Santa Monica College (SMC) has announced priority enrollment at SMC for Santa Monica and Malibu residents and local graduates, effective the winter semester which commences Jan. 3, 2017. The program is the first phase of a Santa Monica College Promise program, with a planned launch date of fall 2017, to help students reduce the expenses related to their first year at SMC.
To enroll in credit classes and qualify for priority enrollment in winter 2017—for which enrollment begins in early December—students must have applied and completed pre-enrollment orientation, assessment and educational planning by Nov. 22, 2016. Current residents of Santa Monica and Malibu are eligible; F-1 visa students are not. In addition, graduating seniors and alumni of Santa Monica High School, Malibu High School,
Olympic High School, St. Monica Catholic High School, Crossroads School, New Roads School, Pacifica Christian High School, and Lighthouse Academy—regardless of home address—are also eligible.
“Santa Monica College has always been a tremendous asset to the Santa Monica and Malibu communities,” said SMC Superintendent/President
Dr. Kathryn E. Jeffery. “By giving local students and graduates priority enrollment, SMC will continue to build upon decades of commitment to provide our communities the highest quality in postsecondary education, reflecting the values of open access and educational equity that we are all so proud of.”
Dr. Sylvia Rousseau, co-interim superintendent of the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD), echoed the sentiment.
“This is a great opportunity for our current high school seniors to apply for priority enrollment at SMC starting in January 2017,” said Dr. Sylvia Rousseau, co-interim superintendent of the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD). “We are extremely fortunate to have such a wonderful partnership with SMC that will now include this new program, in addition to our thriving dual enrollment and concurrent enrollment programs. This is another step toward establishing Excellence through Equity.”
SMC and SMMUSD have a healthy Young Collegians program born out of a 2007 collaborative MoU, allowing an increasing number of SMMUSD students to get a head start on SMC classes and accrue up to 14 college units. Nine years ago, the program started with 15 students; in the last academic year, over 65 students participated. In early 2015, the SMC Board of Trustees also waived enrollment fees for high school students, and those who qualify now take classes at SMC for free.
"I am thrilled that we will now offer priority enrollment to our district residents and local high school graduates,” said Dr. Louise Jaffe, Chair of the SMC Board of Trustees, founder of the Santa Monica Lifelong Learning Community Project, and founding member of the Community for Excellent Public Schools, “Kudos to President Kathryn E. Jeffery for advancing this new initiative to increase both access and success for local students at SMC!"
Returning and continuing students must be in good academic standing and have fewer than 90 credit units at SMC. The State of California also requires certain populations—like veterans and foster youth—to be granted priority enrollment. The State does not permit priority enrollment for students currently enrolled in high school (enrollment for currently enrolled high school students for winter session begins in late Dec. 2016).