Extending the Promise of a College Education:
The Oxnard Promise


Oxnard College is working to increase college access and success for our community. Launching Fall 2017, the Oxnard College Promise will offer two semesters of free tuition to eligible students within the Oxnard Union High School District, as well as Santa Clara High School.

Higher education is transformative. Students who earn a degree or certificate from a California community college nearly double their earnings in three years. Yet the path to that end is difficult for many who shoulder significant family and financial responsibilities.

The Oxnard Promise

Oxnard College is working to increase college access and success for our community. Launching Fall 2017, the Oxnard College Promise will offer two semesters of free tuition to eligible students within the Oxnard Union High School District, as well as Santa Clara High School.

“We want to build a college-going culture in this area,” says Cynthia Azari, president of Oxnard College in an interview with Jean Cowden Moore of the Ventura County Star. “We want to encourage students to go to college, take a full load, and transfer, or get a degree or certificate.”

The Oxnard Promise will make this option a very real and appealing next step for Oxnard Union and Santa Clara high school seniors. The Promise includes

  • Two semesters tuition-free
  • Priority Registration
  • Tutors, advisors and counselors
  • Dedicated support programs
  • Expanded college orientation
  • Career & Transfer Track (UC + CSU)

To qualify, applicants must:

  • Be 20 years of age or under by June 30;
  • Graduate from the Oxnard Union High School District or Santa Clara High School this spring 2017

The Oxnard Promise application opens March 1, 2017. The priority deadline is May 12. That deadline may extend to June 30, if more spots are available. The program is expected to serve approximately 200 students.

Interested applicants must first apply to Oxnard College and file for financial aid under the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or the California Dream Act. They can then submit the Oxnard Promise application online at oxnardcollge.edu/promise

As is the case for all new students, Promise scholars will need to complete a college orientation and develop an educational plan with a counselor.

The Oxnard Promise is generously funded by the Oxnard College Foundation.

Says, Dr. Azari, “We hope this will help more of our local high school students transition to college and get the support they need to succeed – to graduate and move on to great careers and fulfilling life opportunities.”


Benefits for the City of Oxnard

The Oxnard Promise benefits the City of Oxnard, our region and California:

  • Addresses Local Needs
    Oxnard is the fastest growing city in Ventura County, and Oxnard schools have among the lowest college attendance rates in the county. The Oxnard Promise aims to address these educational disparities by improving college access and support.
  • Drives a Culture Shift
    The Oxnard Promise will create a culture of college expectation starting as early as pre-K.
  • Supports Potential
    The Oxnard Promise will help fulfill the academic potential of all youth in our service area. All Oxnard students should be able to have a path to achieve their dreams.
  • Produces Measurable Outcomes
    In partnership with our feeder high schools, the Oxnard Promise will support college readiness initiatives and improve the number and rate of college-bound high school seniors.
  • Economic Stimulus
    The Oxnard Promise will raise the educational attainment rates of the entire region, and positively impact the economy by addressing the workforce readiness gap that exists in California.

With the Oxnard Promise, Oxnard College will join about 30 other California community colleges who have launched Promise initiatives. Several others around the country have also followed this path. Please see our national advocate, Headsup America, for more information on the push for free community college.

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