Centennial celebration: Tigers prepare massive roar for Riverside City College’s 100th year

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Written by: Crystal Olmedo
Viewpoints File Photo
Viewpoints File Photo

Riverside City College will reach its 100th year of offering classes in September 2016. The College will celebrate in the days leading up to it with events beginning in October.

A Presidential Investiture will be held to welcome RCC’s 11th president, Wolde-Ab Isaac, on October 12 at 9 a.m. in the Landis Auditorium.

“It’s a once in a lifetime celebration, a celebration that never gets a second chance,” said Isaac. “Reflecting on the past and what the college has meant to the the people of Riverside and their economic, social and political life.”

The official kickoff for the celebration events will be on November 7 at the Tigers Homecoming football game against rivals Chaffey College, that is close in age to RCC as it opened in 1883. There will be a parade that will go from downtown Riverside to RCC according to Isaac.

According to Rakhee Uma, Associated Student of Riverside City College vice president, clubs will be collaborating with ASRCC to make a float for the parade.

Alumni will be making visits to share experiences about their time at RCC and how it helped them to get where they are now.

Humanities, fine arts, sciences, choral ensembles and RCC Marching Tigers will be preparing performances and events for the Centennial. RCC Marching Tigers will be composing original music specifically for the Centennial celebration.

It is not uncommon for a former student of RCC to return to the college as a professor or to reminisce about their time spent here.

“I think it’s cool that a college in a small town like Riverside has been around for so long,” said RCC student Jennifer Anthony who drives from Highland to come to RCC. “It’s awesome to see how students return to teach at RCC, like my astronomy professor Scott Blair. The planetarium is actually named after his former professor (Robert T. Dixon).”

Students who attended RCC over forty years ago still remember their experiences walking through the halls of the college. “I came to RCC at the end of the Vietnam War so, Southern California was an exciting place to be,” said Bill Osborn former RCC student and staff writer for Viewpoints. He attended RCC before Moreno Valley College and Norco College were built.

“ I grew up in a small town, so coming to Riverside in 1968 when there was a population of about 140,000,” said Osborn. “It was very liberal and progressive and it changed the way I thought and viewed things. I even became and remained best friends with one of my instructors, Al Parker. I still visit the Alumni House to make donation to a scholarship fund for his daughter, the Chrystine Parker Memorial Fund.”

Current students share similar sentiments. “The staff here nicer than other colleges I visited and I like the rustic college feel it has,” said Anthony.

As RCC nears its 100 year anniversary Isaac is looking toward the future and how the college can better serve Riverside.
“We are looking at all the things we’ve been able to build and to sustain a culture of excellence and high quality. We can’t miss the opportunity while we are here, while we are alive, as a community and as we look ahead to the next century examine what kind of challenges will we address to grow from good to great?” Isaac said.

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