UC Berkeley would have more California students with new state budget

UC Berkeley and two of its popular University of California sister campuses would allow more state residents, and the entire UC system would add 6,230 more newcomers for 2022, in a proposed budget bill that lawmakers are due to vote on Monday evening.

Berkeley, UCLA, and UC San Diego would provide places for Californians at the expense of overseas and foreign students. MP Phil Ting, D-San Francisco, named the best college budget in decades.

“This is a huge investment for future generations where we have really focused on inequality and access,” he said on Sunday. “We wanted to make sure that more California children had access to UC and CSU (California State University).”

The higher education component of the $ 262.6 billion state budget would significantly expand Cal Grants and middle-class scholarships for college students, and also launch a five-year plan to raise the enrollment of non-residents in Berkeley, San Diego, and UCLA to 18% to reduce.

The proposed bill will provide enough funding to offset the loss of tuition fees for non-residents – according to official figures, $ 1.3 billion annually in extra-state tuition fees.

In recent years, as California college budgets have been cut, state universities have offset this by admitting a higher percentage of overseas students who tend to pay more for their education than California residents. But this trend has been controversial as some leaders have argued that tax dollars should not be spent subsidizing the education of students who do not live here.

The funding follows a record number of applications for autumn 2021. The UC system announced in January that it had received almost 250,000 Bachelor applications for around 46,000 study places.

The budget provides $ 81 million to increase student enrollment at the CSU’s 23 campuses by 9,434 students, while UC would receive $ 68 million in state funds to increase enrollment for California residents.

“This is a unique advancement in student aid,” said Senator John Laird, D-Santa Cruz, chairman of the Senate Education Budget Subcommittee.

Laird recalled Sunday serving as Senate budget chairman from 2004 to 2008 when lawmakers “just triaged the higher ED.”

Some lawmakers wanted to reduce non-residential enrollment in Berkeley, San Diego, and UCLA from the current 22.1% to 23.5% to 10%.

They agreed on an 18% reduction over five years, which Laird described as “an elegant compromise”.

The move would increase Californians enrollment by 4,500 students over the five years.

The overall package will affect 15,000 California families each year, said Ting, the congregation’s budget chairman.

“That’s 15,000 children who can go to UC and CSU,” he said. “That means our best and brightest will stay in California rather than possibly pursuing educational opportunities elsewhere.”

A UC Berkeley spokesman referred questions about the state budget to system-wide officials.

While UC officials said they support increasing enrollment for California students, they oppose limiting non-residents to 10%.

“We understand and support the legislature’s goal of providing more opportunity for Californians at UC, although we believe that trying to do this by reducing non-resident students may lead to unexpected results,” said one unassigned explanation of the UC system.

Kevin McCarty, D-Sacramento, who chairs the congregation’s subcommittee on education funding, said the unintended consequences UC officials referenced will affect the diversity of the student population.

“For 145 years, UC has focused on 95% California students,” said McCarty. “Suddenly they only see the light for diversity when there is money involved.”

Legislators took advantage of a booming economy in the post-COVID-19 pandemic climate to focus on long-smoldering issues like college admission for residents.

McCarty said residents had complained for the past decade about how their children were being pushed out of the UC and Cal State systems despite being academically qualified.

“It’s an insult, on top of being hurt, that the Place of Horror goes to a non-California,” he said.

Features of the bill include $ 154 million for Cal Grant, the main source of government-funded financial aid. The additional money will go to 133,000 community college students this fall who previously failed to qualify due to age restrictions and years since high school.

In addition, legislation provides for $ 515 million to extend the state’s middle-class scholarship to more middle- and low-income students.

The money would be available to Cal Grant beneficiaries to cover expenses such as housing and food. Laird and Ting said the idea is to work towards a debt-free college experience by lowering the cost of living, especially the cost of housing.

Laird said the bill will also restore core college funding to pre-pandemic levels with a 5% increase in the cost of living.

Legislators also agreed to set up a new $ 2 billion fund to expand UC and Cal State facilities as more students are admitted. The fund would also address the shortage of student housing for the four-year schools and community colleges.

“This is the most significant access and affordability budget in California history,” said McCarty. “It’s almost too good. This is the best we will ever do. “