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San Diego City College students welcome spring semester of support

Community College students across San Diego county are back on campus this week. At San Diego City College, students returned to news of the first ever four-year bachelor’s degree in the school’s history. KPBS Education Reporter M.G. Perez tells us that’s just part of the support for the new spring semester.

Students are back on campus at San Diego City College this week and with a new educational option.

The California Community Colleges Board of Governors has authorized a four-year bachelor's degree in Cyber Security and Analysis. It's the first in the college's history.

City College is the second campus in the San Diego Community College District to offer a baccalaureate program; San Diego Mesa College currently offers a bachelor’s degree in Health Information Management.


Miramar College has submitted a proposal to the state board for a bachelor’s degree program in Public Safety Management.

“Now we’re going from lower-division classes to upper-division classes and making sure that the quality stays there," said David Kennemer, an associate professor of computer information systems at the downtown college.

He led the effort for the new degree program that will offer some tuition savings and convenience to his students.

“This allows (students) to stay here and continue with similar teachers — a similar support structure. They’re using the same support services all the way through their education. They don’t have to transfer and they don’t have to move or relocate," Kennemer said.

City College’s Cyber Security bachelor’s degree will cost a student about $10,000 to complete in four years. A similar program at a California State University would cost $40,000 and it would cost $64,000 at a UC campus, according to estimates provided by City College administration.


The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports employment of computer security analysts is projected to grow 35% in the next decade, with a growing need for innovative solutions in combatting an increasing number of cyberattacks.

Melvin Emery transferred to City College after moving to San Diego from Bakersfield. He is already creating a new plan for graduation after hearing the announcement of a more affordable cybersecurity degree.

"(I will be) able to do everything (I would have done) potentially at a UC or CSU, but at a cheaper cost and also being able to do it alongside students that are thinking the same thing as me," Emery said.

Cosmetology students at San Diego City College shop at the new Knights' Table Food Pantry open this semester, San Diego, Calif., January 31, 2023.
M.G. Perez
Cosmetology students at San Diego City College shop at the new Knights' Table Food Pantry open this semester, San Diego, Calif., January 31, 2023.

San Diego City College has also opened the new Knights' Table Food Pantry this semester to help feed students on limited budgets.

Students can visit the food pantry daily Monday through Thursday and shop for a variety of food items. The pantry is funded by state money earmarked for the basic needs of community college students.

Brissa Martinez, 18, is a freshman cosmetology student who can use the extra help with food.

“I can take many things from here to make at home and ... I can eat here as well. It’s helping me ..." Martinez said.

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