California Governor Gavin Newsom has launched a new program called “Californians For All College Corps” to help struggling students pay for college in exchange for community service.
Students from participating institutions can volunteer up to 450 hours per year in areas where the local government needs help, such as coronavirus relief and recovery, climate change, food insecurity, and educational disparities.
A complete year of service could earn them $10,000, which can be used for student loans and other college expenses. California also announced a $146 million investment in the initiative, potentially funding 6,500 eligible students for two academic years.
“$10,000, that’s a lot of money, that’s a big deal. 6,500 people having that opportunity and if this thing works we can go back to the legislature, take it to another level, hell we can take it to the rest of the county ’cause nobody else is doing this,” Newsom told ABC 7.
Making an Impact in the Community
According to the program’s official website, this is the first initiative of its kind in California, with a vision of employing more than 6,000 College Corps Fellows in the next two years to assist in statewide challenges.
It has three core goals: engage college students to participate in community service opportunities, offer them financial stability, and support community-based work to improve the state.
There are 45 colleges and universities involved in the program, including Fresno City College, Glendale Community College, University of California – Berkeley, California State University – Los Angeles, and Concordia University Irvine.