As you know, the California legislature has restricted its legislative actions in this session to items pertaining to the recovery from Covid-19. Other items filed during this legislative session have been eliminated. Regrettably, one of the casualties is SB 874 (Hill), the bill that would make the existing baccalaureate pilot programs permanent and expand the opportunity to all community colleges in the state. This news is particularly disappointing since the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges has lent its support to the measure and we have worked hard and successfully to find common ground and agreement with representatives from the California State University (CSU) system. Many more legislators have also indicated their support, notably Assemblyman Jose Medina, Chair of the Assembly Higher Education Committee.
We have had setbacks before and we have always rebounded. We will do so again. Chancellor Judy Miner and I are already searching for a new legislative champion for our bill, which we plan to have introduced in next year’s legislative session. The community college baccalaureate is a vital component in much of the nation’s higher education sectors. It will definitely benefit California’s economy by providing job training in a high-quality, affordable, and accessible manner, and with no duplication of programs offered by the public universities.
Thank you all for your support and we look forward to working with you on this critical legislation next year. Special thanks to Senator Jerry Hill for his work in extending the pilot program and for his effort in shaping SB 874. Since he will be leaving the California legislature, we wish him well in his new ventures.
Dr. Constance M. Carroll,
Chancellor San Diego Community College District