Long Beach City College Receives Funding to Support Student Parents
Long Beach City College is one of four selected institutions from across the country that will participate in a new fund launched by Ascend at the Aspen Institute
Long Beach, CA – Today, Long Beach City College (LBCC) announced that it will join a cohort of four community colleges across the country selected to partner with Ascend at the Aspen Institute’s Postsecondary Leadership Circle Activation Fund. Ascend’s new capacity-building fund provides financial support and expert technical assistance to selected community college campuses to accelerate institutional investment into expanding effective, equitable, and culturally-informed student parent supports.
“This collaboration with Ascend at the Aspen Institute will allow LBCC to expand our support for our student parents through their educational journey,” said LBCC Board of Trustees President Herlinda Chico. “Together with our partnering institutions, we are forging a path toward enhanced opportunities for our students and their families, reflecting our dedication to fostering a more inclusive and thriving community.”
Nationally, one in five college students – close to 4 million – is a parent. Almost half of all U.S. student parents attend community college, and 70 percent of these parents are mothers – making institutions like LBCC uniquely positioned to increase student parent outcomes, especially for single mothers.
“As someone who understands the challenges of being a single parent while pursuing higher education, I deeply appreciate the significance of initiatives that support those student parents facing similar obstacles,” said LBCC Superintendent-President Dr. Mike Muñoz. “Approximately one-quarter of our student body is responsible for dependents, and within that group, a quarter are single parents. The funding from Ascend at the Aspen Institute’s Postsecondary Leadership Circle Activation Fund is a crucial step in ensuring that we can provide the necessary resources, guidance, and support to our student parents.”
Investing in student parent, and single mother, postsecondary success immediately benefits families, communities, and the economy. Student parents, especially single mothers, are especially likely to benefit from the earning gains experienced by college graduates: parents who complete college degrees double their lifetime income. That is why Ascend, with support from ECMC Foundation, created the Postsecondary Leadership Circle Activation Fund.
LBCC will receive $75,000 to execute activities to support the program and will also receive regular expert technical assistance from Ascend which will provide opportunities to learn from a community of practitioners that will support their work.
“Building pathways for every family to flourish across generations is central to Ascend’s mission, and we know that when student parents and single mothers succeed, their families and communities succeed as well,” said David Croom, associate director of Ascend’s Postsecondary Success for Student Parents (PSP) initiative. “Community colleges are key to increasing student persistence and attainment, and we are proud to partner with LBCC, a member of Ascend’s Postsecondary Leadership Circle and a leading institution innovating its practices to ensure that student parents are primed for success.”
Since 2018, Ascend’s Postsecondary Success for Parents (PSP) initiative has been a key driver in building a student parent movement – an expansive, nationally-coordinated effort to advance the development of innovative solutions that provide greater postsecondary access, affordability, and success for parents. Ascend focuses on the more than four million student parents enrolled in postsecondary pathways – a group that should inform and strengthen higher education’s equity agenda. The Postsecondary Leadership Circle Activation Fund is central to this effort.
About Long Beach City College
Long Beach City College consists of two campuses with an enrollment of more than 25,000 students each semester. The education program’s primary purpose is to prepare students for transfer to baccalaureate-granting institutions, entry into work or career development, and to support businesses in economic development. Long Beach City College serves the cities of Long Beach, Lakewood, Signal Hill and Avalon. Long Beach City College 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 on Long Beach City College.
About Ascend at the Aspen Institute
Ascend at the Aspen Institute is a catalyst and convener for diverse leaders working across systems and sectors to build intergenerational family prosperity and well-being by intentionally focusing on children and the adults in their lives together. We believe in the power of co-creation. We are a community of leaders — well-connected, well-prepared, and well-positioned — building political will that transforms hearts, minds, policies, and practices.
The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Founded in 1949, the Institute drives change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most important challenges facing the United States and the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners. For more information, visit www.aspeninstitute.org.
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