February 28, 2019, Santa Rosa, CA — The Hispanic Outlook on Education Magazine listed Santa Rosa Junior College (SRJC) as one of the nation’s “Top 50 Community Colleges for Hispanics” in its Feb. 25 edition. According to the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), there are currently about 1,132 community colleges in the U.S.
SRJC was particularly highlighted for having the greatest number of Latinx students receiving degrees and certificates (#28) and having the greatest total enrollment of Latinx students (#50).
SRJC received designation as a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) by the US Department of Education in 2013 due to its Latinx enrollment and robust programs and services aimed at supporting its Latinx population. Currently, 34% of all students enrolled at SRJC are Latinx. Highlights of SRJC’s dedication to Latinx students include:
- SRJC has engaged in strong outreach efforts to improve access for first-generation students. Recent data shows that 40% of all new high school graduates enrolled at SRJC are Latinx, mirroring K-12 public school demographics of Sonoma County.
- In 2017 the Santa Rosa Junior College Board of Trustees unanimously declared the SRJC campus a “Safe Haven for Undocumented and Marginalized Populations.” In 2018, the college hired a new, dedicated Dream Center coordinator to help expand Dream Center services and assist undocumented students. SRJC’s Dream Center is unique because it provides free immigration legal services through a partnership with VIDAS non-profit.
- The SRJC Extended Opportunities Programs and Services (EOPS) serves over 700 first-generation students and provides them with dedicated counseling services, book grants, and priority registration.
- The SRJC Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement (MESA) program serves educationally and economically disadvantaged students majoring in calculus-based majors, so they can excel in math and science and attain STEM degrees from four-year institutions. MESA currently serves over 150 SRJC students.
- The Student Equity and Achievement (SEA) program funded by the state has helped SRJC create services such as the Puente learning community, tutorial services, counseling, and other interventions aimed at assisting first-generation students to succeed in college.
SRJC President Frank Chong said that he’s proud that the college is being recognized for its efforts to support Latinx students. “The demographics of our community are changing and SRJC is dedicated to adjust and grow to meet the current needs of all of our students,” he said.
The full article can be read within the virtual version of the magazine at: https://www.hispanicoutlook.com/education-magazine/february-issue-2019#undefined%2F13