Black and African American Student Success

Discover all the ways you can meet your college and career goals

Black and African American Students Can Succeed at California Community Colleges

California Community Colleges offers many on-campus resources and support services to help you reach your academic goals. Learn more about our programs and services, including financial aid and scholarships, transfer opportunities, state and federal assistance programs, and career education support.

Don’t miss this podcast!

The EDUCATE. ELEVATE. podcast shares stories and inspiration from California community college students, alumni, and administrators. Tune in to hear from students who refused to let the challenges in their life or the myths they heard, keep them from becoming leaders and difference makers. You’ll hear inspiring stories of hope and get connected to the resources you need to make your dreams a reality.

Check back often for more student stories and college myth-busting tips.

In this episode of the three-part season finale, you will discover:

  • Introduction to the EDUCATE. ELEVATE. podcast. - Opening Remarks (2:19)

  • Hear experts discuss the importance of the historic Brown vs. Board of Education ruling and why there is still more work to be done to support students, open doors, and break down barriers.

    Panelists include:

    Dr. Abdimalik Buul - California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office Visiting Executive of Educational Excellence

    Dr. Shirley Weber - California's first Black Secretary of State and the fifth African American to serve as a state constitutional officer in California's history

    Dr. Luke Wood - President of California State University, Sacramento and the youngest permanent president of a four-year public college or university in the nation

    Pam Haynes - Board of Governors member of the California Community Colleges

    Dr. Adam Clark - President of the California Association of African American Superintendents and Administrators, and Mount Diablo Unified School District Superintendent

    Panel Introductions (2:58)
    Panel Discussion (26:37)

  • Episode 9 Teaser. - Closing remarks (2:05)

Did you happen to miss an episode? Catch up by visiting the full episodes list of the Educate. Elevate. podcast!

Dual Enrollment

Get a head start, save money and time toward achieving your college goals. Dual enrollment is your opportunity to enroll in community college classes and earn college credit that may count toward your high school diploma. Some dual enrollment college courses can also count toward your high school diploma.

College Close to Home

Find success right around the corner.

We understand students can face numerous challenges, like financial insecurity, access to resources, racial discrimination, and underrepresentation. Whether we’re working with community leaders and organizations or speaking directly to students, we’re committed to helping Black and African American students improve the future for themselves, their families, and their communities. It’s all part of our goal to help all students reach their educational goals and succeed in life.

Find your local college to learn what opportunities are right around the corner.

Apply for financial aid

There's financial aid available to help cover college costs like tuition, textbooks, supplies—and sometimes even rent.

To get started, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADAA). You can apply for financial aid year-round. No matter your financial situation, it's always free to apply, opening the door to most types of financial aid.

Use our locator tool to get contact information for your local college financial aid office to learn more. Here are just a few financial aid options:

The Gates Scholarship

Scholarship

This highly selective, last-dollar scholarship is available for outstanding, minority, high school seniors from low-income households.

Learn More

Ron Brown Scholar Program

Scholarship

Applicants for this scholarship must be low-income Black or African American high school seniors. This selective program looks for students who demonstrate an interest in public service, entrepreneurship, and community involvement.

Learn More

AMS Minority Scholarships

Scholarship

The American Meteorological Society awards this scholarship to minority students. Applicants must be starting their first year of college and intend to pursue a career in atmospheric or related oceanic and hydrologic sciences.

Learn More

American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE) Scholarship

Scholarship

AABE awards 13 annual scholarships to underrepresented minority high school seniors, including African Americans. Students must pursue a major in business, technology, engineering, mathematics, or one of the physical sciences.

Learn More

Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) Spouses Education Scholarship

Scholarship

Eligible applicants include Black and African American students pursuing undergraduate or graduate degrees. High school seniors may also apply. Applicants must live or go to school in a CBC Members district.

Learn More

National Black Nurses Association (NBNA) Scholarship Program

Scholarship

The NBNA offers numerous scholarships for Black and African American students pursuing a career in nursing. Students must be NBNA members currently enrolled in a nursing program.

Learn More

KnowBe4 Scholarship for Black Americans in Cybersecurity

Scholarship

Administered by the Center for Cyber Safety and Education, the KnowBe4 scholarship is open to Black and African American students. Applicants must be pursuing a degree focused on cybersecurity or information assurance.

Learn More

ACS Scholars Program

Scholarship

Open to applicants intending to major or are already majoring in chemistry, biochemistry, chemical engineering, chemical technology, or another chemistry-related science AND planning to pursue a career in a chemistry-related science as well.

Learn More

Associate Degree for Transfer

We’ve partnered with the CSU system, fully online and out-of-state universities and independent colleges and universities in California to guarantee saved spots for Black and African American transfer students looking to move on and earn their bachelor’s degree. Don’t miss out on this guaranteed transfer opportunity.

Guarantee Transfer to Historically Black Colleges and Universities

We’re proud to partner with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to offer guaranteed transfer to students who receive at least a 2.0 GPA and 30 transferable units. 37 HBCUs currently participate in our program, with more to come.

Career Education

Undecided on your major? Thinking of exploring your culinary skills? Always dreamed of creating your own business? With over 200 hands-on career training programs, you’re sure to find something that works for you. The road to your future starts with enrolling in a career education program at a California community college.

Campus Contacts

Connect with community and campus resources

Want to connect with your campus community organization dedicated to enhancing the cultural and educational experiences of Black and African American students? Would you like to find program coordinators that can help further your success? Check out our campus contacts and make meaningful connections today!

Find important contacts available to you from Cerritos College.

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Contact information pending.

UMOJA
The Cerritos College Umoja Student Success Program is committed to enriching, fostering, and nurturing the educational experience of all students, especially African American and first-generation college students, ultimately preparing them for academic, personal, and professional success beyond Cerritos College.

To learn more, contact:

Damon Cagnolatti, English Instructor
Email: dcagnolatti@cerritos.edu

Dr. Chelena Fisher, Counselor
Email: cfisher@cerritos.edu

Dr. Clara Ross-Jones, Counselor
Email: ctross@cerritos.edu

Rev. Dr. Shelia Hill, Counselor/Director
Email: shill@cerritos.edu

Sara R. Chavez, Umoja Success Coach
Email: umoja@cerritos.edu

Umoja Office Contact Information:

Tel: (562) 281-4131
Email: umoja@cerritos.edu
Follow on Instagram: @umoja.cerritos

Find important contacts available to you from Los Angeles City College.

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Contact information pending.

UMOJA 

Umoja (a Kiswahili word meaning unity) is a learning community dedicated to the academic success, personal growth, and self-actualization of African American and other students. To learn more, contact:

Andrea Eke, Umoja Coordinator
Email: ekea@lacitycollege.edu

Dr. Blaine Simmons, Umoja Counselor
Email: simmonbk@lacitycollege.edu

You can also visit the Los Angeles City College Umoja Community website for more information.

Find important contacts available to you from Los Angeles Southwest College.

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Contact information pending.

UMOJA
Yvette Tucker, Counselor
Email: tuckery@lasc.edu

Los Angeles Southwest College Umoja Learning Community is open to all students and is specifically designed for the success of African-ancestry students. This program is diversity-focused with a cross-cultural philosophy.

Visit Los Angeles Southwest College Umoja Community website to learn more.

Find important contacts available to you from Mt. San Antonio College and learn more about their Center for Black Culture and Student Success.

Tel: (909) 274-6396

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Contact information pending.

UMOJA ASPIRE
Aspire is a dynamic program designed to provide essential educational support and services to increase the academic success, retention, degree completion, and transfer rates of African American and other students enrolled at Mt. San Antonio College.

Traci R. Ebue, UMOJA ASPIRE Program Counselor
Email: tebue@mtsac.edu

Website: Umoja Aspire
Email: aspire@mtsac.edu
Tel: (909) 274-6396

Black Student Success Coordinators 
Clarence Banks, MPA, Director | Center For Black Culture & Student Success
Email: cbanks@mtsac.edu
Tel: (909) 274 - 5661

Mercedes Cunningham, Coordinator | Center For Black Culture & Student Success
Email: mcunningham6@mtsac.edu
Tel: (909) 274 - 5861

Undocumented Student Resources

California Community Colleges knows “undocumented” applies to students from all backgrounds, including Black students not born in the U.S. We understand the challenges undocumented students face and are here to help with a variety of resources.

  • California Department of Social Services/DACA Support
    California Department of Social Services funds programs and provides community education that helps immigrants living in California, including DACA students.
  • Immigration Legal Resource Center
    Immigration Legal Resource Center works with immigrants, community organizations and the legal sector to help build a society that values diversity and rights.
  • Supporting Undocumented Students
    California community colleges offer numerous services to undocumented students including students with a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) work permit and those without one

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