Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Julia Brownley announced that the U.S. Department of Education has awarded over $3.2 million in grants to local colleges and universities to support activities and programs to increase the number of Latino and low-income students in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) degree programs at Hispanic-Serving Institutions in Ventura County.

The three institutions receiving these grants are the Ventura County Community College District ($1,199,230), California State University, Channel Islands ($1,199,297), and California Lutheran University ($855,132).

“This funding will help institutions of higher education here in Ventura County develop and carry out programs that support Latino and low-income students pursuing STEM careers.  We must prepare our students and equip them with the skills necessary to secure the jobs of the future,” said Congresswoman Julia Brownley.

“We are proud to be one of the few private independent universities to receive these grants to serve our growing Latino population on campus,” said Cal Lutheran President Chris Kimball. “We’ve experienced a 77 percent increase in science majors over the past five years, and this grant will enable us to substantially increase services and support for these students.”

“Oxnard College is one of the leading HSI colleges in the United States. Our Science, Technology, Education and Mathematics (STEM) programs and courses offer local access to the most affordable quality courses and programs anywhere,” said Dr. Bernard Luskin, Chancellor of the Ventura County Community College District.

“This is an extraordinary honor for the University and a direct reflection of our campus’ commitment to expanding STEM opportunities for students in our community.  I would like to highlight particular appreciation for Dr. Amanda Quintero and her continued exceptional efforts in leading our campus in these transformative initiatives,” said Dr. Erika D. Beck, President of CSU Channel Islands.

The funding comes from the Department of Education’s Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) STEM Program, which provides funding to institutions to expand their capacity and carry out STEM initiatives that serve Latino and low-income students.

For more information about the HSI STEM Program, visit: www2.ed.gov/programs/hsistem/index.html

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