Saddleback College Health Information Technology Degree Program Earns National Accreditation

The Saddleback College Heath Information Technology associate degree program was fully accredited this week by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM). The national accreditation makes Saddleback College the eighth community college in California, and one of only 14 colleges in the state, to offer an accredited program in health information technology, an increasingly growing field that helps health care providers better manage patient care through the secure use of electronic health records.

In the Southern California region, job growth in the health information technology field is projected to grow 30 percent over the next 10 years. In Orange County alone, there were 1,596 jobs reported in 2015, an increase of 6.68 percent in two years.

Dr. Tod A. Burnett, president of Saddleback College, stated, “I am very proud of our health information technology program which has shown a great deal of promise in training students for successful careers in a field with a wide range of job opportunities.”

Safiah Mamoon, health information technology department chair and program director, stated, “Congratulations to Saddleback College on gaining CAHIIM accreditation for the health information technology associate degree. Since CAHIIM enforces rigorous standards for the programs it accredits, this is a very proud moment as the program has reached a very prestigious milestone joining only seven other community colleges with accredited health information technology degree programs in California.”

Occupations in health information technology include revenue cycle management/billing/clinical coding; health information management, practice management, patient care registrar, health information education, insurance claims specialist, patient portal education/liaison, medical office administration, quality improvement analyst, help desk, release of information, and medical transcription. Health information technology professionals are employed by hospitals, ambulatory care centers, physician offices, long-term care facilities, dialysis centers, public health agencies, pharmaceutical companies, medical supply companies, rehabilitation centers, managed care organizations, behavioral and mental health facilities, law firms, and insurance firms. One hundred percent of employers surveyed stated they would hire Saddleback College Health Information Technology program graduates if openings were available.

The associate degree program prepares students for employment as health information professionals with the knowledge and skills to accurately code diagnosis and procedures for the health care services provided to patients, and to collect, maintain, and analyze clinical data in electronic health records that physicians, nurses, and other healthcare staff rely on to deliver quality healthcare. The program provides training through didactic instruction and directed practice.

For more information on the Saddleback College Health Information Technology program please visit


Saddleback Softball Plays Exhibition Game Against Team from A League of Their Own

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Yesterday, the Saddleback College softball team played an exhibition softball game against the “Rockford Peaches” in a tribute to the movie, “A League of Their Own.” The team making up the “Rockford Peaches” comprised of actresses from the film that played members of the Peaches and women associated with ESPNW. The event was sponsored by ESPNW as part of ESPNW’s Women + Sports Conference, and the Bentonville Film Festival, which champions for women and diversity in film. The conference is being held October 14-16 in Dana Point.

Click here to view the story from the OC Register.

Team Orange County Showcases Energy-Efficient Home at Solar Decathlon

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Casa del Sol, the energy-efficient home designed by Saddleback College and other “Team Orange County” students, is currently on display at the United States Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon at the Orange County Great Park in Irvine. The nine-day collegiate competition, which opened yesterday morning, challenges teams from around the world to design, build, and operate solar-powered houses that are cost-effective and attractive to consumers.

The opening ceremony was led by Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz. Additional speakers were Christina Shea, Irvine City Councilwoman; Gaddi Vasquez, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs, Edison International; Serge Goldenberg, Senior Vice President, Solar Business, Schneider Electric; and Puon Penn, Executive Vice President, Head of Technology and Clean Tech Commercial Banking, Wells Fargo. Representing the South Orange County Community College District Board of Trustees was Dr. James R. Wright, and Saddleback College President Tod A. Burnett and Irvine Valley College President Glenn R. Roquemore were in attendance with Daniele Stroopa, Chancellor of Chapman University, and Gregory Washington, Dean of the UC Irvine Henry Samueli School of Engineering.

Casa del Sol is a collaboration of Team Orange County, which consists of a core group of 20 students from Saddleback College, who took the lead on architecture and interior design; Irvine Valley College, who focused on construction technology; UC Irvine, who oversaw engineering and project management, and Chapman University, who led marketing and communications efforts.

Dr. Burnett stated, “I am incredibly proud of the hard work and dedication of our students, who produced a truly innovative home enhanced by phenomenal design. Saddleback College is committed to providing a first-rate Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) curriculum, which are enriched by our ability to compete in high-level activities like the Solar Decathlon.”

Blake Stephens, professor of architecture, stated, “I am encouraged by the intelligence and hard-working attitude of the students who have dedicated their efforts to Team Orange County and the solar decathlon.”

While showcasing creative and sustainable home designs, the Solar Decathlon helps build a workforce to address the need to reduce carbon pollution that causes climate change. The competition combines classroom instruction with hands-on experience to teach college students the STEM concepts used to build their Solar Decathlon houses. Since the biennial competition began in 2002, many former participants have pursued careers in clean energy and sustainable housing.

The competing teams were selected two years ago in a competitive selection process and their projects represent a diverse range of design, building technologies, and geographic locations, climates and regions. They are constructed to target a broad range of housing markets, including empty nesters, multi-generational, and single family.

In addition to Team Orange, the following collegiate teams are competing in the Solar Decathlon 2015:

California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo
California State University, Sacramento
Clemson University
Crowder College and Drury University
Missouri University of Science and Technology
New York City College of Technology
Team NY Alfred (State University of New York at Alfred College of Technology and Alfred University)
Stevens Institute of Technology
Texas/Germany (The University of Texas at Austin and Technische Universitaet Muenchen)
State University of New York, Buffalo
West Virginia/Rome (West Virginia University and University of Roma Tor Vergata)
Mass/Central America (Western New England University, Universidad Tecnologica de Panama, and Universidad Tecnologica Centroamericana)

Over the next nine days, the teams will compete in 10 contests that focus on house performance, livability, and affordability. To test the livability and efficiency of the houses, the teams will perform a variety of everyday tasks, including cooking, laundry, and washing dishes. The winner of the overall competition will have demonstrated the best blend of affordability, consumer appeal, and design excellence while maintaining optimal energy production and maximum efficiency.

Team houses will be open to the public and free of charge October 8-11 and October 15-18 from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm. The overall winner will be announced on October 17 at 9:45 am. A $10 fee for public parking will be charged at the Orange County Great Park during the event.

For more information and to view photos of the event, visit the President’s Gaucho Gazette Blog, The Team Orange County Website, and the Solar Decathlon Website.
Located in Mission Viejo, Saddleback College provides quality higher education and training to the greater south Orange County community. Having served more than 500,000 students since 1968, Saddleback College offers more than 300 degree and certificate programs to help students reach their personal, career, and educational goals. For more information, please visit