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Santa Barbara City College welcomes back most students in person while Zoom classes are still an option

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The new school year for Santa Barbara City College comes with a fresh look for the campus with a hybrid in-person and Zoom instruction process.

That was a successful transition model for the campus after the slowing down because of the COVID-19 pandemic last year.

On the campus, students will find new "SBCC Vaqueros Stronger Together" banner flags.

The campus staff also says that a team of artists from the Bay Area Mural Project just finished work on a new mural celebrating the Black/African American student journey on the side of the Campus Center building.

"We have about 4000 more students coming back in person," Santa Barbara City College President Kindred Murillo.   "This is our year to make a difference. To get our students back here and get more students in the community to the college."


60 percent of the classes are hybrid, either in person or on line.


Students we talked with were optimistic about their futures at SBCC and ahead.


Student Sarah Robertson said, "I love learning that is the main thing. You need to love what you are studying and you will be good."

One Bay area resident wanted to go to UC Santa Barbara. That didn't work out, but  city college offered the right options.   Justin Jacobs said, "I didn't get accepted so I heard they had a really good transfer program here at the city college so I applied and got accepted obviously so I decided I wanted to move here instead."

When considering Zoom classes or on campus, student Alex Nikolov said,   "I personally do much better in person.  On line I am on my own schedule left to my own devices so I kind of waste a lot a lot of time.   In person you are interacting with students and teachers, a lot more fun you.  It's like a set time of you day."

Murillo said, "there are students who have found that they can do very well on line and they are sticking with it and some of them recognize they are doing better face to face so they are coming back to school."

Student Emily Travers worked with her options to set her schedule. He said, "I would rather do in person classes.   A lot of them didn't work with my schedule so I chose  the on line ones that were open."

One student doesn't have an exact plan but he's got four classes and many options,. 

Caspian Pixley said, "I'm feeling alright.  I don't know. I might drop some might pick some up.  Just experimenting."


For students who want to go on the fast track to a vocational career, this is considered the most affordable approach out of high school.


Kindred Murillo, "we provide career technical education training and can get you in to a liveable wage job quickly."

Recently, according to a ranking by Value Colleges, SBCC has been named the #1 community college in the nation.

The school said in a statement:

In recent years, SBCC has significantly expanded its online programs and offers more than two dozen fully online degree and certificate programs in areas ranging from business and marketing to information management and medical coding.According to Value Colleges, SBCC’s top rating is due in part to its dedication to “building the region’s workforce in services, technology, education, and government. SBCC is especially renowned for their impact on minority and low-income students, providing students from disadvantaged communities with the opportunity to move forward in careers as diverse as music, medicine, and engineering.”The Value Colleges ranking is based on four factors: annual cost, return on investment (from PayScale graduate salary rates), reputation and the number of fully online programs offered. Their goal is to find institutions that combine affordability and quality so that graduates can be assured that their hard work and hard-earned money aren’t wasted.

Article Topic Follows: Education
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John Palminteri

John Palminteri is senior reporter for KEYT News Channel 3. To learn more about John, click here.

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