Citrus College has been recognized by the Campaign for College Opportunity, an organization dedicated to expanding college access and improving completion rates, for its efforts to help Latinx students reach their academic goals.
The California-based research and advocacy nonprofit presented Citrus College with an Equity Champion of Higher Education Award during its virtual celebration on Nov. 16. This is the second year that the Campaign for College Opportunity has recognized California community colleges that are leading the state in conferring associate degrees for transfer (ADT) to Black and/or Latinx students on their campus.
During the virtual ceremony, the organization honored colleges in four categories: excellence in transfer, excellence in transfer for Black and Latinx students, excellence in transfer for Black students, and excellence in transfer for Latinx students. Of California’s 116 community colleges, Citrus College was one of 60 to receive the “Excellence in Transfer for Latinx Students” distinction.
“This is an honor that we are especially proud to receive,” said Dr. Greg Schulz, superintendent/president of Citrus College. “The faculty, staff and administrators of Citrus College are committed to providing every student with a quality, inclusive education. This recognition inspires us to continue investing in resources and programs that will help us meet the diverse needs of our entire student body.”
To determine which colleges should receive awards, the Campaign for College Opportunity created an equity index that assigns a value to each college based on how many ADTs Black and Latinx students received relative to overall campus population. During the 2020-2021 academic year, 857 of the 1268 ADTs awarded by Citrus College (nearly 68%) were presented to Latinx students.
ADTs were first awarded at Citrus College in 2012, two years after the Campaign for College Opportunity and then-State Senator Alex Padilla co-sponsored historic transfer reform legislation. A collaborative effort of the California community colleges and California State University (CSU) system, ADTs provide community college students with guaranteed admission to the CSU system and priority admission to a CSU campus.
Citrus College currently offers 32 ADTs in a broad range of subjects, including administration of justice, biology, communication studies, economics, history, mathematics, philosophy and theatre arts.
“On behalf of the board of trustees, I extend my sincere appreciation to the dedicated Citrus College community for working to improve student equity and increase college completion rates,” said Dr. Patricia A. Rasmussen, president of the Citrus Community College District Board of Trustees. “As we continue to develop and enhance initiatives to increase the college’s inclusivity, it is especially meaningful to have our efforts recognized by the Campaign for College Opportunity. We are proud of the students who have earned these degrees and hope to see our transfer degree numbers grow even more in the years ahead.”