Ds Scholarship

Richmond Promise gets $300K grant to support CCC students

The Student Administration Building on the Contra Costa College campus at 2600 Mission Bell Dr. in San Pablo.

Written by Cathy Choto

Richmond Promise, the undergraduate scholarship and mentorship program creating a college graduation culture in Richmond, has received a $300,000 national grant over two years from the Kresge Foundation to support local Contra Costa College students.

The organization was selected as one of eleven national recipients of the scholarship award, the funding of which was made possible through a partnership with President Obama’s College Promise, part of the College Promise 2.0 (iCoPro2.0) initiative. Promise Richmond said the grant recipients were selected because of their focus on research, programming, and scaling the next generation of equitable and financially sustainable community college or “free college” programs.

The scholarship will expand existing undergraduate success training and campus support programs for Richmond Scholars of Promise attending Contra Costa College (CCC) – a partnership between its institution, and The College and Beyond 12, an Auckland-based undergraduate success organization. As part of the partnership, all scholars who attend CCC will have a personal success coach and access to specialized campus support, according to the organization. These measures are intended to support students in obtaining an associate’s degree or certificate on time or receiving transfer support to four-year institutions.


The Richmond Promise is a college scholarship and mentorship program established in 2014 with a $35 million 10-year investment from Chevron Richmond. Nearly 2,000 scholarship recipients are actively studying at the college, and hundreds more are preparing to follow in their footsteps. Learn more about the organization here.


Beyond 12’s efforts will look to pair scholars with specially trained coaches who provide the academic, social, and emotional support necessary for student success, says Richmond Promise. Researchers will also get access to virtual college training at Beyond 12, text message notifications and a mobile app.

Grant programming will also see Contra Costa College provide promising Richmond scholars with laptops and make it easier for scholars to understand and use specialist resources on-campus, according to the organization.

Promoting success in higher education within the local community means continuing to support community college students — an important subset of the organization’s scholarly groups that are largely defined as people of color and first-generation college students — said Christopher Whitmore, executive director at Richmond Promises. . Many of these scholars also come from low-income backgrounds.

Whitmore added that the Foundation’s investment in the Richmond Promise “reinforces” our promise “to create fair pathways to success that leave a lasting impact on community college students while they are in school and throughout the next stages of their lives.”

Jason Sifra, interim vice president of student services at Contra Costa College, said his work with Richmond Promise has been “transformative for our community and our students,” and that the new collaboration with the organization and Beyond 12 will provide “much-needed support to our promising scholars, providing training and support to increase equitable access.” and success.”


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