MSJC receives CAHSEE Preparation grant

August 15, 2008

Mt. San Jacinto College learned this week that it will receive a $300,000 grant from the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office to help high school students pass the California High School Exit Exam.

The grant will fund the California High School Exit Exam Preparation Program. The program is designed to help high school students pass both parts of the CAHSEE, which is required for graduation. It will also provide non-credit courses for high school students who are deficient in units for high school graduation, said Rebecca Teague, director of Grant Development at MSJC.

A total of 300 students will be served by this program. It represents the first CAHSEE program in the MSJC’s 1,700-square-mile service area. The college has partnered with all eight local high school districts located in the service area: Banning, Murrieta, Beaumont, Temecula Valley, Lake Elsinore, Perris, San Jacinto, and Hemet Unified School Districts.

“We thank the Chancellor’s Office for awarding this grant to Mt. San Jacinto College,” said Superintendent/President Roger Schultz. “This money will allow us, in partnership with the area K-12 school districts, to reach young students who are struggling with the CAHSEE and help them to succeed educationally.”

Laurie McLaughlin, dean of Instruction/Off Site Programs, said the district will create individualized plans for the students and teach them the academic skills they need for the CAHSEE. Students will also receive career education. The district’s goal is to start an orientation for the program in September, McLaughlin said.

The recent grant brings the total the district has received from the state to $1,047,269 since 2007.

The following are other grants MSJC has received in that time from the Chancellor’s Office:

-          Enrollment Growth and Retention Grant Program (Nursing) $302,643 (under two separate grants). This grant will expand enrollment capacity and student success in the nursing and allied health program.

-          Equipment Funds for Nursing and Allied Health Programs (EMT/CNA programs) $72,928. This provides funds for new state-of-the-art equipment for the EMT and CNA programs.

-          Career Technical Education Collaborative (Career Education) $369,700 provides funding to: expand six Career Technical Education programs (Homeland Security and Public Safety, Hospitality, Biotechnology, Manufacturing, GIS, and Engineering); offer career exploration opportunities for 7th and 8th graders; provide professional development opportunities and industry externships for faculty and k-12 instructors.

The Mt. San Jacinto College Grants Office has received more than $6 million dollars in federal, state, and private grant funding over the last four years. Currently, the Grants Office has several pending grant proposals including a $300,000 grant proposal to the U.S. Department of Justice for a Campus Violence Prevention Program; and a $1.8 million proposal to the U.S. Department of Education for a program to (1) increase the number of Hispanic and low income students receiving degrees in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics fields and (2) improve transfer rates to four-year institutions.