Assemblyman Steve Fox, D-Palmdale, announced Thursday that Assembly Bill 736, a measure that could eventually pave the way for a new California State University Campus in the Santa Clarita Valley, received bipartisan approval in the state Assembly with a vote of 67-6.
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“It will direct the (California State University) Board of Trustees to conduct a feasibility study to get the study going, which is the first step to creating a college,” Fox said. “It could end up being in the Antelope Valley, it could be in the Santa Clarita Valley.”
The bill authorizes leaders of the California State University system to study the need for a four-year university in the region, he said.
“Access to higher education must be a priority in all parts of California,” Fox said. “In my district, high school graduates have fewer options to attend college than their peers in other parts of the state. This bill aims to allow our students to get a local education and create the jobs we need for tomorrow’s economy.”
Although CSU Bakersfield has a campus center in Lancaster co-located at Antelope Valley College, budget cuts have resulted in a reduction in classes and student enrollment.
Meanwhile, the Antelope Valley has a critical shortage of licensed health care workers, engineers and math and science teachers.
The California State University Antelope Valley bill requires the Chancellor of the CSU system to conduct a feasibility study to determine the necessity for an Antelope Valley campus.
The study will include elements such as enrollment projections, regional workforce needs, the potential for job creation in the region, and the effects of a new campus on other local educational institutions.
It will be funded by nonstate resources.
The bill now goes to the State Senate for consideration.
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Source: Santa Clarita News