LBCC Receives $4M Federal Grant to Help Older Returning Students Navigate the College System
Congressman Robert Garcia helped secure funding for new program
Long Beach City College (LBCC) President Dr. Mike Muñoz and Congressman Robert Garcia announced that LBCC will receive a $4 million Postsecondary Student Success Grant (PSSG) awarded by the Department of Education during a press conference at LBCC’s Liberal Arts Campus on Monday, January 22. The grant will fund the new Success and Completion Achievement Network (SCAN) program, which will create a structured support system to help students who did not enroll in college immediately after high school by assisting them to successfully navigate the college system. This funding builds on the more than $25 billion in funding to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs), and Tribal Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs) through the Department of Education since President Joe Biden took office. Specifically, $18.1 billion has been allocated for MSIs. LBCC is an MSI, with specific designations as a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) and an Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institution (AANAPISI).
“We are honored to be the only community college in California to receive funding from this important grant,” said Dr. Mike Muñoz, LBCC Superintendent-President. “For many of our students, it has been several years, sometimes even decades since they were last enrolled in school. And while they might be highly motivated and self-directed, they may not have the foundational knowledge to support them as they navigate through a complex college infrastructure. The SCAN program will create a comprehensive network specifically designed to ensure the success of our indirect matriculant students.”
“This significant investment will enhance the college experience for non-traditional and students of color here in Long Beach, funding programs that provide critical college resources and development before they even step on campus,” said Congressman Garcia. “Students will have access to Peer Navigators and academic advising as they navigate the college process, as well as equity-trained professors to help them complete a range of math and English courses. We need to make sure all of the students in our community have the tools and support necessary for their academic success, which means using new approaches and funding to meaningfully uplift our students of color.”
LBCC is one of the largest California Community Colleges, and a minority-majority serving institution. Nearly two-thirds of LBCC’s current student population are students who did not enroll in college immediately after graduating high school, often referred to as indirect matriculants (IDMs). Sixty-five percent of the IDMs identify as Black and/or Latina/o/x. According to LBCC’s annual climate survey, the cost of college can present a major barrier to IDMs, with 58% receiving need-based financial aid. Additionally, 41% of IDMs are first-generation college students.
“This incredibly important grant will be instrumental in LBCC’s efforts to increase the number of ‘non-traditional’ students or individuals who are pursuing higher education in the later stages of their lives,” said Vivian Malauulu, Long Beach Community College District Board of Trustees President. “We are truly grateful to Congressman Robert Garcia for his advocacy in the process.”
Through SCAN, LBCC will continue in its efforts to close equity gaps, providing a structured network of support services within a welcoming environment. Other program highlights include:
- The creation of a team of Peer Navigators made of IDMs with experience at LBCC to assist incoming first-year IDMs
- A summer bridge program and monthly workshops for SCAN participants will be offered both in-person and virtually to provide informational sessions
- SCAN staff will be trained in academic advising for indirect matriculant students and educated on their unique, culturally relevant needs
- Designated Financial Aid and Enrollment Liaisons that will serve SCAN students
- LBCC will also offer exclusive SCAN math and English courses taught by professors who have completed additional professional development, including equity training
The PSSG offers funding designated for the improvement of student outcomes including retention, course credit completion, and four-year institution transfer rates by implementing inclusive, evidence-based activities. Thanks to this grant, the academic and social support framework of LBCC’s SCAN will help increase IDM student persistence, the number of units they will accumulate each year, their completion rate of transfer-level math & English, as well as the number of IDM student credentials, awards, transfers, internships, and jobs.
About Long Beach City College
Long Beach City College consists of two campuses with an enrollment of over 25,000 students each semester and serves the cities of Long Beach, Lakewood, Signal Hill, and Avalon. LBCC promotes equitable student learning and achievement, academic excellence, and workforce development by delivering high quality educational programs and support services to our diverse communities. Visit www.LBCC.edu for more information about Long Beach City College.
LBCC Associate Director
Communications & Community Engagement