Friday, March 8, 2013

Cuyamaca, Grossmont colleges add new short-term classes for spring

Grossmont and Cuyamaca colleges are adding dozens of new short-term classes this spring as the result of strong demand by students and approval of a statewide tax measure by California voters last fall.
The eight-week classes beginning April 1 range from job-training courses in automotive technology to general-education offerings such as American history, and will provide more credit options for students seeking degrees, credentials or university transfers.
The two East County colleges will also be offering a robust schedule of classes this summer, in contrast to the meager, budget-impacted choices of recent summers.
The college district’s Continuing Education and Workforce Training division has also added short-term, non-credit courses starting in early April. They include technical training and certification in environmental and occupational health and safety, as well as green-jobs training in solar thermal systems and solar photovoltaic installation.

New to the workforce training program is a free, three-course series with a total of 48 hours of instruction in geographic information systems, or GIS. In general terms, GIS is a system that integrates hardware, software, and data for capturing, analyzing, and displaying all forms of geographically referenced information. GIS is a tool used by all industry sectors, from environmental science to commercial business and government.
The additional classes are possible because of the November passage of Proposition 30, Gov. Jerry Brown’s tax measure that prevented further catastrophic cuts to education. Although the measure only begins to rectify the damage caused by relentless state budget cuts, the district was able to add spring classes using the voter-approved funds.
Governing Board President Bill Garrett said the classes were added to relieve pent-up demand following four consecutive years of funding losses totaling $16 million that forced the colleges to slash 1,600 classes. 
“I can’t stress enough how grateful we are to the voters of California for approving Prop. 30,” Garrett said. “They recognized that state funding cuts have decimated public education at all levels. With Prop. 30, we were able to add classes for the spring semester and we’re pleased that we will also be able to revive our summer classes so students can reach their educational goals.”
            Registration is available now for the spring classes by going to WebAdvisor on the college websites. Registration for summer classes begins April 29, with classes starting June 10. Classes cost $46 per credit unit.
At Grossmont College, the additional spring semester classes are listed on “hot sheets” posted at www.grossmont.edu . Cuyamaca’s short-term classes can be found by going to http://www.cuyamaca.edu/admissions/ and clicking on “open classes.”
For more on  the non-credit workforce training classes, go to www.cuyamaca.edu/green.