As Graduation Initiative 2025 enters its fourth year, the CSU expects to invest $105 million of the 2020-21 operating budget request to meet the ambitious goals adopted by each campus. Launched in 2016, this initiative aims to increase graduation rates for first-time and transfer students and eliminate equity gaps for historically-underserved students of color and Pell Grant recipients. Reducing time to degree means that graduates enter the workforce or graduate school sooner, positively impacting their future and producing additional graduates to power California.
Systemwide, the four-year graduation rates for first-time students improved by two percentage points compared to last year and by six percentage points over the last three years. Since 2015, nearly all campuses have increased their four-year graduation rate:
These efforts ensure that all students have the opportunity to earn a degree, empowering current and future generations of Californians. More information about specific systemwide and campus priorities can be found at
Closing equity gaps in higher education is the challenge of our time. CSU campuses are rising to that challenge, continuing university-wide efforts to eliminate equity gaps. While graduation rates continue to rise for students from all backgrounds, the persistence of the equity gaps underscores the need for an explicit focus at every level of the university.
Continuous state funding for Graduation Initiative 2025 is critical to maintain momentum. Campuses will continue to use these funds to offer more courses, hire additional tenure-track faculty and to advance innovative student success practices, with a focus on these six areas: