Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Solano Community College-Vallejo Center's growth prompts more funding

Solano Community College-Vallejo Center's growth prompts more funding

More than 1,000 full-time students taking classes at the Vallejo Center means the satellite campus will get $1 million more each year for staffing and other services, officials said Monday.

Solano Community College received word the Community College Chancellor's Office Board of Governors had officially designated the satellite campus on Columbus Parkway as a "center," President Jowel Laguerre said.
This means the school is eligible for the state funding boost.

"We're officially recognized as a center and with that comes extra resources to facilitate our needs here," Vallejo Center Director Jerry Kea said.

Since the Vallejo Center opened in 2007, the facility has been called a "center," but has lacked official state designation as such, Laguerre said.

The additional $1 million will go toward making the Vallejo Center a self-contained facility where students can find services they need and not make trips to the Fairfield campus for help in financial aid and other issues, Kea said.
"We want students to receive, to the greatest degree possible, a range of services, from financial aid, admission and registration support and that type of thing," Kea said.

Proceeds also will likely be spent on custodial services in an effort to help keep the satellite campus maintained and repaired, Kea said.

Vallejo board member Rosemary Thurston said funding will also go toward bolstering the Vallejo Center's educational programs and to collaborate with surrounding universities.
Thurston's late husband Bill Thurston, a long-time Solano College board member, was instrumental in helping to pass the bonds necessary to finance construction of the Vallejo satellite campus.
The ultimate goal is for students attending the Vallejo Center to have access to all the classes and other programs they need in order to obtain bachelor degrees, Thurston said.

School officials are excited about the additional funding, and the center's success, Thurston said.
When the Solano College Vallejo campus was still inside the John F. Kennedy Library, about 250 full-time students took classes there, Kea said.

Last year, the equivalent of nearly 1,300 full-time students were attending, he added.
Contact staff writer Sarah Rohrs at srohrs@timesheraldonline.com or (707) 553-6832.