Fall semester is in full swing, but a dark shadow has been cast over the school since the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges made the decision to revoke City College’s accreditation next July.
There has been a strong reaction from faculty, students, staff and the community since City was hit with a “show cause” sanction. They are all armed with one idea.
The quality of education at City College makes it an institution worth fighting for.
City has over 30 areas of career and technical education. These programs allow students to receive hands-on training and gain experience in their chosen career, from culinary arts to aircraft-maintenance technology.
It has rich diversity programs from Women’s Studies to Asian American Studies to African American Studies. These courses allow students to learn about their background and ethnic history. City College also had the first LGBT Studies department in the country as a part of the diversity department.
The Disabled Students Programs and Services works hard to help the thousands of students with physical and learning disabilities to succeed in continuing their education and training them for their future careers.
The English as a Second Language department is the largest department at City College with over 700 course offerings. The department helps ESL students develop their ability to speak, read, write and comprehend English. Credit classes in the department help students succeed in their vocational or certificate program, as well as working toward transferring.
These departments and countless others are what makes City College a vital part of San Francisco.
The question that has been asked is, will City College close? However, there is a more pertinent question that students, faculty and staff should be asking themselves.
What will happen if City College does close? It is doubtful that another institution could take over the school that has an enrollment of nearly 80,000 students. Who will provide affordable education to low-income students looking to build their careers? Who will provide technical training to students looking to become firefighters, architects or construction managers? Who will employ faculty and staff who depend on City College for their livelihood?
“I can’t tell you how many people I know who are where they are because of City College,” District 8 Supervisor Scott Wiener said at a Save CCSF rally July 9.
The effects will reach across San Francisco if City does close its doors.
Faculty and staff who count on City College may find themselves unemployed next year, and students who don’t have the credits to transfer or can’t make the commute to alternative community colleges will likely drop out altogether.
The future of the school has become full of what-ifs, which makes planning for the future impossible for students, faculty and staff.