San Bernardino Valley College (SBVC) recently launched its San Bernardino Community College-funded Promise Program providing more students with access to a college education. Students receive two years of free college, free textbooks, $300 cash for school expenses and the use of a laptop to complete coursework or online classes.

“The program provides the opportunity for students in the Inland Empire to continue their education with resources available to them to accomplish their goals,” said SBVC Dean of Student Equity and Success Carmen Rodriguez. “Many of the students in the program are first generation college students, low income or come from single parent households and many do not have support in the home. We provide the motivation, support and, most of all, the opportunity for them to accomplish their goals.”

The program, which required students to apply by August 1, saw 1,316 students from across the Inland Empire apply to take advantage of the new program. The bulk of students, 127, 108 and 102, came from Rialto, Pacific and Cajon high schools, respectively. Large numbers of students from San Bernardino (94), Eisenhower (89), Colton (88), Citrus Valley (88), Indian Springs (83), Carter (82), San Gorgonio (79), Grand Terrace (60) and Bloomington (51) high schools also applied for the program. Funding for the Promise Program is provided through a $10 million endowment established by the district last fall.

To participate next year, students should complete a Promise Application, campus application and Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). No minimum grade point average or essay is required to apply and the program is available to students studying any major and for the completion of certificate, associate of arts or transfer coursework.