College Futures Monterey County

College Futures Monterey County

Everyone Wins When More Students Succeed

We believe that every young person should have the opportunity to pursue their educational, career, and life goals. College degrees are vital to a thriving economy and building healthy, safe, vibrant communities in Monterey County. However, too many of our young people with the ability and desire to succeed in college lack the support to do so.

By taking a fresh look at our scholarship approach, informed by best practices in other California communities, we can change this reality. Growing the number of students who earn college degrees makes a brighter future for us all.

College Futures Monterey County Brochure

College Futures – A New Initiative

College Futures Monterey County is a new initiative of the Community Foundation for Monterey County (CFMC) designed to help local low-income students earn a college degree. The program combines more than $600,000 in scholarships in 2017 and 2018 with college success services to address the financial, academic and personal barriers that prevent students from graduating college.

Receiving a scholarship was a big motivation for me. Any amount of money always helps and I am extremely grateful. – Esteban Barajas, Monterey Peninsula College Student

The Need

Today, though 75% of students aspire to attend college, only 33% of all high school graduates in Monterey County have completed the courses required to attend a California State University or University of California institution. In the lowest performing schools in our county, only 1 in 5 males has taken the necessary courses. In some schools, that number is as low as 1 in 20.

Meanwhile, college costs have risen faster than financial aid. Low-income families are faced with college expenses that require 50-70% of their income.

A New Approach

By combining strategic scholarship funds with effective support programs, we aim to increase the college completion rates in Monterey County. College Future Monterey County pairs college success services and public financial aid with needs-based scholarship dollars to ensure that students have the greatest opportunity to graduate college.

I was the first in my family to go straight to a four-year university. Getting help with applications and financial aid was crucial. – Francisca Rios, CSU Monterey Bay Student

  • Providing Scholarships to Students with Financial Need
    College Futures makes more scholarship dollars available for low-income, first generation students who have the ability and motivation to achieve in college, but lack the financial resources to do so. The program also expands college success services to more students in the Monterey County high schools with the greatest need.
  • Supporting Students as They Prepare for College
    We are partnering with California State University, Monterey Bay to expand Upward Bound and Educational Talent Search services in local high schools. These highly effective programs significantly increase rates of college entry and graduation.

College Futures Monterey County is a commitment to helping local students reach their full potential. – Dan Baldwin, CFMC President/CEO

How to Apply

Students interested in applying should contact the guidance counselor in their participating school. Eligible students can apply for College Futures Monterey County and other CFMC scholarships through a new online scholarship portal: Applications for the 2017/2018 academic year are due 3/31/17.

Help Change Lives

Individuals wanting to increase the reach of College Futures Monterey County can contribute by

  • establishing a named scholarship fund at the CFMC
  • making a one-time gift or annual investment
  • planning an estate gift through a will or trust.

Contributions Will be Matched

College Futures Foundation will match donations to the program so that the CFMC can increase scholarships and help students achieve their potential. Learn more about College Futures Monterey County and how you can join us in increasing the number of students in our county who earn a college degree. Call 831.375.9712 or visit