Rio Hondo College Fire Academy held a 50th Anniversary Celebration and Reunion on Oct. 20, welcoming more than 200 guests in addition to retired firefighters and alumni from the first class in 1968. U.S. Rep. Linda Sanchez provided a proclamation recognizing the academy and Rio Hondo College Superintendent/President Teresa Dreyfuss recognized the efforts of faculty and staff and encouraged the program to continue to train tomorrow’s firefighters. Los Angeles County Fire Department provided a helicopter fly-over to kick off the festive event, which also featured a band, a fire bucket brigade challenge and remembrance of graduates who died in the line of duty.
Rio Hondo College has launched a free tutoring program for area public schools in its Adopt-A-School program, providing college students who are studying child development and related fields to assist K-12 students during and after school. The program was piloted in spring at Scott Avenue Elementary in East Whittier City School District and is now offered there and at Dean Shively Middle School in Valle Lindo Elementary School District. It is expanding to encompass others in the College’s Adopt-A-School program, which has linked the campus to area schools for several years.
Rio Hondo College will receive $664,220 in federal dollars over the next four years to remove financial barriers to childcare that can prevent students with children from attending college. The Child Care Access Means Parents in School grant will provide the College with $166,055 annually to subsidize up to 75 percent of the cost of childcare for parents who are Pell Grant recipients or Pell Grant eligible.
Rio Hondo College’s Board of Trustees held an Oath of Office ceremony for one returning board member and two new members in front of a standing-room-only crowd of guests on Dec. 12 before naming new officers during a subsequent board meeting to lead the board through 2019. Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis administered the oath to Norma Edith García, who was re-elected Nov. 6. Superior Court Judge Olivia Rosales administered the oath to new member Rosaelva Lomeli and Chair of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Janice Hahn administered the oath to new member Oscar Valladares. Once seated, the board named Trustee Gary Mendez as its new president, Valladares as vice president and Lomeli as clerk. Also serving on the board is Vicky Santana.