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CSU Faces Unprecedented Demand, Limited Space

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San Jose State received received 45,000 applications for fall 2012, a four percent increase over last year.

Applications and admits continue to rise despite efforts to control enrollment

(May 21, 2012) – The California State University today released preliminary systemwide data for the upcoming fall term indicating all-time highs in applications, and a year-over-year increase in the number of students admitted. San Jose State received 45,000 applications for fall 2012, a four percent increase over last year. SJSU admitted over 26,000 applicants, including over 24,000 undergraduates. The CSU expects to enroll approximately 25 percent of the resident first-time freshmen admitted and roughly 50 percent of the resident transfer students admitted. The CSU estimates that 95 percent of the enrolling freshman class and 94 percent of enrolling undergraduate transfer students will be California residents. “The CSU is caught between a huge demand to attend our universities and a state that simply is not providing adequate funding for these students,” said Eric Forbes, CSU assistant vice chancellor, student academic support.  “We are facing a tipping point in terms of the promise of access that is at the heart of the CSU mission.” Read more.

President Hosts Budget Forum

President to Address AAPI Higher Education Summit

Dr. Mohammad Qayoumi

Dr. Mohammad Qayoumi

By Pat Lopes Harris, Media Relations Director

President Mo Qayoumi will deliver the closing remarks at The Asian American and Pacific Islander Higher Education Summit April 25 in the Westin Bonaventure Hotel, Los Angeles. Organized by the College Board and the California State University system, the AAPI Higher Education Summit will welcome leaders of national advocacy and community-based organizations, college admission and outreach officers, faculty and teachers, school counselors, policymakers and parent engagement coordinators. “We see this conference as an opportunity to advance our strategy for improving college access and completion for all Asian American and Pacific Islander students,” said Charles B. Reed, chancellor of the California State University system. “We also look forward to showcasing our Journey to Success program as a national model for effective partnerships and community engagement to raise college awareness and preparation among AAPI students and families.” SJSU is slated to host a Journey to Success event in fall 2012 for students in grades 6-12 and those attending community colleges. The event will feature workshops about college preparation and requirements in addition to information about paying for college.

KTVU: President Speaks Out on Sacramento’s Failure to Adequately Fund SJSU

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President Mohammad Qayoumi said steep state budget cuts are the reason for the school’s new approach.

Locals no longer guaranteed admission to SJSU

Posted April 10, 2012 by KTVU.

By KTVU.com and Wires

SAN JOSE, Calif. —Officials at San Jose State University unveiled a new policy Tuesday in which the school will no longer guarantee admission to local students who meet California State University requirements.

At a morning news conference on campus, university president Mohammad Qayoumi said steep state budget cuts are the reason for the school’s new approach, in which local applicants not admitted to their preferred majors will be eligible for — but no longer guaranteed — admission as undeclared students.

University officials explained that all students applying to SJSU are required to note their first- and second-choice majors. Those who aren’t accepted to those majors are bumped to the “undeclared” category.

The school will still have a “local area preference” policy in place, in which local applicants being considered as undeclared majors will have a lower admissions threshold than applicants from other areas, university officials said.

The university will also be focusing on moving students who are already enrolled toward graduation more efficiently to make room for incoming students.

The school’s new admissions guidelines, which were crafted after a number of public hearings, will be submitted to California State University Chancellor Charles Reed for approval.

School officials said the new policy will “provide SJSU with tools to reduce enrollment,” but noted that the change will not necessarily be permanent.

Had the policy been in effect for the fall of 2012, 1,400 local students who were accepted to the university would not have been admitted, said William Nance, the university’s vice president of student affairs.

University spokeswoman Pat Lopes Harris said the school receives increasing numbers of applicants each year, and said the new policy is like “putting a spigot on a faucet.”

San Jose State University enrolls about 30,000 students.

KTVU: President Speaks Out on Sacramento's Failure to Adequately Fund SJSU

hear story by clicking on image

President Mohammad Qayoumi said steep state budget cuts are the reason for the school’s new approach.

Locals no longer guaranteed admission to SJSU

Posted April 10, 2012 by KTVU.

By KTVU.com and Wires

SAN JOSE, Calif. —Officials at San Jose State University unveiled a new policy Tuesday in which the school will no longer guarantee admission to local students who meet California State University requirements.

At a morning news conference on campus, university president Mohammad Qayoumi said steep state budget cuts are the reason for the school’s new approach, in which local applicants not admitted to their preferred majors will be eligible for — but no longer guaranteed — admission as undeclared students.

University officials explained that all students applying to SJSU are required to note their first- and second-choice majors. Those who aren’t accepted to those majors are bumped to the “undeclared” category.

The school will still have a “local area preference” policy in place, in which local applicants being considered as undeclared majors will have a lower admissions threshold than applicants from other areas, university officials said.

The university will also be focusing on moving students who are already enrolled toward graduation more efficiently to make room for incoming students.

The school’s new admissions guidelines, which were crafted after a number of public hearings, will be submitted to California State University Chancellor Charles Reed for approval.

School officials said the new policy will “provide SJSU with tools to reduce enrollment,” but noted that the change will not necessarily be permanent.

Had the policy been in effect for the fall of 2012, 1,400 local students who were accepted to the university would not have been admitted, said William Nance, the university’s vice president of student affairs.

University spokeswoman Pat Lopes Harris said the school receives increasing numbers of applicants each year, and said the new policy is like “putting a spigot on a faucet.”

San Jose State University enrolls about 30,000 students.

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SJSU Moves to End Local Area Guarantee for Admissions

Dr. Mohammad Qayoumi

Dr. Mohammad Qayoumi

Media contact:
Pat Lopes Harris, 408-656-6999

SAN JOSE, CA – President Mohammad Qayoumi has decided to proceed with plans to end San Jose State’s local area guarantee effective fall 2013. This means SJSU will no longer accept all CSU-eligible applicants, including some from Santa Clara County high schools and community colleges. The changes come after a series of heavily attended public hearings, and in the wake of severe budget cuts.

“This situation is caused by the failure of our elected officials in Sacramento to adequately fund the CSU in general and SJSU in particular,” Qayoumi said. “We Californians have failed to make the hard but important decisions to invest in the future of our youth.”

San Jose State will maintain a local area preference in the form of a lower admissions threshold for local applicants to the catch-all, undeclared major. SJSU will require all applicants to select first and second choice majors. Local applicants not admitted to their majors will be eligible for, but no longer guaranteed, admission as undeclared.

“Historically, San Jose State accepted all eligible Californians,” Qayoumi said. “SJSU began limiting admissions in 2009 for students from outside our community, but maintained a local guarantee for CSU-eligible applicants. Steep budget cuts have left SJSU no other choice but to reduce enrollment in the most fair and equitable ways possible.”

A new program known as “Spartan Pathways” will serve CSU-eligible undergraduates who do not meet the SJSU-minimum admission criteria. At least 100 enrollment slots will be provided to local applicants. SJSU will also re-double efforts to move continuing students toward graduation, in response to concerns raised at the public hearings.

“Continuing students who do not achieve adequate progress-to-degree hinder the university’s ability to admit new students,” Qayoumi said. “Stated simply, in a flat enrollment environment that is known to be a zero-sum game, every continuing student occupies a slot that is unavailable to a newly admitted applicant.”

President Qayoumi will submit the new admissions guidelines to the California State University Chancellor Charles B. Reed for his approval. The chancellor will report his decision to the CSU Board of Trustees. The guidelines will provide SJSU with tools to reduce enrollment, but this reduction does not need to be permanent.

“Let me reiterate that this unfortunate situation is primarily caused by a lack of adequate funding by the state,” Qayoumi said. “This also means that Sacramento can ameliorate the situation. In other words, if the state funds SJSU adequately, then SJSU will open its doors to all CSU-eligible California residents. After all, SJSU belongs to all Californians.”

Read more on the proposed admissions changes.

Become an SJSU advocate.

San José State — Silicon Valley’s largest institution of higher learning with 30,000 students and 3,850 employees — is part of the California State University system. SJSU’s 154-acre downtown campus anchors the nation’s 10th largest city.

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Public Hearings Planned on Proposed Admissions Changes

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These changes will primarily affect freshmen and community college transfers. Please see the end of this release for details on all three hearings.

Media contact:
Pat Lopes Harris, 408-656-6999

SAN JOSE, CA – San José State University will hold a series of three public hearings, beginning Monday, March 19, to discuss proposed changes to admissions guidelines for the 2013-2014 academic year. These changes will primarily affect freshmen and community college transfers. Please see the end of this release for details on all three hearings. Read more on the proposed changes.

“With the significant decline in state support and an unprecedented number of undergraduate applicants, San José State is considering changes to our admissions guidelines that will make better use of scarce resources,” said Vice President for Student Affairs William Nance. “Before we make any changes, however, it is important that we receive input from the public. We will carefully consider all comments from the campus and community.”

The proposed guidelines are expected to increase retention and graduation rates, while decreasing the time to degree for students. San José State will work with local high schools and community colleges to improve guidance to applicants and counselors and boost student preparation for college success.

PROPOSED GUIDELINES

SJSU is considering the following changes to admissions guidelines for the 2013-2014 academic year:

  • Including the major of “Undeclared” as an impacted major, consistent with all other majors in the university that are already impacted. Read more on impaction.
  • Establishing campus-level minimum requirements for consideration that continue to provide admission preference to applicants from the local area.
  • Ensuring outreach to communities characterized by low socioeconomic status and historically low rates of college going.

HEARINGS

The public may also submit comments by visiting http://go.sjsu.edu/admissions-publichearings12. These meetings are wheelchair accessible. Individuals requiring other accommodations should contact SJSU at (408) 924-1166 as soon as possible.

Monday, March 19, noon – 2 p.m.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library, Room 225/229
150 East San Fernando St.
San José, California 95112

Public parking is available at the Fourth Street Garage, 44 S. Fourth St., $1 per 20 minutes, $20 maximum, Monday – Friday 6 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Wednesday, March 21, 12:15 p.m. – 2 p.m.
Foothill College
Appreciation Hall (Room 1500)
12345 El Monte Road
Los Altos Hills, California 94022-4599

Visitors to Foothill College must purchase a day-use parking permit for $3 from dispensers in student parking lots. The dispensers accept $1 bills as well as nickels, dimes and quarters. For additional information, call 650-949-6107 or visit the college’s website.

Thursday, March 22 at 7 – 8:30 p.m.
East Side Union High School District Board Room
830 N. Capitol Ave.
San Jose, California 95133

Free public parking is available.

San José State — Silicon Valley’s largest institution of higher learning with 30,000 students and 3,850 employees — is part of the California State University system. SJSU’s 154-acre downtown campus anchors the nation’s 10th largest city.

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CSU Freshmen to Get an Early Start on Critical Skills

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Individual campuses will notify students admitted for fall 2012 if they are required to attend the summer program.

Media contacts:
Erik Fallis, CSU Media Relations, (562) 951-4800
Pat Harris, SJSU Media Relations, (408) 924-1748

Beginning this summer, incoming students to the California State University who need to strengthen math and English skills will get a boost through the CSU’s “Early Start” program.  The goal is to begin the skills-building process before students arrive on campus for their freshmen year.

“Early Start is a smart start that paves the way for student success,” said Ephraim Smith, CSU executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer. “Students will develop those skills that are tested on a daily basis on university campuses and be better equipped for courses that count toward their degree.”

Individual campuses will notify students admitted for fall 2012 if they are required to attend the summer program based on entry skills testing.  Students are not required to complete all skills building work during the summer; however, the summer program will be the first opportunity to begin refining those skills.

Read the CSU news release.

View the SJSU Early Start web page.

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Fall 2012 Admissions Update: The Local Area Guarantee

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It is likely the future of the local area guarantee will be discussed at public hearings to be held on dates to be determined.

Contact:
Pat Lopes Harris
, Media Relations, 408-656-6999

SAN JOSE, Calif., — San Jose State will accept all CSU-eligible local frosh and transfer applicants as originally planned.

However, our message to all future applicants remains grades and test scores matter now more than ever, and alternative plans should be made in case you are not admitted to SJSU.

We also would like to remind fall 2012 applicants that MySJSU, our online communications system, remains your first and best source of information.

Why is this happening now?

The California State University sustained a $750 million cut this year, and there’s a strong possibility of an additional $200 million trigger cut. A $950 million cut for the CSU means a $58.4 million cut for San Jose State.

SJSU is receiving more applications than ever but enrollment cannot grow when state support declines. Tuition covers only half the cost of attendance.

In 2011, San Jose State raised admissions standards, a practice known as “impaction.” This made it tougher to get into all SJSU majors than to get into the CSU in general.

How will this affect fall 2012?

At the same time, SJSU sought to honor a local area guarantee by offering admission to all CSU-eligible local applicants. Over the past several weeks, SJSU considered ending the guarantee in fall 2012, but is now examining other options, such as closing admissions for most programs in spring 2013

For frosh, admissions will proceed as planned. All CSU-eligible local frosh will be admitted for fall 2012. Those not admitted to a major will be assigned undeclared.

For transfers, CSU-eligible local transfers not admitted to a major will have two options: Apply now to CSU East Bay, or work hard to gain admission to an SJSU major by the end of fall 2012 while applying to CSUEB for spring 2013 as a back-up plan.

Is this permanent?

SJSU will hold public hearings on the future of the local area guarantee. Details are in the works, and will be shared broadly.

Meanwhile, unprecedented budget cuts to higher education have forced the university to close its doors to thousands of well-qualified students.

It is now more important than ever for all university stakeholders — faculty, staff, students, parents, alumni and friends of the university — to become advocates for higher education.

Remind legislators and the governor that education is integral to the state’s economic recovery, workforce needs, and international competitiveness.

Be an SJSU advocate.

Enrique Guerra, a student speaker featured at the conference

SJSU Hosts Advancing Latina/o Achievement and Success Conference

ALAS logo showing wings and graduation cap

“Advancing Latino/a Achievement and Success,” was carefully selected because its abbreviation (“ALAS”) means wings in Spanish.

Organizers Seek to Boost College Attendance and Graduation Rates by Offering Latino Students and Families Information and Encouragement

Contacts:
Fernanda P. Karp, SJSU Student Affairs, (408) 924-1162
Pat Lopes Harris, SJSU Media Relations, (408) 656-6999
Anna Cearley-Rivas, NHU Public Relations, (619) 301-3701

SAN JOSE, Calif., — San Jose State University will collaborate with The National Hispanic University and the Santa Clara County Superintendents Association to host the third biennial Advancing Latino/a Achievement and Success (ALAS) conference Feb. 11 at SJSU. Almost 100 speakers and presenters will offer 1,500 Latino fifth through 10th graders and their families the information they need to prepare for college. Registration is closed, but the media is welcome to attend. (Please see schedule below.)

“San Jose State University is pleased to host the third biennial Advancing Latino/a Achievement and Success conference,” said SJSU President Mohammad Qayoumi. “SJSU is committed to accessibility and places high value in reaching out to all families as they prepare for higher education. We want to demonstrate to students and their parents that a college education is indeed attainable, especially when you start planning early for the college application process.”

Speakers will include SJSU alumnus Luis Valdez (founder and artistic director of El Teatro Campesino, writer and director of the film “La Bamba,” and playwright for “Zoot Suit) and Enrique Guerra (an Archbishop Mitty High School freshman who garnered national acclaim when a video (right) of a speech he made on the tremendous odds against Latino youth attending college was posted on YouTube).

“We all are partners in the shared mission to improve college opportunities for our local K-12 students, and this conference is one example of that,” said The National Hispanic University President David López. “The success of our region’s Latino and Latina students is integral to the future success of our state’s economy, and that success starts with making sure that students are aware of and prepared for getting into college.”

The idea for this conference springs from a need to increase the number of college-bound Latino students in Silicon Valley. According to the Silicon Valley Latino Report Card 2011, 14 percent of Latinos have a bachelor’s degree or higher, as compared to 52% of non-Latinos. This event also reflects the California State University External Relations mission, which includes ensuring the needs of students with the least opportunity are recognized as a high priority.

“It’s never too early to start setting the course for college!” said Evergreen School District Superintendent Kathy Gomez. “Helping students and their families realize that college is not only possible — but it’s also accessible right here in San Jose — is what ALAS is all about.  The Santa Clara County Superintendents Association is very happy to work with San Jose State University and The National Hispanic University to help spread this message!”

The conference will begin with a formal welcome by President Qayoumi and President López, followed by a keynote address by Valdez. Then, students and their families will attend workshops on campus. Topics will include academic skills, parental involvement, college-student life, and the long-term benefits of higher education.

All Santa Clara County school districts were given the opportunity to invite top Latino students. The conference title, “Advancing Latino/a Achievement and Success,” was carefully selected because its abbreviation (“ALAS”) means wings in Spanish.

Advancing Latina/o Achievement and Success Conference
SJSU Event Center

Feb. 11, 2012

8:30 a.m.
Welcome – President Mohammad Qayoumi, San Jose State University
Welcome – José Manzo, Alum Rock Union Elementary School District Superintendent
Welcome – President David López, The National Hispanic University
Keynote – Luis Valdez, playwright and director
Entertainment – Grupo Folklórico Luna y Sol

9:15 a.m.
Break-Out Session #1

10:30 a.m.
Break-Out Session #2

11:30 a.m.
Lunch & Awards – Manny Barbara, Silicon Valley Education Foundation
Closing – Enrique Guerra, Archbishop Mitty High School freshman
Closing – San Jose Mayor Chuck R. Reed
Entertainment – Mariachi Tradicional, Alum Rock Union Elementary School District

San Jose State — Silicon Valley’s largest institution of higher learning with 30,000 students and 3,850 employees — is part of the California State University system. SJSU’s 154-acre downtown campus anchors the nation’s 10th largest city.

U.S. News & World Report: How the California Dream Act Will Impact the San Jose Area

California Dream Act Offers Path to College for Undocumented Students

The new law, which goes into effect in 2013, waives community college fees for low-income students.

Published by U.S. News & World Report Dec. 30, 2011.

By Joanne Jacobs

When the California Dream Act passed in October 2011, making undocumented students eligible for state college aid, Downtown College Prep‘s 540 Club celebrated. The San Jose, Calif., charter school’s club is named for an earlier state law, AB 540, that made undocumented students eligible for in-state tuition.

Nearly all of DCP’s “540 students” enroll in community college, work part time, and live at home to keep costs down. The new law waives community college fees for low-income students. When 540 students transfer, often to San Jose State University, they’ll be able to apply for Cal Grants to pay tuition.

[Learn more about how to pay for college.]

But it’s not just about money, says Jennifer Andaluz, the school’s executive director. Students see the new law as a “symbolic win,” perhaps a step toward a federal law that would include a path to citizenship. And even without that, most believe they’ll find a way to legalize some day, somehow, Andaluz says. “They’re very optimistic, very hopeful, very resilient.”

Undocumented college graduates find jobs, too. “They’re resourceful,” says Andaluz.

Seventy-five percent of the state’s Latino college students are enrolled in low-cost community colleges, Excelencia in Education estimates. The 540 students are even more likely to choose a community college.

[Read more about how community college can provide cost savings.]

When the California Dream Act goes into effect in 2013, about 2,500 undocumented college students will qualify for waivers, Cal Grants and other aid at a cost of $59.1 million, predicts the Department of Finance. That includes $15 million in community college fee waivers.

That’s a small price to pay, argue advocates for expanded college access.

California’s economy will need a million more college graduates by 2025, says Audrey Dow, community affairs director of The Campaign for College Opportunity.

However, the state’s community colleges already are struggling to educate more students with less money. Community college fees rose from $26 per unit to $36 per unit in fall 2011 and will go to $46 a unit in May 2012 to partially offset a $100 million midyear cut in state funding. By summer 2012, New Mexico’s community colleges will pass California as the most affordable in the nation.

[Learn why a performance push could hurt community colleges.]

California Assemblyman Tim Donnelly (R-San Bernardino) is leading a campaign to repeal the “California Nightmare Act” before it can go into effect. Volunteers hope to collect more than 500,00 signatures by the first week in January to get a repeal initiative on the November 2012 ballot.

If voters decide the issue, the dream could die: In a recent USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times survey, 55 percent of voters said they oppose state aid for undocumented students. While 79 percent of Latinos supported the Dream Act, only 30 percent of whites agreed.

Nationwide, Latino college enrollment is surging, with most of the growth at community colleges, reports the Pew Hispanic Center. Forty-six percent of Latino college students are enrolled in a community college, much higher than the rate for other ethnic and racial groups.

[Find scholarships for community college students.]

However, Latino graduation rates are low. In California, 47 percent of first time, full-time white college students complete degrees compared to only 35 percent of Latinos, reports Excelencia in Education.

It’s not clear how many undocumented students earn a college degree.

Only 5 percent to 10 percent of undocumented high school graduates enroll in college, estimates the Immigration Policy Center. Those who do are highly motivated.

“They hunger for education in a way that, sadly, some students in our country do not,” says Isa Adney, a student life coordinator at Seminole State College in Florida.

At Downtown College Prep, which sends all its graduates to college, 540 students are much more likely to earn a degree than their classmates who are citizens or legal residents, says Andaluz. “Their attitude seems to be: ‘My parents sacrificed so much for me. I can’t squander my opportunities. The golden gates are going to open and I need to be ready.'”

Joanne Jacobs writes Community College Spotlight for The Hechinger Report, an independent nonprofit education news site. Jacobs also blogs about K-12 education and is the author of Our School: The Inspiring Story of Two Teachers, One Big Idea and the Charter School That Beat the Odds.

San Jose Mercury News: Strive for Success Matches SJSU Mentors With High School Students

San Jose State college students help high schoolers navigate the college application process

Published by the San Jose Mercury News Dec. 25, 2011.

By Sharon Noguchi

‘Tis the season when one of the most dreaded experiences in high school — applying to colleges — reaches its moments of crisis. While most seniors aiming for California’s public universities have sent applications, new deadlines loom for out-of-state and private schools.

A handful of San Jose State students, along with dozens elsewhere, are almost joyfully forgoing winter break to shepherd bewildered high school seniors through the application process.

The volunteers are part of Strive for College, a growing nonprofit group that pairs college students with high schoolers, most who are the first in their families to attend college. The volunteers help the struggling high school students navigate the formidable maze of applications, letters of recommendation, test-score reporting, scholarship and financial aid forms.

Julia Rodriguez, 22, of Union City, is in her second year of volunteering with Strive. Her reason is simple: “I didn’t want any other student to go through what I went through.” Four years ago, Rodriguez was accepted to four University of California campuses, but she couldn’t attend any because her family couldn’t afford them, and she wasn’t put in touch with anyone who could help. Instead, she’s living at home, attending San Jose State and still paying full tuition.

One of the students she mentors is Luis Jose Hernandez, 17, who hopes to study mechanical engineering and design alternative power for engines. He’s depending on Strive to help him get his applications in to universities in Los Angeles, New York and Kentucky. “If I hadn’t been in Strive, I would have been lost,” he said. Instead, his mentor was on top of things.

Hernandez is one of 34 students at Del Mar High School in San Jose matched with a San Jose State mentor. They’ve met once a week since last winter, initially to make sure they were on track for college, signing up to take entrance examinations and looking at universities.

“It helps us out tremendously,” said Richard Mendoza, a counselor at Del Mar, where the two full-time counselors each handle 580 students. Del Mar, part of the Campbell Union High School District, has no college and career center. While counselors do their best to talk to classes about college preparation, things get a little overwhelming. Juniors and seniors have to take the initiative to ask. And, Mendoza said, “freshmen and sophomores get left in the dark because of lack of time.”

The deadlines, requirements, prerequisites and tremendous costs of college can be overwhelming. As a result, when talking with even good students, Mendoza said, “they don’t think they can afford to go to college.”

Without Strive, they just wouldn’t bother. “It was too much to think about,” said Nayeli Manrique, 17.

Strive is the brainchild of Michael Carter, a San Jose native who founded the group while attending Washington University in St. Louis. As a student at Prospect High in Saratoga, Carter enjoyed the application experience so much that he applied to 24 colleges. He was accepted at 23 and was on a waiting list for one. But he realized that most high school students weren’t like him.

So as part of a community-service program at Washington University, he founded a nonprofit that taps into college students’ expertise and enthusiasm to help low-income students. In four years, Strive has grown to seven chapters at campuses ranging from the Claremont Colleges in Southern California to the University of North Carolina. Soon to come are Vanderbilt and Cal State University campuses from Monterey Bay to San Marcos.

Strive chapters’ regular meetings are winding up, as students have finished applications to California’s public universities. Of the 34 in Del Mar’s Strive program, 25 have applied to four-year colleges, eight plan to attend community college and one may return to the family home in Australia, Mendoza said.

But while college students may know the application process up and down, the Strive program is not as strong on the financing end. Of the 38 students in last year’s Del Mar Strive class, more than three-quarters were accepted to four-year universities. But only 52 percent of the class enrolled. Those who didn’t, Mendoza said, were either undocumented and not eligible for federal or state aid — although California’s Dream Act will change that next year — and the rest simply couldn’t afford a university price tag.

Del Mar will welcome the Strive Class of 2013 next month. But first, those in the Class of 2012 targeting private or out-of-state schools need to get their applications in. “I know they have school and social life and sports,” mentor Julia Rodriguez said, “so I have to remind and push them. They do respond.”

SJSU in the News: Women CSU Student Outnumber Men

Reversing the gender gap: Women surpass men at CSU

Originally posted by the San Jose Mercury News Dec. 19, 2011.

By Lisa M. Krieger

Women are leapfrogging men into the classroom at the nation’s largest university system, redefining the gender gap on California State University campuses in a startling way.

About six out of 10 CSU graduates last spring were female — a complete reversal over the past four decades. Some campuses, like Dominguez Hills and Stanislaus, have almost twice as many women as men, feeling eerily like women’s colleges.

The trend is so pronounced that last month Cal State East Bay held a special one-day “Male Initiative” conference for young minority men, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Women are pouring into college at elevated rates all over the country — not only at two- and four-year schools, but also into professional and graduate programs. The profound shift comes two decades after educators issued an alarming report entitled “How Schools Shortchange Girls.”

“It shows you how quickly things can change. Not only are women being more encouraged to go to college, it is necessary. It is expected,” said Cal State East Bay student Lyla Pehrson, 25, a low-income student from the tiny Humboldt County town of Trinidad, who was raised by her father, a commercial Alaskan fisherman.

“As women, we are realizing that with the economy being as it is, we can’t depend on a man to bring home the bacon and make everything be OK,” said Pehrson, whose mother did not attend college. The 25-year-old serves in her student body government and works two jobs to pay for school.

The student bodies at the University of California and California community colleges average about 55 percent female — slightly less than CSU’s 59 percent.

Nationally, women have represented about 57 percent of enrollments at American colleges since at least 2000, according to a report by the American Council on Education. They have surpassed men not only in bachelor’s degrees, but also master’s degrees Ph.D.s.

But female enrollment skews even higher among older students, low-income students and minority students — the demographics of the CSU population.

Private universities can shape their classes — so schools like Stanford, with an incoming class that is 47.5 percent female, and Santa Clara, which is 51.4 percent female, are gender-balanced.

But public schools accept all qualified students, so they reflect the larger societal shift.

“We don’t reach out more to women than men. We’re not trying to recruit more women than men,” said Greg Smith, associate vice president for planning and enrollment management at Cal State East Bay, which is 60 percent female. “We put the message out there, encouraging all to apply.”

“What happens is that women more successfully respond to that message,” he said.

Researchers cite several reasons: Women tend to have higher grades and test scores; men tend to drop out of high school in disproportionate numbers; and women recognize they need a college degree to approach pay equity with men.

“I mainly attribute it to social and economic factors. Minority men are more likely to be unemployed, incarcerated or dead. I was fortunate to have the great support of my father,” said Christopher Prado, 21, president of the student government at Cal State East Bay and the first member of his Mexican-American family to attend college.

Many of his friends were attracted by the lure of quick money, he said. “When you get out of high school and can work at a warehouse for $400 a week, every single week, that seems like a lot of money,” he said. “But it’s not an investment. It’s an illusion.”

The good news is that both men and women are attending college in higher numbers. Applications to attend CSU next fall have surged — from 611,225 to 665,860. The university still doesn’t have a breakdown of how many of those applicants are women.

Women’s advances don’t “translate into a loss for men,” said Mikyung Ryu, Associate Director for the Center for Policy Analysis at the American Council on Education. “It’s not a zero sum game.”

Men remain very well represented at CSU campuses with strong engineering programs, like San Jose State, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and Cal Poly Pomona, or forestry programs, like Humboldt State.

But at other campuses, students say they miss the male voice.

“We lose the perspective that comes from men when there are open classroom discussions. We get a lot of the female view,” said Jesseca Stone, 35, who is earning a Liberal Studies degree, along with a teaching credential, at Cal State East Bay’s Concord campus.

Although she’s focused on studies, not dating, Stone said men “are very few and far between, if you’re even remotely thinking about meeting someone.

“It’s a different college experience.”

Contact Lisa M. Krieger at 408-920-5565.

SJSU in the News: Women CSU Student Outnumber Men

Reversing the gender gap: Women surpass men at CSU

Originally posted by the San Jose Mercury News Dec. 19, 2011.

By Lisa M. Krieger

Women are leapfrogging men into the classroom at the nation’s largest university system, redefining the gender gap on California State University campuses in a startling way.

About six out of 10 CSU graduates last spring were female — a complete reversal over the past four decades. Some campuses, like Dominguez Hills and Stanislaus, have almost twice as many women as men, feeling eerily like women’s colleges.

The trend is so pronounced that last month Cal State East Bay held a special one-day “Male Initiative” conference for young minority men, funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Women are pouring into college at elevated rates all over the country — not only at two- and four-year schools, but also into professional and graduate programs. The profound shift comes two decades after educators issued an alarming report entitled “How Schools Shortchange Girls.”

“It shows you how quickly things can change. Not only are women being more encouraged to go to college, it is necessary. It is expected,” said Cal State East Bay student Lyla Pehrson, 25, a low-income student from the tiny Humboldt County town of Trinidad, who was raised by her father, a commercial Alaskan fisherman.

“As women, we are realizing that with the economy being as it is, we can’t depend on a man to bring home the bacon and make everything be OK,” said Pehrson, whose mother did not attend college. The 25-year-old serves in her student body government and works two jobs to pay for school.

The student bodies at the University of California and California community colleges average about 55 percent female — slightly less than CSU’s 59 percent.

Nationally, women have represented about 57 percent of enrollments at American colleges since at least 2000, according to a report by the American Council on Education. They have surpassed men not only in bachelor’s degrees, but also master’s degrees Ph.D.s.

But female enrollment skews even higher among older students, low-income students and minority students — the demographics of the CSU population.

Private universities can shape their classes — so schools like Stanford, with an incoming class that is 47.5 percent female, and Santa Clara, which is 51.4 percent female, are gender-balanced.

But public schools accept all qualified students, so they reflect the larger societal shift.

“We don’t reach out more to women than men. We’re not trying to recruit more women than men,” said Greg Smith, associate vice president for planning and enrollment management at Cal State East Bay, which is 60 percent female. “We put the message out there, encouraging all to apply.”

“What happens is that women more successfully respond to that message,” he said.

Researchers cite several reasons: Women tend to have higher grades and test scores; men tend to drop out of high school in disproportionate numbers; and women recognize they need a college degree to approach pay equity with men.

“I mainly attribute it to social and economic factors. Minority men are more likely to be unemployed, incarcerated or dead. I was fortunate to have the great support of my father,” said Christopher Prado, 21, president of the student government at Cal State East Bay and the first member of his Mexican-American family to attend college.

Many of his friends were attracted by the lure of quick money, he said. “When you get out of high school and can work at a warehouse for $400 a week, every single week, that seems like a lot of money,” he said. “But it’s not an investment. It’s an illusion.”

The good news is that both men and women are attending college in higher numbers. Applications to attend CSU next fall have surged — from 611,225 to 665,860. The university still doesn’t have a breakdown of how many of those applicants are women.

Women’s advances don’t “translate into a loss for men,” said Mikyung Ryu, Associate Director for the Center for Policy Analysis at the American Council on Education. “It’s not a zero sum game.”

Men remain very well represented at CSU campuses with strong engineering programs, like San Jose State, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and Cal Poly Pomona, or forestry programs, like Humboldt State.

But at other campuses, students say they miss the male voice.

“We lose the perspective that comes from men when there are open classroom discussions. We get a lot of the female view,” said Jesseca Stone, 35, who is earning a Liberal Studies degree, along with a teaching credential, at Cal State East Bay’s Concord campus.

Although she’s focused on studies, not dating, Stone said men “are very few and far between, if you’re even remotely thinking about meeting someone.

“It’s a different college experience.”

Contact Lisa M. Krieger at 408-920-5565.

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Third Year of Record High CSU Undergraduate Applications

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SJSU experienced a nearly nine percent increase over last year in the number of applications received from potential first-time frosh.

Some campuses still accepting applications for graduate programs

Media contact: Erik Fallis, (562) 951-4800

(December 5, 2011) – For the third year in a row, the California State University received a record number of undergraduate applications. This year’s record confirms the continued high demand for a CSU education.

Through CSU Mentor, potential first-time freshmen and transfer students submitted 665,860 applications for fall 2012 – easily eclipsing last year’s 611,225. The submissions came from 258,834 distinct applicants versus 241,166 last year. Potential students typically apply to multiple CSU campuses.

For SJSU, potential first-time freshmen submitted 24,690 applications for fall 2012 – an almost nine percent increase over last year’s 22,702. Potential transfer students submitted 12,604 applications to SJSU for fall 2012, a nearly five percent increase over last year’s 12,029.

The CSU has also continued a trend of attracting a group of students that reflects the diversity of California. Based on self-reported statistical data, no ethnic or racial group forms a majority among CSU undergraduate applicants. This year also saw a first with Latino applicants outnumbering White applicants by 33.3 percent to 31.2 percent.

“The CSU has gone into communities throughout California with the message that a university education is achievable,” said Nathan Evans, director of CSU Enrollment Management Services. “California’s high school and community college students identify the CSU as the university that offers them a clear path to a successful and prosperous future.”

Read more.

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Undergraduates, Apply Now Through Nov. 30 for Fall 2012

San Jose State University is accepting applications from undergraduate students beginning on Oct. 1 through Nov. 30, 2011.  International applicants should refer to www.csumentor.edu for dates and deadlines.

IMPORTANT! To be considered for Fall 2012 admission, SJSU requires that applicants meet minimum CSU requirements. Details are posted at http://info.sjsu.edu/home/admission.html

The same impaction policies enforced in Fall 2011 will be applied for Fall 2012—qualified applicants will be ranked according to self-reported information provided on their CSUMentor application and admitted according to the capacity of the individual SJSU major. CSU eligible, local students who do not get admitted to their first-choice major will be admitted as undeclared. CSU eligible non-local students who do not get admitted to their first choice major will be admitted as undeclared up to the university capacity level.

View the results of the Fall 2011 frosh impaction process.

View the results of the Fall 2011 transfer impaction process.

San Jose State University is not accepting Fall 2012 applications from lower-division transfers, or those seeking a second bachelor’s degree.

PLEASE NOTE: Applications are term-specific which means that SJSU will not defer or roll forward applications or admission from term to term. To guarantee review for Fall 2012 admission, apply between October 1, 2011 and November 30, 2011 (a very simple process if you have already filled out an application for spring admission).

Graduate and Special Session Programs for Fall 2012:

SJSU will accept applications for most regular and special session (self-support) professional, graduate level programs offered in Fall 2012. Check the GAPE website for a listing of available programs and specific application and document deadlines for the Fall 2012 application cycle.

The first and best place for all applicants to stay informed is via their MySJSU account. To ensure that they remain eligible for consideration, applicants must monitor their MySJSU accounts at LEAST twice weekly and comply with all posted deadlines.

Read a related CSU news release.

SJSU Welcomes 28,000 Students to 2011-2012 Academic Year

Young man and lady holding ice cream cones (photos by Elena Polanco).

Fall term began with a Student Success Fair, featuring a free "meet and eat" ice cream social sponsored by the SJSU Alumni Association (photos by Elena Polanco).

By Pat Lopes Harris, Media Relations Director

Fall term began Aug. 24 with approximately 28,000 students arriving on campus for the first day of classes and for Fall Welcome events, including a Student Success Fair featuring a free “meet and eat” ice cream social sponsored by the SJSU Alumni Association.

Students crowded the San Carlos plaza for the fair, moved from its usual spot along El Paseo de Cesar E. Chavez to make way for construction crews, who spent the summer operating a towering pile driver building a foundation for the new Student Union. Students also packed the Spartan Bookstore, offering new products and services under Barnes & Noble management.

The campus crowd included 4,000 freshmen, SJSU’s largest first-year class in ten years, the result of more applicants meeting admissions standards, coupled with a greater percentage of those admitted completing the intent to enroll process, including orientation and registration.

The bumper crop of freshmen resulted in a campus housing shortage. Beginning Aug. 20, roughly 90 returning students who had planned to live in the dorms were assigned to the Clarion Hotel, where at least one resident found “the amenities outweigh any inconvenience.” Meanwhile, over 3,600 students settled into Campus Village, Joe West Hall and The Bricks.

Dr. Mohammad Qayoumi began the week by delivering his first Fall Welcome Address as SJSU president, announcing that his office would hold 40 town hall meetings during September so that the campus community can begin sketching out a new strategic plan for the university.

The president also highlighted good news on academic performance. “Our last two graduating classes, for both first-time frosh and transfers, have shown marked improvement of about five percent increases in six-year graduation rates,” he told the 800 or so students, faculty and staff who filled Morris Dailey Auditorium.

Factors that could be contributing to higher grad rates include intense academic advising, featuring online resources and a focus on seniors with 120 or more credits. Other factors might include the CSU’s Early Assessment Program and SJSU’s MUSE program, and economic conditions like tuition increases and a competitive job market.

A marked improvement in the academic performance of our football team means the Spartans will begin the 2011 season against Stanford Sept. 3 with a full complement of 85 scholarship players. The good news came as the athletics department completed a year-long self study, culminating in its third NCAA certification.

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Transfer Students, Apply Now Through Aug. 31 for Spring 2012

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Transfer students are welcome to apply now through August 31 for spring 2012 admissions.

San Jose State University is accepting applications from upper division domestic and international transfer students (students with 60 or more transferable semester units and the four basic skills completed) beginning on August 1 through August 31, 2011. Students should be aware that not all programs will be available for Spring 2012.

IMPORTANT! To be considered for Spring 2012 admission, SJSU requires that upper division transfer applicants complete the minimum CSU transfer requirements (60 transferable units and the four basic skills) by the end of the Summer 2011 term. This condition has been posted on info.sjsu.edu and will be strictly enforced for Spring 2012. Adhering to this requirement allows new transfers earlier access to course registration during the shorter Spring admission, advising and registration cycle.

The same impaction policies enforced in Fall 2011 will be applied for Spring 2012—qualified applicants will be ranked according to self-reported information provided on their CSUMentor application and admitted according to the capacity of the individual SJSU major. CSU eligible, local students (Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties) who do not get admitted to their first-choice major will be admitted as undeclared. CSU eligible non-local students who do not get admitted to their first choice major will be admitted as undeclared up to the university capacity level.

San Jose State University is not accepting Spring 2012 applications from first-time freshmen, lower division transfers, or those seeking a second bachelor’s degree.

PLEASE NOTE: Applications are term-specific which means that SJSU will not defer or roll forward applications or admission from term to term. To guarantee review for Fall 2012 admission, apply between October 1, 2011 and November 30, 2011 (a very simple process if you have already filled out an application for spring admission).

Graduate and Special Session Programs for Spring 2012:

SJSU will accept applications for most regular and special session (self-support) professional, graduate level programs offered in Spring 2012. Check the GAPE website for a listing of available programs and specific application and document deadlines. Check the GAPE website in mid-September for a listing of available programs and specific application and document deadlines for the Fall 2012 application cycle.

The first and best place for all applicants to stay informed is via their MySJSU account. To ensure that they remain eligible for consideration, applicants must monitor their MySJSU accounts at LEAST twice weekly and comply with all deadlines from now through January 2012.

Read a related CSU news release.

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SJSU “Strive for College” Mentors Help Students Succeed

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Del Mar High School students stop at the Smith Carlos sculpture for a photo during a campus tour organized as part of the Strive for College mentoring program.

By Amanda Holst, Public Affairs Assistant

Michael J. Carter came up with the idea for Strive for College, a national nonprofit, many years ago after transferring from a private to public high school.

“I made a lot of friends in AP classes who got great GPAs and SATs, but were the first ones in their families to think about going to college,” Carter said.

He was struck by how many of his peers lacked the guidance or resources to navigate the admissions process, and that was the origin of his organization.

Founded in 2007, Strive provides low-income high school students with college mentors from campuses nationwide including SJSU and Stanford.

Award Winning Program

According to Carter, about 400,000 low-income high school seniors qualify for a four-year college annually, but end up not going because they are unfamiliar with the application process.

Carter was fortunate enough to receive a merit scholarship to Washington University in St. Louis, Mo., and as a way of giving back, brought the idea of providing college counseling to inner city high schools to his scholarship director.

During the fall of his freshman year in college, Carter launched his first mentoring program between Washington University and juniors at a nearby high school. Strive quickly expanded to 10 chapters across the country. In recognition of his vision, Carter was recently named a 2011 Echoing Green Fellow.

“I saw that under-resourced students didn’t have the information or guidance to find the resources they needed to apply for the best-fit schools.” Carter said. “Building a movement of college students on college campuses to help reach high schools and deserving students get into college became the most cost-effective, most leverageable, and most impactful ways to solve this problem.”

The SJSU Connection

In 2008, Strive partnered SJSU with Del Mar High School in Campbell, and in a year doubled the amount of mentors as well as the number of students going to four-year colleges. The partnership is still going strong.

The Associated Students of SJSU’s Cesar E. Chavez Community Action Center recruits, trains, and operates the Strive for College program at Del Mar, under the direction of an SJSU student coordinator.

Senior social work major Veronica Carrillo has mentored at Del Mar for a year, and her first student is expected to attend Chico State this fall. As a mentor, Carillo helps her students choose the right college, find financial aid, sign up for SAT and ACT tests, and create personal statements and essays.

“I realized that those who don’t get the opportunity to go to college don’t need much. They just want someone to guide them,” Carillo said.

Incoming freshman Shanna Brancata, a foster youth who was in the Strive program, was chosen to give the commencement speech at Del Mar High last June. She plans to become a Strive mentor at SJSU this fall.

“Through this program I found the confidence to get into college” Brancato said. “Strive made me believe in myself.”

Interested in becoming a Strive volunteer? Contact the Cesar E. Chavez Community Action Center at (408) 924-4144.

SJSU in the News: SJSU, CSU Campuses Urged to Give Local Students Priority

Originally published in the San Francisco Chronicle, Feb. 15, 2011.

Students applying to jam-packed California State University don’t always get into their campus of choice, but they’ve always been able to count on priority admission to their local CSU.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/02/14/MN8V1HMTHI.DTL#ixzz1E9qPcRqq