Stanislaus State is one of eight California public and private universities entering into a first-in-the-nation pilot initiative designed to help students pay for college through public service through a combination of federal and state funding.
California Volunteers unveiled the Civic Action Fellowship on Monday, Feb. 10, in partnership with Stan State, Dominican University, University of the Pacific, Cal Lutheran, Cal State LA, UC Berkeley, UC Merced and San Jose State University.
As part of the Civic Action Fellowship, current students will sign up as AmeriCorps Fellows and commit to community service tailored toward their curriculum. The eight universities will welcome nearly 250 students into the initial cohort in fall 2020, with 47 of those spots earmarked for Stan State students to promote college and career readiness. Students statewide will be able to earn up to $10,000 each for their participation.
Stanislaus State President Ellen Junn, who attended the program’s kickoff press conference in Sacramento, said the ability to pay students for public service is fitting with the University’s ongoing commitment to public service.
“During the 2018-19 academic year, more than 3,300, or about 40 percent, of our undergraduates were enrolled in one or more of our 193 course sections that included service learning components," Junn said. "These students logged nearly 70,000 hours of public service, most of it in and around our community.”
Approximately $3.2 million in state and federal funds will support this initiative with an additional $677,000 in scholarship funds to be awarded directly to students upon completion of their fellowship. The program is part of Governor Gavin Newsom’s vision of reaching 10,000 people in the state formally committed to public service.
“The ability to compensate students financially for their civic engagement will enable our University to increase our hands-on contribution of time and effort in our community,” Junn said. “I can think of no greater way to enhance the lives and experiences of our students at Stan State.”