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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

Job skills, dual enrollment boost California community colleges

Enrollment is rebounding at California's community colleges due to career programs and dual enrollment, reports Michael Burke on EdSource.

At Mt. San Jacinto College in Riverside County, students are "gravitating more towards career-focused educational paths,” said Brandon Moore, the college’s vice president of enrollment management, in an email. The college’s automotive and computer information systems programs are popular.

San Diego Community College District is seeing increased demand for short-term certificate programs in subjects such as accounting, biotechnology and cybersecurity.

College and Career Access Pathways, or CCAP, is broadening access to dual enrollment for "underachieving students and those underrepresented in higher education, said Olivia Rodriguez, senior fellow and director of the Public Policy Institute of California's Higher Education Center, in testimony before the California Legislature.

Eight of 10 dual-enrollment students "enrolled at a two- or four-year college within 12 months of graduating from high school, compared to about two-thirds for all high school seniors," Rodriguez said.

CCAP and other dual-enrollment students were more likely than non-DE students to pass college-level math and English in the first year of community college. However, the bar was low: 32 percent of CCAP students and 28 percent of other DE students completed gateway courses compared to 18 percent of non-DE classmates.

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