Chaffey College campus in Chino nears reality

CHINO - Years of planning and occasional distractions have not deterred the vision of a community college in Chino.

It's almost here.

"Welcome to the college town of Chino," said Mayor Dennis Yates on Friday about the groundbreaking ceremony for the 100-acre Chaffey College Chino campus.

The event was attended by city, college and county officials.

The new campus, whose construction has already begun, will have more to offer than campus buildings; it will mean a shorter drive for local college students, and a potential increase in college-goers.

"It will be in our backyard," said Michelle Sliwa, Chino Hills High School counselor. "It will mean access. It will mean (students) won't have to travel to get something."

That "something," is education, and with a campus closer to home, the potential increase in college attendance is prevalent.

San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools Herbert Fischer said the county has seen a 44 percent increase in high school graduates going to college in the last five years, with most of them attending a community college.