In 2001, the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) created the Escalera Program: Taking Steps to Success to promote economic mobility for Latino youth by eliminating barriers to basic and advanced education and employment. Escalera targets youth who display high potential for success but, because of academic, financial, or familial reasons, may be at risk of not graduating.
The Citrus College STEM Summer Research Experience (SRE) program was established in 2012 with support from a federal grant aimed at increasing the number of Hispanic STEM majors. Prior to 2012, data showed that Hispanic students were not selecting STEM majors at rates proportional to their enrollment at the college, and those enrolled in STEM were not succeeding or transferring at rates consistent with their peers.
College Match focuses on high achieving high school students who are low-income and primarily Latino/a. This year, College Match provided comprehensive college access services to more than 700 low-income students in 23 high schools.
This is a two-year program that provides research training to first-generation, low-income and underrepresented minority undergraduates, to place them into respected PhD programs, and to ensure the future success of MARC graduates in those programs. To achieve this, students are provided with a solid curriculum, strong research experiences, career and academic advisement, and experience presenting their data at national meetings.
The Bridge Program was initiated in 1998 to address the educational and support needs of incoming, first-time freshmen who place into the lowest basic skills levels at Mt. SAC. The program supports basic skill students to successfully progress to college level courses. The majority of students are Latino (91%), first generation, and low income.
The Encuentros Leadership College Preparatory Academy was created in response to the growing Latino male achievement gap in higher education. The overall purpose of the Academy is to significantly close the college achievement gap for Latino males. In California, the best and brightest Latino males accepted into the UC system as freshmen experience the highest dropout rate, at over 80%.