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The Epoch Times
The Epoch Times
1 Apr 2023

NextImg:University of California Proposes Guaranteed Admission for Qualified Transfer Students

The University of California (UC) proposed a plan this week to guarantee admission to qualified community college students—but only for certain campuses.

UC officials presented their plans to state legislators during a March 28 state Assembly budget hearing.

To be guaranteed admission, students must be enrolled in a state community college and would need to complete general education courses required by UC and earn a minimum grade point average, according to UC officials.

Such transfer students may request the UC campus of their choice—and if they are not admitted, they are guaranteed admission to UC Santa Cruz, UC Merced, or UC Riverside.

Additionally, six of nine UC campuses already offer transfer-guaranteed admission programs—UC Merced, UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC Riverside, and UC Santa Barbara.

UCI Medical Center in Orange., Calif., on Dec. 16, 2020. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

UC Academic Senate Chair Susan Cochran said during the meeting that the system hopes to simplify the process for transfer students so they don’t take more community college classes than they need to.

“The key to transfer is to ask students only what they need to do and not more,” Cochran said. “We think this proposal … is a positive step forward for simplifying transfers and helping UC meet its responsibilities to the people of the state of California.”

The proposal comes as UC transfer applications have fallen across all campuses—from 46,155 in fall 2021 to 39,363 for fall 2023—and total applications have dropped from 249,855 to 245,768 during the same time period.

As an incentive to increase enrollment, Gov. Gavin Newsom proposed a 5 percent increase in funding for both the UC and California State University (CSU) systems in his 2023–24 fiscal budget proposal.

The increases amount to $216 million for UC and $227 million for CSU and fulfill a pledge Newsom made last year to give the systems five percent annual budget increases for the next five years if they agreed to work toward improving graduation and enrollment rates, particularly among California residents.

Newsom also promised UC an additional $30 million as an incentive to boost enrollment among California residents.

A student wears a face mask on the campus of the UCLA college in Westwood, Calif., on March 6, 2020. (Mark Ralston/AFP via Getty Images)

In the proposed budget, the governor also directed UC to adopt a guaranteed transfer admissions program for UCLA, its most selective campus, or face a $20 million budget cut.

Last month, the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst’s Office recommended legislators reject the directive, saying that UCLA has a higher rate of transfer student enrollment than any other UC campus.

However, analysts recommended UC “consider whether to require all UC campuses to participate in the transfer admission guarantee programs.”

UC officials told legislators at this week’s budget hearing that their proposed expanded transfer admissions guarantee was an alternative to Newsom’s directive.

Though no action was taken during the hearing, legislators have until May to review the proposal and decide whether to add it to the state budget.