Celebrating history, looking ahead

Illustration by Katie Silva. | katiemsilva@yahoo.comIllustration by Katie Silva. | katiemsilva@yahoo.com
Illustration by Katie Silva. | katiemsilva@yahoo.com

Illustration by Katie Silva. | katiemsilva@yahoo.com

The 2015–16 school year has nearly come to a close, but with its ending comes a new beginning — preparations to celebrate City College’s centennial.

Like anything else, the college started with an idea, a place where new high school graduates could get an education and interact socially with like-minded classmates.

Sacramento City College began as a department of Sacramento High School, founded by math teacher Belle Cooledge in 1916. Not only was the college founded by a woman, a rare occurrence for the time, but the first graduating class in 1918 of six students was all female.

Fast forward 100 years later, with the college not only moved to its permanent location (which happened in 1926) but also expanded to provide services for thousands of students of different ages, races, religions and learning capacities.

The 100-year celebration will feature a number of events that begin in August and will run throughout the academic year, including the unveiling of several time capsules, which you can read more about on page 11.

The changes and challenges the seventh-oldest community college in the state has overcome will be part of the celebration. There is still, however, a long road ahead on many fronts.

This issue contains the stories and struggles of many people still fighting for change, inch by inch. Just a few examples include ways the campus community is trying to help homeless students, the ongoing struggle to provide counseling for students with mental health issues, and the achievements the college’s Feminist Club has made — not to mention profiles of successful students who are using what they’ve learned at City College to move forward in the world.

We’re also seeing our own student body president, a very active member of the community and the campus, take on the position of student trustee for the district at the same time new student leaders emerge on campus.

We also tell the stories of campus structures such as the Performing Arts Center, born as the Auditorium during the Depression and transformed into a state-of-the-art theater complex, and Union Stadium and the work of labor unions and student athletes who helped build the baseball complex. And we look at some of the most current changes—the new sports logos that will soon represent City College.

We also pay tribute to the Pony Express, which was this newspaper’s name for many years (after starting as Jottings and then called The Blotter) with some of the paper’s old mastheads on our cover.

I believe that if Belle Cooledge were here now to witness how her life’s work has grown, she would be very proud of City College’s accomplishments and would wish for us to continue fighting the good fight.

In fact, Cooledge, who was then dean of women, wrote in the 1931 Pioneer yearbook, “My wish for you is that you may take the spirit of endeavor and desire to succeed which we have watched grow in you, to your future undertakings, and that happiness and success may be your reward.”

So as we dust off our books to study for one last cerebral dance in the quest to conquer the end of the semester, bear in mind the tolerant ideologies of our college’s foremother, and the great strides she and so many others made to give us an opportunity to build something great in our own way.