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ERIC Number: EJ897828
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 7
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1068-610X
Serving Special Populations: A Study of Former Foster Youth at California Community Colleges
Rassen, Elisa; Cooper, Darla M.; Mery, Pamela
Journal of Applied Research in the Community College, v17 n2 p24-34 Spr 2010
Community colleges nationwide are tasked with meeting the needs of a wide range of students, many of whom come to higher education with financial, educational, and social disadvantages. Developing strategies to effectively serve these students and promote their academic and personal success can be challenging and resource-intensive. The study presented here examines one such special population: former foster youth at community colleges in California. Though the findings relate specifically to former foster youth, the recommended strategies can be applied to a variety of struggling student populations. This study documents the experiences and needs of former foster youth enrolled in California Community Colleges, investigates the successes and challenges of community colleges responding to those needs, and makes recommendations to improve the educational success of former foster youth. To achieve these outcomes, the study employed a mixed-methods design that included a survey of community college staff throughout California, a statewide survey of former foster youth students, and interviews with the college staff who works directly with former foster youth at 12 selected colleges. The findings indicate that, although many California Community Colleges have made strides toward meeting the needs of students from special populations, additional support is needed to assist these students, including former foster youth, in both succeeding academically and achieving economic security and personal fulfillment. Specifically, there is a need for improved data collection and program evaluation, additional assistance with financial aid and housing, the creation of a broad network of support within each college, the utilization of a case management approach, and increased resource development to support programs that serve former foster youth. The full report on the research study that was the basis for this article can be found at www.rpgroup.org/css/FosterYouth.html. (Contains 4 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California