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RCC Newsletter


The Political Science Students Association (PSSA) hosted a local level panel discussion to inform students of social, political, and economic issues unique to the Riverside and Inland Empire. Developing this generation’s civic literacy is vital to maintaining and strengthening the foundation of democracy. 

PSSA understands the need to improve civic education and promote civic literacy, knowledge, and engagement among college students.

The exciting discussion included five local and civic leaders, three of whom are proud RCC alumni:  

  • Ronaldo Fierro – Ward 3 Councilmember, City of Riverside and Business Owner. 
  • Gracie Torres – Board, Western Municipal Water District and President for Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice
  • Italia Garcia – Political Director, Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice (CCAEJ) 
  • Adonis Galarza-Toledo – Interim Civic Engagement Coordinator at CCAEJ and Member of the Board of Education, Coachella Valley School District
  • Damien O’Farrell – President, Parkview Legacy Foundation
PSSA President Karen Esparza Lopez served as panel moderator addressing questions such as:  How did you get into politics? What are the biggest issues that RCC students are aware of? How have your duties changed due to the pandemic? When facing complex problems, what is the hardest part of your job? What advice would you give students interested in being a public servant?

Topics discussed ranged from housing and climate, to the digital divide/connectivity issues, and unemployment. Representatives of different areas within the county and regions are not all experiencing the same challenges, yet they agreed that solutions impact everyone in the region. 

Councilmember Fierro encouraged students to, “Deliver value in everything you do. Work hard because people see the value,” while Galarza-Toledo advised students to build strong relationships. 

Panelists also shared advice about how to get involved in advocacy on a local level. Each confirmed there are numerous volunteer opportunities that have a direct impact on the community. 


The RCC Jazz Ensemble, one of the College’s six large jazz ensembles, recently released a CD titled, “Quarantined.” Directed by Music Professor Charlie Richard, all songs were written and performed by RCC students. Mixing and mastering the CD was done by Jim Linahon. 
During the spring of 2020, fortunately before quarantine, the Ensemble performed together and recorded the songs found on this CD. During the two years represented on the recording, students performed with numerous guest artists, including: Kim Richmond, Bill Reichenbach, Alex Iles, Vince DiMartino, Gabriel DiMartino, Rick Lawn, Jim Snidero and Jeff Hellmer. 
RCC’s Jazz Ensemble was named the top Community College Jazz Ensemble by Downbeat Magazine at the 43rd Student Music Awards in 2020. They also received Downbeat’s Outstanding Performance award in 2019.  
While the students and faculty members are learning remotely, like most ensembles throughout the world, they continue to explore opportunities to perform together while mastering their craft. 


The launch of the redesigned RCC website is near! The test phase began on September 22 as select faculty, staff, and students were asked to examine the new site using their phone, tablet, and computer throughout the two-week period and provide feedback. 

Designed with equitable access in mind, the new website features will officially launch on October 15. The updated design allows for streamlined menus, clear navigation, and a responsive layout for all platforms. With a student-centered focus, the goal was to create a site that is easier for new and current students to navigate and find information quickly and efficiently.

As the College moves towards scaling up Guided Pathways and delivering on the promise of excellence for all, mark your calendars for the new website launch on October 15. The web team is excited to share with you and the community the new site. 


Riverside City College is currently the top community college in the California Students Vote Project (CSVP) Ballot Bowl. The Bowl officially kicked off on August 17 and as of September 28, Riverside City College has registered 307 students, nearly 30 more than the second ranked college.  

The Ballot Bowl was developed by the CSVP to increase civic engagement and voter participation among California college students. This friendly competition was designed to encourage universities and colleges to engage their students in the democratic process and register them to vote. The Ballot Bowl includes all of California’s major higher education systems, including the California Community Colleges, California State University, University of California, the Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities systems.

In the last week of September over 15,000 California students registered to vote, representing a one week increase of 312.65%.


RCC received a $10,000 grant from the City of Riverside to promote free online courses for adults offered by the College and its neighboring adult schools, in partnership with the Riverside Public Library. Alvord Adult School, Jurupa Adult School, Riverside Adult School, and RCC’s new Extended Learning program all offer a variety of free online courses to help adults reach their educational and career goals.  


The ASRCC Student Resource Center distributed toiletries, school supplies, discount cards, and other resources to students on September 29. The first 100 students participating received a free box lunch prepared by students in the RCC Culinary Arts Academy. Expressing their Tiger Pride, ASRCC is confirming that RCC is a place where every student can thrive.


Riverside Community College District leadership signed on to the Skills for CA letter to the California’s Future Work Commission. The letter supported a commitment to racial equity and a strategy that emphasizes quality jobs and offered five workforce development strategies for consideration as the state charts a reimagined economy.

The Commission is working to finalize recommendations. The five strategies supported by the coalition, include:
  • Expanding high-road industry partnerships;
  • Ensuring that local workers have access to quality jobs created by infrastructure investments;
  • Expanding pre-apprenticeship, apprenticeship, and high-quality work-based learning;
  • Supporting digital access and learning for all workers; and
  • Providing public data tools in order to identify equity gaps and solutions for closing them.
Skills for CA is a statewide network of organizations advancing workforce development policies that remove systemic barriers and promote an inclusive economy for Californians. Skills for California uses a three-prong approach — equity, pathways to good jobs, and systems innovation. Through equity, Skills for California hopes to provide education and skills training and upward mobility for Californians. By creating skill training pathways, Skills for California plans to develop jobs that pay family supporting wages with room for worker advancement, stability and predictability. Through innovation, Skills for California anticipates the development of collaborative innovations in workforce development that could lead to more business growth and more Californians obtaining needed skills to maintain and grow the labor market. 


Voting 2020: Access & Equity town hall discussion was held on Thursday, October 1, with Secretary of the State Alex Padilla. Faculty, staff and students participated via Facebook Live. 

The town hall was moderated by Guillermo Ochoa, Telemundo 52 news anchor. In 2019, the Secretary of State codified AB963, the California Students Vote Project. AB963 requires each of California’s higher education institutions to encourage student civic engagement efforts in order to promote a democracy that is more inclusive of student voices. Padilla shared information on registering to vote, how to participate in the Census, and provided information on the statewide Ballot Bowl, a friendly competition to encourage students to register to vote. 

A student leadership team from the District colleges assisted with the facilitation of the town hall, including a period for questions and answers. The event was available in English and Spanish.


Thursday, October 1, at 12:50 pm
Learn the History of the Beautiful Dance of Ballet Folklorico and see a Special Performance  
Tuesday, October 6, at 1 pm
ASRCC presents: A Conversation and Showcase of Art and Culture with Chicana Artist Karina A. Monroy
Friday, October 9, at 11 am
Mental Health is Often Overlooked in the Latinx Culture, Let’s Breakdown the Stigma
Tuesday, October 13, at 12:50 pm
ASRCC presents: Celebration of Latinx Culture with food giveaway and movie screenings
Thursday, October 15, at 6:30 pm
Questions & Answers with Ricky Hinds, writer of “My Name is Myeisha,” via MUSE Literary Magazine on Facebook Live 
* All events are held via zoom. For more information, contact

Census 2020 

Every 10 years, people across the country fill out the Census in order to have an accurate count of all people living in the United States. The Census helps determine California’s congressional districts and provides resources such as funding for some student financial aid, healthcare, housing, transportation and other important student services. 

Encourage students, family and friends to participate in the Census. It has never been easier to respond on your own, whether online, over the phone, or by mail.  Now’s the time, the 2020 Census ends on October 5. 


Riverside City College
4800 Magnolia Avenue
Riverside, CA 92506

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Riverside Community College District · 3801 Market St · Riverside, CA 92501-3225 · USA