Van De Kamp’s to host courses

By Danny Vasquez

The Los Angeles Community College District, Van De Kamp Innovation Center, splits 14 classes between East Los Angeles College and Los Angeles City College to determine if more classes will be added in the future.

This is the first time ELAC has offered courses at the center. Originally, the center was meant for LACC students and the Glassell Park community.

ELAC’s Vice President of Academic Affairs Richard Moyer, Ph.D., said LACCD Interim-Chancellor Adriana Barrera, Ph.D., had the idea to offer classes at the center.

“ELAC is the most successful college in the LACCD. We are the largest college and we have a financial surplus that we were able to generate. We’ve done well in terms of attracting and retaining students and it was (Barrera’s) belief that ELAC would be in a position to kick off this project,” Moyer said.

The center’s use was to provide an outreach toward the community with technological education.

For about 10 years, Van De Kamp was leased by the LACCD to outreach more students in the community and provide LACC more space for classes. Before becoming a center, it was formally the Van De Kamp bakery and needed to be remodeled to house classrooms.

“It cost a large amount of money to refurbish that facility and all they left of that front building was the facade and the foundation, and they had the high school in the back,” Moyer said.

The use of the center was to provide technology classes for a community that was outside of district lines. The center is located a good distance away from both ELAC and LACC on 2930 Fletcher Drive in Los Angeles. Students would need to consider transportation before attempting to take a class at the center.

Two years ago, classes were taught at the center until a coalition of community organizations and citizens filed a lawsuit claiming misuse of public funds.

 Instead of leaving the center empty, the LACCD allowed the Alliance Charter School to use the property alongside LACC.The district asked  both ELAC and LACC to provide classes as an experiment to see how the center will progress and to determine future use. Classes at the center will start on Monday for 12 weeks.“Based on that we would determine whether we would offer more classes or perhaps somewhere down the road look at it as an educational center like South Gate,” Moyer said.

LACC and ELAC will each offer seven evening courses, Monday/Wednesday classes and Tuesday/Thursday classes for three hours each class session. All courses at the center are three transferable units courses.

Three classes are filled and classes such as Administration of Justice 001, Chicano Studies 002, Communication studies 101 and Health 08 are still open at the center.

The facilities will be shared with the charter high school and classes will seat 35 to 40 students. Moyer said that the rooms are small and if the center would succeed, there would be need to expand.

“The district has owned the Van De Kamp for quite some time and they haven’t yet decided on the purpose to serve. The community would like some classes there and we would like to teach classes there as a district,” Moyer said.

To add courses vist and, for new students, apply at New-Students.aspx.

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