Eligible community college students hoping to attend the University of California will have a guaranteed spot at one of its campuses beginning in fall 2019.
UC and the California community college system on Wednesday announced an agreement to ease the often complicated process of transferring to a four-year school. It builds on a 2015 program that created "transfer pathways," clarifying what classes community college students should take to qualify for 21 of the most popular majors at UC.
Starting next fall, students who complete one of those model curricula, which are meant to ensure they can graduate within two years after transferring, and meet the minimum grade point average requirement will also be guaranteed admission into the UC system. If students are not admitted to the campus of their choice, UC said it will place them at another campus that has space in their major.
Eloy Ortiz Oakley, chancellor of the California Community Colleges, said the agreement will particularly benefit students in rural California and disadvantaged communities, which may have fewer resources available to guide them through the transfer process.
"We're trying to level the playing field for all students," Oakley said. "It opens up more possibilities for more students who have not traditionally seen UC as an option."
A similar agreement, called the Associate Degree for Transfer, already exists between the community college system and California State University. Early results suggest it is helping students graduate with their bachelor's degree faster.
UC said it also plans to recognize some of the transfer degrees as part of its admissions guarantee for community college students, though the UC Academic Senate must still determine which majors will be accepted.