Peralta Community College District's Only Student-Run Publication
Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Laney College Baseball held a naming ceremony April 26 for its stadium, now called the Tom Pearse Diamond. The name change was approved by the Peralta Board of Trustees at its April 23 meeting. (Photo: Marcus Creel/PCCD)
Laney names baseball stadium, FabLab to relocate and more at 4/23 meeting for PCCD trustees
Eliot Faine, Staff Writer • May 15, 2024
Student Trustee Natasha Masand believes her voice has the power to impact the PCCD community.
Student Trustee Natasha Masand finds her voice
Isabelly Sabô Barbosa, Social Media Editor • March 19, 2024
The search for a permanent president of the College of Alameda is down to three candidates. William “Terry” Brown (left), Melanie Dixon (middle), and Rebecca “Becky” Opsata will respond to community questions at public forums on Thursday. (Photo courtesy: PCCD)
Finalists for CoA President unveiled
Community questions accepted until midnight tonight
Desmond Meagley, Staff Writer • May 13, 2024
College of Alameda jazz professor Glen Pearson demonstrates his musical talent on his classroom piano. Hes one of the newest members of the Count Basie Orchestra, a historic 18-piece jazz ensemble that took home a Grammy this year.
The humble Grammy-winning pianist leading CoA’s music program
Desmond Meagley, Staff Writer • March 4, 2024

Spring is free… again!


The Peralta Community College District (PCCD) is offering its districtwide “Spring is Free” initiative for the second year in a row. Tuition and fees will be waived for those who complete the requirements. 

The minimum course requirement for the Spring 2024 semester is six units. Additionally, students must complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), or a California Dream Act application for undocumented students. 

The program is only available to California residents. To be considered a resident, students “must have lived continuously in California for at least one year.” Out-of-state students and international students are not eligible.

The program also includes free access to AC Transit.

All PCCD colleges will continue to offer loaner laptops for enrolled students, while supplies last. The four colleges also offer additional perks to encourage enrollment. 

College of Alameda (CoA) is providing $300 Safeway gift cards to eligible students who enroll at CoA as their home campus. CoA also hosts a free market on the first and third Tuesday of the month where food items, personal hygiene products, and laundry supplies will be provided to those enrolled in at least one class at the college. For students that cannot attend the market on a Tuesday, appointments can be made at the market outside of the normal hours. 

Laney College provides one meal per day to its students at no cost Monday-Thursday, free produce on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, as well as free pantry items on Wednesdays and Thursdays. 

Berkeley City College hosts a food pantry every Thursday, from 12 p.m.-3 p.m, in addition to free lunch on Wednesdays.

Merritt College offers its students free breakfasts and lunches Monday-Thursday for students. The college also hosts the Merritt S.O.U.L. food bank on the second and fourth Thursday of each month.

In an email to The Citizen, Merritt College President David Johnson said that he hopes that Spring is Free would encourage dual enrollment for high school students, consistent with the California Community College Chancellor’s Vision 2030 initiative. He also hopes to attract non-traditional aged college students, such as those between the age of 40 and 60. 

“Demonstrating to this population the value of coming to Merritt for re-training/skill building, as well improving salaries by earning credentials in key industry (e.g. cybersecurity) is the approach we are taking,” Johnson said.

Registration for Spring 2024 classes is currently open. Spring semester registration closes Jan. 27, 2024. 

Correction 11/29/2023 3:51 PM: The original version of this article incorrectly stated that hotspots will be available for students. Laney Web Content Developer Chanda Brewer informed The Citizen on Wednesday that the district webpage on available technology resources contained outdated information; the link has been removed from the article above. According to Laney Director of IT Chris Moore, hotspots will no longer be available to students, and Chromebook supply is limited; approximately 350 devices may be available at Laney next semester. 

About the Contributor
Lylah Schmedel-Permanna
Lylah Schmedel-Permanna, Managing Editor
Lylah Schmedel-Permanna is a Bay Area native and graduate from the University of California-Davis where she received her bachelor’s degree in Socio-Cultural Anthropology with an emphasis on political structures. She is returning back to the community college system after having attended Las Positas College, where she was student body president in 2019. Lylah also has a strong background working in employment law and police misconduct law. She is passionate about uplifting voices in the Bay Area which has sparked her interest in becoming a journalist.
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