End Your Semester Strong: Resources to Help You

Does the quickly approaching end of the semester have you stressed? We know that this point in the semester can be very hectic, with papers and projects coming due, and finals rapidly approaching. We want to see you succeed, so we’ve rounded up resources at the College to help you survive (and thrive) these last two weeks. The LLRC even has extended hours to help you succeed!

Academics: Support at the Library & Learning Resource Center

    • Resources for research: Books, periodicals, and article databases are available through the Library,  which you can find here. Librarians are also available to assist you in your research. Not near a computer? They have an app! You can also text a librarian—simply text “Cypress” to 66746.
    • Computers: Both the Library and Learning Resource Center have desktop computers, and the library has laptops that you can check out as well.
    • Math Learning Center: Need help with a problem in math, stats, or physics? Go here! They have tutors available for questions, as well as computers for online math work.
    • English Success Center: Having problems with a specific part of a paper, or need formatting assistance? They can help, and have computers available for research and writing as well.
    • Individual tutoring: It is available in several subjects, including English. Tutors can work with you on research papers.  See how to make an appointment. Not on campus? Online tutoring is available! Click here for details.

Supplies and Food: Associated Students Finals Fuel

  • Supplies: The Associated Students will have those items vital for your exams- They will be handing out Scantrons, Blue Books, and pencils!
  • Food: A.S. will have snacks as well, so you can grab a quick bite to keep you fueled!
  • Finals Fuel will be Monday, May 22nd & Tuesday, May 23rd from 11:30 am- 1:00 p.m. outside the Student Activities Center.

Stress Relief: Resources through the Student Health Center and LLRC

  • Health Journeys Online Resources: Download tools to help reduce stress and get you through finals here.  These resources have been made available by the Student Health Center via the CCCCO.
  • Chill Zone: Relax your mind doing puzzles, filling out coloring books, or making buttons!
  • Guided meditation: Stop by the second floor classroom in the LLRC on Tuesday, May 16 or Thursday, May 18 from 12 to 2 p.m.
  • Raffle: The LLRC will give out colored pencils, coloring books, and more to help relieve stress, Thursday, May 18 from 3 to 5 p.m.
  • After-hours cart: At the College, in the evening hours, there will be a self-serve cart full of items to help alleviate stress.

Northern California College Tour Opens Up #CYPossibilities

Opening possibilities for all students is one of the core goals of Cypress College, so offering programs that provide a support system, expose students to wide-ranging educational and life opportunities, and help facilitate success at all levels, like the Puente, Legacy, and Honors programs, is one of the many priorities of the College.

Two buses full of Cypress College Puente, Legacy, and Honors students fought traffic out of Southern California Thursday, April 20, for the opportunity to visit Central and Northern California public university campuses. It was the first time students from all three programs went on a college tour together.

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Students visited four campuses and the California State Capitol on the three-day tour that also provided the opportunity to see and experience other parts of the state.

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The group’s first stop: the beautiful, beachfront campus of the University of California, Santa Barbara. Students chowed down at one of the campus’ four dining commons alongside UCSB students before heading out on a student-guided tour of the expansive campus.

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“One of the campuses I really loved was UC Santa Barbara,” said Karen Lopez, a Puente student who plans to double major in psychology and English. “As we were touring the university, I could imagine myself there as a student. The campus was absolutely beautiful and it was near a beach.”

“I personally have never been a fan of the beach,” she added, “but just thinking about the peaceful environment and how calming the sound of the ocean is makes me think it would be a great way to study for exams and work on homework for classes.”

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Following the stop at UCSB, everyone reloaded the buses for a four-hour trek up miles of idyllic coastline and into the hills and winding acres of Central California vineyards and farmland off the historic 101.

Destination: the South Bay Area city of San Jose for an introduction and short walk around the San Jose State University campus.

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Representatives from the university’s EOPS program gave a short, but comprehensive presentation about the program: how to apply and qualify, what the requirements and benefits are, etc. They also heard from students in the school’s MEChA student organization and the Associated Students president-elect about college life.

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Michelle Chitica, a Puente student and radiologic technology major at Cypress, said she felt very privileged touring the campuses and “listening to the students and other speakers share their stories of success.”

Students also took interest in the Olympic Black Power Statue on the SJSU campus, and learned the history behind the statue from a student.

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Karina Lopez, a Cypress College Puente Program student studying business administration, said she wasn’t too fond of the SJSU campus as a whole, but thought the statue was inspiring.

“It was great that students gave us a short presentation about it,” she said, “because we were able to understand the significance of the statue and how SJSU students were the ones who protested and fought to have it on campus, despite the college administration taking credit for it.”

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The next day, the buses headed further north to visit the University of California, Davis, known for its strong science, veterinary, and agriculture programs. Students were treated to a presentation about UCD and its programs, outlining entrance requirements and what the university looks for in potential students, and various programs the university has to help students along.

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Student guides then took groups on tours of the huge campus—the biggest UC by acreage.

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Lisette Figueroa, a nursing major in the Puente Program at Cypress College, said she “fell in love” with the Davis and San Jose universities and that they “felt just like home even though I was seven hours away from where I live.

She added, “Visiting these campuses not only motivates me, but made me question why I did not go to college sooner.”

After Davis, students were treated to a tour of the California State Capitol in Sacramento, courtesy of Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva’s office. The Assemblywoman’s district includes Cypress College.

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Students learned about the state legislature and the work that is done in the Capitol. They even had the opportunity to enter the Assembly Chamber, one of the most secure areas in the State Capitol building, and sit in the same seats assembly members sit in on a day-to-day basis.

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“The tour at the State Capitol was amazing,” said Karina Lopez, the business administration major. “It was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be able to go into the Legislature room.”

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Michelle Chitica, the radiologic technology student, added that visiting the State Capitol made her think about political science “for the first time.”

The second day ended with some time exploring in the heart of San Francisco. One of the great things about the college tour is that it not only introduces students to many different campuses to consider continuing their educations at after Cypress, but it takes them to places they might never have been to or considered visiting.

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Some students had never been to San Francisco before, let alone out of Southern California. John Rojas said visiting the city was one of his favorite parts of the trip.

“It was my first time there and I was very excited about crossing the Golden Gate Bridge,” he said.

To finish off the tour, students visited Cal—the University of California, Berkeley—on Cal Day, the university’s annual open house.

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Gabby Garcia and Jesus Madrigal, both Cypress College alumni and former Puente students, met up with the group to take students on a quick tour of the campus and share their educational journeys. Both graduated from Cypress in 2010 and transferred to Cal, where they earned their bachelor’s degrees. Garcia now works for Google and Madrigal is continuing his studies at Cal in a doctoral program.

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After the tour, the students sat down for a presentation and had the opportunity to speak with current Cal students. Quite a few students from the group were impressed with the school and expressed their desire to transfer to Cal after completing their studies at Cypress College.

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Michael Maxwell, a Legacy Program student and sociology major at Cypress College, reflected on the entire tour, saying it “expanded my horizons and ignited a fire within me.”

“As a first-generation college student, I had no road map; now I know what lies before me,” he said. “This trip is something I will always remember and I am grateful that I got to experience so many amazing universities and get a better understanding of the transfer process.” He said after this tour, he has decided to transfer to a UC school.

District Encourages, Supports Greater Female Representation in Elected Office

The number of women in California elected office has remained stagnant or decreased over the last few election cycles. In an effort to inspire and engage the next generation of women leaders, the North Orange County Community College District hosted the Women in Politics Symposium at the Fullerton Community Center Friday, April 28.

The event, organized in partnership with California Women Lead, a nonpartisan association of women encouraging greater female participation in government leadership roles, and the Orange County Legislative Task Force, gathered about 100 Orange County students, education workers, and political leaders for discussions on topics like entering California politics as a woman, what it’s like being an appointed government official, and how to get women more engaged in politics and becoming leaders in elected and appointed office.

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Three panels of women leaders spoke about different government roles and aspects of political life, answering questions from moderators and also taking questions from attendees.

Jeanette Vazquez, a member of the Fullerton School Board and former Cypress College Associated Students president, participated in the first panel of the day. She said she’s proud of the NOCCCD for its role in hosting and helping to organize the symposium.

“I remember, as a community college student myself, when I was thinking about what life in public service would be like and seeing it as a possibility, it was definitely all about me trying to figure it out on my own,” she said. “I think that this is really important for the District and other community colleges to have for students early on as they’re starting to think about public service because they already have that seed there. What this does is it gives them those tools and that push without shying them away from the field because of all the rhetoric that’s going on right now.”

Vazquez graduated from Cypress College in 2009 with an associate’s degree in liberal arts. She transferred to the University of California, Berkeley where she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in political science and minor in public policy. She earned her teaching credential and master’s degree in education from Loyola Marymount University. Vazquez is now a sixth grade teacher in North Orange County.

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Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva, who represents District 65, which includes the NOCCCD, said she believes there’s more encouragement for and engagement with women to become involved in politics now, especially compared to about 15 years ago when she first ran for elected office.

The former public school teacher and huge supporter of education added, “I think it’s really a vital part of women choosing to run when they can be educated about not only what it takes to run and when, but what the job’s actually like and actually hear from local and state leaders that are doing the job.”

Speakers also provided words of wisdom and suggestions for becoming involved in public service and governance.

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Mona Pasquil, appointment secretary in California Gov. Jerry Brown’s office, told the audience that one of the most valuable things is to find a mentor and advised everyone to “be prepared to step up at any time to think about how you want to lead your community, your state, your country, this world.”

Former California Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez added that you can choose to be a leader, no matter the role you have.

“Everybody has a comfort level, and at any point, a woman can be a leader,” she said. “We can all be leaders. Whether we’re in politics or not, we must be and take that responsibility of being leaders in our communities.”

 

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Other featured speakers and panelists included:

Barbara Bagneris, Orange County Fair Board vice chairwoman
Lisa Bartlett, Orange County supervisor
Alicia Berhow, Accountancy Board chairwoman
Cyd Brandvein, State Board of Optometry member
Letitia Clark, City of Tustin councilmember
April Lopez, State Council on Developmental Disabilities member
Fiona Ma, State Board of Equalization member
Rachel Michelin, chief executive officer of California Women Lead
Loretta Sanchez, former member of Congress
Jaqueline Rodarte, NOCCCD trustee
Betty Yee, California state controller

Imparting some last few empowering and inspiring words, Dr. Cheryl Marshall, chancellor of the NOCCCD, closed the symposium saying, “Your voice matters. Everybody here remember that. You matter, your voice matters. Find your passion. Go forward, lead, live your values. That’s what matters as we walk day by day through this life.”

#CYPossibilities: John Rojas, NorCal College Tour

Cypress College Puente, Legacy, and Honors program students had the opportunity to go on a three-day Northern California college tour last Thursday, April 20 to Saturday, April 22. The trip helped to familiarize them with other colleges in the state, as well as inspire them to consider transfer colleges not just based on proximity to home. The students visited four Central and Northern California public university campuses—the University of California, Santa Barbara; San Jose State University; the University of California, Davis; and the University of California, Berkeley—and the California State Capitol on a trip that also gave them the opportunity to see and experience other parts of the state.

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John Rojas, Puente Program Class 21
Plans to major in sociology or urban and regional planning
Hopes to transfer to UC Santa Barbara or UC Davis after graduating from Cypress College

Last week, the Puente program went on a trip to Northern California for a college tour at four different campuses. We were accompanied by students from the Honors and Legacy programs. We visited the University of California, Santa Barbara; University of California, Berkeley; San Jose State University; and University of California, Davis. We also visited Sacramento and San Francisco.

The tour was an amazing experience that I’ll never forget. On our way there, we passed through various landscapes along the Pacific Ocean. Our first stop was UC Santa Barbara. I really loved the architecture of the campus and I learned a lot about the programs and majors they offer. Out of all the universities we visited, I thought UC Santa Barbara and UC Davis were the best. I hope to transfer to one of these schools and play soccer for them one day.

On the second day of the trip, we visited the State Capitol in Sacramento and learned more about the history of the building.

My favorite part of the trip was when we visited San Francisco at the end of the second day. It was my first time there and I was very excited about crossing the Golden Gate Bridge.

Overall, I had a wonderful time with my Puente family, and I hope to visit all of these places again soon. The Puente program has really helped me survive college. I first came to Cypress College to play soccer, but I ended up joining Puente, which was the best decision I’ve made in my life. I highly encourage everyone to check the program out.

#CYPossibilities: Lissette Figueroa, NorCal College Tour

Cypress College Puente, Legacy, and Honors program students had the opportunity to go on a three-day Northern California college tour last Thursday, April 20 to Saturday, April 22. The trip helped to familiarize them with other colleges in the state, as well as inspire them to consider transfer colleges not just based on proximity to home. The students visited four Central and Northern California public university campuses—the University of California, Santa Barbara; San Jose State University; the University of California, Davis; and the University of California, Berkeley—and the California State Capitol on a trip that also gave them the opportunity to see and experience other parts of the state.

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Lissette Figueroa, Puente Program Class 21
Nursing major
Plans to transfer to a UC or CSU after graduating from Cypress College

I never imagined myself in college because I grew up in a home where it was not talked about. In high school, all I thought about was graduating because that meant no more school ever. Once I graduated, it was time to think about getting a job. It all sounded amazing until I had to grow up quickly and realized just how tough life is.

Cypress College was an obvious choice simply because it was near my home. I did not know how wonderful this school would be. One day, a few Puentistas came into my English class recruiting students to join the Puente Program. It was only my second semester in college and they spoke about the aid Puente provides for students who are unaware of what they are going to do after they graduate from Cypress College. I never thought about what came after college, so I knew I had to be part of Puente.

My life plans changed from just graduating from Cypress to transferring because Puente took us on trips to visit many different colleges in both Southern and Northern California. After visiting a few colleges, I learned that there were more options than just attending a school based on the commute from home. Before going on the college tours, I was set on attending UCLA; California State University, Long Beach; or the University of California, Riverside based on the short distance from home and because they offer nursing, the field I plan to go into.

Last week, we went up north and visited four colleges. I fell in love with the University of California, Davis and San Jose State University. The scenery is beautiful on both campuses and they felt just like home even though I was seven hours away from where I live. Visiting these campuses not only motivates me, but made me question why I did not go to college sooner.

Opportunities do not always happen, so if given the chance to be part of something great, take advantage of it and, as Puente students would say, “Si se puede!”

#CYPossibilities: Karina Lopez, NorCal College Tour

Cypress College Puente, Legacy, and Honors program students had the opportunity to go on a three-day Northern California college tour last Thursday, April 20 to Saturday, April 22. The trip helped to familiarize them with other colleges in the state, as well as inspire them to consider transfer colleges not just based on proximity to home. The students visited four Central and Northern California public university campuses—the University of California, Santa Barbara; San Jose State University; the University of California, Davis; and the University of California, Berkeley—and the California State Capitol on a trip that also gave them the opportunity to see and experience other parts of the state.

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Karina Lopez, Puente Program Class 21
Business administration major
Hopes to transfer to UC Berkeley, UC Davis, Cal State Fullerton or Cal State Long Beach after graduating from Cypress College

The Northern California College Trip was an amazing opportunity that I was able to experience thanks to the Puente Program. Visiting the campuses really helped me see that there are so many college options that I wasn’t aware of. I really enjoyed all the tours we went on and thought it was great having the opportunity to speak to current students at the universities. I have always focused on Cal State University schools because of my major, but after talking to representatives from each campus we visited, I was able to find a major that was very similar to mine at a University of California school.

At our first stop at the University of California, Santa Barbara, I really enjoyed that we visited on a regular school day and were able to see the regular flow of a student’s daily routine. UCSB has a gorgeous campus and nice environment. The modern look and feel to the school really gave off a calm ambiance. The calm and comforting environment really provided a welcoming tone to the campus. I really enjoyed having the beach just feet away from the classrooms, which could provide a quick escape from the stress college life can bring. It was a true honor to step on and experience the amazing UC Santa Barbara campus my friends have been telling me about.

I wasn’t the biggest fan of our next stop, San Jose State University. The environment honestly seemed like a big high school to me. My favorite part of the campus, however, was the Olympic Black Power Statue. It was great that students gave us a short presentation about it because we were able to understand the significance of the statue and how SJSU students were the ones who protested and fought to have it on campus, despite the college administration taking credit for it.

The University of California, Davis, our third stop, had a really nice campus. I loved how it was so big and really felt like a community within a city. I loved the easy access to transportation to the bigger cities surrounding Davis, and I found it neat that it is such a bike-friendly campus. Bike paths are all you see around campus.

The tour at the State Capitol was amazing. It was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be able to go into the Legislature room. It was neat being able to sit in the chairs of the members of the California State Assembly. I think it’s awesome how the architects left signatures all around the building, such as the gargoyle on the ceiling or intentionally inserting one tile in the entire building upside down.

I really liked our last stop, the University of California, Berkeley. I just wish we would’ve had more time to see more of the campus itself. It was really cool to be at Berkeley on Cal Day—the university’s open house—but it would have been nice to go on a different day and go on an actual tour arranged by the school.

Having the opportunity to visit these four campuses was honestly an amazing experience. I do not think I would have had this opportunity if it weren’t for the Puente Program. It was also really nice being able to spend time with all of the students who attended the trip. Touring these campuses motivated me to continue doing the best I can here at Cypress College to later transfer to one of these great universities.

 

#CYPossibilities: Michelle Chitica, NorCal College Tour

Cypress College Puente, Legacy, and Honors program students had the opportunity to go on a three-day Northern California college tour last Thursday, April 20 to Saturday, April 22. The trip helped to familiarize them with other colleges in the state, as well as inspire them to consider transfer colleges not just based on proximity to home. The students visited four Central and Northern California public university campuses—the University of California, Santa Barbara; San Jose State University; the University of California, Davis; and the University of California, Berkeley—and the California State Capitol on a trip that also gave them the opportunity to see and experience other parts of the state.

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Michelle Chitica, Puente Program Class 21
Radiology major
Plans to transfer to Cal State Northridge after graduating from Cypress College

When I finally decided that school would be the only way I could properly care for my six children, I did my research and discovered that Cypress College was one of two other community colleges that had an ultrasound program. Being at Cypress College has been a great experience thus far; the staff and students have made me feel welcome and secure.

After Cypress, I plan to transfer to California State University, Northridge to complete my bachelor’s degree in radiology. At Cypress, being a part of the Puente Program has been a life-changing experience. I doubt I would be as confident as I am now if it had not been for the teachers and counselor in Puente. I feel more confident in my education and I have been able to experience so many different things because of the program.

This weekend’s Northern California college trip was amazing. As I visited each campus, I felt proud to be a Cypress College puentista. I felt privileged touring each campus and listening to the students and other speakers share their stories of success. During the trip, we also had a chance to stop at the State Capitol, and for the first time, I actually gave political science a thought.

Overall the experience I had on the trip was awesome. Each campus was absolutely beautiful, and I admire and appreciate the time everyone took to welcome and motivate us with their stories. More than ever, I feel compelled to continue my education and make my family proud.

#CYPossibilities: Karen Lopez, NorCal College Tour

Cypress College Puente, Legacy, and Honors program students had the opportunity to go on a three-day Northern California college tour last Thursday, April 20 to Saturday, April 22. The trip helped to familiarize them with other colleges in the state, as well as inspire them to consider transfer colleges not just based on proximity to home. The students visited four Central and Northern California public university campuses—the University of California, Santa Barbara; San Jose State University; the University of California, Davis; and the University of California, Berkeley—and the California State Capitol on a trip that also gave them the opportunity to see and experience other parts of the state.

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Karen Lopez, Puente Program Class 21
Plans to double major in psychology and English
Hopes to transfer to a UC or CSU after graduating from Cypress College

I had never considered moving out of the comfort of my hometown to go to school more than two hours from home, but since coming back from this Northern California campus trip, I realize I have more options and opportunities than I thought I had before. On this trip, we visited four different campuses and listened to students talk about their experiences adjusting to being away from home to further their education and learned about different resources each campus provides for their students.

One of the campuses I really loved was at the University of California, Santa Barbara. As we were touring the university, I could imagine myself there as a student. The campus was absolutely beautiful and it was near a beach. I personally have never been a fan of the beach, but just thinking about the peaceful environment and how calming the sound of the ocean is makes me think it would be a great way to study for exams and work on homework for classes.

The Puente Program has been a great help for me in many ways. It has given me a direction to what classes I need to get and get me to my end goal of graduating from Cypress and transferring to earn my bachelor’s degree. The program has also given me a support family within my peers in class. When I am struggling with an assignment my friends in the program are cheering me on and giving me the right motivation to keep on going and persevere.

I want to double major in psychology and English, but still do not know where I want to transfer to. I had my mind set on transferring to a California State University—either Long Beach or Fullerton—but since coming back from this trip, I realized that I don’t need to settle for universities that are close to home. Now I am considering applying to the University of California, Davis or University of California, Santa Barbara, as well as the California State Universities I mentioned before.

Overall, this trip was an eye-opener. I am thankful for the opportunities it has given me. My educational journey is just beginning, and I look forward to seeing where it takes me.

NOCCCD Passes Resolution Supporting Students, Data Privacy

The North Orange County Community College District Board of Trustees passed a resolution Tuesday, March 14 supporting all District students and privacy of student records to “reassure students and our community that our campuses will remain welcoming places for students of all backgrounds to learn.”

The District “declares that its campuses shall remain open and welcoming to all students who meet the minimum requirements for admission, regardless of immigration status, and that financial aid remains available to certain undocumented students.”

It also “urges the new United States presidential administration to continue the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which grants ‘Dreamers’ – people brought to this country as children by their parents – reprieve from deportation because California and the United States are both stronger due to their contributions to our economy and to our communities.”

The resolution was passed 6-1.

A similar resolution will be presented at the Thursday, March 23 meeting of the Cypress College Academic Senate. The Senate will also consider a motion supporting the NOCCCD resolution and a similar resolution already passed by the Fullerton College Faculty Senate Feb. 16.

Read the full District resolution here.

Mortuary Science Alum First in Line as Baccalaureate Application Opens

Steve Crawford was so determined to be the first applicant for Cypress College’s Funeral Service baccalaureate program, he flew to Southern California from the Bay Area a day early to hand in his completed application Monday.

“I’m very excited. I wanted to make sure that I was that person who was the first one in,” the alumnus said after he handed in his application. “I came down yesterday so I could be prepared, so I could be here, print all my stuff at eight o’clock, drive over here, and be done.”

Crawford graduated with an A.S. Mortuary Science degree in Fall 2014.

Applications for Cypress College’s first baccalaureate program opened Monday. The bachelor’s degree is part of a statewide pilot program signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown in September 2014 to offer four-year degrees at California community colleges. Under the pilot, these degrees do not compete with programs at UC or Cal State schools.

While a student, Crawford championed the program to the District Board of Trustees, helping to secure their support to submit the program to the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office for consideration. Each district could only submit one program. Cypress’ Funeral Service proposal was up against Fullerton College’s proposal for a law enforcement supervision degree.

In January 2015, the CCCCO selected Cypress as one of 15 community colleges to participate in the pilot.

Crawford credits Cypress Mortuary Science faculty member Jolena Grande with making the program a reality.

“If not for her, the program wouldn’t have made it,” he said. “I’m sure I helped, but the credit really goes all to her. She went all out for this. It’s really her baby.”

Cypress’ Mortuary Science program is just one of two public programs in the state and the only one offering a four-year degree on the West Coast. Courses for the program start next fall.

Crawford said his interest in mortuary science started with a desire to land a job in a coroner’s office. One way to meet job requirements was a degree in mortuary science, and Cypress was his school of choice “because it’s ranked really highly just in the list of mortuary programs nationwide,” he said.

“I don’t know if I would be where I am within my own organization without the education from Cypress,” he added.

Crawford is currently completing an embalming apprenticeship working as a crematory manager for the Holy Angels Funeral and Cremation Center in East Bay. He hopes to finish up his professional licensing while completing the bachelor’s program.

He said he hopes that having a bachelor’s program in funeral services will help to start change the way the mortuary and funeral industry is viewed by the public.

“The funeral industry kind of gets a bad rap,” he said. “People think they’re basically used car salesmen for death, trying to upsell people…taking advantage of people when they’re grieving.

“Hopefully, through furthering the education process and really getting involved more in the professional organizations, we will change that outlook.”