The Community College League of California’s 2023 Annual Convention plenary session speakers will address a variety of topics during the three-day conference from Thurs., Nov. 16 – Sat., Nov 18.

The conference opens with "LEVEL UP - A National Movement for Black Learner Excellence,” a session delving into the loss of 600,000 Black learners across all sectors over the last 20-plus years. Panelists will focus on the impact on community colleges, an essential entry point for first-generation, low-income, and Black students. Presenters include Dr. Edward Bush, president, Consumnes River College/A2MEND; Dr. Nesha Savage, executive director, NANDI; Dr. Darla Cooper, executive director, RP Group; Dr. Helen Young, co-founder and assistant project director, Pipelines2Possibilities and CCCCO Transfer Guarantee Pathway Agreement to HBCU; Barbara Calhoun, trustee, Compton Community College; and Dr. Eric Mayers, executive director, Umoja. This session will shine a spotlight on the LEVEL UP initiative, a nationwide effort supporting Black Learner Excellence.

On Friday, Nov. 17, California Community Colleges Chancellor Sonya Christian, takes the stage for the morning session, providing an essential update on the "State of the System."

Friday will also include a plenary session featuring the Coalition for Transformational Education (CTE). “Making Higher Education Work for Life” focuses on enhancing lifelong wellbeing through student belonging, identity, agency, and purpose. CTE presenters will address the potential of higher education to promote long-term health and satisfaction. Panelists include Dr. Keith Buffinton, executive director, Coalition for Transformational Education; Dr. Domenico Grasso, chancellor, University of Michigan-Dearborn; and Marjorie Malpiede, executive director and editor-in-chief, Mary Christie Institute and Learning Well Magazine.

Saturday’s closing session, “The Potential of California’s Community College Baccalaureate Program for Closing Racial Equity Gaps," addresses the current conversation around the importance and relevance of bachelor’s degrees at community colleges. Panelists include Dr. Pam Luster, Dr. Patricia Gandara, UCLA School of Education & Information Studies & The Civil Rights Project, Dr. Cecilia Rios-Aguilar, professor and department chair, UCLA School of Education & Information Studies Dr. Fransico Rodriguez, Chancellor, Los Angeles Community College District, Ahmad Thomas, CEO, Silicon Valley Leadership Group and, Davis Vo, Ph.D. student, UCLA School of Education & Information Studies.

The 2023 Annual Convention’s full program is now online.