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CSU Priorities 2017

Summary of CSU System Priorities for 2023-24

The California State University (CSU) consistently provides an outstanding return on federal investments in its students, institutions and research. With 23 campuses and approximately 477,000 students, the CSU is the nation’s largest public four-year university system, providing access and success for unprecedented numbers of underserved and low-income students. Every year, 132,000 new CSU graduates enter the workforce across all economic sectors.

The system’s top federal priorities for 2023-24 are:

  • Invest in student success by doubling the maximum Pell Grant and restoring annual cost-of-living increases to the program
  • Support and protect Dreamers, including by providing them with a clear pathway to citizenship

A full list of CSU system priorities for 2023-24 follows.

Improve College Access and Timely Completion through Aid to Students

The CSU remains one of the nation’s best bargains. Significant state and institutional grants provide vital support to our low-income students. Federal financial aid programs remain critical to these students, including nearly 226,000 who rely on need-based Pell Grants. More than 65,000 Pell recipients earn CSU bachelor’s degrees each year.

  • Enhance the Pell Grant program by doubling the maximum grant; restoring automatic cost-of-living increases to the maximum grant; reserving any surplus funds for future program needs or improvements; and simplifying the FAFSA process to ensure ease of accessibility for all students and families
  • Invest in the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) and Work-Study programs
  • Prioritize resources for institutions serving the greatest number of students with need
  • Support policies that minimize college debt burden and promote higher education philanthropy through scholarship, internship, faculty/student research, capital outlay, and similar support

Prepare Students for College Success

The CSU is continuously working to improve K-12 student readiness and measure the performance of CSU-trained teachers. The federal government is a vital partner.

  • Provide robust funding for effective pipeline programs like GEAR UP and TRIO, and expand pre-K investments
  • Maintain a strong federal partnership with universities to transform the preparation of America’s teachers and school leaders, especially for high-need schools

Foster Degree Completion for California’s Diverse Population

The CSU provides more than half of all undergraduate degrees granted to California’s Latinx/a/o, Black and African American and Indigenous Native American students and is a leader in transitioning veterans to the workforce. Federal capacity-building programs and targeted grants help bridge completion and equity gaps.

  • Support federal policies that assist California’s Dreamers – young people brought to the US as children – and provide them with long-term stability and opportunities
  • Maintain strong support for Hispanic- and Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions through administrative flexibility and increased investments in capacity-building programs at the Department of Education and other federal agencies
  • Support the needs of veterans on campus and smooth their transition to the civilian workforce
  • Promote policies that reduce recidivism by expanding access to a college education
  • Foster community college transition of students to CSU’s for successful degree completion, in accordance with Graduation Initiative 2025

Educate Students for Tomorrow’s Workforce

Every year, 132,000 new CSU graduates drive California’s and America’s economy in the information technology, life sciences, agriculture, business, hospitality, healthcare, education, public administration, entertainment and multimedia industries. Targeted federal programs help propel their success.

  • ​Support science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education, including through funding for the National Science Foundation (NSF)’s Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation, Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship, and Hispanic-Serving Institutions programs
  • Invest in USDA’s Hispanic-Serving Institutions Education Grants Program
  • Provide robust funding for the National Endowments for the Humanities and the Arts
  • Cultivate a welcoming environment for international students, scholars, and visitors through improved visa processes, employment-based opportunities, and permanent protections for Dreamers.
  • Support funding for co-curricular high impact practices, internships, fellowships, apprenticeships, and extension curriculum design and deployment, including in climate space

Solve Societal Problems through Applied Research

In laboratories, at field sites and through programs at the CSU, students, faculty and collaborating scientists advance California’s capacity to address key issues of significance to our state and nation. Federal investments are vital to continued progress.

  • Maximize opportunities for comprehensive universities to compete for federal resources, including in STEM programs and climate research
  • Maintain strong funding for NSF, National Institutes of Health, and national security research and training
  • Invest in Non-Land-Grant Colleges of Agriculture (NLGCA) program

Enhance Campus Health, Safety and Infrastructure

State-of-the-art facilities and innovative programs help make campuses vibrant and secure for all.

  • Promote Federal funding and policies that support students’ well-being and basic needs, including housing and food security and mental health
  • Fund programs that enhance campus safety and assist campuses with addressing sexual violence
  • Support investments in infrastructure and assets that provide campuses opportunities to partner with their communities, improve facilities, and promote job training and strategic economic growth, including in connection with federal maritime responsibilities​