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Tuition at CSU and UC Is Growing—but So Is Aid

By Jacob Jackson

Planned tuition increases at the state's public universities will mean higher college costs for many. But both CSU and UC are taking steps to minimize the financial impact, especially for the lowest-income families.


Strengthening California’s Transfer Pathway

By Marisol Cuellar Mejia, Hans Johnson, Cesar Alesi Perez, Jacob Jackson

Increasing the number of California community college students who transfer to four-year institutions is critical for creating a more diverse pool of college graduates. Despite recent progress, transfer rates remain low and racial disparities persist. Several reforms are already underway, and higher education institutions must continue to work together so more students can reach their academic goals.

Policy Brief

Policy Brief: Strengthening California’s Transfer Pathway

By Marisol Cuellar Mejia, Hans Johnson, Cesar Alesi Perez, Jacob Jackson

By increasing the number of students who transfer to four-year institutions, California can preserve higher education’s critical role as a ladder of economic mobility and ensure that college graduates fully reflect the racial and ethnic diversity of the state’s youth.


Improving College Access and Success through Dual Enrollment

By Olga Rodriguez, Daniel Payares-Montoya, Iwunze Ugo, Niu Gao

At one time, mainly high-achieving high school students took college courses through dual enrollment; but access has widened under the College and Career Access Pathways (CCAP) program. While CCAP students are benefiting from the program—they enroll in community college at high rates and reach key milestones—CCAP has room to improve.

blog post

After a Three-Year Hiatus, Californians Will Resume Student Loan Payments Soon

By Jacob Jackson

The US Supreme Court recently ruled against the Biden administration’s student loan forgiveness plan, while a pandemic-era freeze on payments and interest accrual ends in the coming months. What does this mean for the nearly 4 million Californians with federal student loan debt?

Fact Sheet

Student Loan Debt in California

By Jacob Jackson, Darriya Starr

Student borrowing in California has declined markedly over the past decade. Borrowing rates vary across the state’s public and private institutions; undergraduates at public universities are least likely to borrow, while students who attend for-profit schools are more likely to struggle to pay off loans.

blog post

Improving Lives through Public Policy

By Tani Cantil-Sakauye

President and CEO Tani Cantil-Sakauye reflects on the role that PPIC’s independent, nonpartisan research plays in helping to improve Californians’ physical, educational, and economic well-being.


Is College Worth It?

By Marisol Cuellar Mejia, Cesar Alesi Perez, Vicki Hsieh, Hans Johnson

Rising college costs and a reluctance to take on debt lead many students and families to wonder if college will actually yield a brighter future with higher earnings and better jobs. In this explainer, we explore whether the benefits of a college degree outweigh the costs.

Policy Brief

Policy Brief: COVID-19 Emergency Funding and California’s Higher Education Systems

By Jacob Jackson, Kevin Cook, Darriya Starr, Chansonette Buck

Just before the pandemic hit, state funding for higher education was high and increasing, student outcomes were improving, and programs for students in need were robust. COVID-19 sent shocking changes through these educational institutions’ means and methods of operating.

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