What scares The Campaign this Halloween
October 31, 2013 | Written by: Jennifer Escobar, Community Affairs Associate, Campaign for College Opportunity
This Halloween as folks visit haunted houses and dress up as scary characters for one night, at The Campaign, we are scared by the unknown future of our state and the scary statistics that are our reality.
- In CA only 23% of community college students who intend to transfer actually do within 6 years of enrollment.
- CA has the highest number of working low-income families in the U.S. and 60% of those families have no postsecondary education.
- CA faces a critical shortage in the health workforce. The state will soon be hit by the ‘double whammy’ of its aging population who leave healthcare jobs as they retire and demand for more healthcare as they age.
- CA needs an additional 2.3 million degree and certificate holders than we are on track to produce by 2025 in order to meet workforce demands.
- CA spends more money on prisons than it does on higher education.
While at the end of any of children’s Halloween movie, the children are assured that all of the ghosts, zombies, and other scary subjects were only pretend, in the real world we are sorry to say that none of the above statistics are pretend. They are the reality of our state. They are the reality our students face on a daily basis.
The situation is certainly grim but not hopeless. We can begin to change these statistics if our state leaders would make a commitment to prioritize higher education and make plans to address these issues.
While these statistics remain the scary truth of our state, The Campaign will continue to push forward recommendations to the Governor and lawmakers to:
- Ensure a spot in college for all eligible students
- Support our community colleges and universities with additional revenues
- Preserve financial aid for low and moderate income Californians through Cal Grants and increasing student access to federal Pell Grants
- Support higher education funding and policy priorities that hold colleges and universities accountable for increasing student graduation and completion rates
- Improve the coordination between our two year colleges and four year universities especially with regards to early college preparation, assessment and transfer
- The future of our state is at risk, but this Halloween you can help begin to change the frightening world we are creating for future generations in California by sharing these statistics with your friends. Help us raise public awareness about these higher education issues and invite others to join us in spreading the word that these statistics are unacceptable.