Image: Scenes from around campus

Peralta News

Peralta News – Grand Opening Barbara Lee Science & Allied Health Center

23 November 2015


The Peralta Community College District celebrated a historic groundbreaking ceremony for the new Barbara Lee Science and Allied Health Center at Merritt College. The new building is one of the most advanced science centers at a community college in California. A letter from President Obama acknowledging the grand opening was read as part of the ceremonies celebrating this new building.

The building includes cutting edge technology and the latest in sustainable, or green, building advances. The 107,292-square foot building will house Merritt College’s sciences, genomics, nursing and nutrition departments.

For the full speech, click here.

Filed under: Merritt College, Peralta News. Tagged: ,

Peralta Recognized for Commitment to Study Abroad

20 November 2015

IMG_0461The Office of International Education for the Peralta Community College District (PCCD) was recognized in the Institute of International Education’s (IIE) “Generation Study Abroad Year One Impact” report for its commitment to increase awareness and advocacy of study abroad. (

Founded in 1919, IIE is a private, not-for-profit leader in the international exchange of people and ideas. In collaboration with governments, foundations and other sponsors, IIE creates programs of study and training for students, educators and professionals from all sectors. These programs include the flagship Fulbright Program and Gilman Scholarships administered for the U.S. Department of State. IIE also conducts policy research, provides resources on international exchange opportunities and offers support to scholars in danger..

This past summer, 2015, PCCD offered four study abroad programs to Europe, Haiti, Ghana and Jamaica. In 2016, PCCD is offering courses in Cuba, Iceland and Ghana.

As part of the effort to expand awareness of study abroad, the Office of International Education hosted its second annual study abroad fair at Berkeley City College on September 23, 2015. The fair included a special presentation on Cuban Animation by popular Cuban animators, Mario and Daniel Rivas, that was facilitated by Paul Bardwil of Global Education Foundation, the organization assisting the Spanish Study Abroad in Cuba Program at Berkeley City College, which is scheduled to run in May 28 to June 4, 2016. Facilitated by Drew Gephart of the PCCD Office of International Education, the event was well attended by students from all levels, including international students who are also eligible to join in the study abroad program of their choice. Several vendors, including those from the Peralta Colleges, as well as the Office of International Education, were present to showcase and to answer questions about their study abroad programs.

“As a local travel company based here in Berkeley, Go Overseas was proud to participate in the Peralta Study Abroad fair. We’re committed to making international education accessible for all students and this event was an excellent opportunity to promote awareness and drum up enthusiasm for community college students here in the Bay Area,” said Anna Morris, Study & Intern Abroad Director, Go Overseas.

The Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange, released today by the Institute of International Education (IIE), shows that five percent more American students – a total of 304,467 – studied abroad for academic credit from their U.S. colleges and universities in 2013/14, as compared with the prior year. This is the highest rate of growth in study abroad in five years, and reflects building momentum after the two percent growth reported last year. While study abroad by American students has more than tripled in the last two decades, still only about 10 percent of U.S. students study abroad before graduating from college.

The Peralta Community College District has focused on increasing study abroad participation this year, as a commitment partner in the IIE Generation Study Abroad initiative to double the number of American students who go abroad each year —

600,000 individuals — by 2020, and to diversify that group. Currently, fewer than 10-percent of American college students participate in international study programs, and less than 25 percent of those students are from underrepresented minority groups. At PCCD, there is an emphasis on the importance of global awareness, and a belief that a study abroad experience enhances a student’s global outlook and overall education.

“There is a great need to grow the study abroad program at The Peralta Colleges. Due to the necessity for international exposure in the global economy, we are working hard so that Peralta students are better situated to be successful in their careers and in lives,” said Drew Gephart, International Services Manager of the Peralta Community College District..

“International experience is one of the most important components of a 21st century education,” said IIE’s President Dr. Allan E. Goodman. “Studying abroad is one of the best ways undergraduate and graduate students gain the international experience necessary to succeed in today’s global workforce. And studying in another country prepares students to be real contributors to solving key global issues in the world we share.”

Launched in March 2014 with 156 partners, Generation Study Abroad has grown to include more than 600 partners that have pledged a total of $185 million in support to make study abroad more accessible to all students. Partners include 350 U.S. colleges and universities, 100 from outside of the United States, study abroad organizations and education associations, as well as 14 country partners around the world – including the U.S. Department of State. In addition, 500 K-12 teachers from 50 states have pledged to take action to encourage their students to develop a global perspective and consider studying abroad when they are in college.

Filed under: Announcements, Peralta News. Tagged: , , , , , , , , ,

Peralta Matters hosted by Chancellor Jowel C. Laguerre

19 November 2015


This month on Peralta Matters, guest host Chancellor Jowel C. Laguerre, Ph. D. introduces us to three of our amazing student leaders. Adrien Abuyen is a student at the College of Alameda and sits as a student representative on the Peralta Colleges Board of Trustees. He explains his decision to attend college and drive to help fellow students. Brianna Rogers, President of the Associated Students of Berkeley City College, describes her successes as a returning student and the activities that have led to her Servant Leadership. And Serena Witherspoon of Berkeley City College details her passion for youth voter education and experiences as a college student.

Filed under: Berkeley City College, Board of Trustees, College of Alameda. Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Peralta News – Board Spotlight November 10, 2015

18 November 2015


At the November 10, 2015 meeting of the Peralta Colleges Board of Trustees, Proclamations were issued honoring David Harper, first African American jury foreman of a major murder trial. Student leaders reported back from their visit to the Congressional Black Caucus. And Deputy Chancellor Gravenberg and the College President provided reports on Accreditation.

The Peralta Colleges Board of Trustees meet the second and forth Tuesday of every month. All meetings are open to the Public, and are broadcast LIVE on peraltaTV and KGPC, 96.9 fm. Past meetings are available for viewing here.

Filed under: Board of Trustees, Board Spotlight. Tagged: , , , ,

Peralta Trustees to Honor David Harper, First African American Jury Foreman of a Major Murder Trial

6 November 2015


david-harper-circa-681At its regular board meeting on Tuesday, November 10, at 7:00 p.m., the Board of Trustees of the Peralta Community College District, will honor David Harper, the first African American jury foreman in a major murder trial in the United States, on the same day as the Mayor of the City of Oakland proclaims November 10th as “David Harper Day.” The meeting, at 333 East 8th Street in Oakland, is open to members of the public. Media are also invited to attend.

Both David Harper (pictured, circa 1968) and a representative from the Office of Mayor Libby Schaaf will be in attendance at the meeting. Board President Meredith Brown will make special remarks noting Harper’s pioneering role in the 1968 murder trial of Black Panther founder Huey Newton for the death of a white Oakland policeman. The Mayor’s Proclamation will be read at the meeting, which takes place at 333 East 8th Street in Oakland, and will be televised live on Peralta TV, cable channels 27 or 28 in the East Bay.

Harper’s role as jury foreman in 1968 remains important even today. In many jurisdictions prosecutors routinely excluded all black jurors from juries “of one’s peers” in death penalty cases.  This month, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the constitutionality of an all-white jury that condemned a black teenager to death. In 1968, banker David Harper risked his life to serve as foreman of the polarizing Huey Newton murder trial, held in Oakland just months after Dr. Martin Luther King’s assassination sparked riots in cities across country. The Newton jury reached a verdict under Harper’s leadership that kept peace when widespread rioting was expected. That groundbreaking jury also led to far broader inclusion of women and minorities in juries across the country.

“Peralta is pleased to play a role in the recognition of David Harper’s contribution to the American justice system,” said Peralta Community College District Board President, Meredith Brown.

“We are an institution of higher learning that serves a diverse population, and the historical and educational aspects of the jury reform movement sparked by the Newton Trial speak to our mission to sustainably enhance the region’s human, economic, environmental and social development and to develop leaders who create opportunities and transform lives,” President Brown said.

“David Harper has contributed to Peralta’s mission through his participation in the justice system and use of the knowledge and skills that he gained through his education. David Harper is a meaningful role model for our students,” she added.

The 1968 Newton trial is the subject of a book,”The Sky’s The Limit,” by retired Oakland Judge Lise Pearlman, who is working on a documentary about the trial, and who will also be in attendance at the meeting.

Filed under: Announcements, Board of Trustees, Peralta News. Tagged: , , , , , , , ,

Arts & Culture – Eco Arts Matters Gallery at Laney College

3 November 2015


The Eco Art Matters class at Laney College covers the history of the environmental/social justice arts movement. Students take field trips, volunteer, watch documentaries and put together an eco art exhibit.

The students do extensive research on an important “matter” of their choosing, develop a proposal, and then create artworks, installations, visual presentations or performances which are installed by the artists and exhibited at a local gallery.

Check them out on Facebook!

Filed under: Arts & Culture, Laney College, Peralta News. Tagged: , ,

Barbara Lee Science and Allied Health Center Grand Opening Friday at Merritt College

2 November 2015

peralta_science_2Join US Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Peralta Chancellor Jowel C. Laguerre, Ph.D., and Merritt College President Norma Ambriz-Galaviz for the grand opening of the Barbara Lee Science and Allied Health Center this Friday at Merritt College. The Peralta Colleges will unveil the region’s newest health and allied sciences building, which will allow facility to have the tools they need to provide state of the art science/technology instruction to our students.

A letter from President Obama acknowledging the grand opening will be read as part of the ceremonies and tours of the facility by science faculty and students will be provided. Join in at 11:30 a.m. on Friday. The event is free and open to the public!


What: Grand Opening of the Barbara Lee Health and Allied Science Building, one the most advanced facilities in the region.

When: Friday, November 6, 2015, 11:30 AM

Where: Merritt College, 12500 Campus Drive, Oakland, CA 94619

Who: US Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Peralta CDD Chancellor Jowel C. Laguerre, Ph.D., Merritt College President Norma Ambriz-Galaviz


Background: With over 60,000 square feet of dedicated space for science and technology, the Barbara Lee Health and Science building, located at Merritt College, will be the region’s newest epicenter for innovation in science and technology.

As part of the Peralta Community College District’s commitment to provide access to the region’s student population, in addition to the District’s student population, the health and science building will be made available to local high school students. Merritt College has developed a concurrent enrollment program with local high schools where students will be able to enroll in academic courses at the college.

The Barbara Lee Science and Allied Health Center is a new four story building, totaling approximately 110,000 square feet. The majority of the building is dedicated to programs in the Sciences and Allied Health but additionally includes Mathematics and Business Technology as well. Each department area has been designed to not only anticipate but to encourage growth within each field for the future of the Merritt Campus.

This architectural design of this building and the state of the art equipment chosen for this facility was established to essentially have something for everyone. To accomplish this the design was aimed at achieving a number of goals, in particular enhancing the student learning environment, promoting the growth of the departments and energizing the campus as a whole.

As the theme of this building is for the Sciences and Allied Heath, There is a specialized screen that goes across the south and west face of the building. The basis of this screen is derived from Mitochondria DNA. Mitochondria DNA, or mtDNA, is distinct from general human DNA, as they are the structures within human cells that convert food to energy in useful form. The twenty-eight screen panels are a graphic representations of the mtDNA sequence that is almost identical in every human being.

In theme with the building, the exposed spiral staircase in the center of the building has been designed as a double-helix staircase to mirror the graphic representation of the mtDNA screen and to show case both formats scientist look at DNA.

At various locations throughout the building, there are a number of public common areas for students and faculty to freely interact. These common areas have an open environment within the building to encourage active learning in an environment that is not limited to just the classroom, but in their day to day life interactions.

The state of the art technology and furniture included in this building was specifically chosen to again enhance the learning environment for students and faculty. This ranges from interactive projectors in each classroom and lab, top of the line equipment specifically chosen by each department, and even to the student desks and chairs with the adjustability for left and right handed students.


Read more about the science programs offered at Merritt College here: Barbara Lee Center Program Descriptions 10-28-15

Filed under: Announcements, Merritt College, Peralta News. Tagged: , , , , ,

KQED Open Newsroom Event at Laney College

2 November 2015



Laney College is hosting the Oakland edition of the KQED Open Newsroom next week on November 4th!

The Open Newsroom asks the question, “What can KQED News learn from you and your community?”

This will be part of an ongoing series of forums which invite community leaders, newsmakers, local business owners and residents to pitch stories, meet journalists and build a relationships. In attendance will be KQED’s East Bay Desk team Devin Katayama and Sandhya Dirksas well as morning newscaster Joshua Johnson and education reporter Ana Tintoclis. For the Oakland edition of the KQED Open Newsroom they would like to invite pitches around three themes:
– Community and Policing
– Jobs for Oaklanders
‎- School and ‎Education

Please register now, click here.

Check Laney’s social media pages for updates!

Filed under: Announcements, Laney College, Peralta News. Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Peralta News – Congressional Black Caucus 2015

29 October 2015


Eight student leaders from the Peralta Colleges put their leadership and networking skills to the test as they travel to Washington DC to attend the annual Legislative Conference hosted by the Congressional Black Caucus.

Filed under: Peralta News. Tagged: , ,

Peralta Community College District Receives $500,000 Grant For Career Technical Education

26 October 2015


CTEOAKLAND, Calif., October 26, 2015 On Tuesday, October 20, at its regular meeting, the Board of Trustees for the Peralta Community College District authorized the acceptance of a Career Technical Education (CTE) Enhancement Fund sub-grant of $505,052 (40% allocation) from Cabrillo Community College District, which is the Bay Area Community College Consortium’s (BACCC) fiscal agent that is responsible for the distribution of CTE Enhancement Funds from the California Community College State Chancellor’s Office.

The Career Technical Education (CTE) Enhancement Fund was created by a one-time allocation from the state’s FY 2014-15 budget for California Community Colleges. The purpose is to develop, enhance, retool and expand quality career technical education offerings that build upon an existing community college regional capacity to respond to local labor market needs.

Acceptance of funds by each of The Peralta Colleges (Berkeley City College, College of Alameda and Laney and Merritt Colleges in Oakland) from the CTE Enhancement Allocation will greatly enrich the educational mission of the district that serves the cities of Albany, Alameda, Berkeley, Emeryville, Oakland and Piedmont.

Many of its over 30,000 students attend the Peralta Colleges – Berkeley City College, College of Alameda, Merritt College and Laney College – in order to pursue certificates in Career Technical Education and fast-track to the every-changing job market.

This sub-grant will make a significant difference in the quantity and variety of CTE classes offered by the four-college district.

Filed under: Announcements, Berkeley City College, Board of Trustees, College of Alameda, Laney College, Merritt College. Tagged: , ,

Peralta Student Trustee Appointed To Citizens’ Bond and Parcel Tax Oversight Committee

26 October 2015

PCCD_AnnouncementAdrien-AbuyenOAKLAND, Calif., October 26, 2015 – – At its regular meeting on Tuesday, October 20, the Board of Trustees for the Peralta Community College District approved the appointment of Adrien Abuyen, a student Trustee, as the student representative to serve on the Citizens’ Bond and Parcel Tax Oversight Committee (“Citizens’ Oversight Committee”). The purpose of this committee is to ensure that bond and tax dollars generously given to the District by the electorate are spent to enhance education at the four Peralta Colleges – Laney College, Merritt College, College of Alameda and Berkeley City College.

The Citizens Oversight Committee membership consists of a minimum of eight (8) members appointed by the Board of Trustees from candidates submitting written applications, and is comprised of: one a member active in a business organization representing the business community located in the District; a member active in a senior citizen’s organization; a member active in a bona-fide taxpayer’s organization; a member who is a student and currently enrolled in the District and active in a community college group, such as student government; a member active in the support and organization of the community college or the community colleges of the district; and two members of the community at-large.

Abuyen is already a Student Trustee for the Peralta Community College District Board of Trustees. Previously, he has served on the Associated Students of the College of Alameda (ASCOA) as the Communication Officer, and then as the Vice President of Operations during the following term.

“I feel that my education must serve a deeper purpose than just meeting a deadline for a class,” said Abuyen. This motivated student has a strong desire to serve his community, which is reflected in his plans to major in Community and Regional Development when he transfers to UC Davis after completing his studies at College of Alameda. Adrien also plans to attend law school and hopes to one-day work in youth advocacy.

Filed under: Board of Trustees, College of Alameda, Peralta News, Press Release. Tagged: , , , ,

Peralta News – Board Spotlight October 20, 2015

26 October 2015


Welcome to Board Spotlight, a brief re-cap of the bi-weekly meeting of the Peralta Colleges Board of Trustees.

At the October 20 meeting, Chancellor Laguerre update the Board on his visits to our colleges.

The Peralta Federation of Teachers recognized the outstanding work of our Human Resources Department in hiring 41 new full time faculty this year.

And Vice Chancellor of Finance Ron Little provided an update on our progress resolving external audit findings.

The Peralta Colleges Board of Trustees meet the second and forth Tuesday of every month. All meetings are open to the Public, and are broadcast LIVE on peraltaTV. Past meetings are available for viewing here.

Filed under: Board of Trustees, Board Spotlight, Peralta News, PeraltaTV. Tagged: , , , ,

Student Spotlight – Maria Garcia Alvarez

23 October 2015


Maria found a future and career in a field that is both rewarding and stable through the HVAC program at Laney College. She takes time from her busy day to talk with Peralta TV about her experiences and rewards from remaining determined.

The Environmental Control Technology Department (ECT) offers technical certificates and associate degrees in Residential and Light Commercial HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) as well as Commercial HVAC systems, with new certificates and degrees in Building Automation Systems and energy management in development. Students in these programs learn the theoretical, technical and problem-solving skills essential for employment in the HVACR or controls industries. Students completing the curriculum can seek employment as refrigeration technicians, heating, ventilation, air conditioning technicians, sales engineers, equipment and system installers, parts persons, operations and maintenance technicians, building engineers, controls technicians, and energy specialists.

The ECT Department occupies a space of over 8,000 square feet. The program provides theoretical content, and extensive hands-on labs on refrigeration systems, light commercial and commercial air conditioning and heating equipment, boilers, chillers, hydronic HVAC systems, and building automation control systems.

For more information, click here

Filed under: Academic Excellence, Laney College, Student Spotlight. Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Please join us in dedicating the Barbara Lee for Science and Allied Health Center

20 October 2015

lee dedication-email.qxdFriday, November 6 at Merritt College. RSVP at (510) 436-2416 or email

Filed under: Announcements, Merritt College, Peralta News. Tagged: , ,

Peralta Students Urged to Participate in Congresswoman Barbara Lee’s Twitter Town Hall

20 October 2015

BL_iconOn Thursday, October 22nd, Congresswoman Barbara Lee will be hosting a Twitter town hall to speak directly with constituents on the issues that affect their lives. The Congresswoman has specifically invited students from the Peralta Colleges to participate. How it works: Just tweet any question about politics or policy to @repbarbaralee, using the hashtag #AskBLee. The Congresswoman will be answering questions from both personal Twitter accounts and accounts belonging to organizations.

When: The town hall is on October 22nd from 6:00 p.m-7:00 p.m.
What: Send in questions anytime or during the town hall.

For more information, please contact Emma Lydo at
The Congresswoman looks forward to Peralta students’ participation!

Filed under: Announcements, Peralta News. Tagged: ,

  • Peralta Colleges

    Saturday 28 November 2015
    Powered by Wordpress

  • Peralta Community College District

    The district comprises four campuses serving northern Alameda County.
  • Oakland Weather

    Conditions for Oakland, CA at 4:52 pm PST: Fair, 51 F