The Community College League of California spoke with Pamela “Pam” Ortiz Cerda, a DACA recipient and undocumented advocate, about a day in the life of a dream center. Pam is the Dream Center Program Coordinator at Skyline College in the San Mateo Community College District.
Welcome to 72 STRONG
72 STRONG is a blog written by the Community College League of California featuring California's 72 community college districts. The blog provides a platform for the League and its stakeholders to address timely and relevant issues that impact higher education and California's Community Colleges. We invite you to read our latest post.
We don’t have to look far to see the impact of food insecurity on college campuses. Recent reports show that 48 percent of community college students are food insecure. At Cerritos College, 25 percent of students qualify for the state’s EBT/CalFresh program. The CalFresh Program, federally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), issues monthly electronic benefits that can be used to purchase most foods at many markets and restaurants. As such, students are facing an unspeakable dilemma – having to choose between paying for living expenses or purchasing a meal.
Butte College is playing a key behind-the-scenes role in the Camp Fire recovery. More than 350 individuals have gone through training that Butte College established, with several hundred more on the waiting list. Of those, roughly 50 are already at work for debris-removal companies. From providing training for those jobless and displaced by the Camp Fire, to instructing how cleanup and construction can happen safely, Butte College is a partner in the rebuilding of the Paradise Ridge.
After watching the Assembly Chamber unanimously pass ACR 31 (with 67 co-authors signing on to the resolution) recognizing April 2019 as California Community College Month, I was reminded of just how far community colleges in California have advanced from their origins as extensions of K-12 school districts in the first decade of the 20th century.
It is a sunny Thursday morning in Aptos, California, and a large truck from Second Harvest Food Bank Santa Cruz drives onto the campus of Cabrillo College. Boxes of fresh produce – carrots, watermelons, potatoes, lettuce, corn, and tomatoes – are unloaded by student volunteers and brought into the upper quad. A sandwich board sign with large letters announcing “Free Produce” at the “Cabrillo Fresh Market” is strategically placed in the middle of the main thoroughfare, hoping to attract the attention of passers-by on their way to and from class. Anyone within the Cabrillo community is welcome.
League staff interviewed high school senior, Lily Alvarez, to gain insight into her experience as a dual enrollment student and how it has helped mold her view on college. Lily is currently a student at Red Bluff High School in Red Bluff, California and a participant in Shasta College’s dual enrollment program.
Few students and parents, if any, give much thought to institutional accreditation when choosing a college or university. The term “accreditation” may even make your eyes glaze over, but the reality is that it’s an incredibly important concept. Allan Hancock College is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC), a federally-recognized, regional accreditation agency. Regional accreditors — there are seven recognized by the Department of Education — are considered by many to be the gold standard when it comes to ensuring educational quality.
Recognizing that results are still coming in, the League offers a brief recap of some of the 2018 midterm election results and what it will likely mean for our sector. With strong majorities in the California Legislature, we anticipate Governor-elect Gavin Newsom to pursue several of his signature education initiatives that he refers to as “cradle-to-career.”
California’s next Governor is in the enviable position to strengthen local economies in rural, urban, and suburban areas statewide, enhance employment opportunities for low and middle-income individuals and their families, and support growing industries in need of skilled and educated employees. And the Governor can do this early in his term and enjoy the political benefits of ribbon-cutting ceremonies at the state’s most popular higher education institutions: California’s community colleges.
With a full 60% completing 30 units in their first year of enrollment data show that sports benefit our students immensely. And that our student-athletes complete their degrees at a much higher rate than the average community college student.