Blue waves behind the words Coast Colleges in dark blue

Weekly News Brief | February 25, 2022
From the Office of Chancellor John Weispfenning, Ph.D.

Chancellor Weispfenning at his desk typing

Modified from the Flex Day video sent February 25, 2022

Thank you, colleagues, for working to make this semester possible. I recognize the barriers and challenges you have overcome and those you continue to face. The vaccination mandate implementation and roll out of the testing protocol have been relatively smooth. A large part of that is thanks to faculty willingness to direct students to appropriate resources. For our student affairs professionals, I know you have taken the lion share of the work in helping students navigate new as well as newly online processes. Students are adaptable, yet adaptation can take time.

This semester threw a curveball at all of us in the form of the Omicron variant. The sudden rise of cases required emergency action. My appreciation for all who helped move classes scheduled to be in-person back online. It is a relief that rates of new cases fell away almost as quickly as they rose. This is not to say that we are safe, but we are much safer now than we were a month ago.

Flex Day is about sharing and learning as peers. We are all in a position to gain something from the experiences of others, or unique perspectives on shared experiences. We might find that we too are adapting to a new endemic reality. For the foreseeable future, we will be all students in a changing world.

Be well,


John Weispfenning, Ph.D.


College News


After two years of being closed to the public, Coastline Art Gallery in Newport Beach is hosting its first art show, "An Orderly Line?" This three-person exhibition focuses on one of the seven elements of art: line. A basic gesture that has the power to be a complex tool of expression. The phrase, an orderly line, comes from the first half of a poster promoting safety procedures used for civil defense air raid drills, "An Orderly Line Is a Safe Line!" This slogan was a product of the WPA's efforts to ease congestion and assure that all members of the community found refuge in the event of a disturbance.


The words Coastline College above a shield with the letter C.


Over the weekend, a Huntington Beach Police helicopter, HB-1, crashed in Newport Beach waters while responding to a call Saturday evening. The crash resulted in the injury of the pilot and tragically killing Officer Nicholas Vella. Officer Vella, a 14-year veteran of the Huntington Beach Police Department (HBPD), was 44 years old and leaves behind a wife and teenage daughter. He is described by his colleagues as a selfless and driven police officer and man.

This tragedy hits close to home to our GWC colleagues in the Criminal Justice and Public Safety departments, many of whom are either active or retired HBPD officers; and Chief Jon Arnold, GWC Public Safety Director and 30-year veteran of the HBPD, who served as a former helicopter pilot and flight instructor and has personally experienced the challenges and hazards of law enforcement aviation. On behalf of the Coast District and Golden West College, we extend our deepest condolences to the family of Officer Vella, Huntington Beach Police Department, GWC's community of officers and trainees served by our training center, and our GWC family as they grieve the loss of their friend, colleague, and brother.


A circle with the words Golden West College, Huntington Beach, on the outside with a central surfboard and the letters GWC.


During the month of February, Orange Coast College is celebrating Black History Month, a nationally recognized observance that highlights the achievements and contributions of Black- and African-Americans who have shaped United States history. OCC's newly formed Black Student Union (BSU) led the way, organizing several events throughout the month including a "Certified Black Students Meet & Greet" on Zoom, an online screening of the film "A Love Song for Latasha," and a "Rollin' in Melanin" roller skating event on Feb. 25 at Fountain Valley Skating Rink. Founded last year by president Nylah Hines, the OCC BSU provides a space for students to gather and learn more about Black culture in the U.S and around the world. OCC's Multicultural Center, International Multicultural Committee and Student Equity program also collaborated to plan several events throughout the month, including lectures that are part of OCC's Umoja Indaba Series.


An Orange circle forming an O with two interior waves in dark blue forming two C shapes.


Schedule, Week February 28

Board of Trustees
The next regular meeting will be held Wednesday, March 2, with closed session beginning at 4:00 p.m. and open session at 5:00 p.m.

Chancellor's Schedule
Dr. Weispfenning is in the District, Monday through Wednesday
Dr. Dunn is the Acting Chancellor, Thursday and Friday