Cal State San Bernardino has been named a 2023 Equity Champion of Higher Education by the Campaign for College Opportunity, which recognizes the university’s exemplary work in implementing the Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT).

CSUSB will be formally honored on Tuesday, Nov. 14 as a 2023 Equity Champion of Higher Education for Black Students for working with intentionality to support Black students via the Associate Degree for Transfer, and is joined by California State University campuses Fresno, Fullerton, Long Beach, Los Angeles and Sacramento. The official awards ceremony will take place on Zoom beginning at 10 a.m. Pacific Time.

In its recognition of CSUSB, the Campaign for College Opportunity said the university “successfully ensured both that over half of your 2022 Black undergraduate transfer students were ADT earners, and that of those ADT earners, over half were on a guaranteed pathway.”

“We are honored to be recognized as a 2023 Equity Champion of Higher Education,” said Tomás D. Morales, president of CSUSB. “This award is a testament to the commitment of our faculty and staff to provide equitable opportunities for all students, particularly our Black students.

“As a Minority-Serving Institution, where more than 80% of our students are the first in their families to attend college, we take great pride in assisting our students through their educational journey, helping them to break down barriers, preparing them to prosper once they graduate and move on in their careers – and helping them to define not just their own futures, but those of their families and their communities,” Morales said.

Though community college is often thought of as a two-year stepping stone to a university, the lived experience of students indicates otherwise: many are caught in a confusing maze, navigating varied course requirements and inconsistent guidance to achieve their transfer goals.

In response, the Campaign for College Opportunity championed SB 1440 (Padilla) in 2010, creating the ADT pathway. Today, the ADT has impacted the lives of nearly 490,000 students by supporting them on a faster road to transfer with guaranteed admission to the CSU system, saving students valuable time and money. And, though new research indicates that California still must make progress to support transfer students, the ADT has shown promising results: students who successfully transfer show greater use of the ADT, and more Latinx and Black students are choosing the ADT as their preferred transfer pathway.

“For nearly a decade, the ADT has given community college students struggling to navigate a complicated transfer maze a clear path to success with a degree to show for their hard work,” said Jessie Ryan, executive vice president of the Campaign for College Opportunity and former community college transfer student. “As colleges grapple with pandemic-induced enrollment declines, we laud the 27 community college and CSU campuses that continue to forge ahead for students by strengthening the transfer pathway and removing unacceptable equity barriers in transfer for Latinx, Black, and first-generation college students across the state.”