Public Affairs

Higher Education Heightens Inspiration at Super Sunday

March 3, 2011
By Elizabeth Chapin

Throughout February, CSU officials including Chancellor Charles Reed, 20 university presidents, trustees and provosts took to the pulpit at dozens of African American churches throughout the state. Advocating the value of higher education, the speakers were joined by teams of CSU staff and volunteers to provide information about what it takes to go to college, from what classes to take in high school to how to apply for financial aid.

One of the main themes throughout the Super Sunday services was the importance of investing in California’s youth. San José State President Don Kassing explained at Marantha Christian Center on Feb. 13 that SJSU and the CSU want young people to have the chance to thrive. A college education can give stability to struggling families and get the struggling economy back on its feet.

“Our offer is to create opportunities for young people to go to college and work their way out of the recession,” Kassing said.

On Feb. 27, Cal State Long Beach President F. King Alexander brought up a point that resonated with many in attendance at Holy Trinity AME church in Long Beach: The increased salary that comes with a college degree gives graduates the ability to provide for their families.

Several attending the service at Holy Trinity shared their dreams of watching their children and grandchildren graduate from college – because they did not have an opportunity a generation ago.

Parents and mentors were reminded that they play an important role to turn that dream into a reality.

“This is why we are here today asking grandparents, parents and mentors to push students to work harder in middle and high school,” Cal State Monterey Bay President Dianne Harrison told congregants at Greater Victory Temple in Seaside on Feb. 20. “Young people tend to achieve what’s expected of them. They need to know that we expect them to prepare for college.”

Following the services, teams of volunteers answered questions and provided materials including information about how to get to college, financial aid, Pell grants and scholarships.

For more information about CSU Super Sunday: