To More College Acceptance Letters and Graduates

Every new year, the Campaign team returns from the holiday ready to roll up our sleeves and continue our mission to ensure every student can experience two special occasions: opening their long-awaited college acceptance letters and hitting the stage with their caps and gowns.
Memories of our own college acceptances and graduations also remind us to pause and reflect on the successes we have had thus far. With incredible allies like you by our side, 2019 was another successful year of increasing college opportunity. From rallying to protect access to our public colleges to celebrating the work of higher education champions at our events, we are grateful for your support! You can read all about our accomplishments here .

This year is already in full swing! Governor Newsom’s state budget proposal increased higher education spending by $110 million and put dollars toward closing racial equity gaps . The very next week, members of the Legislature introduced a bill to strengthen oversight of admissions changes at our public universities.

In this newsletter, you will get to meet our new fellows and read our latest brief on Guided Pathways. You will also get to see who made our 2019 Dean’s List and read about our support for Proposition 13 slated for the March ballot.
We look forward to partnering with you in 2020 as we continue to ensure California students experience more of those special, life-changing moments. 
Michele Siqueiros
Latest Research: Guided Pathways
Though community colleges educate over two million Californians, less than half of students complete their degree/certificate or transfer within six years. Guided Pathways explores the lessons learned from three California Community Colleges who have tailored the college experience and created pathways to boost student success.
On the March Ballot: Vote Yes on Proposition 13

This March, California voters will have the opportunity to invest in our K-12 school, college, and university campuses with Proposition 13. The $15 billion ($9 billion for K- 12 and $6 billion for higher education) in funds will go to much-needed repairs to ensure the safety of school facilities and create affordable student housing at our public universities. We encourage voters to vote yes on Proposition 13 and invest in our schools. 
Advocates and the Legislature Protect Access to the CSU  
For the better part of a year, our coalition of over 100 civil rights and education advocates, the California Teachers Association and School Districts, school boards, and administrators across the state have raised concerns over a harmful proposal to change admissions requirements at the California State University (CSU). In response, the CSU Chancellor’s Office has put before the CSU Trustees a resolution that acknowledges and addresses key concerns. We applaud the CSU Chancellor, the Chancellor’s Office staff, the CSU Trustees, the Legislature, and advocates who have all worked together to ensure the process of considering a change in eligibility requirements yields an outcome that preserves equal opportunity to access and success at the CSU. 

Assemblymember Jose Medina (D-61) introduced legislation last week to increase oversight of public university admission policies. The legislation establishes guardrails so that any future efforts by California’s public universities to change admissions requirements undergo a thorough and transparent analysis to ensure college opportunity is preserved for all students. Learn more
Congratulations to Our Legislative Dean's List Honorees
We kicked off the new year honoring seven legislative champions at our 2019 Dean’s List celebration. The event highlighted the efforts of exemplary leaders in crafting student-centered policy in pursuit of increasing college affordability, undocumented student support, higher education coordination, and racial equity: 

  • Connie Leyva (SD-20) - Distinction in College Affordability
  • Richard Roth (SD-31) - Distinction in College Affordability
  • Evan Low (AD-28) - Distinction in Statewide Higher Education Leadership
  • Ben Allen (SD-26) - Distinction in Statewide Higher Education Leadership
  • Monique Limón (AD-37) - Distinction in Undocumented Student Support
  • Jesse Gabriel (AD-45) - Distinction in Undocumented Student Support
  • Kimberly Rodriguez, Legislative Director, Office of Senate President pro Tempore Toni G. Atkins
Meet Our New Team Members
We’re pleased to announce the first generation of the 2019 - 2020 Steve Weiner and David Wolf Founder Fellowship Program, graciously funded by the ECMC Foundation. Our fellows have embarked on a rigorous 9-month experience advocating for college opportunity in the fields of Communications, Public Affairs, Policy, and Policy Research. Learn more .

With generous funding from Art for Justice Fund, we brought on our Program Analyst, Danny Murillo , who will work with us to increase awareness about the unique challenges facing currently and formerly incarcerated students in California’s public higher education system. Read his story.