A partnership that helps underprivileged Latino high school students get accepted into Cal Poly Pomona and other universities has earned a 2017 Promising Practices Award.
Pomona TRANSFERmation creates pathways for students in the Pomona Unified School District to attend two- and four-year colleges and universities. The program aims to create additional math classes, improve English proficiency, tell district parents about the importance of college, and give training for teachers, counselors and parents about admission requirements.
More than 1,200 students in the Pomona district have participated in the program since it was launched in 2015. To underscore Pomona TRANSFERmation’s outreach efforts, nearly 400 fifth-graders from Pomona schools visited the campus on Feb. 15-16 to participate in STEM-related activities, diversity sessions and get a glimpse of college life.
“We are excited and proud that our efforts to widen the K-12 pipeline to college have been recognized and honored,” says S. Terri Gomez, interim associate vice president for student success. “The end results for students in Pomona are increased access to higher education and greater economic mobility.”
The program, which is an outgrowth of a similar successful transition program called PolyTransfer, was launched to provide greater access to higher education in accordance with a White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics.
In announcing the award, Student Affairs Partnering with Academic Affairs (NASPA) committee members were “thoroughly impressed with the quality and potential” of TRANSFERmation and cited it a “model of expertise in this area.” NASPA is an international association of student affairs administrators. TRANSFERmation also was recognized by the White House in 2015.
“The TRANSFERmation program is an example of how Cal Poly Pomona continues to be a Hispanic Serving Institution actively engaged in a relationship with not only Pomona school district leaders, but its students, parents and families and the city,” says Lorena Marquez, coordinator of the PolyTransfer program housed at the College of Education & Integrative Studies.
The program is a collaborative effort involving Cal Poly Pomona’s divisions of Student Affairs and Academic Affairs and the Pomona Unified School District.
Affirmation of the university’s role in boosting social mobility came in a study by The Equality Opportunity Project. Cal Poly Pomona is ranked among the top universities in the nation for helping students climb the economic ladder, the study found. The university ranks No. 9 for helping students rise from the bottom fifth to the top fifth in income earnings for schools with an entering class of more than 300. Cal Poly Pomona also comes in at No. 12 for the chance a poor student has to become wealthy.
Cal Poly Pomona will receive its Promising Practices Award at the NASPA 2017 Annual Conference in San Antonio, Texas, on March 13. The university’s entry was titled “PolyTransfer Program & the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics.” NASPA seeks to be the principal source of leadership, scholarship, professional development and advocacy for student affairs administrators.