Ezekiel Contreras Forrest receives Board of Governors Student Leadership Award

Santa Barbara City College student Ezekiel Contreras Forrest has been awarded one of three Board of Governors Student Leadership Awards, initiated for the first time in 2021. The awards were presented by Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley and two student members of the California Community College Board of Governors at the opening of the General Assembly for the Student Senate of the California Community Colleges on Friday March 26.

The Board of Governors established the Student Leadership Award in 2020 to celebrate visionaries enrolled in the California Community Colleges (CCC) who are demonstrating the highest level of commitment to student leadership and helping to realize the goals and objectives laid out in the CCC Vision for Success.

A former foster youth, Ezekiel has a 4.0 GPA (including 10 A+'s), has been on the President’s Honor Roll every semester, is a member of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and will be completing his final semester at SBCC with a triple major, graduating in May with plans to transfer to a four-year university in Fall 2021. During his time at SBCC, Ezekiel established the Filipino Cultural Club, worked as a student ambassador for international students, served as a peer mentor for Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS) and Guardian Scholars, and worked in Enrollment Services where he has helped other students navigate the enrollment and financial aid processes. Additionally, as a member of Associated Student Government, he worked with the vice president of the Board of Governors, the Chancellor’s Office and college administration to find equitable solutions in distributing the Student Success Completion Grant. Ezekiel has also played a vital role in aiding Guided Pathways faculty and staff to update college policies and procedures related to the onboarding process of new students, with a focus on marginalized students.

According to EOPS Counselor Camila Acosta, “Everything that Ezekiel does at Santa Barbara City College serves the greater community because, as a California Community College student and leader, he is helping to develop and mold our future leaders. Ezekiel is an exemplary student and young man, and truly embodies the California Community College Chancellor’s Vision for Success in action.”

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