Cabrillo College plans for 25-member advisory board, community surveys in renaming process

Cabrillo College's Aptos campus
Cabrillo College’s Aptos campus.
(Thomas Sawano / Lookout Santa Cruz)

Cabrillo College’s governing board briefly outlined the process to rename the school at a meeting Tuesday. Among the steps: The board plans to solicit applications from campus and community members to form a “name advisory committee” of up to 25 people to help narrow the list of potential new names to three to five.

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Cabrillo College’s governing board outlined the next steps for changing the school’s name during a meeting Tuesday, a process the board says will likely include online surveys, community forums, a 25-member advisory committee and trademark lawyers.

The process will eventually provide a new name for the college that its governing board is set to vote on in August.

“Board members will have the final decision on making that choice of the name,” board member and renaming subcommittee member Christina Cuevas said at the meeting. “But we want to be sure we have a lot of input and eyes on what the opportunities for a new name might be.”

Among the steps Cuevas and fellow subcommittee member Adam Spickler will take: solicit applications from campus and community members to form a “name advisory committee” of up to 25 people, and launch online surveys asking campus and community members for name ideas.

Cuevas said a survey will likely be launched next week and close around Feb. 22. The survey will also invite people to apply to be part of the advisory group.

The subcommittee will then review applications and select the members from a mix of students, faculty, alumni, staff and others affiliated with the college and “community members who reflect the geographic and demographics of the district.”

The name advisory committee will then meet virtually four or five times in the spring to prioritize potential names for the college. An “iterative” process will be used to narrow a list of potential new names for the school to between three and five choices.

Once those names are selected, a trademark attorney will research those options for any potential conflicts. The college also plans to hold community forums to describe the renaming process and identify potential new names. The governing board will make a final decision on Cabrillo’s new name.

The board’s Tuesday night agenda document didn’t include a timeline for the surveys, community forums or application deadlines.

Cuevas said the board is “still finalizing plans for the next phase of the renaming process” and didn’t provide a timeline for applications or the community forums.

A majority of board members voted in November to change the school’s name so that it will no longer be named after Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo — an explorer of the California coastline, whose expedition is considered to have cleared the way for the colonial conquest of California and the violent treatment of native people.

FOR THE RECORD: This story was updated with additional details from the Cabrillo board of trustees meeting about the renaming process.


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