have to direct or walk students over to another building if they needed something taken care of at another department, such as Financial Aid. “Now everything is right here … It’s a really great set up.”

SSC
Photo by Fabian Guillen

The new “front door” of VVC faces Bear Valley Road and features tall pillars, the college name and a window graphic which reads “STUDENT SUCCESS BEGINS HERE.”

It’s a “point of entry” for all new students, Executive Director of Facilities and Operations Steve Garcia said.

SSC
Photo by Fabian Guillen

“We’ve never really had a face — structurally — for the community to say, ‘That’s Victor Valley College, and that’s where you need to go,’” Garcia said. “It’s something that’s iconic and the intake functions are housed in one place, making it very customer-friendly and efficient.”

When students entered the building on Thursday, they were first greeted by friendly Rambassadors, VVC student employees who assist and peer mentor students.

SSC
Photo by Fabian Guillen

“We’re mainly guiding people today to help them find where they need to go,” said Rambassador Naomi Fowler. “I thought it was going to be crazy today, but I was surprised with how smooth everything has been going and how fast the departments are going through the lines.”

Fowler also commented that she and many of the students she helped on Thursday are enjoying the welcoming environment and aesthetics of the building.

“I like how bright it is,” she said. “It’s also super open, which is really nice.”

SSC
Photo by Fabian Guillen

Also at each entrance of the building is a large, interactive and user-friendly kiosk available for student use.

The Student Services Center is in full operation in time for the start of the Spring semester, which begins February 18.

The Grand Opening Ceremony will be held from 10 a.m. to noon on February 7. Tours of the new building will be led by campus dignitaries and Rambassadors and lunch will be provided for all attendees.

Comedy magic

VVC thrills crowd with ‘Comedy & Magic’ show

Comedy magic

By Brian Woods

Victor Valley College hosted “An Evening of Comedy and Magic” in the Performing Arts Center (PAC) on January 18. The sold-out event featured world-renowned performers blending the arts of comedy and magic in a vivacious variety show, produced by Lowell Entertainment. 

The event was hosted by Chipper Lowell of film and television notoriety, including all five seasons of “Masters of Illusion.”

“Every year we bring a new show with new artists, a lot of them from around the world… You won’t see this anywhere else but Victor Valley College,” Lowell said, foreshadowing the upcoming illusions of the night. 

Lowell then introduced the first performer, Elliott Hunter, of The Academy of Magical Arts’ Magic Castle in Hollywood. 

With lights off and entrancing electronic dance music filling the PAC, Hunter began a choreographed LED illusion, making a luminous baton pole levitate and orbit around him. 

“Folks, this is where it all began. In fact, this is my first act that got me started in magic,” Hunter said. 

As the lights rose, a mirage of playing cards began appearing, disappearing and reappearing across his palms and wrists. As Hunter rolled up the sleeves of his glittering jacket, a fountain of red and white cards began flying into the air. 

Host and MC Lowell provided comedic relief through interludes, lightening the mood and weaving a relatable narrative throughout. 

“It’s gonna get really weird now,” Lowell joked, before successfully teleporting an audience volunteer’s Apple Watch inside of a soda can, cutting it out with scissors after.   

The next performer, Pop Haydn, brought an old-timey, intimate and vintage feel to the PAC.  He introduced his self-proclaimed classic feats of magic, including the “Six Card Trick” and the “Miracle of the Chinese Linking Rings.”

Playing the role of the evening’s ultimate jokester, Haydn’s gags and tricks kept the audience laughing throughout his set. 

Pam Kane, an audience volunteer for the Chinese ring act, also contributed to the hilarity. She delivered one-liners and quick wit, on par with even Haydn himself.

“My husband and I come every year, and it’s different every time,” Kane said, following the event. “We’ve come maybe seven or eight years now.”

Lowell then took a moment to thank the backstage, lighting, and technical support crews before breaking the audience for intermission. All snack and drink proceeds went to fundraising VVC’s Off-Broadway Performing Arts Club. 

Famed illusionist Ryne Strom provided the show-stopping finale, transporting audiences to different worlds through comedy, costumes, dance, danger and theatrics. Strom transformed the stage into various facades, including an old-style Parisian circus, a mad scientist laboratory and a nostalgic speakeasy straight from the Roaring ‘20s. 

Strom integrated avant-garde illusions with immersive audience interaction, including both his professional assistants and volunteers to aid in his large-scale tricks. As his grand finale, Strom performed a variation of Harry Houdini’s trunk escape, complete with dazzling costume changes and a police chase. 

VVC’s “Comedy and Magic” show continues to provide the local community with an evening of heart, laughter, magic and togetherness. Audience members left with the reminder to dream big, work hard and never stop believing in magic.

Corrections

VVC celebrates 23 graduates of Corrections Academy

Corrections

Story by Brian Woods

Victor Valley College recently celebrated the graduation of the 70th session Corrections Core Academy program.

The Standards and Training for Corrections (STC) module provided a platform for 23 graduates to complete the 16-week program, held at the VVC Regional Public Safety Training Center in Apple Valley.

Communication, integrity and self-discipline were among the recurring themes of the night,  with an intimate crowd of faculty, family, and friends attending in support. 

The opening statement was given by Administration of Justice Director Rand Padgett, with an inspiring invocation by class Assisting Officer Mariah Treto. A moment of silence ensued to pay respect to fallen law enforcement entities, and the introduction of the Session #70 class began thereafter. 

Class speaker Arick Luna filled the venue with a hopeful message of insight and growth.

“Looking back, it’s the small details we will all take with us from this day forward,” Luna said. “Integrity begins with the smallest amount of effort… a symbolic representation of who we are becoming.”

Luna continued to say that the values he and his peers gained through the program can be applied to any future trials they face.

“Although this course has come to an end, we must take our experiences and the applications of self-defence, integrity, communication, and self-discipline,” he said.

Guest speaker Shannon Dicus, Undersheriff for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, also delivered a powerful speech on the importance of youth in Corrections’ careers.

“I left the graduation inspired. The young people in the graduating class were focused on their career choices, and it was evident by the ceremony that they are well on their way,” Dicus said. “VVC is doing its part by providing this essential training to area youth…To say I left inspired isn’t enough — I feel taller after spending time with the graduates. We are in good hands.”

The STC Core Academy prepares students for an established and fulfilling career in criminal justice, as a city or county corrections officer, and more. Visit www.vvc.edu/academic/administration_of_justice/ to learn more about the VVC Corrections Academy.

Corrections