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San Diego Lawmaker Wants State Community Colleges To Award 4-Year Degrees

Evening Edition

Above: California's community college system is considering a proposal to offer four-year degrees. And one San Diego lawmaker is getting ready to introduce legislation that would make it happen.

Aired 12/18/13 on KPBS Midday Edition.

Guests

State Sen. Marty Block, (D-San Diego)

Constance M. Carroll, Chancellor, San Diego Community College District

Beth Smith, President, Academic Senate for California Community Colleges Professor of Mathematics, Grossmont College

Transcript

Just this week, San Diego State University announced the number of applicants for next term is at an all-time high.

There has also been a record-breaking number of applications to University of California schools across the state.

As the demand for four-year degrees continues to surge, the state's community colleges want to get in on the act.

A final report being prepared by a state community colleges study group will likely recommend that many California junior colleges be allowed to award four-year degrees in vocational majors, such as nursing and information technology.

State Sen. Marty Block (D-San Diego) is planning to introduce legislation allowing such a change. Similar proposals in the past have failed, but Block says times have changed.

Funding for California Community Colleges has been cut by $1.5 billion since 2007-08. Proposition 30 funds have helped boost enrollment and classes this year.

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