Leaders from California State University, Dominguez Hills (CSUDH), El Camino College (ECC), Inglewood Unified School District (IUSD), Centinela Valley Union High School District (CVUHSD) and the South Bay Workforce Investment Board (SBWIB) pledged their commitment to strengthening the pipeline from high school to college and beyond by signing the South Bay Promise at a ceremony on the CSUDH campus on Monday, July 14.
At the signing ceremony were CSUDH President Willie J. Hagan, ECC President Thomas Fallo, IUSD State Trustee Don Brann (an ECC alumnus), CVUHSD Interim Superintendent Bob Cox (CSUDH Class of ’72, M.A., Education), and SBWIB CEO Jan Vogel (CSUDH Class of ’74, M.A., Education), along with the first batch of South Bay Promise cohorts.
“Inglewood Unified, Centinela Valley Union and El Camino College have always been partners with California State University, Dominguez Hills. What the South Bay Promise does is strengthen that alliance and serve as a visible sign to students that we believe in them and are willing to back that up with a guarantee,” Hagan said. “It is also about starting the conversation about college earlier than a student’s junior or senior year, setting clear expectations for them, and a full complement of support to ensure their academic success.”
The South Bay Promise is an initiative designed to strengthen the college-going culture, ensure college readiness, and create a seamless transition from high school to college among students at IUSD’s Inglewood, Morningside, City Honors College Preparatory high schools and CVUHSD’s Hawthorne, Lawndale and Leuzinger high schools. Through the program, the students receive not only early advising on the courses they’ll need for admission to CSUDH but they will also be able to participate in events on the CSUDH campus to better familiarize themselves with college life while still in high school.
If they meet the admission requirements to attend CSUDH upon graduation, they will receive priority admission to the university, participate in the pre-freshmen year Summer Bridge Academy, and be part of the Encounter to Excellence first year initiative that offers one-on-one advising, peer mentors, supplemental instruction and other resources to ensure their academic success.
The Promise also guarantees El Camino students acceptance to CSUDH upon the completion of 60 semester credits including full general education certification. As an added component to help these students prepare for their post-secondary education, the South Bay Workforce Investment Board will provide after-school enrichment and work-based learning activities on their high school campuses.
Lawndale High graduate Ryan Jones said he was pleased to be among a group of South Bay Promise students who will attend Cal State Dominguez Hills in the fall. In fact, Jones is currently enrolled in the university’s Summer Bridge Academy, which provides him with the opportunity to get some credits under his belt before the fall.
“I am fully aware that there were a handful of us that were chosen and we should take advantage of that because out of everyone else, we were given a huge opportunity,” Jones said.