West Hills Offers Unique Opportunities to Students

Brian GermanEducation

West Hills

West Hills College Lemoore is home to opportunities and programs that aid students in professional development, soft skill development, and personal understanding of the professional world. Kris Costa, Dean of Career Technical Education at the college, speaks on behalf of all the benefits available to students.

The students at West Hills College Lemoore have access to opportunities outside of their typical classes or majors that allow them to practice and learn individual skills. These programs, such as the Make-Ovate Lab or the Industrial Automation Program, give students practical aspects of the professional world to practice and develop for their future careers, no matter the background.

The Make-Ovate Lab is a recent addition to the college and contains several entrepreneurial resources, such as a 3-D printer, a laser engraver, and other crafting equipment. Workshops on these machines are available for students to learn the application of them and how to conduct their own businesses.

“We’ve been working with the Kings-County Economic Development and Job Training Office and been partnering with them as well as people in the community to introduce this idea of entrepreneurship to students regardless of what their programs are,” Costa said.

Students that take advantage of these resources or programs such as the Industrial Automation Program, tend to have success in finding jobs in and out of the agriculture industry. Costa points out that 90 percent of students in the Industrial Automation Program find jobs in the agriculture industry after graduation.

“We have some really incredible programs. We have incredible faculty and we lead the state in open educational resources. We have 21 programs that are zero-textbook cost, meaning no student in those programs ever has to buy a textbook if they don’t want to. So, we save millions and millions of dollars in textbooks for students,” Costa said. “We don’t charge for parking, small class sizes, caring faculty, there are a thousand reasons why we’re worth the drive to come to Lemoore and take a program, but that message continues to be difficult to get out.”

Costa remarks on the positive aspects of the college and the strength of her programs. She invites anyone and everyone to the school and hopes to expand their programs even further to help as many students as possible. West Hills has an abundance of resources that aid its students in career and personal success.