The California Community Colleges Board of Governors recently recognized Rio Hondo College as the recipient of the 2018-19 Exemplary Program Awards for its alternative fuels program. The schools that received honorable mentions include Riverside City College, Santa Barbara City College and Sierra College.
“These colleges are successfully training students to combat climate change and sustainably address food insecurity on campus,” said California Community Colleges Board of Governors president Tom Epstein. “The collaborations among faculty and students to achieve these important goals serve as models for other community colleges throughout the state.”
To match with this year’s award theme of “Environmental Responsibility” Rio Hondo College received the award for its alternative fuels program that covers hybrid, fuel cell, compressed natural gas, liquid natural gas, liquid petroleum gas and electric vehicle technologies.
The program collaborated with community colleges and universities throughout the country on safety standards to improve technician safety.
Riverside City College was recognized as an honorable mention for its urban farm, which engaged members of the college, the community, K-12 schools and partner institutions to create the farm and its approach to community agriculture. The farm is also utilized as a food source for students experiencing food insecurity and as a place of refuge for several students.
Santa Barbara City College was also recognized as an honorable mention at the awards for its permaculture garden. The garden has changed the college’s appearance by converting well-kept lawns into large grounds with sustainable plants that help diminish student food insecurity.
Lastly, Sierra College was recognized as an honorable mention for its environmental studies and sustainability program, which provides students with the ability to transfer to four-year institutions in the environmental fields.
The annual Exemplary Program Awards was established in 1991, with funding from the Foundation for California Community Colleges, to honor outstanding state community college campus programs.