Parent University

Academic Level
Community-Based Organization
Issue Area
Key Personnel
Program Focus
Parental/Family Engagement


Building Skills Partnership (BSP) and UCLA Center for Labor Research began their collaboration in 2007 to form a unique partnership of over 75 janitorial companies, more than 40 building owners, the janitor’s union (SEIU-USWW), and colleges, all coming together to break cycles of poverty through education. BSP has engaged parents as the advocate and facilitator towards college while simultaneously working with their children to instill a family centered college-going culture. The Parent University curriculum provides immigrant-working parents the tools needed to navigate a complex educational system, gives the skills to build parents’ advocacy voice, and provides direct support to their children in meeting educational goals. Since 2007, over 2,000 families have participated in the Parent University.

Program Description

Building Skills Partnership’s (BSP) Parent University mission is to break cycles of poverty through education. Each year, BSP sets a goal of increasing its workplace parent outreach efforts and increasing its capacity to expand the parent university program to include more families. Annually, BSP provides support to over 450 participants through a combination of one-on-one advising and group workshops.


  • 85% of students are on track to complete A-G admission requirements.
  • Students who enroll and are in the 2.0-2.6 GPA average, able to increase their GPA from 2.5 to 3.1 GPA as a result of the program.
  • 90% of students enrolled graduate high school.
  • 88% of participants apply to a post-secondary education.
  • 98% percent complete a FAFSA application.
  • 75% of participating students enroll in college.
  • 100% of parents report having a better understanding of the K-16 educational system after the Parent University program, and a 30-35% increase in participation in their children's school.