PIERCE COLLEGE'S COMMUNITY TIES QUESTIONED : NEW PRESIDENT SAYS ACADEMICS, JOB TRAINING OUTRANK TRADITIONAL FESTIVITIES IN BUDGET PRIORITIES.
Byline: Eric Wahlgren Daily News Staff Writer
Recent decisions by Pierce College In 2006 the Library won a national Excellence award. Academics
Pierce College offers associate's degrees, mainly in the arts and sciences. There are also certificate programs in early childhood education, social services, dental hygienist, and others. to drop its rodeo, Fourth of July Fourth of July, Independence Day, or July Fourth, U.S. holiday, commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence. Celebration of it began during the American Revolution. fireworks fireworks: see pyrotechnics.
Explosives or combustibles used for display. Of ancient Chinese origin, fireworks evidently developed out of military rockets and explosive missiles and accompanied the spread of military explosives westward to and popular produce stand have some residents grumbling that the institution is taking the ``community'' out of community college.
Two years ago, under then-acting President Mary E. Lee, the college decided to reject a contract proposed by longstanding tenant Cicero Farms, forcing the family farm and produce stand to move off Pierce land.
Then last year, newly arrived college President E. Bing Inocencio approved an advisory board's recommendation to pull the plug on the fireworks, citing the show's failure to break even.
And just last week, Pierce announced plans to scrub this year's version of the intercollegiate in·ter·col·le·giate
Involving or representing two or more colleges.
Adj. 1. intercollegiate - used of competition between colleges or universities; "intercollegiate basketball" rodeo held annually in May, signaling the possible end of a 41-year-old San Fernando Valley San Fernando Valley
Valley, southern California, U.S. Northwest of central Los Angeles, the valley is bounded by the San Gabriel, Santa Susana, and Santa Monica mountains and the Simi Hills. tradition.
Although Pierce's Agriculture and Natural Resource Management Department - and not the college president - decided to cancel the rodeo because of plummeting ticket sales, a former member of a committee that helped pick Inocencio now accuses him of showing a lack of commitment to the community.
``I am disappointed to see some of these things "These Things" is an EP by She Wants Revenge, released in 2005 by Perfect Kiss, a subsidiary of Geffen Records. Music Video
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2. go by the wayside since (Inocencio) came on board,'' said Bob Gross, a Woodland Hills resident who served on the 18-person selection committee that helped pick the former New York City New York City: see New York, city.
New York City
City (pop., 2000: 8,008,278), southeastern New York, at the mouth of the Hudson River. The largest city in the U.S. college official for the post.
``I thought he was going to be a lot more sensitive to the community than he seems to be,'' Gross added.
Inocencio, who has won high marks from faculty and students for his efforts to revitalize the struggling college, said too many people view the 400-acre campus mainly as a public park or farm.
Its true identity, he said, is as an educational institution.
``I want every student . . . to be transfer-ready or employment-ready,'' said Inocencio, who assumed his $93,353-a-year post about 10 months ago. ``If you take money from other programs and put it into a rodeo, for instance, how will you hurt the students in other programs?''
The college is faced with a $1.2 million deficit, low enrollment and aging buildings.
Despite its troubles, Pierce is one of the Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850. Community College District's top-performing schools, leading the district in the number of students who transfer to campuses of the University of California The University of California has a combined student body of more than 191,000 students, over 1,340,000 living alumni, and a combined systemwide and campus endowment of just over $7.3 billion (8th largest in the United States). and California State University Enrollment
Although some students said they regret the loss of school traditions such as the rodeo, many said they believe it is more important that Pierce preserve its academic programs.
``If they don't have enough resources, they have to allocate them to the most essential part of Pierce,'' said 20-year-old Jonathan Kim of West Hills, a psychology student.
Open to suggestions dtpost
Inocencio said he opposed spending scarce college money to bail out the rodeo, but would be open to suggestions from the Pierce College Council - an advisory board made up of students, faculty members and other employees - on other ways to fund it.
He said he stands by the advisory council's decision last year to end the unprofitable Fourth of July fireworks display.
And college officials, he added, are still deciding what to do with the plot at the corner of Victory Boulevard Victory Boulevard is a major thoroughfare on Staten Island, measuring approximately 8.0 miles (12.87 km) and stretching from the west shore community of Travis to the upper east shore communities of St. George and Tompkinsville. and De Soto de So·to , Hernando or Fernando 1496?-1542.
Spanish explorer who landed in Florida in 1539 with 600 men and set out to search for the fabled riches of the north. Avenue, where Cicero Farms used to operate a produce stand. The plot remains vacant after a contract with a new tenant fell through two years ago.
For now, Inocencio is concentrating on the school's structure, finances and programs.
Becoming the seventh president to head the school in a decade, the 61-year-old Manila, Philippines, native took over a campus which lacked continuity in leadership.
Enrollment has fallen from 24,000 about a decade ago to about 14,000 now.
The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges plans to visit the campus again in April after finding two years ago that the school needed to make improvements in several areas.
Inocencio hopes Pierce will sail through the panel's accreditation process this year, adding that ``all of their concerns are being addressed frontally.''
Helen Krahn, president of Pierce's Academic Senate, said that despite the college's many woes and Inocencio's short tenure, faculty members so far appear pleased with his performance.
``I liken lik·en
tr.v. lik·ened, lik·en·ing, lik·ens
To see, mention, or show as similar; compare.
[Middle English liknen, from like, similar; see like2 the campus to a 150-ton steamer, and you don't turn it around on a dime,'' Krahn said. ``But I think that the commitment that Bing has to Pierce is so strong that things are going to change.''
PHOTO E. Bing Inocencio, president of Pierce College, defends decisions to cancel fireworks and a rodeo.