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Cabrillo Community College, CA

Grant Type:  Individual Development Grant


Cabrillo College is a public, open-door community college and Hispanic-Serving Institution located in Aptos, California (population - 251,747).  Cabrillo College offers general education courses for transfer to four-year institutions and certificates and degrees for Career Technical Education (CTE) programs in occupational fields of study, as well as Basic Skills classes to prepare students for college-level courses.  

Cabrillo College serves approximately 24,000 students annually at the main campus in Aptos and two outlying centers in Watsonville and Scots Valley.  Cabrillo College draws students from Santa Cruz County and parts of Northern Monterey and San Benito Counties Over a quarter (28 percent) of the population in Santa Cruz County is Hispanic, while in Watsonville, the population is majority Hispanic (79 percent).  The mission of Cabrillo College is to “enhance the intellectual, cultural, and economic vitality of our diverse community by assisting all students in their quest for lifelong learning and success in an ever-changing world.”  

The goal of the project is to strengthen the college by developing high engagement practices to successfully transition at-risk Basic Skills/ESL students to college and to completion.  

Over the life of the grant, there will be several key project activities:  


First Year Experience Learning Communities [+Supplemental Instruction]:  Develop (1) FYE communities of learning for greater student engagement and networking with peers and (2) course-specific Supplemental Instruction for Basic Skills/ESL students;


Redesign Basic Skills/ESL courses:  Develop linked/content-based Basic Skills-Math/ESL to make learning more meaningful for students (on four different education/career tracks);


Summer Bridge to Success Program for Transitioning Cohorts:  Develop (1) a summer four-week curriculum to include math, writing, self-efficacy, information literacy, study skills; (2) “feeder & receiver” system with high schools and “home” departments (Allied Health, Early Childhood Education, Teacher Education; General Transfer); and, (4) logistical processes (facilities, assessment & orientation, registration) with the goal of transitioning the cohorts into FYE Learning Communities the following fall;


SMART Classrooms and Instructional Resources for Basic Skills and ESL Instruction:  Provide faculty with technology-enhanced tools (smart lectern and electronic projection) and with a computer-aided learning lab environment to more effectively engage Basic Skills and ESL students in learning and to address different learning styles; and


A Faculty Inquiry System (Timely Access to Data) at the Program Level:  Provide faculty with the tools to (1) evaluate effectiveness of curriculum and teaching methods for continuous improvement of teaching and learning and (2) identify what works for specific subsets of students at the Basic Skills/ESL program level to promote student success and persistence.  

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