Having a place to work off the months of constant cramming sessions and the alarming amounts of ingested caffeine is essential. As students, we’re constantly told to rest up and be ready for what comes next, both inside and outside of the classroom.
Not every student has the luxury of living close to Las Positas, and according to the Las Positas College Student Characteristics Final Census of Fall 2021, only 25% of students live in Livermore, while 75% commute from other cities. For some, living far from campus and traveling daily to class has proved to be inconvenient and stressful, impacting the quality of their lives.
In an article published by The Independent, a weekly Livermore newspaper, Chabot-Las Positas Community College District officials stated that they’re preparing to institute on-campus student housing for LPC within the next couple of years.
On-campus housing would cut down time spent on the road and allow further focus on studies. To be eligible, prospective resident students must be taking a minimum of 12 units per semester.
These one-bedroom or two-bedroom units would be affordable, costing students $1,249 a month in rent. Compared to rental websites in Livermore, apartments range in price from $2,445 to $3,160, nearly double the price of LPC’s charge.
The funding will be derived from Senate Bill 169, the Higher Education Student Housing Grant Program. The bill is a three-year $2 billion plan passed by the California state legislature and signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom in 2021.
The grant program appropriated $500 million for student housing in 2021-22, and another $750 million each in 2022-23 and 2023-24. Half of the money was made available for community colleges — just 12 of 116 in the state have on-campus housing — along with grants to conduct studies and create plans for what they would need. According to The Independent, CLPCCD received $510,000 to conduct a study on the needs of students who would need on-campus housing.
According to the article, the president of LPC, Dr. Dyrell Foster stated “This has been a conversation that has occurred across the state within the California Community College system,” Foster said.
He continued, “Based on the data and feedback and input that we’ve received from community college students about their needs, affordable housing is one of the most critical factors that keeps rising to the top.” On behalf of college administrators, Foster said that they want students’ efforts to focus on their studies, not on finances to survive.
Although the college is exploring this option, not all students are in favor of the idea of on-campus housing. According to LPC student Camelia Allen, she thinks that the on-campus housing would not in particular benefit her. Allen states “As someone who only travels 18 miles to and from school every day I don’t particularly see it as a commute.” It wouldn’t be worth it for me.” Another student, Juan Patino says he would not be in favor of it as well. Patino states “It’s not that bad of a drive and personally if I were to commute the 20 miles I would choose to go to a college that was closer to or in my own city.
If all goes as planned, the grants for Chabot and Las Positas will arrive in 2024-25.
Asia Alpher is the arts and entertainment editor and social media editor for The Express. Follow her @asiaadanae.