COD Earns Accolades for Championing Equity Among Black and Latinx Students

PALM DESERT – College of the Desert (COD) is being recognized by Hispanic Outlook on Education Magazine and The Campaign for College Opportunity as a champion of equity for underrepresented student populations.

Statewide educational advocacy group, The Campaign for College Opportunity, recognized COD for championing academic achievement among Black and Latinx with the following designations: California Community Colleges Equity Champions for Black Students and California Community Colleges Equity Champions for Latinx Students.

The College will be formally recognized at a virtual event, the 2023 Champions of Higher Education for Excellence in Transfer, on Tuesday, Nov. 14.

The organization uses associate degrees for transfer as a measure of achievement among some of the state’s historically underserved populations, including students who are Latinx and Black. The two-year associate degrees are fully transferrable to California State University with no more than 60 semester units or 90 quarter units.

“COD is committed to closing persistent racial equity gaps through its Associate Degrees for Transfer program, providing a gateway to a brighter future,” Superintendent/President Laura Hope said. “We value open access to educational opportunities above all and will continue to support students in the Coachella Valley with programs and services such as free tuition and dedicated counseling.”

Hispanic Outlook on Education Magazine used metrics like enrollment, total degrees granted, and others to measure schools across the nation. COD ranked in the top 100 two-year colleges in the nation for 2021-2022 enrollment. Within the top 100 schools, College of the Desert was situated at number 33.

Hispanic Outlook Magazine is a national monthly magazine that delivers a Hispanic perspective on issues surrounding education, kindergarten through graduate school. Their 28 years of publication have put a spotlight on important topics such as financing education, specific career paths, and the best schools.

These recognitions help not only celebrate progress but establish a threshold from which College of the Desert and other schools can grow. This is especially important to bear in mind coming off of the findings from Gallup’s poll titled The State of Higher Education. The poll stated that “More than half of Hispanic students (52%) and 43% of Black students say they considered stopping out in the past six months — up from 44% and 37%, respectively, in 2021.”

College of the Desert recognizes that maintaining and creating educational opportunities for Latinx and Black students requires constant vigilance and addressing shifts in the economy and the world at large.

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