Legislature Recognizes College’s Growth and Statewide Support
June 28, 2023, Sacramento, Calif. – Calbright College is pleased to receive full funding through the California 2023-2024 fiscal year budget agreement between Governor Newsom and the California Legislature. This budget continues to invest in Calbright’s growth, success, and position as a statewide workforce catalyst on the leading edge of the learning curve for supporting adult learners.
“Calbright is a different institution today than a year ago, as we continue to test, iterate, and improve while building this College from the ground up. We appreciated hearing legislative staff vocalize how they or their families, who didn’t fit into the traditional education mold, could benefit from higher education programs that offered more flexibility given the many responsibilities they’re juggling at home and work. For many, Calbright validates that their communities belong in higher education, and we are grateful legislators recognize this forward momentum and have funded the College appropriately so that we can continue this critical work,” said Jenny Johnson, vice president of government relations for Calbright College. “We were founded to meet the unique needs of Californians who have fallen through the cracks of today’s education system and economy – and it’s working. Amidst a drop in enrollment levels in community colleges across the state, Calbright’s enrollment more than doubled in the last fiscal year. 91% of our student body is 25 years of age or older and 34% of students are caregivers or parents. We look forward to driving more change and creating better career pathways for Californians.”
Roughly halfway through the College’s seven-year start-up period, Calbright continues to grow as an innovative and unique education model within the California Community Colleges system. Throughout the 2022-2023 fiscal year, the College achieved several notable milestones, which include:
- Surpassed a student body of 2,800 — an increase of 165% in the fiscal year — and awarded 169 certificates, the most in the College’s history;
- Designed, validated, and received Board approval for a total of 17 programs, with the first new program, Data Analysis, expected to launch to the public in the fall of 2023;
- Created the College’s inaugural student body organization and continued to build pathways to nurture student community, such as the Experiential Learning and Leadership program; and,
- Ratified the College’s first contract with the California School Employees Association (CSEA) Chapter 53, creating an organized labor union agreement for classified employees.
Advocates for Calbright span the state. The College received support from a large coalition of multi-sector, statewide organizations, illustrating the strong need to engage and empower the 6.8 million Californians ages 25-54 with a high school diploma but no college degree as well as others whose employment prospects are increasingly limited. With this continued funding, the College will focus on growing enrollment, expanding and building its holistic student support model, partnering with employers and economic development entities, launching and developing new programs, and advancing the overall Calbright student experience.