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College for Working Adults Provides Educational Lifeline to Busy Students

An Information Night Will Be Held Thursday, Nov. 29 at 6 pm


Siosiua Vea enrolled in Cañada’s College for Working Adults as a last chance to get back into school. Now he doesn’t know where he would be without the program.
Siosiua Vea
The College for Working Adults costs about $400 a semester, or $46 a unit, and takes three years to complete but offers students the chance to earn associate’s degrees in social behavioral science or arts and humanities while attending school on Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings. Students follow a prearranged schedule of courses but they are guaranteed entry into those classes and they don’t have to worry about switching majors or evaluating whether they can transfer their credits to a UC or CSU school.

A new cohort of 35 students will begin classes in January. A special information night will be held Thursday, Nov. 29 at 6 p.m. in Building 9, Room 106 on the Cañada College campus, 4200 Farm Hill Blvd., Redwood City. To RSVP for the event, email

“This program has allowed me to rekindle my academic flame,” said Vea. “It’s giving me a chance to earn the first of many degrees to come. CWA is catering to my needs to help me get a degree in two years.”
Stephanie Culberson, a single mom who works full time as an administrative assistant at Stanford University’s Business School, likes the fact that CWA’s academic schedule allows her to continue to work full time. “I like the support of the administrators and the flexibility,” she said.
Culberson said she wants to earn an associate’s degree in liberal arts, humanities and psychology and then transfer to earn her bachelor’s degree in psychology.
Stephanie Culberson
Vea said he’s working to bring his GPA up to a 4.0 and then he’s hoping to graduate from Cañada with two associate’s degrees. “I want to transfer to Harvard, Syracuse or UC Berkeley to study architecture.”
Because he’s returning to college, Vea said he was uneasy about the thought of sitting in a class full of students who have recently graduated from high school. “I like the fact that we have our own cohort outside of the general population of students,” he said. “This allows me to focus a little better because I am a working adult. The fact that we have a dedicated academic counselor for the program is also great. Having personalized staff working directly with our cohort of students really helps.”
For working adults who are considering returning to school to earn a degree, Vea said he recommends the program. “If you are working during the day and want to earn an associate’s degree in two or three years, CWA is the perfect vehicle,” he said. It is customized for working adults and all the resources you need are at your fingertips. CWA is a worthwhile program. Without it, you’re on your own.”
The program is funded by Measure G, a parcel tax passed by San Mateo County voters in 2010. Cañada receives about $1 million from the measure each year, with 10 percent going to support the CWA program.


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