Expanding College & Career Success

Event - August 2019

Expanding College & Career Success

On August 1st, the Center for an Urban Future held a policy forum with California Community Colleges Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley and CUNY Chancellor Félix Matos Rodriguez that examined recent community college reforms and their role in the economy.

Tags: higher education low income community colleges economic opportunity

"Expanding College & Career Success"
A Center for an Urban Future Policy Symposium

August 1, 2019
8:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

@ General Assembly HQ
902 Broadway, 4th Floor

This forum began with a “fireside chat” with Chancellor Oakley, who is well known throughout the nation for implementing innovative reforms to boost student success in college and the workforce. Under his leadership, California is restructuring the way community colleges are funded to reward community colleges that improve outcomes for low-income students; phasing out high-stakes placement exams and developing for-credit alternatives to remedial classes; expanding access to structured academic and career pathways; and establishing an online community college to provide education and workforce training for adults who can’t or are unlikely to take classes at fixed times at a brick-and-mortar campus.

Chancellor Oakley was then joined by Chancellor Matos Rodríguez, who assumed the role of CUNY Chancellor on May 1, 2019 after successfully leading Hostos Community College and Queens College. The conversation with the two chancellors examined what New York should take away from the reforms put forward in California and explored a variety of important topics, including the role of community colleges in preparing people from low-income backgrounds for today’s changing economy; how to help overcome the growing financial barriers facing community college students; what state and city policymakers can do to help community colleges succeed; and how community colleges can more effectively partner with employers, community-based organizations, and philanthropy.

This symposium included a conversation and Q&A with:

  • Eloy Ortiz Oakley, Chancellor, California Community Colleges
  • Jonathan Bowles (moderator), Executive Director, Center for an Urban Future

And a panel discussion, featuring:

  • Eloy Ortiz Oakley, Chancellor, California Community Colleges
  • Félix Matos Rodríguez, Chancellor, City University of New York

This symposium is made possible through generous support from The Clark Foundation. 

Photo credit: Tai's Captures /Unsplash