West Hills College Lemoore has been selected to receive the Excellence in Placement award at the second annual award ceremony hosted by the Campaign for College Opportunity. The college is being recognized for its outstanding efforts in implementing AB 705, a landmark placement policy championed by Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin and signed into law in 2017. West Hills College Lemoore has successfully supported 100% of their total student population and 100% of Latinx and Black students to enroll directly into transfer-level English coursework.
West Hills College Lemoore's equitable placement practices have significantly increased access to transfer-level coursework, maximized student success, and closed racial/ethnic equity gaps.
"We firmly believe that every student deserves the opportunity to succeed, and we are committed to providing the resources and support necessary to make that happen," said James Preston, West Hills College Lemoore President. "This award is a testament to the hard work of our faculty and staff and the dedication of our students to achieving their college dreams. We are proud to lead the way in creating a stronger, more prosperous California through higher education."
Before AB 705, many incoming community college students were placed into remedial math and English courses, ultimately discouraging and derailing them on their college journeys. This policy has led to a decline in the likelihood of students earning a degree when starting college in remedial courses. However, West Hills College Lemoore has taken a bold step in ensuring equitable access to higher education for all its students, regardless of their background or prior educational experiences.
Michele Siqueiros, president of the Campaign for College Opportunity, commented, "These colleges are leading the way in providing equitable access to higher education and ensuring that we break down barriers to student success. By providing students with the support and resources they need, we are making it clear that their college dreams are a priority and helping build a stronger, more prosperous California. After all, California succeeds when students complete college and earn a degree, certificate, or transfer to a university because of a stronger and smoother pathway."
West Hills College Lemoore will be honored at the annual award installation ceremony, Excellence in Placement: Honoring Community Colleges Excelling in Equitable Course Placement for Students, on Wednesday, May 31, 2023.