Closing the Achievement Gap The California State University has established an important strategy to improve success among students from underserved communities. Page Image Page ContentCelebrated nationally for its commitment to diversity, inclusion and excellence, the California State University is a stalwart advocate for student achievement, irrespective of background. Even so, students from underserved communities continue to graduate from college at a lower rate than their peers. Half of CSU undergraduates from underserved communities graduate within six years. A system as inclusive as the CSU—in which more than 65 percent of first-time full-time freshmen are students of color and 49 percent receive need-based Pell grants—must strive to achieve both inclusivity and excellence.Which is why, more and more, the work of the California State University centers on improving the likelihood of attaining a degree, promoting inclusive excellence, and empowering a lifetime of success for our students and alumni.A New Goal Source: "CSU Undergraduate Outcomes Report: Graduation Rates, Persistence Rates, and Analysis of Factors Related to Outcomes," April 2016With this in mind, Chancellor Timothy P. White has challenged the CSU to reach an achievement gap of zero: In other words, that there will be no difference between the opportunities that an underserved student who is willing to work toward a bachelor’s degree will have and that of his or her peer with greater advantages.Chancellor White has proposed three objectives to accomplish the goal of an achievement gap of zero: Establish a continuous pipeline from preschool to a bachelor’s degree with state support for growth with quality at every level of a child’s education. Ensure that high school graduates and transfer students enter the CSU better academically prepared to succeed at the university level. Provide readily available resources and timely interventions for current and future students. We know that our greatest strength as a university is when we can come together. Simply put, the CSU understands, embraces, and respects the strength of our diversity of people, ideas and pedagogy.