New semester at SBCC brought changes to campus community


Jenna McMahon

Students cross the bridge between East and West campus to get to class on Wednesday, Sept. 11 at City College in Santa Barbara, Calif. The bridge makes it easier for students to get from one side of campus to the other instead of having to cross the street below.

Yarrow Hogan, News Editor

With the fall semester in full swing, students are settling into the new school year as City College welcomes new and returning students back to campus.

With more classes offered in-person, an influx of friendly faces have arrived on campus. In comparison to last year, 60% of classes are in-person or hybrid with approximately 4,000 new students on campus.

“The campus has come back alive and it’s so wonderful to see students be able to create community in person,” said Executive Director of Public Affairs and Communications, Martha Swanson. “It’s a crucial part of the college experience to have those interactions and find your community and where you belong.”

While certain COVID-19 protocol standards are still in place, City College has left some behind. Masks are currently still required on campus. However, in an announcement sent by the Interim Superintendent-President, Kindred Murillo, Santa Barbara County is now in low tier which, if maintained, “the most significant change will be that masks will be strongly encouraged indoors, though not required,” Murillo wrote.

A survey was sent to the City College community by Murillo asking for input about the mask mandate on campus. 

Students and staff are no longer required to obtain a daily wristband when entering campus. However, the daily health survey will remain in effect and every person on campus is expected to have their survey completed upon arrival. 

Fully vaccinated students and staff do not need to provide weekly negative tests, while those with vaccine exemptions are required to maintain weekly tests in order to complete the daily health survey.

Continued availability of free PCR and rapid antigen tests are located at the testing stations. In addition, the Aptitude Clinic testing sites remain in effect at Earl Warren Showgrounds.

With some students returning to in-person classes for the first time since the pandemic, there are countless resources available for general student needs. The Office of Student Life located in the cafeteria distributes campus cards to students and the bookstore is available for textbooks, supplies, and merchandise.

A new addition to the City College website is the career and academic pathways (CAP) feature embedded within Guided Pathways student resource. CAP is “designed to show students what our college offers based on their interests and skills,” said Christian Erickson, who works on the Guided Pathways team. “It allows you to understand how what you like applies to things we offer at the college.”

Guided Pathways Faculty Coordinator, Margaret Prothero, discusses how this new addition to the website is an amazing resource for students and how it “opens up thinking and exploration around things that you are interested in. It is accessible for students to learn more about what we have to offer and get involved.”

SBCC students enjoy the west campus cafeteria being open again for the first time since the pandemic on Wednesday, Sept. 7 at City College in Santa Barbara, Calif. Students are able to stop in and buy snacks and drinks in between classes.
SBCC students enjoy the West Campus Cafe being open again for the first time since the pandemic on Wednesday, Sept. 7 at City College in Santa Barbara, Calif. Students are able to stop in and buy snacks and drinks in between classes. (Jenna McMahon)

All around campus there are food and dining services to enjoy a lunch break or snack. Some of them include the East Campus cafeteria, the JSB cafe and the reopening of the West Campus cafe. There are also always new improvements and additions to The Basic Needs Center where everyone is welcome to collect a limited number of free food items per day and much more.

“Faculty and staff are here to help you. Take advantage of what we offer,” Swanson said.

City College faculty is excited to display the new light post banners that symbolize strength in community and conjure the togetherness and importance this semester of “Vaqueros Stronger Together.”