Dr. Kelly Lake set to give 37th Annual Faculty Lecture April 13


Jamie Rosenberg

Courtesy photo


Dr. Kelly Lake will being giving the 37th Annual Faculty Lecture on April 13 at the Garvin Theatre. His speech, “The Power of Resilience” will be an experience reminiscent of childhood years starting at 2:30 p.m. this Wednesday.

“Resilience; it’s not apart of our biological makeup, but we all need it,” Lake said. “Anybody, no matter who attends, is going to walk away with at least one thing.”

The lecturer of the year award is City College’s highest honor and the speaker is chosen by the faculty and students.

Lake is an early childhood development professor at City College, has worked extensively in the department for 24 years and is an active member in the community. Lake was the first and only male president for the statewide Association of Early Childhood Educators, he’s been nominated twice for the Hayward Award and is currently working on the Wolf Museum of Exploration here in Santa Barbara.

Lake’s inspiration for the speech originally came from his students. After getting elected last April, he watched them give their final presentations and one thing kept standing out in his mind.

“They kept coming back to class, kept participating, they were always there,” Lake said. “And I got really intrigued by what is this thing called resilience.”

He spent the summer researching and submerging himself in this idea. Since then, he has worked to create a whole experience for everyone in attendance. Lake hopes to provoke the audience to think about resilience in their own lives and the resilience of children as well.

“There will be music playing with children singing appropriate songs to get people in the mood,” he said. “I have also commissioned seven original pieces of art that have been done by children.”

Lake compares resilience to a toolbox, saying that if you have the right tools, you can get through the bumps in the road. Learning how to use these tools begins at a young age, which is why he is so passionate about early childhood development.

“I want to showcase my department,” he said. “Everybody does it differently, which is the beauty of it.”

Beth Rizo, director of the Orfalea Early Learning Center at City College, has worked closely with Lake for years. The entire department has been anticipating the event and supporting Lake from the sidelines.

“His understanding of the topic comes from the past, from the present and from the future,” said Rizo. “It’s more than just working with children it’s being passionate about what you plan and what you offer.”

Lake encourages everyone to get to the Garvin early and play with an array of activities that will set the tone of the event.

“Get in the mood for early childhood education, which is the world I live in,” Lake said.