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Anthony Ross, CSU-LA Vice President
A commanding figure both in stature and resolve, California State University - L.A. Vice President for Student Affairs Anthony Ross described the benefits of early college preparation and "How to Get to College" on Feb. 27 to parishioners at First African Methodist Episcopal (FAME) Church in Los Angeles during the sixth annual CSU Super Sunday. The event is part of the CSU's African American Initiative.
The first person to address the congregation after a brief introduction, Ross helped set a communicative tone of educational partnership between young people and adults as they shouted "Amen" from the pews after many of his recommendations and comments.
Ross was one of many CSU representatives from Southern California who helped cap off another very successful African American Heritage Month for the entire 23-campus CSU system, which sent speakers to more than 100 African American churches throughout February.
"The opportunity to speak to students, as well as their parents and guardians, about the necessity of early preparation and planning for college is what Super Sunday is all about," said Ross. "Providing them with a ‘road map' of the classes students need to take in middle and high school empowers both students and adults, and allows them to plan accordingly."
Ross continued, "This is a message that the African American community needs to hear, and there is no better place to reach large numbers of African American students and parents than at African American churches. The CSU is especially appreciative of the support of our church partners in this endeavor."
Also stepping up to the pulpit at three other churches in the region on behalf of CSU-LA were President James M. Rosser, Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology Dean Keith Moo-Young, and Arts and Letters Acting Dean Bryant K. Alexander.
After the service, parents and students talked to CSU representatives about the benefits of a college education, gathered financial aid information, learned about CSUMentor.edu, and grabbed a copy of How To Get To College - a practical, award-winning poster that illustrates how to prepare for college beginning in the sixth and seventh grades.
Super Sunday reaches more than 100,000 churchgoers and is part of CSU's outreach to educate students and families about what it takes to successfully enter college and obtain a degree.
The annual event is a partnership between CSU campuses and African American religious leaders with the goal of increasing college going rates among African American students. The initiative is led by CSU Chancellor Charles Reed and engages CSU Trustees, campus presidents, executives and staff.
"The message is being heard. The CSU has experienced a major increase in African American student applications, enrollment and success since Super Sunday began in 2006," said President Rosser. "But we need to do more, especially for our young men - our most threatened and challenged - whose enrollment numbers continue to remain low."