More Community Colleges Embrace Fund-Raising, Reconnect With Alumni

Friday, October 19, 2012

Many colleges seek donations for new construction or scholarships. Pasadena City College, however, has an additional goal that was unthinkable before California's budget crisis forced community colleges to slash course offerings.

The school is seeking donations from alumni and others to restore some of the 570 classes it planned to cut this academic year. The campaign, launched in April, has received about $89,400 in donations, and the school is also devoting $106,000 from savings resulting from some cost cuts, officials said.

The result: 35 classes are being revived in such high-demand fields as biology, political science and psychology.

Beyond the effect on that 30,000-student campus, the effort highlights how community colleges around the state and nation are increasingly courting donors and reconnecting with their alumni — tasks often neglected when state funds were more plentiful.

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