UC Admissions Increase Focus on Transfer Students

The University of California and California Community Colleges (CCC) will jointly devote $2.6 million to resources and programs designed to increase transfer student access to UCs over the next three years, the CCC and UC announced last Monday.

The $2.6 million will fund outreach, especially to “underserved” California community college students, establish summer bridge programs for 1,500 students at three UC campuses and support school counselors through training designed to ease students’ transitions from community colleges to UC campuses.

Additionally, more transfer pathways — approved sequences of classes formulated to prepare community college students for specific UC majors — are in development. This month, eleven majors — including humanities majors such as English and film and media studies — were added to the transfer pathway program in addition to the existing ten majors, the majority of which were STEM majors such as biochemistry, molecular biology and physics.

The proposed transfer student access program “Focuses on students who might otherwise not have access to a UC education, including those from low-income backgrounds, foster homes and underrepresented racial and ethnic groups — in addition to veterans and active-duty members of the military,” according to a UC press release.

The program was announced just months after UC’s pledge last November to admit 10,000 new Californian UC students over the next three years. Over 30 percent of UC’s current student population began their educations at a community college, and transfer student admission is expected to increase proportionally until 2018. About a third of the expected 10,000 newly-admitted students will be transfers from California community colleges, according to the UC’s statement.

In fall 2015, UC Irvine admitted 7,455 out of 17,057 transfer applicants — the third-highest rate of transfer applicants throughout the UC system. Approximately 94 percent of transfer students admitted to UCI last fall were from California community colleges, as the highest priority for admission goes to junior-level California residents and students in the CCC system, according to UC admissions.

This month, initial UC acceptance letters were distributed to incoming freshmen and transfer students. In addition to each campus’ projected enrollment, the UC system will enroll 5,000 more in-state students divided between all nine undergraduate campuses during the 2016-17 academic year. Another 2,500 in-state students will be admitted to the UC system over each of the following two years. A third of the total 10,000 California students admitted throughout the three-year plan will be transfer students.