Asian American and Pacific Islander Student Success

Asian American and Pacific Islander student success

Asian American and Pacific Islander students can succeed at California Community Colleges

Asian American and Pacific Islander students can face challenges like racial discrimination, financial insecurity, and lack of representation on the path to higher education. That’s why California community colleges are working hard to increase access for students from all backgrounds including our AAPI students.

Financial Aid

Money shouldn't get in the way of going to college and reaching your goals. Thankfully, financial aid is available to help cover college costs like tuition, textbooks, supplies—and sometimes even rent. To get started, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADAA) to apply for financial aid year-round. No matter your financial situation, it's always free to apply and it opens the door to most types of financial aid.

There are many financial aid options available, including grants and work study, as well as scholarships specifically for AAPI students. Use our locator tool to get contact information for your local college financial aid office to learn more. Here are just a few financial aid options:

Korean American Scholarship Foundation Scholarships
Korean American students and students from Korea are eligible to apply for this scholarship. Descendants of American veterans who served during the Korean War can also apply.

Asian American Architects/Engineers Association Scholarship
Applicants must be members of the Asian American Architects/Engineers Association attending school full time in the U.S. and majoring in a field related to architecture or engineering.

APIA Scholarship Program
Asian and Pacific Islander students are eligible to apply. Special consideration is given to those who live at or below the poverty level, are first-generation college students, and demonstrate leadership and engage in community service.

Korean Ancestry Grant
Applicants must be of Asian ancestry with at least one Asian grandparent. Preference is given to applicants with Korean ancestry. Candidates must have a minimum GPA of 3.5.

Kao Kalia Yang Scholarship Program
This scholarship offers $5,000 to students of Hmong descent. Students must be seniors in a U.S. high school and have a 2.0 GPA or higher. All majors may apply. The deadline is set for April each year.

The Taiwanese American Scholarship Fund
This scholarship offers $5,000 to high school seniors and first-year college students. Applicants must hold U.S. citizenship and be a direct blood descendant of a Taiwanese citizen. They must also live at or below the poverty level and hold a 3.0 GPA or higher. The application is due every year in April.

U.S. Pan Asian Chamber of Commerce
This scholarship goes to Asian-American high school seniors who demonstrate academic achievement, leadership, community service and financial need. Applicants must be of Asian or Pacific Island heritage and have a GPA of at least 3.3. The award amount varies.

Associate Degree for Transfer

Transferring to a four-year institution is easier than ever, thanks to California Community Colleges and our partnering institutions. Our transfer program guarantees saved spots at partner four-year universities within the CSU system, fully online and out-of-state universities and independent colleges and universities in California.

Career Education

California Community Colleges offers more than 200 hands-on career training programs through Career Education to help you get your start. Whether you’re interested in a trade like welding or want to explore your entrepreneurial skills, there’s a program for you.

On-Campus Organizations

Asian Culture, Anime, Dance and more. California Community Colleges offers a wide variety of clubs and organizations that support AAPI student interests. Every college club offering is different though, so be sure to check with your local campus for the full list of AAPI student organizations.

•Pacific Islander and Southeast Asian club
•Asian Appreciation Association
•Japanese Culture club
•Korean Culture club
•Chinese Student Union
•Vietnamese Student Association

Tutoring Services:
It’s okay to get help if you need it. All California community colleges offer free tutoring services to AAPI students, both online and in-person. Tutors are friendly and supportive fellow students who want you to succeed. Whether it’s writing, math, English language skills, or science, there’s a tutor who can help. Check with your local campus for tutors and skills workshops.

Food and Housing

Food or housing insecurity should never keep you from a college education. Eleven California community college campuses offer student housing to our AAPI students, and free money is available for groceries through the CalFresh program.

On-Campus Housing
Some California community colleges offer on-campus housing options. Take the next step and see if on-campus housing is available near you.

Free Money for Groceries
The CalFresh program helps students buy food and eat healthier with extra cash for groceries. CalFresh benefits are not income and don’t impact taxes or financial aid. Many AAPI California community college students are eligible for CalFresh. Find out if you qualify today.

Notable Asian American Pacific Islander Alumni

Join a Distinguished List
A California Community Colleges education can open you up to extraordinary things, just as it did for some of our most notable Asian American Pacific Islander alumni.

Tani Catil-Sakauye
California Chief Justice - Sacramento City College

Amy Tan
Novelist - San Jose City College

Make your mark. Enroll today.