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Columbia College Sets New Record

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Columbia, CA – “Promise” students are making history at Columbia College.

The Promise Program serves recent high school graduates from Tuolumne, Calaveras, Mariposa, Amador, and parts of Stanislaus Counties. More than 230 local high school graduates have already signed up or are in the process of signing up to become full-time students to get free tuition for the fall semester.

“That’s a record for us, and it’s exciting!” said Jan Verhage, who chairs the Foundation’s Promise committee. “And there’s still time to enroll — we’re hoping the numbers go even higher as more recent high school graduates take action in these last couple of weeks before school.”

In March, the Columbia College Foundation, Promise students, private donors, and the college celebrated five years of the program that provides two full years of free tuition and fees for high school graduates who enroll full-time immediately following graduation, as earlier reported here. Students also must complete a financial aid application and work with a counselor. Funds can be used for Trade and Technical Education, Associate of Arts degrees, and transfer readiness to four-year colleges and universities. Former Sonora High School student turned Columbia College student and student ambassador, Gabe Broyer, was a new Promise student last fall and will help these students get connected.

“Promise gives students incentive to get organized, get connected to the campus, and learn what they’ll need to do over the next two years. I hope students take advantage of it, and I hope I can be a part of getting them excited and to feel fulfilled here at this campus.”

There is still time to enroll, and interested students can attend the Go Columbia Days for orientation on Wednesday (8/9) or Thursday (8/10) of next week. There they can also take care of final registration steps, meet fellow students, and enjoy campus tours and a free lunch. For further information, call 209-588-2194. The college will also host a New Student Welcome from 2–5 p.m. on Friday, August 25, before classes start on Monday, August 28. To learn more or register, call the college at 209-588-2194. For more information on the Promise Program, click here. More than 1,000 recent high school graduates have taken part in the program since its inception.

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