Foothill offers free college to first-generation students

A program launching this summer at Foothill College aims to put underrepresented students through their first two years of college at no cost while they are still in high school.

Through the Early College Promise program, dual-enrolled students can begin taking classes at Foothill while still completing high school. Early College Promise is intended for students who participate in the Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) college readiness program, many of whom represent the first college-bound generation in their families.

Early College Promise will cover the cost of students’ tuition, fees, textbooks, instructional materials and public transportation. A combination of private donations and state funding supports the program.

The program model is built on national research showing that early college pathways created by dual enrollment in high school and college increase the rates at which underrepresented students enter and succeed in college.

Foothill’s Early College Promise is currently accepting applications from students enrolled in AVID programs at Los Altos High, Mountain View High and Palo Alto High, and all students enrolled in Alta Vista High.

Participants may begin the program this summer by enrolling in Foothill’s Introduction to College course. Students also may enroll in other general education courses starting this summer.

For more information about the program, visit

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