College Guide


August 25, 2011 11:00 AM California Turns Away Community College Students

By Daniel Luzer

A whole lot of Californians will be turned away from the Golden State’s nominally open-access community colleges this year. According to a piece by Steven Brown in the San Francisco Business Times:

Deep cuts to California’s higher education system mean the state’s community colleges may turn away as many as 670,000 students, said Jack Scott, chancellor of the system.
The state university system has taken a hit of $650 million and the community college system has had its funding cut by $400 million so far this year. Both systems have raised their prices already, but warn that more cuts may be on the way.

The problem is not just the reduced funding from the state. With the Great Recession continuing, the unemployed continue to increase demand for community colleges, which they want to attend for training in the hopes of landing a job.

“Our system is currently being funded for 2.5 million students,” Scott explained. But Scott expects that about 3.1 million Californians want to study in community colleges. That’s more than the colleges can handle.

Meanwhile, an elderly widow gave $7.6 million to UC Davis in her will. None of it will go to students; all of it will apparently go to research to cat cancer, really.

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer


  • Libraryguy on August 26, 2011 9:14 AM:

    Really? Again you're complaining about the priorities a private citizen assigns to the funds in her estate? If she had a billion dollars, enough to make up (for just one year) the shortfall to the state university and community college systems, would she be morally obligated to do so? It's not like she's funding groups or organizations actively attempting to usurp democracy or support corporate welfare (See: Koch brothers).

    I'm truly sorry California is in this mess, along with much of the rest of the country. But one woman's $7.6M bequest wouldn't fix anything, and will do a hell of a lot in feline research.