Enrollment opens for Gavilan

San Benito High goes green in ‘18

Prospective students can now enroll in winter and spring session classes at Gavilan College, which offers a variety of courses at five locations as well as online: the main campus is in Gilroy, with additional instructional sites in San Jose’s Coyote Valley, Morgan Hill, San Martin (aviation only) and Hollister.

Winter Intersession runs from Jan. 2, 2019 through Jan. 25, 2019. Spring Semester begins Jan. 28, 2019 and runs through May 24, 2019. The Aviation Maintenance Technology program begins Jan. 10.

The cost for California residents is $46 per unit versus $279 per unit for out-of-state residents. Financial aid is available. First-year students who graduated from a California high school may be eligible for free tuition through the Gavilan Promise program.

Gavilan offers academic programs leading to Associate in Arts (AA) degrees, Associate in Science (AS) degrees, Associate in Arts for Transfer (AAT), and Associate in Science for Transfer (AST) degrees. The AAT and AST degrees provide a clear pathway to transfer to California State University, University of California and private universities.

Career programs leading to degrees, certificates and employment are offered in Administration of Justice, Aviation Maintenance Technology, Business and Accounting, Child Development, Cosmetology, Computer Science, Digital Media, Drone Technology, HVAC, Nursing, and Water Resources Management. Not-for-credit career programs include phlebotomy, Veterinary Technology, Dental Assisting, and Pharmacy Technology. Noncredit instruction is offered in English as a Second Language and GED preparation.Apply for winter intersession and spring semester classes at gavilan.edu/

Engineering teacher wins grant

San Benito High School engineering and leadership teacher Thien Vu-Nguyen, who also is the adviser for the Robotics Club, recently won a $5,000 grant from Monsanto to offset competition expenses and purchase supplies for the school’s robotics team, according to a SBHS District announcement.

“Being allowed to participate in a second competition is a big step for us,” Vu-Nguyen said. “Many teams use the first competition as a measure of what their robot can do (by) making sure the robot works properly.”The SBHS robotics team was only able to compete once in the previous season, so “we were only able to really compete in four of 10 matches,” Vu-Nguyen said.

The team will use $1,000 of its grant funding to purchase wires, tires, additional metal and hand and power tools, according to staff.

Grants for energy-efficient vehicles

San Benito High School this year has used $1.3 million in grants from the Monterey Bay Air Resources Control Board to purchase four buses, a diesel-powered shop truck, four gas-powered shop trucks, four Traverses and an electric cart and to fund the installation of cameras on all buses, according to SBHSD staff.

The funding has allowed the district to replace older, higher-polluting vehicles in the fleet, including swapping four diesel-burning buses with clean-burning versions. All district buses now have seatbelts. A gas-powered cart used on campus was replaced by an electric cart.

Future grants are also expected to fund an electric school bus, and an Air Resource Board grant will pay for additional plants, trees, signage and bike racks on campus, according to Kristy Bettencourt, the district’s maintenance, operations and transportation manager.

Bettencourt reported to the school board on the planting of drought-resistant landscaping throughout campus, the addition of fresh paint to buildings, the installation of a new monument sign on the 400s campus, the addition of push bar gates on the fences on the West Street side of the main campus, and an inside facelift for O’Donnell Gym over the summer.

She said that the sale of district items through the Govdeals website has netted $172,000 that is being used for campus improvements. The California Highway Patrol on Oct. 18 found all nine of the district’s school buses to be in safe operating condition, according to Bettencourt’s report.

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