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Community College Leadership Retreat Builds Pipeline for Students of Color to Attend UC Merced

By FDR Media-Posted: July 19, 2022

To continue to execute and build a strong foundation for students of color to attend a four-year college, UC Merced held its first Black California Community Colleges CEO’s Retreat. The three-day event welcomed to the campus several Black community college leaders from around the state.

Attendees had the opportunity to learn about UC Merced’s mission and the pathways the campus created for transfer students to attend the university, including the third party online program called Program Pathways Mapper. This online program allows students to explore vetted transfer pathways independently and gives counselors an excellent tool for advising.

“A critical component of our institution’s success is ensuring that students who begin their academic journey at a California community college can envision a clear pathway from your institutions to completing their bachelor’s degree at UC Merced. So, we are creating innovative pathways for transfer students,” Chancellor Juan Sánchez Muñoz said.

UC Merced, in collaboration with Stanislaus State, recently announced the expansion of the 1300 Campaign, an initiative aimed to send an additional 1,300 young people of color into the UC and California State University (CSU) systems by 2030.

The 1300 Campaign will focus on high school students in the Northern Central Valley, including the areas of Stanislaus, Merced and San Joaquin counties.

“What truly sets us apart is our mission and our momentum. We are here to create a better future for students and their families, and we have more than words to back that up,” Muñoz said.

The Black California Community Colleges CEO’s Retreat was led by Vice Chancellor and Chief Diversity Officer Delia Saenz with a welcome by UC Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Michael Brown.

Felicia Roberts took an idea gathered a few people to reached into a minority community to highlight the positive, using a minority newspaper the Central Valley Voice. Roberts was joined by her sisters Carolyn Williams, Alleashia Thomas, niece Hermonie Lynn Williams, nephew Ron Williams, cousin Jerald Lester, Jay Slaffey, Greg Savage, Tim Daniels and the late J Denise Fontaine. Each individual played an important role in the birth of the newspapers. Since, then many have stood strong behind the success of the newspapers and its goal to fill a void in the Central Valley community. The Central Valley Voice published their 1st issue in November 1991. Its purposed was to highlight the achievements of minorities in the Central Valley. The Voice focuses on the accomplishments of African Americans and Hispanics giving young people role models while diminishing the stereotypical pictures of gangs, crime and violence that permeate the minority communities. Since 1991, the Central Valley Voice has provided an important voice for the minority community throughout the Madera, Merced. Stanislaus and San Joaquin counties.

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