A statement from Dr. Steven R. Gonzales, Interim Chancellor of the Maricopa County Community College District regarding the passage of SB1453 allowing community colleges to offer baccalaureate degrees:
“The overwhelming support and passage of SB1453 today is a historical moment for Arizona’s higher education system. With this bill, Arizona will join 23 other states across the nation that allow community colleges to offer baccalaureate degrees under limited prescribed circumstances. Our Governing Board, College Presidents, faculty, and students applaud enhancing access and affordability to higher education. SB1453 will provide a better pathway for future college students in our state and region.
Thank you to the bill sponsors, Representative Becky Nutt and Senator Paul Boyer, and the members of the legislature who supported this bill and kept students top of mind. Additionally, I would like to thank the many other individuals and organizations for their ongoing advocacy over the past few months to ensure the passage of this critical bill. We will be communicating with the Governor’s Office and look forward to Governor Ducey’s signature on SB1453 in the coming days and his continued support of Arizona’s community colleges.
As Interim Chancellor of the Maricopa Community Colleges since last January, the passage of SB1453 has been a highlight of my tenure as our District’s leader. I look forward to strategically implementing these bachelor’s degree programs in the highest need workforce areas, such as healthcare, information technology, police and fire sciences, and teaching.”