Community College Chancellor visits

Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley and Superintendent Kathy Hart at Student Chef for lunch for the Listening Tour. Photo by Vivienne Aguilar
Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley and Superintendent Kathy Hart at Student Chef for lunch for the Listening Tour. Photo by Vivienne Aguilar

On Oct. 17, California Community Colleges Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley visited San Joaquin Delta College for a stop on his “Listening Tour.”

Delta College was one of six visited throughout the 114 college system.

The campus’ Expanded Executive Leadership Team spent the day in and out of departments on campus with Oakley and his staff, along with a few Board of Governors members. 

“I like that he provided the opportunity for different constituents in the campus to meet with him kind of in a smaller group setting,” said Le Phan, manager of student and community outreach.

The afternoon included meetings with faculty and classified employees, where the Oakley asked questions including: “What measures are you taking for participatory governments with the students and faculty, that’s been a concern among a number of faculty here and statewide?”

Oakley readdressed the question to the public at a town hall meeting at Tillie Lewis Theatre. 

He assured the audience that the statewide Academic Senate has proper and frequent representation, but it is a “tremendous responsibility” for students as representatives, so he and the president of the Academic Senate for Community Colleges guide as best they can.

The focus of the meeting was to discuss the Chancellor’s Vision for Success: “Strengthening the California Community Colleges to Meet California’s Needs.”
The majority of the 40 people at the town hall were Delta faculty — specifically those on the executive leadership team, a few deans and directors, classified employees, and Board of Governors members. 

Questions were lethargic, and Oakley kept having to encourage the audience.

“I was just at Shasta College on Monday and they had many questions. You can not let Shasta beat you!” he implored the crowd.

Oakley’s day-long tour of campus started in Student Chef. Aspiring culinary students welcomed the opportunity to serve the Ortiz and the Executive Leadership Team. 

“It gives them more skills on how to be more professional and how to stand up straight when not only when there’s people, guests around, but when there’s cameras around and stuff like that,” said Brittany Howard, adjunct and instructional aid, said before the lunch service.

Oakley and the group was then led by Delta student Austin Leatham around campus to see various departments, including the Horton Art Gallery. 

“I’d say honestly he was impressed about the campus overall. [At] The CAT program, he asked a lot of questions which is a good sign that he was interested in the presentation and the program there. The art gallery, he really liked. He was struck by that because he said not many schools have one of those. The radio station was a big one too. The student chef, he said was good. So I mean, there are a lot of like highlights just that this school has that he said were nice and he was pleased with.”