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Centennial Oral History Project: Berta Harris

Biographical Essay



In 1956, Berta Harris was born in Kassel, Germany. Her parents were living in Germany for about two years. Her father was teaching English at an American school for military children. Shortly after Harris’ birth the family returned to the United States and she spent her childhood growing up in rural Bloomington in San Bernadino County, California. Harris completed her B.A. and M.A. degrees in Child Development at San Diego State University and she taught at a number of different schools before joining the faculty at City College in 1985.

In her almost thirty years of service at City College, Harris has held a number of leadership positions at City College including President of the Academic Senate, Child Development Center Director, and student learning outcomes coordinator. Her essay discusses her childhood, the Nixon Presidency, City’s Child Development Center, taking a sabbatical and returning to school full-time, and her leadership involvement at City.

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