For voters who live in Mission Canyon and parts of Santa Barbara, the November 6 election is a chance to vote for important change on the Santa Barbara City College Board of Trustees.

The challenger is Darcel Elliott, a UCSB grad and education major with 10 years’ experience working on local and regional policy matters. Darcel sees students as participants in the life of SBCC, not merely recipients of decisions from higher-ups. Her opponent, the incumbent Marsha Croninger, calls students “clients,” as if they exist only to receive, not contribute to, policy making. This demonstrates a lack of respect for the wide range of people who attend SBCC, many of whom are adults returning for further education.

Darcel would also push the college to take on the long-neglected issue of housing. SBCC is the top-rated community college in the country for value, and draws students from all over. It cannot turn away any California student, which means low- and middle-income renters are pushed out as these students come needing housing. (Having served as a county housing commission for 17 years, I have seen these impacts first hand.)

The college should take some responsibility for the consequences of its presence, and develop a coherent and immediate plan for offering housing, to ease the burden on an already noose-tight rental market.

If you live in Area 5 of the City College District, please vote for Darcel Elliott on November 6.


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