LASC Receives Over $1.5 million in Congressional Bill

Posted on: 08/09/2022

Los Angeles Southwest College (LASC) will celebrate the awarding of $1.5 million to fund a Re-Entry Initiative for Success in Education (RISE) Center and a Family Resource Center on its campus on Wednesday, March 23. The funds will both provide services and resources to students from underserved populations to help them continue their education.

The funding was part of the recently passed omnibus appropriations bill, H.R. 2471, the “Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2022.” Procedural vehicles for these allocations are Community Project Funding, which provide for direct funding for specific projects in larger spending bills. LASC’s proposal was sponsored by Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA., 43rd District).

The proposed RISE Center aims to support student Anti-Recidivism and Gang Intervention efforts, primarily focused on supporting justice-impacted individuals. The proposed Family Resource Center looks to be transformational in support of retention and student success efforts for student-parents.

“Thank you, Congresswoman Waters, for decades of investing in our community. We appreciate you working with LACCD to bring much-needed federal dollars to the South Los Angeles community. Together, we will support and empower Los Angeles Southwest College students to achieve and succeed, said Trustee Nichelle Henderson.”

“These centers will integrate higher education and job preparation for underserved populations within our service area,” said LASC President Seher Awan, Ed. D. “We are especially excited that, in alignment with our mission of social justice, our college will be able to leverage existing partnerships with numerous community partners, including the County and City of Los Angeles, to combat the systemic inequities that exist within our service area.”

The RISE Center will offer students case management services, dedicated counseling and peer mentorship, academic support tailored to need, job readiness and soft skills, accelerated retraining and educational opportunities, and more.

Student-parents receiving services from the Family Resource Center will be offered student parent programs, parenting workshops, infant and toddler playgroups, free children’s clothing exchange, emergency aid and stipends, access to family events and more.

“The District is very appreciative of our Congressional representatives for the seven Community Project Funding allocations that we received, and especially Congresswoman Waters for championing the two Centers at LASC,” said LACCD Chancellor Francisco C. Rodriguez, Ph.D. “ These centers will provide services and resources to LASC students and a pathway to success that will advance their economic mobility by reducing barriers to higher education and jobs.”

Student populations engaging with both facilities will also be able to take advantage of existing, additional special programs available at LASC, including EOPS/CARE and CalWORKs.

The lone college in South Los Angeles, LASC’s service area encompasses Gardena, Hawthorne, Inglewood and Los Angeles as well as the unincorporated communities of Westmont and West Athens. The Family Resource Center funding is critical as LASC has more than 2,000 student parents each year, about twenty-five percent (25%) of its enrollment. The RISE Center will look to support students in an area that the Race Counts Projects says incarceration was its most disparate indicator measured.

“We want to thank Congressmember Maxine Waters for fighting for our District and helping us to secure this transformative funding for our neediest students,” said LACCD Board President Gabriel Buelna. “These two Centers will transform so many lives.”

RISE-FRC press release