LONG BEACH, CA – The Institute for Evidence-Based Change’s (IEBC) longtime partner, California Community Colleges Classified Senate (4CS), is producing a guide outlining strategies for community colleges to sustain and institutionalize the Caring Campus initiative beyond its initial implementation, integrating the program’s principles and strategies into the college’s culture for long-term effectiveness.

IEBC created Caring Campus to provide staff and faculty with tools and resources to help students feel more connected to their college, thereby improving student retention, persistence, and success.

4CS is a nonprofit organization made up of volunteers from across the California Community College system who advocate for shared governance for all classified professionals. IEBC and 4CS have partnered together since 2019, when IEBC President and Founder Dr. Brad Phillips delivered the keynote speech at a 4CS Classified Leadership Conference.

“Our partnership with IEBC is incredibly valuable because, as the overarching organization that has connections to each community college, 4CS can work one-on-one with classified professionals and continue promoting Caring Campus principles after the initial coaching sessions,” said Trisha Albertsen, past 4CS president and Chaffey College accountant. “We’re able to see the confidence and sense of leadership that community college classified professionals gain from going through Caring Campus first-hand.”

Through their partnership with IEBC, 4CS brought together classified professionals from across California to work on the Caring Campus guidebook, which will focus on five main areas: how to work and collaborate with leadership, going beyond the standard commitments, supervisor participation, celebration of classified professionals, and Caring Campus under a classified committee.

Together, these topics are designed to help community colleges sustain their Caring Campus work by providing a guidelines on how to engage with and successfully implement the program, creating an environment where students and employees feel a connection to their campus and peers.

“As a classified professional who has gone through Caring Campus, I’ve loved seeing how the program has helped both staff and faculty assist students and make them feel like they belong on campus,” said Hope Ell, Chaffey College executive assistant and 4CS secretary. “It can be something as small as smiling at students and saying hello, or stopping to help a student if they look lost. These small gestures can really go a long way.”

Albertsen and Ell both said they joined 4CS because of their desire to elevate the voices of classified professionals and show these employees they are a vital part of every community college.

“I would like to thank IEBC for bringing classified professionals into a leading role for this important work,” Albertsen said. “Classified professionals are often overlooked on our college campuses , and to be included in something as crucial as Caring Campus makes us feel seen.”

4CS plans to release its Caring Campus sustainability and institutionalization guide in June 2024.

“We are so thankful to 4CS for its continued partnership and support of our work through Caring Campus,” Dr. Phillips said. “It’s partnerships such as theirs that help make our organization so powerful and impactful. We can’t wait to see how our California community colleges will continue to grow and expand their Caring Campus efforts through the upcoming 4CS guide.”


IEBC_4CS1: Members of the California Community Colleges Classified Senate (4CS) created the Caring Campus Institute to develop a guidebook that offers resources and tools on how community colleges can sustain and institutionalize Caring Campus.