Orange Coast College hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday to dedicate the new College Center building that faces Fairview Road.
The College Center houses the school’s hospitality and culinary programs, the student-operated restaurant Captain’s Table, administrative offices and rooms for conferences and large events. Coast Community College District Chancellor John Weispfenning explained that the College Center serves as a gateway to the OCC campus.
“This is a building to house activities, to welcome new students, to support and educate existing students and invite our community to imagine themselves and their families becoming future OCC students,” he said.
A reception inside the College Center immediately followed the ribbon cutting, and the culinary program provided refreshments for guests attending the ceremony.
During the ceremony, Culinary Arts student Lindsay Taeger said how much she was looking forward to experiencing the facilities inside the College Center.
“After seeing it from the outside during the shutdown and only being able to imagine what was inside, it’s amazing to be back on campus and to enjoy everything that it has to offer,” she said.
Orange County Supervisor Katrina Foley emphasized the role of community support in the construction of the new 119,000 square foot building. Following a supermajority vote in November 2012, CCCD was able to provide a $698 million bond towards construction and remodeling for the schools.
“The $698 million bond paid for so much,” Foley said. “You can see the results, and you can see the value."
The College Center dedication ceremony was supposed to take place in 2020 but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. OCC President Angelica Suarez said that the ceremony marks a new chapter for the school, and the College Center is a place for students to connect as they return to campus.
“This facility gives our students an opportunity to discover OCC,” she said. “I think downstairs, in the food services area, that’s the heart. That’s where I see the students.”