Community College Facilities Coalition (CCFC) 30th Annual Conference

The Community College Facilities Coalition (CCFC) convened its 30th Annual Conference at the Sacramento SAFE Credit Union Convention Center in November, attracting over 500 community college professionals. This gathering provided a platform to learn, exchange ideas, and collaborate on current and evolving topics and trends as well as how to best address challenges in facilities operations and management.

The conference commenced with an Economic Outlook presentation by Mark Schniepp, offering a comprehensive overview of the economic landscape and its implications for community colleges. Throughout the three-day event, educational sessions covered diverse topics such as affordable student housing, campus modernization, sustainability initiatives, and technological advancements such as artificial intelligence. 

Jorge Burwick discusses the advantages of utilizing CollegeBuys agreements during the NorCal/SoCal Facilities Officers Joint Session.

CollegeBuys was proud to share our expertise and contribute to the collective knowledge of the community college facilities community. CollegeBuys representatives delivered presentations and engaged in discussions supporting sustainable practices, student housing initiatives, and overall facility enhancements. At the NorCal/SoCal Facilities Officers Joint Session, Jorge Burwick, Senior Program Manager at CollegeBuys, co-presented with Shirley Asher, Senior Director of Technology Solutions and Special Projects, providing an overview of relevant FoundationCCC programs. Shirley highlighted FoundationCCC’s support for community college districts and discussed updates to the FUSION (Facilities Utilization, Space Inventory Options Net) application, a valuable tool for managing maintenance projects. Jorge emphasized how CollegeBuys agreements support districts’ student housing needs, sustainability initiatives, and other facility priorities, while also realizing cost savings, resource optimization and risk mitigation.

(From Left) Jennifer Keiper, Eera Babtiwale, Aris Hovasapian, and Lisa Mealoy share their insights on resources for campus sustainability efforts.

On the second day of the conference, Jennifer Keiper, Senior Director of CollegeBuys, participated in a panel discussion titled “Leveraging Existing Resources to Support Sustainability Initiatives” alongside Eera Babtiwale from Mt. San Antonio CCD, Aris Hovasapian from Anser Advisory, and Lisa Mealoy from the Community College League of California (CCLC). Together they provided an overview of systemwide sustainability initiatives and highlighted sustainable efforts on various campuses as well as existing resources available through FoundationCCC and CCLC to support climate action and sustainability plans. Participants brought attention to lack of staffing and funding, and panelists shared information about funding sources like deferred maintenance funds, new and enhanced tax credit opportunities authorized by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), and revenue-generating opportunities through utility bill auditing and 179D tax credits.

Jorge Burwick moderated a panel on the final day, discussing “Receiving Federal Direct Payments for Qualifying Energy Projects.” This session featured Michael Day from Trane and Chris Madden from Butte-Glenn CCD, providing a comprehensive overview of the IRA’s Direct Pay program, an IRA provision that offers a direct payment option in lieu of tax credits to non-taxable entities like school districts investing in and producing clean energy. A case study from Butte College and CollegeBuys partner, Trane, shed light on decision-making factors in the process.

CCFC collaborated with the Chancellor’s Office to present the Professional Design Awards, recognizing outstanding architectural design. The awarded projects showcased innovative and sustainable designs that enhanced the learning environment for students. The awarded projects include:

  • Specialized – Award of Merit
    Irvine Valley College Outdoor Learning Classrooms, South Orange County CCD
  • Project in Design – Award of Honor
    Mt. San Antonio College Technology and Health Replacement Building, Mt. San Antonio CCD
  • Project in Design – Award of Honor
    Santa Monica College Arts Complex Replacement, Santa Monica CCD
  • Growth – Award of Excellence
    Merced College Raj Kahlon Agriculture and Industrial Technology Complex, Merced CCD
  • Growth – Award of Excellence
    Cuyamaca College Student Services and Administration Building, Grossmont-Cuyamaca CCD
  • Project Innovation – Award of Honor
    Cañada College Kinesiology and Wellness Center, San Mateo County CCD
  • Project Innovation – Jurors Citation Award
    Los Angeles Community College District Integrated Energy Resources Plan, Los Angeles CCD
Pablo Manzo accepting the 2023 Paul Holmes Facilities Leadership Award during the second day of the conference.

Additionally, Pablo Manzo, Associate Vice Chancellor of Facilities Management at Los Rios CCD, received the 2023 Paul Holmes Facilities Leadership Award for  his significant contributions to enhancing facilities for California Community College students.

The CollegeBuys team is grateful for the opportunity to participate and share insights at this year’s CCFC Conference and eagerly anticipates future events and collaborations. We extend our thanks to all attendees and heartfelt congratulations to the award winners.

CollegeBuys Resource Table pictured during CCFC conference.

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