Press Room

You’ve Heard of Berkeley. Is Merced the Future of the University of California?

By Jennifer Medina

July 19, 2018

MERCED, Calif. — As he walks to class at the University of California, Merced, Freddie Virgen sees a sea of faces in various shades of brown. He is as likely to hear banda corridos blaring out of his classmates’ earphones as hip-hop. With affectionate embraces, he greets fellow members of Hermanos Unidos, a peer support group for Latinos that is one of the largest student organizations on campus.

“When I looked at other campuses, I would find myself feeling that I didn’t belong, like I’d stick out,” he said. “This was the only place where I saw so many students I could connect to, who would get where I was coming from. Even if it felt like academic shock, it wouldn’t feel like culture shock.”

In the decades since a ballot measure banned affirmative action in California’s public institutions, the University of California has faced persistent criticism that it is inadequately serving Latinos, the state’s largest ethnic group. The disparity between the state’s population and its university enrollment is most stark at the state’s flagship campuses: at University of California, Los Angeles, Latinos make up about 21 percent of all students; at Berkeley, they account for less than 13 percent.

But at Merced, the newest addition to the 10-campus University of California system, about 53 percent of the undergraduates are Latino, most closely mirroring the demographics of the nation’s most diverse state.

Merced lacks the same national reputation for academic excellence as other campuses in the University of California system. It has the highest acceptance rate by far (70 percent compared with 16 percent at U.C.L.A.), and some students across the state do not see it as in the same league as the other campuses. Graduation rates have consistently been lower than at any other campus in the system: 45 percent of freshmen who entered in 2009 had earned a degree four years later, compared with 65 percent at San Diego and 76 percent at Berkeley.

Merced has yet to hire the star faculty found at other U.C.s and has a much smaller graduate program. The college does not attract the state’s top-scoring applicants when it comes to test scores and grade-point averages. Eligible students from California who are rejected from other University of California campuses are often funneled to Merced, which offers them a spot even if they have not applied. But more than 90 percent of those students rejected the offer, according to a 2016 state audit.

During student orientation each summer at Merced, parent workshops are offered in Spanish. Each year, there are large celebrations and altars for Día de los Muertos and performances from the campus ballet folkorico. Study session snack binges often include tostilocos, corn chips or Cheetos smothered in chamoy, a sticky salty-sweet sauce made popular in Mexico.

Tatiana Acosta with her mother, Enedina, during a visit home to Fresno. Ms. Acosta is the first person in her family to go to college.CreditMax Whittaker for The New York Times

Merced, which opened its doors in 2005, is an outlier in other ways, too. The campus draws students from all over California, but almost none from other states or countries. Nearly three-quarters of students are the first in their families to attend college.

And whereas other campuses are situated near the state’s big urban centers, Merced sits in the middle of California’s Central Valley, a vast agricultural region that has long been one of the poorest and overlooked parts of the state. In the early 2000s, state leaders focused on opening a campus there to serve a region that lagged far behind in educational attainment.

“More Latinos than ever are trying to go to college and they are largely not represented in the state’s elite public university system,” said Audrey Dow, the senior vice president at the Campaign for College Opportunity, which has pushed for more Latinos and students from California to be admitted. “Half of all school-age children are Latino, so it’s the future we’re looking at. If we don’t improve these numbers quickly, a significant population will continue to be shut out.”

Now, more than any other campus, Merced is pivoting to serve a new generation of students. If California hopes to address the vast gap between rich and poor, students such as Mr. Virgen will need to earn college degrees. It is something of a paradox: the future of the state depends on whether the University of California can grow to be more like Merced, and the future of Merced depends on whether it can grow to be more like other campuses.

Surrounded by vast green fields on every side, with cows meandering by a small lake, the campus evokes a kind of isolation that is compounded by the long stretch of highway that needs to be traversed to find it. For students coming from cities like Los Angeles and Oakland, it can either feel like relief or a painful shock.

Mr. Virgen, a psychology major, often thinks the remoteness deepens the relationships among students.

“Here, you don’t feel like you’re in exile from your community, which could lead to all kinds of mental health issues,” said Mr. Virgen, who was born in Los Angeles after his parents emigrated from Jalisco, Mexico. But he does worry that entering graduate school or the professional world, where he may encounter far fewer Latinos, may be jarring. “That’s one of my fears. Latinos aren’t very well represented in the professional work force now compared to whites. So will I be in for a culture shock then?”

Latinos make up the majority of students at fewer than two dozen four-year public colleges nationally, including the University of Texas at El Paso and Florida International University in Miami. Latinos are also the majority at a handful of campuses and make up nearly 40 percent of all students in the California State University system, which is larger and less selective than the University of California. Merced was not specifically intended as a predominantly Latino school, but many students, professors and administrators see the campus demographics as a point of pride that drew them there.

Though he rarely spoke Spanish with his friends in Los Angeles, growing up in Koreatown and attending high school in Silver Lake, Jason De Leon, 20, finds himself using it far more often at Merced, where he is majoring in cognitive science. When he meets someone and picks up that they know the language, he will likely pepper his sentences with “pues” and “oye.” When he was setting up an event on campus and needed help, he shouted out to a group of friends the same way his grandmother used to call out to him: “Ven! Ayúdame!”

“It worked, it grabbed their attention,” said Mr. De Leon, whose parents immigrated from Guatemala in the 1990s. “That kind of stuff happens all the time. Some of it is being homesick, some of it is slang and some things just make much more sense in Spanish.”

Although Latinos are the dominant culture on campus, there have been signs of discomfort in recent years, as the national debate over immigration arrived on campus.

A sign in support of undocumented students at Merced.CreditMax Whittaker for The New York Times

Earlier this year, the College Republicans set up a table on campus with signs that said “I love undocumented firearms” and “Ice Ice Baby,” referring to the acronym for Immigration and Customs Enforcement. There was also a phone number posted for students to call federal immigration authorities

The signs prompted weeks of protest by Latino students. Dorothy Leland, the chancellor, issued a statement in March saying that she was troubled that anyone would wish harm on undocumented students and “would deliberately introduce added stress and anxiety into their fellow students’ lives.”

The incident also prompted renewed calls for a student center on campus that would have dedicated spaces for Latino student groups.

In part, Latinos make up the majority of students at Merced because many have no other choice in the University of California system. The system promises to admit all students who graduate in the top 9 percent of their local high schools, but that is no guarantee that they will receive a spot at the most competitive schools, like U.C.L.A., Berkeley or San Diego. Often, students who are rejected elsewhere are sent to less-sought-after campuses such as Santa Cruz, Riverside, and Merced, all of which have the highest percentages of Latino students.

The campus is also attracting students from the surrounding Central Valley, many of whom considered other University of California schools out of reach and applied specifically to Merced. The number of applicants from the Central Valley to the U.C. system have more than doubled since the Merced campus opened, many the first in their families to take that step.

As a child in Fresno, Tatiana Acosta did not know anyone who had attended college, other than her teachers. Her mother has spent years working in a packing plant, filling small boxes with figs. Her grandfather, too, had held down mostly low-wage jobs in the agriculture industry after moving to the Central Valley from Nayarit, Mexico.

But in her sophomore year of high school, Ms. Acosta was recruited to an Upward Bound program, run by Merced to help high school students get into college. She spent several nights in the dorms at Merced that summer with other low-income students from Fresno, which is about an hour’s drive south.

“Before that, I was not doing anything good, I was not on the right path,” Ms. Acosta, 19, said one recent evening. “I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life or even if I was going to finish high school. But I started connecting myself with people who wanted to see me succeed. It made me want something better for myself.”

To improve the graduation rate on campus, administrators say they are trying all sorts of strategies for getting first-generation students not only to enroll, but to earn diplomas.

Ms. Acosta has struggled to juggle her family life back home with her new life on campus. Last fall, after her older sister was sentenced to several months in jail, her mother was often lonely and depressed, so Ms. Acosta felt obligated to visit. But Ms. Acosta struggled to stay on top of her school work, and ended up nearly failing a course in math and had to repeat a writing class. By the spring semester, Ms. Acosta, who is majoring in management and business economics, told her mother that she could visit only once every two weeks for a night at a time.

“She didn’t want me to just leave her,” she said. “It was very hard to explain to my mom that this wasn’t aout me not wanting to see her, but about doing what I came here to do.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/19/us/university-california-merced-latino-students.html

GreenPower Announces Plans to Triple Production Capacity

Porterville, California –

August 27, 2018 –

Greenpower Motor Company Inc. (TSXV: GPV) (OTCQX: GPVRF) (“Greenpower” or the “Company”) today announced plans to triple its production capabilities of its zero-emission all-electric buses. The Company has leased a facility with over 50,000 square feet in the City of Porterville as a manufacturing and assembly center, which will open on October 1, 2018. Initial production will focus on EV Stars and then Synapse Type-D school buses. Should the Company reach full capacity, it could lease additional space to increase the size of the facility to over 90,000 square feet. The lease is for a term of four years with an option to extend the term for an additional three years.

“With our current order book with over 120 buses and growing, this additional facility will allow us to meet our production demand. The close proximity of this location to our current and under construction production sites also helps ensure we maintain simplified and efficient logistics.” said Brendan Riley, President of GreenPower. “We are on track to produce 25 buses per month by the end of this fiscal year.”

The Company currently operates out of a 20,000-square-foot facility in Porterville. This property will be retained for additional service and office space. Over the past year, the Company has completed plans for the civil work, obtained a grading permit and submitted plans for the construction of a 144,000-square-foot manufacturing facility on the 9.3 acres owned by the Company. All three phases are scheduled to be completed by 2020, with the first phase consisting of 50,000 square feet to come online next year. Total investment in the manufacturing facility is expected to be $6 million to $7 million, which the Company plans on funding from operating cash flow over the next few years.

“We are excited that we are increasing our production capabilities in the City of Porterville and the San Joaquin Valley,” said Fraser Atkinson, Chairman of GreenPower. “Our plan allows us to take advantage of current sales opportunities in a cost effective manner while we develop our longer term production facility out of cash flow from operations.”

About GreenPower Motor Company Inc.

GreenPower designs, builds and distributes a full suite of high-floor and low-floor vehicles, including transit buses, school buses, shuttles, and a double decker. GreenPower employs a clean-sheet design to manufacture all-electric buses that are purpose built to be battery powered with zero emissions. GreenPower integrates global suppliers for key components, such as Siemens or TM4 for the drive motors, Knorr for the brakes, ZF for the axles and Parker for the dash and control systems. This OEM platform allows GreenPower to meet the specifications of various operators while providing standard parts for ease of maintenance and accessibility for warranty requirements. For further information go to www.greenpowerbus.com

 

Forward-Looking Statements

This document contains forward-looking statements relating to, among other things, GreenPower’s business and operations and the environment in which it operates, which are based on GreenPower’s operations, estimates, forecasts and projections. Forward-looking statements are not based on historical facts, but rather on current expectations and projections about future events, and are therefore subject to risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from the future results expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. These statements generally can be identified by the use of forward-looking words such as “may”, “should”, “will”, “could”, “intend”, “estimate”, “plan”, “anticipate”, “expect”, “believe” or “continue”, or the negative thereof or similar variations. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict or are beyond GreenPower’s control, such as the regulations and requirements in different jurisdictions. A number of important factors including those set forth in other public filings (filed under the Company’s profile on www.sedar.com) could cause actual outcomes and results to differ materially from those expressed in these forward-looking statements. Consequently, readers should not place any undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. In addition, these forward-looking statements relate to the date on which they are made. GreenPower disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

 

For further information contact:

 

GreenPower Motor Company

Fraser Atkinson, Chairman

(604) 220-8048

 

GreenPower Motor Company

Brendan Riley, President

(510) 910-3377

 

Elevator Communications, LLC

John Reed, Media Relations

(415) 846-4862

Ready to Work, ready to succeed

Roger Lawson

Aug. 22, 2018

A typical day for the 27-year-old Lawson begins with a breakfast of jail grub and continues with community-service volunteer work loading boxes or landscaping.

And after the work, it’s back to the Honor Farm, back to the jail grub, back to the nine other men in Lawson’s program, and back to the so-called mattress, with lights out at 10:30 p.m.

But you won’t hear Lawson complain because it’s the life he has chosen, at least for now.

“Once you get around people that actually want to help you,” Lawson said, “you actually want to start to better yourself, too.”

Lawson is one of the first 10 participants in the inaugural cohort of homeless men enrolled in a residential job-training program run by Ready To Work, a Stockton-based nonprofit that was awarded $1.4 million in grant funding three months ago by the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors.

Ready To Work’s aim is to set the men up with housing, job training and, ultimately, paying jobs — all aimed at giving participants a better opportunity to succeed once they leave the program after a maximum of 15 months.

“The people who are here want to be here and they’re focused,” said Jon Mendelson, Ready To Work’s executive director.

Mendelson has based his program — which may reach its 45-man capacity within a month — on one in New York that assists men who are leaving homeless shelters or the criminal justice system.

According to data from New York, nearly 80 percent of its participants are employed six months after they have exited and taxpayers save $3.60 for every dollar spent on the program.

Ready To Work is providing its participants training, food and sleeping quarters. After the initial adjustment to the program, the men are dispatched as supervised work groups in the community.

They are paid salaries, and with housing and food taken care of, the men have an opportunity to build a nest egg by the time they exit the program for their own apartments and a chance to build a new, independent life.

Lawson, who has a high school diploma and some college credits, moved from North Carolina to California several years ago, joining his mother in Stockton.

Strained family relations eventually pushed him out of his mother’s door and into the Stockton Shelter for the Homeless, where he lived while working for short stints at Walmart and for an alarm company.

While at the shelter, Lawson said he eventually met someone who knew of a job traveling with California Carnival Company setting up and tearing down the rides as various fairs moved from one city to another.

But the backbreaking work and 16-hour days were not what Lawson wanted for the rest of his life, so he returned once more to Stockton, staying at the shelter and at the Gospel Center Rescue Mission. When Lawson learned what Ready To Work was doing, he jumped at the opportunity.

“I need a steady source of income and transportation so I can get my own home,” he said. “I think this is a good stepping stone and opportunity for a lot of people to basically come up in the world.”

Leading visitors Wednesday around the yard, which includes a pingpong table and a basketball court, Mendelson pointed to 12-foot perimeter fencing covered with slats and topped by barbed wire, and he said there have yet to be any security breaches. Additionally, Ready To Work Program Director Deborah Johnson just happens to be the retired warden of the Central California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla, so she knows a thing or two about security. Johnson said collaboration between Ready To Work and the Sheriff’s Office led to the enhanced fencing and the barbed wire that tops it.

“We also worked on trying to ensure that the movement between their inmates and our clients out of that area is limited,” Johnson said. “So when (inmates are) moving to and from their dining facility … our clients are pretty much inside.”

 

Lawson said that in his mind, the precautions are unnecessary. His plans, he said, do not include attempting to interact with inmates. He has loftier visions.

“My own apartment, own place to stay, transportation, of course, maybe a nice car,” he said. “This is some foundation, some place that I can establish myself and be on my own feet without having to ask anybody for anything. It’s basically for independence and freedom, you know?”

http://www.recordnet.com/news/20180822/ready-to-work-ready-to-succeed

This new-to-Fresno chain restaurant plans to hire 200 workers

This new-to-Fresno chain restaurant plans to hire 200 workers. Here’s the latest

August 22, 2018 08:45 AM

Moving In: First Buildings of Massive Expansion Open to Students

August 20, 2018
Hundreds gathered to celebrate the opening of the first three buildings of the Merced 2020 Project.
Hundreds gathered to celebrate the opening of the first three buildings of the Merced 2020 Project.

Less than two years after breaking ground on its unprecedented campus expansion, the University of California, Merced, last week celebrated the opening of the first three buildings of the Merced 2020 ProjectOpens a New Window..

More than 400 people were on hand for an opening celebration Thursday, including UC Merced Chancellor Dorothy Leland and UC President Janet Napolitano. Leland and Napolitano also met with students Friday, and visited with more students and their families during move-in.

On Saturday, students moved into two brand-new, mixed-use residence halls, which feature more than 700 beds in addition to classrooms and retail space.

“The capacity we are building right now will enable our future,” Leland said. “We will provide world-class education to more of the best and brightest students from California and beyond. We will grow our faculty thoughtfully and strategically to have the greatest possible impact in our areas of research excellence. We will become a powerhouse of innovation and transformation for the San Joaquin Valley.”

Campus community members, supporters and their families got a glimpse of three new buildings.
Campus community members, supporters and their families got a glimpse of three new buildings.

UC Merced’s Journey Continues

At final delivery in 2020, the $1.3 billion initiative will comprise 13 new buildings featuring new classrooms, research labs and student life facilities that will allow the university to accommodate up to 10,000 students.

The centerpiece of the project, and the site of last week’s celebration, is the Pavilion — an iconic 600-seat dining facility overlooking Little Lake. The Pavilion is complemented by two new residence halls that have been strategically designed to form a pedestrian-friendly corridor that blends housing with classrooms, study lounges and student activities.

The first phase expands UC Merced’s ability to provide access to a world-class education to more of California’s best and brightest students, and future phases will include state-of-the-art laboratories to help further the university’s research mission.

“We believe in the power of education to change lives and change the world for the better,” Napolitano said. “There is no better example of that than UC Merced, and this step tonight marks a new chapter in the expansion of that opportunity.”

UC President Janet Napolitano and UC Merced Chancellor Dorothy Leland met with students and toured new housing facilities Friday.
UC President Janet Napolitano and UC Merced Chancellor Dorothy Leland met with students and toured new housing facilities Friday.

Winning Awards and Transforming Lives

The unique public-private partnership UC Merced is using to develop the project has garnered numerous awards and recognitionOpens a New Window. from across the country, including being named Social Infrastructure Project of the year at last year’s P3 Awards. The agreement provides the university with contractual assurance that the buildings will be well maintained for decades.

With 600 employees on site every day, the project is expected to generate a total of $1.9 billion in regional economic impact and $2.4 billion statewide through its completion. Development partner Plenary Properties Merced (PPM) and lead contractor Webcor joined the university in commemmorating the completion of the project’s first phase.

“We are well on our way to meeting our delivery and sustainability goals for the UC Merced 2020 Project, and this milestone marks a tremendous occasion for the university and our PPM team,” said Dale Bonner, Executive Chairman of Plenary Concessions. “We are incredibly proud to see this project setting the standard for P3 partnerships in the higher education sector.”

Webcor has placed a strong emphasis on hiring local workers, including 17 San Joaquin Valley subcontractors. Seven UC Merced students honed their analytical, engineering and communication skills as interns on the project, and Webcor has since hired them as full-time employees.

“This momentous milestone for UC Merced brings to light the unwavering efforts of the design-build team and the success and innovation a true P3 partnership can bring,” Webcor President and CEO Jes Pedersen said. “This project is also a great example of how Webcor seeks to improve communities and local economies. We’ve made it our mission to utilize the regional subcontracting community, provide education and on-the-job training for UC Merced students, and assist local nonprofits with various projects and support throughout the region.”

UC Merced Press Release

L’Oréal USA to open distribution center at Tejon Ranch Commerce Center

August 17, 2018

  • To relocate professional salon distribution operation to TRCC
  • “It’s all about access”

Cosmetics maker L’Oréal USA says it is relocating its professional salon distribution operation to the Tejon Ranch Commerce Center in Kern County, south of Bakersfield.

L’Oréal USA’s SalonCentric unit will occupy the remaining 240,000 square feet of space in a 480,000-square foot building developed in partnership with Majestic Realty Co., says the owner of the center, Tejon Ranch Co. (NYSE: TRC).

As part of the move, SalonCentric will relocate its Valencia distribution center to Tejon. SalonCentric, headquartered in St. Petersburg, Florida, and operating in 48 states, is distributes salon professional products.

“SalonCentric’s decision to move its Valencia operations toTRCC, which is located just 40 minutes north of its current facility, underscores Tejon Ranch’s value as a proven and opportune place for companies wanting to locate and/or expand in California,” says Joseph Rentfro, executive vice president of real estate at Tejon Ranch Co. “It’s also further evidence of Kern County’s emergence as a major distribution region with the ability to serve California and the western U.S.”

Bertrand Fontaine, president of SalonCentric, says the Tejon location directly on Interstate 5 provides great access, and “given the size of TRCC, we have room to expand operations to further realize our vision of modernizing the professional beauty industry.”

Earlier this year, Dollar General (NYSE: DG) leased the initial 240,000 square feet of space within the partnership’s building as it increased its footprint at TRCC by nearly 40 percent.

“It’s all about access,” says John DeGrinis, senior executive vice president of Colliers International, who represents TRCC.

L’Oréal USA is also applying for economic incentives administered through Kern County’s “Advance Kern” policy, which provides eligible companies the opportunity to seek reimbursement for a portion of the property and sales taxes they generate. The policy is only applicable to unincorporated areas of Kern County, like the Tejon Ranch Commerce Center.

The Tejon Ranch Commerce Center is Tejon Ranch Co.’s 1,450-acre master planned commercial/industrial development located at the junction of Interstate 5 and Highway 99 in Kern County, about an hour north of the Los Angeles basin. It’s entitled for more than 20 million square feet of commercial and  industrial space, with about 15 million square feet still available.

Bakersfield will be getting FAT

August 20. 2018

  • Hamburger chain to expand
  • “We are excited to expand our existing presence on the West Coast”

Los Angeles-based fast food company Fatburger is getting bigger, adding stores in Southern California plus one in Bakersfield in the Central Valley. It will be its first foray into the Valley.

FAT is an acronym that the company says means “fresh,” “authentic” and “tasty.”

FAT Brands Inc. (NADAQ: FAT), parent company of Fatburger and Buffalo’s Express, says the expansion will see the  development of 12 new co-branded Fatburger and Buffalo’s Express restaurants The expansion is to include a Fatburger and Buffalo’s Express restaurant in a new casino being developed by the Quinault Indian Nation.

The Southern California locations will span across Orange County, Simi Valley, Rialto, Glendora, Colton, and Eastvale. The locations are slated to open within the next year. Specific sites for the stores were not announced, with the exception of the casino-based outlet.

The two brands offer menus of classic fare including made-toorder burgers, milkshakes and fries at Fatburger and customizable, boneless and bone-in chicken wings and fresh salads at Buffalo’s Express.

“We are excited to expand our existing presence on the West Coast with these upcoming locations,” says Andy Wiederhorn, CEO of FAT Brands.

The company currently owns six restaurant brands Fatburger, Buffalo’s Cafe, Buffalo’s Express, Hurricane Grill & Wings, and Ponderosa and Bonanza Steakhouses, that have over 300 locations open and more than 300 under development in 32 countries.

http://files.constantcontact.com/2cb20f61601/74f3a172-731b-409f-bc3c-1cc087cb4c25.pdf

Fresno State named one of the 100 best schools in the country

VOLT Institute Graduates Inaugural Class

MODESTO, CA — On June 27, nearly a year after opening, VOLT Institute saw the graduation of its

first class of maintenance mechanic students. VOLT Institute, a partnership of Opportunity Stanislaus

and Stanislaus County Office of Education, was started at the request of local employers looking for

skilled candidates to fill existing and future vacancies. Employers set a priority of training maintenance

mechanics, a field with widespread shortages including over 300 openings in Stanislaus County alone.

Austin Parker, 22, is one of the graduates. He credits the program with his new job at Hughson Nut,

citing the teachers, hands-on learning, and personalized pace as benefits.

 

“VOLT was a greatopportunity,” said Parker. “It has already opened up a ton of doors for me. The instruction at VOLT

was hands-on and kept pace with students and the job placement assistance was beyond what any other

college would do. Thanks to VOLT I no longer just have a job- I have a career.”

 

Parker’s situation is not unique. In fact, VOLT boasts an 88% placement rate among graduates.

Opportunity Stanislaus CEO David White has been a driver of VOLT since the planning stages. “We

have come so far so fast and are excited about the momentum we’re gaining,” said White. “We have

the best equipment—machines that simulate industry facilities—and we have a team that is absolutely

committed to the success of the students. We look forward to great things.”

 

In addition to the 11-month Industrial Maintenance Mechanic program, VOLT also has a 3-month

Certified Production Technician program and workshops on a wide variety of business topics. Training

areas will continue to expand as the student population and capacity grows. “Stanislaus County Office

of Education has a tradition of preparing students for the workforce through education,” said Executive

Director Deb Rowe.

“VOLT is a great example of multi-sector partnership training, the industry

recognized certifications through VOLT qualify student for a living wage job which affirms we are

headed in the right direction to support our community and beyond.”

 

VOLT Institute recently made news when it was awarded $1,000,000 in the 2018-19 California State

Budget to expand training for high-demand careers in manufacturing, one of the county’s most critical

industries. The funding will support the expansion of an education and training partnership between

Modesto Junior College (MJC), Stanislaus County Office of Education (SCOE), and Opportunity

Stanislaus to prepare students for jobs based on employer demand. The grant will serve as the local

match necessary for a federal United States Department of Commerce, Economic Development

Administration grant.

 

New classes start October 8 and continue through September 5 of 2019. For more information or to

enroll please visit www.voltinstitute.com or call 209.566.9102.

Software engineering school opens inStockton

Central Valley Business Times

August 10, 2018

  • Code Stack Academy seeks students
  • “We know firsthand the challenge in recruitment and retention of software engineers”

Stockton’s first immersive, accelerated software engineering school offering students paths to high-paying careers and source for businesses in need of highly skilled employees has opened.

The San Joaquin County Office of Education says it has officially launched “Code Stack Academy,” Stockton’s first accelerated software engineering school. The immersive  coding school provides a route for students pursuing careers in technology and will help build a community of software engineers in the region ready to meet the growing demand for a highly skilled workforce.

“Students will have opportunities to find well-paid jobs with local businesses in need of workers with software-engineering skills,” says San Joaquin County Superintendent of Schools James Mousalimas.

Code Stack Academy offers a combination of hands-on workshops, one-on-one mentoring with career-experienced developers, peer-to-peer learning, and real-world project experience. It uses project-based “gamification” to measure progress and provide a fun and engaging experience. Students gain points as they complete projects. Points allow progression through the curriculum.

In addition to the full, nine-month course, Code Stack offers three-day and one-day Foundation Workshops throughout the year that teach core concepts of web development and equip students with all the basics to develop simple websites.

No previous coding experience is required for either the workshops or the academy course. Students must be 18 years or older to enroll. The first nine-month Academy Course begins in November.

Code Stack Academy will be operated through the SJCOE’s Center for Educational Development and Research, a software engineering department responsible for building web, software, or mobile apps used by over 5,000 school districts nationwide and over a dozen state agencies.

“We have the resources, curriculum, expertise, and experience to provide a broad and deep dive into software engineering,” says Johnny Arguelles, director of CEDR. “And as an employer,

we know firsthand the challenge in recruitment and retention of

software engineers.”

Business and government leaders voiced their support for the new Code Stack Academy and its potential to benefit San Joaquin County.

“Our community needs a workforce trained in technology to support growth of our current businesses and attract others to our area. This program will help to meet those needs,” says Jane Butterfield, president and chief executive officer of the Business Council of San Joaquin.

For more information:

https://codestackacademy.org/