The News Site of Fresno City College

The Rampage Online

The News Site of Fresno City College

The Rampage Online

The News Site of Fresno City College

The Rampage Online

Students at Fresno City College Smile for their Bachelor’s Degree

Photo by: Christianna Schiotis
Victoria Horne, a dental hygienist student, cleans her friend Rhonwyn Groger’s teeth on Nov. 22.

Fresno City College will start offering its first bachelor’s degree in fall 2024.

As a part of the Vision 2030 plan, FCC will provide bachelor’s for dental hygiene, according to Melissa Villarin, Spokesperson for the Chancellor’s Office.

Mary Claire Ewing, a professor and a part of the 1968 graduating class, has been waiting for a program like this for a very long time.

“The work that they do is equivalent to any bachelor degree in dental hygiene, and they should really get credit for the work they’re doing,” Ewing said.

Dental hygiene students graduate with 107 credits. But to obtain a bachelor’s degree, students would need to take three additional classes.

According to FCC’s website, students who apply in the spring 2024 semester for the program will be applying for the fall 2024 bachelor of science degree in dental hygiene.

According to Joanne Pacheco, the director of the dental hygiene program, they have been trying to apply for the baccalaureate program since 2014 and were finally approved in 2022.

High end unit programs, like the dental program, are able to apply through the chancellor for an opportunity in the baccalaureate program, according to Pacheco.

At this time, FCC has not applied for any other baccalaureate programs.

Assembly Bill 927 says that community colleges are not allowed to offer the baccalaureate program if it interferes with neighboring California State Universities (CSU) or University of College (UC) schools.

The program offers a new and more affordable option to students and strives for student success, and according to Villarin, upper division coursework is approximately $84 per unit.

“Equitable baccalaureate attainment is a priority in our strategic plan, Vision 2030, and our Bachelor’s Degree Program plays a necessary role. Student success is measured at both the local and statewide level,” Villarin said.

According to Christian, students who are taking advantage of the baccalaureate program are graduating and getting livable-wage jobs.

Jasmine Agurrie, a dental hygienist student, works on a typodont on Nov. 22. A typodont is used for students to practice on before they work on real people’s mouths. (Photo by: Christianna Schiotis)

“They come in as beginners and leave as professionals. I think that’s what I enjoy the most. They come in knowing nothing, and leave with all kinds of skills and abilities to then put into practice,” Pacheco said.

Vision 2030 is an active plan “for policy reform, fiscal sustainability, systems development and for process and practice reform in the field,” according to the California Community Colleges website.

The dental hygiene program has been around since 1972 and their first graduating class was in 1974.

“It really takes a lot of these students out of poverty. And that’s the best part as well as they go out and get these really good, high paying jobs that last a lifetime,” Ewing said.

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About the Contributor
Christianna Schiotis, News Editor
Christianna Schiotis is an 18-year-old who loves the color pink and dinosaurs; paired with that she has childish humor and enjoys a good joke. She graduated in 2023 from Sanger High School with plenty of merit and awards. She graduated with California Scholarship Federation (CSF) and a State Seal of Civic Engagement. She has made it clear that just because she is young, do not underestimate her. This is Schiotis’s second semester with the Rampage; this semester she is fulfilling the News Editor role. Schiotis was in journalism classes for two of her high school years. In her first year, she was the Photo Editor. Also in her first year, she was in charge of her school's Arts and Literary magazine, which got tenth in the nation at NSPA’s journalism conference. For her Senior year, she was her high school’s newspaper's Editor in Chief, where she led a group of 23 students. During her time, she made her mark and her story got third in the nation. She was ecstatic and will forever brag about it. She is also very thankful for the experience and the amazing staff she had. On top of that, she fell in love with photography. She entered many competitions and even opened her own small photography business. One of her pictures got first place in its division at the Fresno Fairs Junior Art Exhibit. She currently shoots with a Canon R6 and a 24-105mm lens. Schiotis also has her own pets who she spoils- her cat Mocha and puppy Azura. She loves to spend time with her best friend of eight years and her boyfriend of four years. She grew up in Fresno with her three siblings, all younger than her. She is going to do something in the journalism field, but doesn’t know what yet.  

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