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Dr. Glenn Roquemore PhD (BHS 1970) and his wife Kiana | Courtesy Photo

China Lake-BHS Work Experience Program and Dr. Glenn Roquemore

By Bruce Auld
News Review Correspondent

On Tuesday, April 26, 2022 the Naval Air Warfare Center, Weapons Division (NAWCWD) and Sierra Sands signed a new Educational Partnership Agreement, executed by Dan Carreno, NAWCWD Executive Director and Sierra Sands Superintendent, Dr. David Ostash. Although a new agreement, this legendary partnership’s roots began with the Naval Ordnance Test Station pioneers.

“Unique in application, objective and procedure is the Work-Experience Program according to Burroughs High School students given the opportunity to utilize classroom theory through an on-the-job study-work contact with Station scientists and with Station equipment in Michelson Lab. Well into its fourth season of operation, the Work-Experience Program was formulated in its present stage last year (1958) by J. A. Donnan, Burroughs chemistry instructor and Science Club Advisor, and A. E. Ellings and R. D. Weaver, members of the Research Society of America, Dr. C. E. Weinland he Weapons Planning Group, and members of the Station training program.” (February 27, 1959 Rocketeer)

Seven years later in 1966, 44 Burros were led in the Work-Experience Program, most in scientific fields. Yet of the 1966 group, one became a dentist, another a city manager, one a BHS art teacher, several big time LA lawyers and a public-school superintendent.

The Work-Experience Program was an “elective class” conducted in the full spectrum of China Lake civilian work. I am thinking every one of the BHS “scientist superstars” benefitted from their participation. I know I did, but not as a scientist. I don’t remember if I selected my assignment or if my counselor, or maybe principal Ken Westcott made the assignment, but I had a great assignment with Dr. Carl Austin and Ken Pringle as a student geologist. A scientific assignment! It led to three years of summer employment as an undergraduate GS-2, loaded with travel and adventures from flying to San Clemente Island to driving to the mines of Socorro, New Mexico.

I was privileged to work at the very beginnings of the development of the Coso Geothermal Project. Typically, I would drive either Dr. Austin or Ken to the site in my “very own” 1965 US Navy gray GMC 4×4 short bed pick-up with “monster tires.” On one occasion, I was alone on-site butt up, head down dropping a water capture device into the well casing to collect a water sample for a chemical analysis. Behind me, I heard heavy breathing, then a snort. I deftly retreated to the truck, waiting for the curious burro to move on. During my final exit interview, Dr. Austin said, “Bruce, you know you are not a scientist, right?” Ken Pringle nodded in agreement. Already a psychology major at UCLA, I agreed. Nonetheless, it was a great experience. Robert (Bob) Roseth (BHS 1959) took a similar path, from science to teaching. Bob was sponsored by Charles Drew of the Combustion Branch of the Chemistry Division. Bob Roseth studied “reaction between cyclopentane and heavy water,” yet returned to Burroughs to teach Humanities and coach football.

Dr. Glenn Roquemore (BHS 1970) was sponsored by China Lake pioneering legend Dr. Pierre St. Amand. Glenn later became China Lake’s Head of the Applied Geoscience Research Office. Glenn started his post-secondary education at Porterville College where he earned AA degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences. He earned his BA and MA degrees in Geological and Earth Sciences from CSU Fresno. At the University of Nevada, Reno, Glenn earned his PhD in Geophysics and Seismology.

Dr. Roquemore had a long and distinguished career at China Lake, serving thirteen years as Head of the Applied Geoscience Research Office. Glenn conducted research in seismology, engineering geophysics, geomagnetism, geothermal energy, rock mechanics, ground water resources, active faulting, active volcanism and remote sensing. Glenn was a certified rear-seat flight engineer with Air Test and Evaluation 5, in the TA-4 Skyhawk and TA-6 Corsair, giving him an aerial view of China Lake’s 1.1 million acres.. The earthquakes of July 4th and 5th, 2019 were not a surprise for Glenn. Dr. Roquemore left China Lake in 1991, taking on the challenges as Chair of the Department of Geological Sciences at Irvine Valley College (IVC). In 1998, Glenn was appointed as IVC’s Interim Vice President of Instruction. There he was responsible for “distance learning and working with program heads and department chairs to effectively measure institutional effectiveness, student performance, retention and satisfaction. He developed annual institutional budgets, supervised regular and summer term college catalogs and course offerings and managed enrollment to meet strict budgetary requirements. In 2000, Glenn was named Dean of Advanced Technology, where he increased distance learning opportunities by 50%. In 2002, Glenn became IVC’s President, a position he held for some 18 years. As president of IVC, Glenn ensured the institutional and fiscal health of the college through shrewd resource allocation, personnel management and budge

tary strategy-with continual focus on student recruitment, retention and completion. Glenn balanced the IVC budget for each of his 18 years.” (California Southern University website)

Glenn retired from IVC with the title “President Emeritus.” Glenn recently received the “Implementing a Vision Award” for his role in developing the vision for the South Orange County Community College District’s Advanced Technology and Education Park (ATEP) and IVC’s Integrated Design, Engineering and Automation (IDEA) Building. (Linkedin)

Currently, Glenn is the CEO of Roquemore Higher Education, LLC and serves on the Flying Leatherneck Historical Foundation Advisory Board, specializing in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics
(STEM) programs. (Linkedin)

Glenn attended Richmond and Las Flores Elementary schools and James Monroe Junior High School. While attending Burroughs, Glenn played guitar for “The Reason Why’” a local award-winning rock band. Glenn played a custom-built left-handed Ebony Fender Stratocaster. He sold his guitar in 1973 for $350 to buy a HP-35 calculator for his college chemistry class. Today, the guitar is worth $10,000, the calculator $25! (Dr. Glenn Roquemore)