Hear My Voice: Strengthening the College Pipeline for Young Men of Color in California


California’s young men of color continue to face troubling academic disparities and persistent discrimination on their path to and through higher education, finds our new report, Hear My Voice: Strengthening the College Pipeline for Young Men of Color in California. The first Ed Trust–West report examining the intersection of race, gender, and education, Hear My Voice draws upon on-campus interviews with male students of color, parents, educators, and administrators, as well as reviewing existing research. Below you’ll find the report, a short video about Hear My Voice, a researcher Q&A, and a petition urging California’s education leaders to publicly report important race and gender data.      

The Education Trust–West has also partnered with Educational Results Partnership (ERP) on this work, to learn from and share research findings, policies, and practices that help strengthen access to higher education for California’s young men of color. Based on their longitudinal database on student achievement, ERP has developed the YMOC Data Tool – which allows users to search and identify key academic data at the regional, county, district and school levels. The tool provides in-depth data analysis on Latino, African American, Native American and Pacific Islander males, ages 16-24.

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Karla Fernandez

Communications Manager

Karla Fernandez (she/her/hers) joins Ed Trust–West as a Communications Manager with over 11 years of experience advancing social impact initiatives.

Karla started her career as a teacher at Chicago Public Schools and UIC College Prep. After teaching, Karla joined United Friends of the Children to support LA County’s youth in foster care as a college counselor. Through Leadership for Educational Equity, Karla also served as a Policy Advisor Fellow for the office of a Los Angeles Unified School Board Member. She solidified her interests in policy analysis and quantitative research during her time with the Price Center for Social Innovation, the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles, and the USC Presidential Working Group on Sustainability. Before joining The Education Trust–West, Karla was the Associate Director for the Southeast Los Angeles (SELA) Collaborative, a network of nonprofits advocating for communities in SELA.

Karla holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Anthropology from the University of Chicago, a Master of Public Policy from the USC Price School of Public Policy, and a Graduate Certificate in Policy Advocacy from the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Karla is based out of southern California and is passionate about using data analysis, communications, and digital strategies for policy advocacy and social justice efforts.