UMOJA started as a pilot program in 2007 and was funded in fall 2009 through The Basic Skills Initiative. As documented in 2006 through 2010, African American students had the lowest levels of retention and success rates of all races combined. As a result, the UMOJA program was developed with the deliberate intention of providing African/African American students with additional academic support.
The goal of the Umoja Program is to assist African/African American students with the completion of a Certificate, AA Degree, or Transfer. The Umoja Program is open to all students attending Grossmont College, however the program focuses on the cultural experiences of African/African American students.
We are striving to expand the Umoja Program through continuous recruitment efforts which include outreach to High Schools, developing partnerships with other programs on campus including First Year Programs and Athletics, classroom visits, and participating in WOW Week.
Students who participate in our program demonstrated average course retention of 79% over seven semesters, compared to 73% for other similar ethnically diverse students. Umoja students persist at an average of 90% from fall to spring semesters, compared to 62% for similar ethnically diverse students.
Our students succeed at an average rate of 73%, compared to 51% for other similar ethnically diverse students. Students completing the Umoja program indicated that they understood the requirements for graduation and transfer, as well as factors impacting learning, at a 20% higher average rate then when they entered the program.
Since 2007 Umoja has served over 500 students. The program currently serves 35 African American and Hispanic Students, and has been growing 25% per semester since spring 2009.