Dreamer cuts ribbon, grand opening well attended


From left to right: Trustees John Paul Drayer, Karen Patron, President Jose Fierro, Trustees Zurich Lewis, Shin Liu, Marisa Perez and Fine Arts and Communications Division instructional dean Gary Pritchard preparing to cut the ribbon. Both of the buildings were paid for through funds given to the college through Measure CC and G. Photo credit: Benjamin Garcia

Benjamin Garcia

“Gratefulness, hope, well-endowment.”

That was the theme of Fine Arts and Communications Division instructional dean Gary Pritchard’s speech at the joint Fine Arts and Communications and Science, Engineering and Mathematics Division ribbon cutting ceremony, for which attendees there were not enough chairs for.

The ceremony was held on Wednesday, Feb. 15 at 4:15 p.m, and the ribbon was cut by student trustee Karen Patron who said she was very excited to hold the big scissors.

Both of the buildings were paid for through funds given to the college through Measure CC and G.

Measure CC was passed by voters on March 2, 2004, providing $210 million to facilities to accommodate the needs of Cerritos College, which at the time was facing new demands due to increased student enrollment.

Since then, measure CC funds have also been allocated toward other projects such as fire alarm upgrades and parking lot renovations.

Voters passed Measure G on November 6, 2012, giving Cerritos College a $350 million General Obligation Bond continuing renovation precedented by Measure CC.

Attending the event were the the members of the board of trustees including Patron who said “I’m glad to be a part of the ceremony and I had fun cutting the ribbon.”

Also present was former Mayor of Cerritos Grace Hu, former board of trustees member Robert Arthur, representatives from Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia’s office and Cerritos College President Jose Fierro.

Fierro opened the ceremony with a speech about the importance of leading the students of Cerritos College studying under the two divisions into the future; which was recently made possible with the new facilities.

After that he introduced Pritchard to the stage who cited the various upgrades the completion of the Fine Arts and Communications division complex such as the film lab, equipment for 3D printing and journalism newsroom.

Expressing gratitude for the endowment because “the art students are looking to understand the world,” adding “right now is the time to embrace the arts.”

Fierro stated that the exterior was inspired by the work of artist Piet Mondrian.

This was followed by Dean of Science, Engineering, and Mathematics department dean Connie Boardman honoring James D. Whoolever for his commitment to mathematics students for more than 53 years.

Boardman said he went “above and beyond” in helping his students with “whatever they needed,” which explained the reason for Whoolever being the CIS lobby’s namesake.

She also commented on how the math students “finally have a home” after having to go to their classes spread across the campus from the multipurpose building to Norwalk Adult School and how the astronomy students have been given a stellar viewing platform on the roof of the CIS building.

The ceremony concluded with the ribbon cutting and the attendees and guests dispersed to the open house of the two divisions.