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csu_logoThis February the California State University system will again partner with African American churches across California for CSU Super Sunday in an effort to improve educational outcomes for historically underserved populations. Now in its tenth year, CSU Super Sunday will feature leaders from all 23 CSU campuses sharing the opportunities available through a college degree and encouraging and inspiring students to pursue higher education.

“The power and the purpose of our university is to give every person access to the endless possibilities that higher education offers and to help make college a reality,” said CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White. “By collaborating with our church partners during CSU Super Sunday, we are able to start the conversation about college early, empower children to aim high and prepare every student to succeed in college.”

CSU Super Sunday, the first program of its kind in the nation, launched in 2006 with 21 church partners and has flourished into an annual event where CSU ambassadors visit more than 100 churches to speak about the tools needed to successfully enter and graduate from college. Through the dedicated efforts of the university and community, more than 600,000 churchgoers have received information on a variety of topics including preparing for college, applying to a CSU campus and obtaining financial aid.

Chinonyerem Kamalu, a churchgoer at St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church in Sacramento, enrolled in college after hearing Sacramento State President Alexander Gonzalez speak about the value of a higher education during CSU Super Sunday. She graduated in May 2014, receiving the campus’ top honor – the President’s Award—in recognition of her academic excellence and commitment to service.

“My life has changed so much since seeing President Gonzalez first speak that day at the church,” said Kamalu in a CSU Voices and Views blog. “Super Sunday gave me that extra push I needed to obtain that degree that has since taken me to great heights.”

After the service, CSU representatives are available to answer questions about how to enroll, afford and graduate from college. Youth and their families can also obtain copies of the CSU’s award-winning How to Get to College poster, receive information about how to apply to the CSU through CSUMentor and learn about streamlined transfer programs such as the Associate Degree for Transfer.

Chancellor White will speak from the pulpit on February 15 during the 10:00 a.m. service at Crenshaw Christian Center in Los Angeles. In addition to White, CSU presidents, trustees, administrators, students and alumni will speak about the value of higher education during services on February 8, 15 and 22.

CSU Super Sunday is one of many events coordinated by CSU’s African American Initiative to increase the preparation and retention of African American students, especially males, throughout the university.  The Initiative, which is a partnership between the CSU and leaders in the African American community, provides support through additional outreach and preparation events such as the Super Saturday College Fair and the Summer Algebra Institute.

To view the list of participating churches and to learn more information about CSU Super Sunday, visit the CSU Super Sunday website. Information about the CSU African American Initiative and other initiatives and programs that address college access for underserved communities can be found on the CSU External Relations website.

About the California State University

The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, more than 450,000 students and 45,000 faculty and staff. Created in 1961, the CSU awards more than 100,000 exceptional degrees annually and this spring will be celebrating the milestone of reaching 3 million alumni.

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