Community Colleges Provide Innovative Pathways to Workforce Opportunities

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The Baccalaureate Degree Programs at California Community Colleges have been a catalyst of economic and regional development since their inception in 2014. The focused baccalaureate programs at 21 of California’s community colleges offer career-specific bachelor’s degrees to help answer the persistent call from our state’s workforce for trained, skilled workers. The Bay Area Council is proud to partner with our community colleges in promoting pathways to workforce opportunities. 

These tailored workforce programs and training degrees help educate the next generation of California’s workforce, including programs in applied fire management, automotive technology, biomanufacturing and healthcare. The degrees are nonduplicative of those at the California State University system and are tailored to meet specific regional workforce needs. Key student statistics from after graduating include: 

  • Graduates of these programs earned twice as much as they did before obtaining a degree.
  • 98% of students are employed in the field in which they earned their degree.
  • 56% of graduates stated they would not have pursued a bachelor’s degree had it not been offered at their community college.
  • 72% of students reported taking out no student loan debt to finance their education.

These programs are proving to be transformative for students who otherwise would not consider pursuing a bachelor’s degree. Providing alternatives to predatory for-profit institutions that take advantage of the lack of access to workforce training programs and often put these students into overwhelming debt is critical to stimulate our state and regional economies. Many community college students are also adult learners and working parents that do not have the ability to uproot their lives and move to attend a university across the state. 

Baccalaureate degrees offered at community colleges address access, equity and economic mobility for all Californians and help meet our state’s degree attainment and workforce goals. Learn more about these invaluable programs here.

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