Introducing San Diego College of Continuing Education

Institutional Name Change

The largest adult noncredit educational institution of its kind in the nation, San Diego Continuing Education (SDCE), adds the word college to its name. The new name, San Diego College of Continuing Education (SDCCE), better reflects the organization's status and mission to transition adult students to credit college and careers.

SDCCE is the adult education division of the San Diego Community College District (SDCCD) and serves 40,000 students annually at 7 campuses in San Diego spanning from the Miramar community in the north to Barrio Logan in the south. The institution has been serving adult students in San Diego since 1914.

"Today is an important day in the history of the San Diego Community College District," said Constance Carroll, Ph.D., Chancellor of SDCCD. Adding "college" to the name of our noncredit instruction immediately elevates community understanding of what SDCCE is and does, plus also clarifies that SDCCE is part of the community college system. In noncredit discussions and for system noncredit colleagues, SDCCE already offers four of the five categories of community college programs and a name change would legitimize the status of these education programs as “college” programs.

The legacy of the organization's first century of teaching is deeply rooted in serving immigrant populations with basic skills such as learning English and also serving unemployed populations by preparing adults for the workforce.

Adding the word college to the name provides a foundation for SDCCE's second century of serving adults, with a continued focus on helping students transition to college and careers.

"The identity of SDCE has evolved over time and significantly over the past fifteen years, largely as a result of career development and college placement efforts, the direct focus on transitioning students to work or college, and also the funding and support for strong workforce programs not only in our region but throughout the state and even the nation," said Carlos Osvaldo Turner Cortez, Ph.D., President of SDCE. "SDCE is already known statewide as a career college. The programs we now offer look more and more like community college courses, majors, certificates, and pathways."

The decision to change the name was years in the making and required a thorough process that started with insight from faculty and classified professionals who have been serving students for decades. During the organization's last accreditation review cycle in 2017, the visiting committee interviewed faculty, classified professionals, and administrators who work at the institution and reported that a name change should be considered so people have a better understanding of the organization's mission.

After more deliberation, committee discussion, and surveys, the faculty, classified professionals, and administrators agreed that the word college should be added to the name. In December 2020, SDCE submitted a proposal to the SDCCD Board of Trustees who approved the request. The Western Association of Schools and Colleges also approved the change last month, which becomes effective February 1, 2021.

"The new name, San Diego College of Continuing Education (SDCCE) is a better description of the caliber of noncredit curriculum offerings and highly educated faculty experts who teach for the institution," said President Cortez. "With over 75 certificates in 9 career technical education pathways, no other District in the state offers the quality, quantity, and caliber of career education programs provided by SDCCE."

For students, this reflection also increases legitimacy for college transition and/or career transition, which would also lead to extended credit-by-exam agreements with colleges both within SDCCD and across the region. Credit-by-exam is a process that allows students to earn college credit for courses completed at SDCCE.

Letters from President Cortez

Carlos Cortez

Dear Community Friends and Partners,

One hundred years after our founding, we at San Diego Continuing Education (SDCE) are honored to announce a name change for the institution. SDCE has added the word college to its name, effective February 1, 2021. The new name, San Diego College of Continuing Education (SDCCE), better reflects our organization's status and mission to transition adult students to credit college and careers.

SDCCE is the adult education division of the San Diego Community College District (SDCCD) and serves 40,000 students annually at 7 campuses in San Diego spanning from the Miramar community in the north to Barrio Logan in the south.

Since 1914 SDCCE has supported immigrants, refugees, and undocumented students to rebuild or create lives in the United States through free Citizenship and ESL classes and also serving unemployed populations by preparing adults for the workforce.

The identity of SDCCE has evolved over time and significantly over the past fifteen years, largely as a result of career development and college placement efforts, the direct focus on transitioning students to work or college, and also the funding and support for strong workforce programs not only in our region but throughout the state and even the nation. The programs we now offer look more and more like community college courses, majors, certificates, and pathways.

The decision to change the name was years in the making and required a thorough process that started with insight from faculty and classified professionals who have been serving students on our campuses for decades.

In December 2020, SDCCE submitted a proposal to the SDCCD Board of Trustees who approved the request. The Western Association of Schools and Colleges also approved the change last month.

The new name, SDCCE is a better description of the caliber of noncredit curriculum offerings and highly educated faculty experts who teach for our institution. With over 75 certificates in 9 career technical education pathways, no other District in the state offers the quality, quantity, and caliber of career education programs provided by SDCCE.

For students, this reflection also increases legitimacy for college transition and/or career transition, which would also lead to extended credit-by-exam agreements with colleges both within SDCCD and across the region. Credit-by-exam is a process that allows students to earn college credit for courses completed at SDCCE.

We are looking forward to this new phase in continuing strategic partnership growth, access to academic achievement, and workforce development and we thank you for joining us in celebration of this historic milestone.

Sincerely,

signature of Carlos Cortez
Carlos Osvaldo Cortez, Ph.D.
President
@SDCE President

Carlos Cortez

Dear Colleagues,

One hundred years after our founding, we at San Diego Continuing Education (SDCE) are deeply honored to announce a name change for the institution. As you know, SDCE has added the word college to our name. The new name, San Diego College of Continuing Education (SDCCE), better reflects our organization's status and mission to transition adult students to credit college and careers.

The identity of SDCE has evolved over time and significantly over the past fifteen years, largely as a result of career development and college placement efforts; the direct focus on your work to transition students to work or college, and also the funding and support for strong workforce programs not only in our region but throughout the state and even the nation.

The new name, SDCCE is a better description of the caliber of noncredit curriculum offerings and highly educated faculty experts who teach for the institution, and classified professionals who support students and faculty. With over 75 certificates in 9 career technical education pathways, no other District in the state offers the quality, quantity, and caliber of career education programs provided by SDCCE. The programs we now offer look more and more like community college courses, majors, certificates, and pathways.

As you may know, the decision to change the name was years in the making and many of you have been part of that process since the first consideration. The process started with insight from many faculty and classified professionals who have been serving students for decades. During our last accreditation review cycle in 2017, following interviews with many stakeholders, the visiting committee reported that a name change should be considered so people have a better understanding of our mission.

For students, this reflection also increases legitimacy for college transition and/or career transition, which could also lead to extended credit-by-exam agreements with colleges both within SDCCD and across the region.

The process for changing SDCCE’s name will be ongoing. You can expect to see our new logo in digital formats more quickly, while printed materials and some other examples (e.g. an updated URL and social media accounts) will take a little longer to update. Please visit this page for more details.

We are looking forward to this new phase in our history and to serving students with a renewed focus on academic achievement, and workforce development.

Thank you for your commitment to SDCCE. Let’s celebrate this historic milestone.

Sincerely,

signature of Carlos Cortez
Carlos Osvaldo Cortez, Ph.D.
President
@SDCE President

Carlos Cortez

Dear Colleagues,

As you know, San Diego Continuing Education (SDCE) is considering a name change to better reflect educational offerings and programs available to adults. Next week, you will receive an electronic survey ballot from SDCE's Office of Planning, Research and Institutional Effectiveness that will ask two questions: 1) Do you support adding the word "college" to the San Diego Continuing Education, and if so, 2) Which name to you propose we adopt. As you consider this important future for SDCE, I ask you to consider two main points:

1) Historically SDCE has faced challenges with consistent branding of who we are and what we do.

Many local community members are not clear on who SDCE serves or even if we are part of the San Diego Unified School District or part of one of the District colleges, or if we are a high school.

The identity of SDCE has evolved over the past fifteen years, largely as a result of career development and college placement efforts, the direct focus on transitioning students to work or college, and also the funding and support for strong workforce programs not only in our region but throughout the state and even the nation. The programs we now offer (and are increasingly required to offer) look more and more like community college courses, majors, certificates, and pathways. SDCE is known statewide as a career college.

2) There are significant benefits to employees, students, and the organization if the word "college" was included in SDCE's name.

The term college best reflects the increased caliber of the programs we provide with 75+ certificates in 9 career technical education (CTE) pathways. No other District in the state offers the quality, quantity, and caliber of CTE programs provided by SDCE.

For students, this would increase legitimacy for college transition and/or career transition, which would also lead to more and better CTE credit by exam agreements with colleges both within SDCCD and across the region.

For our instructors, and especially our adjunct instructors who are also part-time employees for positions with other community college districts, it will be easier to explain what SDCE is/does;

There is great value to our institution in adding "college" to our name in that we would immediately elevate community understanding of what SDCE is and does, plus also clarify that SDCE is part of the community college system. In noncredit discussions and for system noncredit colleagues, SDCE already offers four of the five categories of community college programs and a name change would legitimize these education programs as status as “college” programs.

The timing for this consideration and vote aligns with the critical mid-year review cycle for our Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) accreditation. As a reminder, during the last accreditation cycle, the WASC visiting team suggested we consider a name change to better explain the size and scope of SDCE as an accredited institution the organization and will now be expecting our response and decision.

Thank you for your consideration of this critical juncture in SDCE's future, and for your timely response to the two-question survey you will receive this week via e-mail.

Sincerely,

signature of Carlos Cortez
Carlos Osvaldo Cortez, Ph.D.
President
@SDCE President

Q & A

Does the name change mean that SDCCE will begin to offer credit courses?

No, SDCCE will continue to offer noncredit courses and programs to help students 18+ transition to college and career.

Why add college to the name if there are no actual credit college courses being offered?

The new name better reflects the organization's status and mission to transition adult students to credit college and careers. Select courses offer credit by exam, students can earn up to 3 college credits earned toward an Associate Degree toward San Diego City, Mesa or Miramar colleges.

Has the accrediting commission changed for SDCCE?

No, SDCCE will continue to be accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Is SDCCE now the 117th community college in California?

No, SDCCE will remain the noncredit division of the San Diego Community College District.

When does the name change take effect?

January 1, 2021

What is the difference in College for CE and College for City/Mesa/Miramar?

San Diego City, Mesa and Miramar colleges are credit colleges within the San Diego Community College District. San Diego College of Continuing Education is the noncredit college of the San Diego Community College District.

Do I get college credit for my classes?

Most noncredit classes do not qualify for college credit. There are exceptions if the class is within career training programs that articulate with credit colleges through credit-by-exam agreements.

Do my high school classes qualify for college credit?

No, high school classes do not qualify for college credit. If a college course is taken to satisfy a course requirement specific to SDCCE's joint high school diploma program then the class will qualify.

Will my previous classes/certificates be able to convert or transfer into college credit?

No. Your previous completed classes and certificates will not change.

Will there be changes to available supports and/or resources?

No, the currently available student supports and resources will continue to be available to students.

Will I need to get a new student ID card?

No. Your current student ID card is still valid.

Will each campus name change as well?

No, SDCCE's 7 campuses will remain as Cesar E. Chavez Campus, the Educational Cultural Complex, Mid-City Campus, North City Campus, West City Campus, CE at Miramar College Campus and CE at Mesa College Campus.

Does SDCCE offer college degrees?

No, upon successful certification completion, students are ready for entry-level employment or can transition to San Diego City, Mesa or Miramar colleges.

Does the name change impact student transcripts?

Yes, when students graduate they can more easily explain where their transcripts came from, to employers and other educational institutions.

Mission: San Diego College of Continuing Education commits to student success and community enrichment by providing accessible, equitable, and innovative quality education and support services to diverse adult learners in pursuit of lifelong learning, training, career advancement, and pathways to college. read more »