In collaboration with the Chancellor's Office and Young Invincibles, the Foundation created a mobile application targeted to low-income students and families. The initial goal of the partnership was to provide low-income Latino families, specifically in the Inland Empire, with access to information about California Community College education opportunities and awareness of careers that can increase earning potential and provide improved economic prosperity for the entire family.
The Inland Empire, specifically San Bernardino and Riverside counties, is an area of California where emerging industry job opportunities can help improve the economic standing of low-income Latino families. The project, in alignment with California Community Colleges Career and Technical Education programs, aimed to increase higher education enrollments of Latino students in coursework focused on three priority employment sectors: Advanced Manufacturing, Global Trade and Logistics, and Health—all areas projected to experience economic growth in the Inland Empire. In addition, the mobile app was tailored to reach students as early as middle school, providing information about academic programs, career options, and wage data, and real career stories from parents and alumni.
Through the first phase of the project targeted research, focus groups, online surveys, and work with community partners were used to inform the application development process. The second and third phases of the project focused on the application development cycle and beta testing.
The project launched with a two-year, $375,000 grant project by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, an independent, private foundation guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive. Current enhancements to prepare the application for statewide use are supported by the California Community Colleges Division of Workforce and Economic Development.