HSU Joins California’s Historic College Service Program

Governor Gavin Newsom and the leaders of California’s college and university systems joined Chief Service Officer Josh Fryday on Jan. 18 to launch the largest state-level investment in a college service program in California history: #CaliforniansForAll College Corps, which will help create debt-free college pathways for low-income students who commit to serve.

Humboldt State University is one of 45 colleges and universities selected as inaugural partners for the service-based college opportunity program. HSU will be awarded up to $3.3 million to support approximately 100 students each year for their community projects, and to support community partners that host students over the next two academic years, starting in Fall 2022, according to Kathy Thornhill, director of the Center for Community Based Learning (CCBL). The CCBL, which will run the program, promotes and supports academic coursework integrated with community-based learning through service learning and academic internship courses.

“California is a world leader in both higher education and service,” said Governor Newsom. “The #CaliforniansForAll College Corps advances these priorities by connecting Californians of different backgrounds with enriching service opportunities throughout the state while making college more affordable for our state’s future leaders. We hope the Corps will be replicated across the nation.”

#CaliforniansForAll College Corps will provide up to 6,500 college students over two academic years with service opportunities in critical areas such as climate action, K-12 education, and COVID-19 recovery. HSU students who complete 450 hours of service will receive $10,000 while gaining valuable experience serving in their communities. This program will unite young Californians of all backgrounds in service, and for the first time, specifically create state-funded opportunities for AB 540 eligible Dreamers to serve their communities.

The California State University (CSU), University of California, community college, and private university systems have been selected as program participants via a competitive grant application process. Humboldt State University is one of 16 CSU campuses chosen for the program. See the full list of schools.

“Today is a historic day in California. The Governor, alongside the leaders of the world’s top higher education systems, offered a monumental proposal to the next generation of Californians— if you step up to serve your community, we’ll help you pay for college,” said Fryday, who is the head of California Volunteers.

Nearly four million Californians owe a combined $147 billion in student debt with Black and Latino Californians facing the highest rates of default and delinquency. Governor Newsom has prioritized the #CaliforniansForAll College Corps as part of an effort to lead the nation in service-centered paths, relieving the debt burden on our recent graduates, while moving the state forward with service-focused careers.

“The California State University students who participated in the pilot program over the past year took their world-class CSU education and translated that into on-the-ground tutoring and mentoring in their communities,” said California State University Chancellor Joseph I. Castro. “This program is an invaluable opportunity for our students to not only give back to their communities, but also to help prepare the next generation of CSU students for success. We look forward to even greater opportunities for the students selected through the inaugural year of the Corps.”