College: Making it Happen
CVHEC is taking the lead on coordinating the Central Valley’s College: Making It Happen Program. Aimed at middle school students, their families, and educators, the program is designed to communicate the importance of early academic preparation and financial planning. This event offered information and training to K-12 teachers, counselors, administrators, and college and university staff. Representatives from our college and university affiliates, as well as volunteers from local high schools, spoke on the following topics:
- The benefits of a college education
- College preparation for middle school students
- Paying for college
- Types of colleges and universities
- Academic resources and organizations
- Financial aid and scholarship resources and organizations
The College Place
Thousands of students have been served with information and resources such as college planning, college searching, goal-setting, financial aid, cash for college workshops, and more. The Center was placed in the Manchester Mall in Fresno, was housed with Fresno City College’s Manchester Educational Resource Center. Albert Valencia, CSU, Fresno professor was the lead faculty advisor and recruited four interns, known as college coaches, who served through the fall semester. The interns enrolled in the M.A. program and conducting their counseling internships as the Center and receiving a stipend of $1,500 to help off-set their college expenses. The College Place attracted grant funding from the California Partnership for the San Joaquin Valley in the amount of $200,000 to jumpstart the services in 2007. The City of Fresno invested $100,000, the Walter S. Johnson Foundation granted $50,000, and the Rotary Club of Fresno granted $1,600.00. Our legacy continues with our one-stop, premier, college-going resource website, College Next.
Hispanic Youth Symposium
Every summer since 2006, CVHEC partners with the Hispanic College Fund to co-host a four day, three night program which has brought over 600 Central Valley high school sophomores and juniors to Fresno State to experience college life, learn how to prepare for a professional career, get involved in community service, and meet role models and leaders from thriving businesses and industries. During the event, students compete for scholarships in the following contest areas: speech, art, dance, and “issues to action.” The event is funded by grants and donations by Wells Fargo, Kaiser Permanente Hospital, and other partners. Scholarships won at the event competitions, in the amount of $15,000 per event, has helped many students pay for college tuition.
Why Access Matters
Produced and published by the Consortium in 2008, this research/data report provides higher education and its stakeholders a deeper, more specific understanding of the college-going trends in the Central Valley, and the data necessary for monitoring selected indicators in college access, transfer, and workforce preparation. For the full report, please download Why Access Matters (PDF).
Workforce Investment Act (WIA Grant)
In December 2009, CVHEC teamed up with the California Partnership for the San Joaquin Valley in a WIA grant that assisted Valley high schools and colleges in providing training and awareness on the workforce needs in the Valley as well as provide workforce preparation initiatives. CVHEC was granted $25,000 for 2010 and $25,000 for 2011 as a part of a subcontract. CVHEC was responsible for three deliverables related to economic development.
Youth Ambassadors for College Opportunity
This joint effort between CVHEC, Advanced Placement Via Individual Determination (AVID) and Fresno Pacific University trained high school students as college advocates in four local high schools: Hoover High School, Washington Union High School, El Diamante High School, and Riverdale High School. Using the “near peer” model, college students mentored high school students on how to develop a college-going culture within their high school community and neighborhood. More than 5,000 high school sophomores per year received college information through the Youth Ambassador project.
College Readiness Supported by the California Education Policy Fund
The C6 Consortium has identified College Readiness as a top priority. With funding support from the California Education Policy Fund, (CEPF), the Consortium has invested in the capacity building of region-wide Standards and Accountability that better prepare students to “be ready” and to succeed in college from the first assessment/placement test through graduation.
Through the funding made available by the CEPF, the C6 Consortium will work together to pilot a series of innovative approaches to educational policy reform efforts focused on College Readiness. The first priority is Assessment/Placement. Amid growing research that a narrowly focused policy change produces very limited outcomes or confounding results, the CVHEC strongly supports that our pilot policy reform efforts focus on interrelated educational areas and will utilize action-oriented advocacy as a comprehensive strategy to policy making. As a result we are working on a streamlined, common assessment system that will serve to revolutionize testing for students in the Central Valley region.
CVHEC Executive Director, Dr. Barbara Hioco, provides a back bone for the C-6 Consortium efforts by establishing a team of faculty experts that are tackling innovative approaches and bold responses to the Department of Labor Community College and Career Training grant solicitation. The recent Department of Labor TAACCCT award marks an unprecedented opportunity for our region to develop accelerated, intensive programs of study so students earn a degree or credential of value in a reasonable amount of time, enabling them to enter the workforce of critical industries with growing occupational demand in an accelerated timeframe. This project is grounded in Valley expertise and input from regional employers and county Workforce Investment Boards which will transform the design, structure and delivery of education at 13 California Community Colleges. Our Board believes that our experience and research-based project can be replicated as a state and national model.
Youth Ambassadors for College Opportunity
The Fresno Regional Foundation Grant is funding the recruitment and education of 100 high school students (designated to be first-generation prospective college-goers and from working poor families) from Tulare County to prepare for the college application and admission process. Specific activities include College Knowledge Boot Camp, a 5-day program, hosted at a university campus, that prepares students for the increasingly competitive college admission process. The students will be trained as College Opportunity Ambassadors to empower their high school peers to attend college.
Central CA Workforce Collaborative – CA
The Central California Workforce Collaborative is comprised of nine local Workforce Investment Boards representing the fourteen counties of Amador, Calaveras, Fresno, Inyo, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, Mono, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Tulare, and Tuolumne. The Central California Workforce Collaborative was one of the sponsors for the College/Career Boot Camp which was hosted at CSU Stanislaus June 15-18, 2015. This boot camp served as an opportunity for students to gain leadership and advocacy skills increase awareness of financial aid, scholarships, and interview tips.
Tulare County Migrant Education Region VIII – Tulare, CA
Tulare County Office of Education provides quality service and support to the students and school districts of Tulare County by promoting life-long learning opportunities that will help individuals lead healthy and productive lives. Tulare County was one of the sponsors for the College/Career Boot Camp which was hosted at CSU Stanislaus June 15-18, 2015. This boot camp served as an opportunity for students to gain leadership and advocacy skills, increase awareness of financial aid, scholarships, and interview tips.