During these historically tight fiscal times, Santa Barbara City College got some major-league good news this week in the form a multimillion-dollar federal grant. In fact, it was on the receiving end of the single largest grant in school history, and it is earmarked for some of the students who need it most. Summing up the news, Acting SBCC Superintendent/President Dr. Jack Friedlander said simply, “This is enormously important for us.”
Specifically, to the tune of $4 million over the next five years, SBCC’s soon-to-launch Express to Transfer Program — which aims to fast-track fully enrolled and qualifying Hispanic and low-income students toward an associate’s degree in math, science, technology, or engineering, and get them successfully transferred to a four-year university within two or three years of starting at SBCC — will reap the benefits of federal Title V grant money. According to school officials, the cash injection will go toward developing and implementing Express in such a way that easily accessible and clearly defined pathways toward graduation and eventual transfer are established while providing extensive student support services along the way. It will also create a similar type of program for students without science- or tech-related majors at some point in the future.