State, COC to offer extra $4K in grants

Courtesy photo of College of the Canyons. Signal reader photo by Dave Bogna

Continuing a push to increase the number of students who graduate with degrees on time, California and College of the Canyons will offer an extra $4,000 in grants to community college students who take a 15-unit-plus course load starting this fall.

The move is part of California Community Colleges Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley’s Vision for Success, a new plan that details California’s educational landscape and the steps community colleges will take to graduate future workers.

In 2016, less than half of the 2 million enrolled students at California community colleges transferred or left with a degree or certificate after six years, according to state records, but Oakley would like to see a significant increase in the coming years.

By 2022, the state wants a 20 percent increase in the number of community college students who acquire associate’s degrees, credentials or certificates and a 35-percent increase in the number of community college students transferring annually to a University of California or California State University campus.

Community college leaders expect the Cal Grant increase to have a substantial impact on the students who work to support themselves, according to the Vision for Success plan.

COC recently graduated its largest class ever, but students and administrators on campus hope to see another boost in degree and certificate completion rates when the added aid takes effect.

“It sounds like a great incentive to encourage students to take a full course load and achieve their goals faster,” COC spokesman John Green said. “We’re looking forward to receiving more information from the state.”

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