Education leaders in California discusses about the ADT Program and racial equity

Victoria Meza, Reporter

BC hosted webinar called Committing to Transfer as a Key Racial Equity Strategy was held on Nov 19. The event started with the introduction of the host, Michele Siqueiros, and the Sec. of State Alex Medina. Siqueiros said that, for 16 years, they have been fighting to ensure that all students have equal opportunities regarding their color of skin and social status.
Sec. of State Alex Medina started talking about the controversial 2020 election. He explains that, since the events happened with the Black Lives Matter movement, the COVID-19, and much more there has been an increase of voters; mostly people from 18 to 21 years. Then he explains that they have been trying for students to get a higher education. According to Medina, some students have a difficult time when transferring to a 4-year university from college, and that transfer might cost them so much money and time. Their program tries to avoid the excessive cost for students to be able to transfer and to get their degree faster.
He said that they have 10 years running that program and more than 280,800 students have been beneficiating from it.
Elizabeth Moreno was introduced in the talk. She an associate student with a degree for transfer, and she was invited to explain why the ADT program is so important.
Moreno explained that she is a student that did not know how to manage college systems at first. It was difficult for her, but the program helped her a lot to get her degree in a good time manner and it helped her to save some money.
Siqueiros introduced the California Community Colleges along with their presidents, starting with Bakersfield College and President Sonya Christian and finishing with Pasadena City College with President Erika Endrijonas.
All the community college presidents ensured that there has been a big growth in the student population that wants to get a degree for transfer to a CSU. They explained that this program helped their students too much and that each one of them is a community that wants to ensure the future of their students, no matter what their race, ethnicity, or social status are.
After introducing the community college presidents, Siqueiros introduced some of the presidents of the California State Universities (CSU). The Doc. Luke Wood, vice president of the San Diego State, ensures that the ADT program has meant a big change and innovation within higher education.
Stephen Kodur and the assembly member Marc Berman joined the discussion. In one of the things they discussed the program, they mentioned that according to research, there is a lot of students of color and Latino students that do not get to complete their degree because they have to work or anything that could happen. Berman said that, with the ADT program, those students would have a chance to get their degree done.
After their discussion, Dc. David Johnson started to talk about his point of view of the ADT program.
“I feel that the ADT is compelling because it provides students with a rigorous academic preparation of more direct pathway to the CSU system and guaranteed junior status once they arrive on campus”, said Dc. Johnson.
He said that the project must guarantee students to not only meet the requirements for their degree but also to gain as many disciplines as possible and to prepare better for their future. They know they still have a lot of work to do although they have been awarded already. They need to ensure everyone’s future no matter their social status and race.
The celebration of the 16 years of the ADT program finished with Siqueiros saying that they are proud to be honored with a great team of leaders that are looking for racial equity and they care about it. She announced that there was going to be a conference about how to continue with the studies on Dec 9 at 5:00 p.m. and the guest are going to be the leaders of the California highest institution systems.