Pasadena Community Foundation (PCF) recently announced the launch of PCF Scholars, a new grant program to provide financial assistance and social-emotional support to 32 local students over the next four years. PCF Scholars is a partnership among PCF, College Access Plan, and Pasadena City College’s (PCC) Pathways program to create a consistent through-line of support that helps Pasadena Unified School District (PUSD) students complete their studies at PCC.
PCF provides need-based, multi-year financial assistance to each student, while College Access Plan and Pathways offer counseling, guidance, and assistance. By reducing the number of hours students need to work at outside jobs, offsetting unexpected expenses, and covering the costs of books, computers, and fees, PCF hopes to give scholars the time and capacity to focus on their school work. Social-emotional support will ease the transition to college for the students, many of whom are the first in their families to attend college.
The first group of PCF Scholars – eight students representing all six of PUSD’s high schools – will start at PCC this fall. They are Ramon Cano Cristobal (CIS Academy), Alejandra Anaya Diaz (John Muir High School), Jaylin Jenkins (John Muir High School), Mahely Cedillo Lambaren (Blair High School), Kevin Morales (Marshall Fundamental), Mario Nicasio (Rose City High School), Hannah Tellez (Marshall Fundamental), and Abigail Vides (Pasadena High School). The program will add eight new students each year for the next four years and support all scholars for up to four years.
“Pasadena City College is a critical resource for students who want to attend college, but cannot start their education at a four-year school,” said Jennifer DeVoll, president and CEO of PCF. “However, we have found that far too many promising students become discouraged and drop out due to financial or social-emotional challenges. Our hope is that the PCF Scholars program provides the individualized resources that students need in order to persist to graduation or transfer to a four-year college or university.”