Saddleback College Summer of Theatre makes O.C. Hot List

The Orange County Hot List recently ranked the Summer of Theatre at Saddleback College the sixth best festival in Orange County, beating out such events as the Newport Beach Jazz Festival, the Garden Grove Strawberry Festival, and others.

“We are excited to learn that the wider Orange County population is not only aware of what we are doing, but took the time to vote for our incredible event,” said David Anderson, director of audience development for the division of Fine Arts & Media Technology.

This year, 6,700 people came to see free performances of “Shrek: The Musical,” a Big Band performance featuring 100 year-old Shep Shepherd, Shakespeare by the Sea productions of “Macbeth” and “Taming of the Shrew,” and “The Music Man.” The series is designed to introduce theatre and music to residents and families who cannot afford to attend these productions at area theatres.

Anderson said, “It was so fun to see four generations of community members laughing, playing and singing along with our talented student casts. Nothing thrills us more than to see young people enjoying our shows without having to worry about sitting in a formal theatrical setting where they have to sit still and be quiet.”

The City of Mission Viejo through its Community Grants program partnered with the college to put on the 2017 Summer of Theatre. Anyone wishing to sponsor this event can email sc_arts@saddleback.edu or call 949-582-4913.

The O.C. Hot List’s top five were the Orange County Fair, Sawdust Art & Craft Festival, Tustin Street Fair & Chili Cook-Off, Doheny Blues Festival, Festival of Arts of Laguna Beach. Saddleback College’s KSBR Birthday Bash also made the list at No. 9. The Orange County Hot List features more than 4,475 businesses competing for title of Orange County’s best.

Dr. Burnett reflects on his time at Saddleback in State of the College

Dr. Tod A. Burnett, president of Saddleback College, released his final State of the College today.

The report, “We Did This Together,” focuses on how the college has improved during his nine years as president. Dr. Burnett retires today.

“I am extremely proud of the fact that each year our college has made great progress in serving our students and community. I have always believed that you cannot have student success without employee success, and it is for this reason we have tried to devote as many resources as possible for professional development, training, and support of our faculty, staff, and management,” he stated in the report.

Among the college’s successes are: doubling the number of annual degrees and certificates awarded; leading the $15 million Orange County Career Pathways Partnership; creating the High School Partnership Program; developing preliminary plans for the Center for Innovation in Healthcare Education at the district’s Advanced Technology and Education Park in Tustin; forming a unique partnership with Cal State Northridge to synchronize KSBR and KCSN on our shared channel of FM 88.5; adding more degrees for transfer and career technical education degrees and certificates; increasing financial aid 450 percent to $33 million; completing the new award-winning state-of-the-art Sciences Building; expanding professional development, training, and other support for our full and part-time faculty, staff, and management; and raising over $24 million for the Foundation.

The top 10 projects for the year are: student equity and achievement gap; K-career pathways; College Promise; non-academic barriers to student success; facilities; human resources; budgets; district culture; district structure; district behavior.

“We have created a unique culture of excellence at Saddleback, and the fruits of our labor will be enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of students and other members of our community for decades to come,” Burnett said in an email to the college today.

To read the full 2017 report, visit www.saddleback.edu/president/annual-state-college.

Saddleback College’s Accreditation Reaffirmed

A letter received today from the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges reaffirmed Saddleback College’s accreditation.

Dr. Tod A. Burnett, president of Saddleback College, stated, “I am thrilled Saddleback and the South Orange County Community College District achieved the most successful accreditation results in more than 20 years. We owe this success to the outstanding collaborative efforts of our students, faculty, staff, management, and community.”

The ACCJC gave Saddleback high marks, with the college and district receiving 10 commendations highlighting some of the college’s efforts. Especially impressive was one commendation that read, “The team commends the college for its student-centered approach to learning and student services. There is an enthusiastic collegial spirit and a commitment to student success exhibited by faculty, staff, and managers throughout the college. Saddleback College has demonstrated that it has a student-centric culture that is integrated with each area of the campus; the staff, faculty, managers, areas, and programs work in concert to provide the student with a consistent structure of support, recognition, and inclusion.” Dr. Burnett said, “This commendation says it all about Saddleback.”

The commission’s other commendations include: exemplary tutoring program; maintaining an aesthetically pleasing campus; information technology tools and practices that maximize the quality of interaction between students and counselors; high quality Emeritus Institute; becoming an area leader in developing a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT); Faculty Center for Student Success providing innovative instructional support; implementation of basic aid allocation creating stable base funding; ongoing training for the accreditation process and ongoing review of student success and equity data; and district-wide planning.

The ACCJC recommended Saddleback develop a more consistent mechanism to ensure that all program reviews are up to date and all programs contain action plans to improve the quality of the program. The commission also recommended the district implement a system that ensures the effectiveness of human resources. The college will submit a follow‐up report to the commission in October 2018.

For more information and to see the commission’s letter and External Evaluation Report, visit www.saddleback.edu/accreditation.

Accreditation ensures the public that an institution evaluates its educational quality and institutional effectiveness on a regular basis, and promotes institutional improvement. In this voluntary process, all colleges must complete an accreditation self‐study every seven years.

The primary purpose of an ACCJC-accredited institution is to foster student learning and student achievement. An effective institution ensures that its resources, programs, and services, whenever, wherever, and however delivered, support student learning and achievement. The effective institution ensures academic quality and continuous improvement through ongoing assessment of learning and achievement and pursues institutional excellence and improvement through ongoing, integrated planning and evaluation.