Skagit Valley College (SVC) was founded in 1926 and continues to remain committed to providing quality education and support to all learners, regardless of racial or ethnic background or income level. The college serves those in Skagit, Island, and San Juan counties in northwest Washington state.
SVC recognizes that equity arises from student need – 30% of its students are first-generation college students and approximately 40% receive need-based financial aid. Although only 9% of SVC's 5,700 students are Hispanic, Skagit County's two largest high schools have Hispanic student populations totaling close to 50%. Another student need is college-level preparation. Of those students required to take assessment tests, 50% score below college-level English and 95% score below college-level math. Of all SVC students, 20% have not graduated from high school or completed their GED and 12% are enrolled in ESL or IBEST pathways. Based on these disparities, SVC plans to do more to provide equitable access and support for students.
As an Achieving the Dream Institution, Skagit Valley College will bolster its efforts to help students succeed in completing their degrees and programs. This being a high priority, SVC is particularly interested in serving those who lack high school credentials, do not possess English language or literacy skills, are first-generation college students, are underprepared, economically disadvantaged, or suffer disadvantages through discrimination against race, ethnicity, creed, sexual orientation, or disability.
Currently, SVC's Champions of Diversity (scholarships for low-income students), TRiO (student support services), and Basic Skills programs are examples of how SVC is striving to achieve its vision for disadvantaged and underprepared students. In order for the college to accomplish student equity across all racial, ethnic, and income groups, Achieving the Dream Coaches and Data Coaches will be a core resource to help guide decision-making and reforms by assisting in: