Attention Students: Be Counted in the 2020 Census!



Paul Feist and Paige Marlatt Dorr

Your response impacts funding for student financial aid, healthcare, housing, transportation and other important services.

California community college students have a chance to make real change in their communities and on their campuses this spring by participating in the 2020 Census. Every 10 years, people across California fill out the Census in order to have an accurate count of all people in the United States.

The Census determines California’s funding for some financial aid, healthcare, housing, transportation and other important student services.

The Census also helps to reassign seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, ensuring our state’s share of representation in Washington, D.C.

Remember, more seats equal a greater voice in what happens on our campuses and in our communities!

Another important thing to know is that your information is safe. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that immigration and citizenship status will not be asked in the Census. Your Census data is safe, protected, confidential and will not be shared with the federal government or any other organization. When completing the Census, be sure to include all people living in your household, family or not, regardless of citizenship status.

Starting in mid-March 2020, each household in California will get a letter in the mail explaining how to complete the Census form. There are three ways to complete the Census: online, by phone and by mail.

The quickest and easiest ways to complete the Census form are online or by phone. For the first time, the Census will be available online in 13 languages and will only take a few minutes for you to complete for each person living in your household. The form will ask nine simple questions about you and the people who live in your home, including your name, age, phone number, race, sex and whether you rent or own your home.

Also new this year, the Census can be completed from your cell phone. Finally, a limited number of households will receive a hard copy Census form, available in English and Spanish,that can be mailed back to the U.S. Census Bureau upon completion.

The California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office is urging you to take charge of your future and be counted in the 2020 Census.

“The students of California play an incredibly important role in the economy and future of our great state. Students from all backgrounds and income levels deserve to be counted and we will do everything in our power to make sure they have a voice in this incredibly important initiative,”said Eloy Ortiz Oakley, California Community Colleges Chancellor.

Census responses are accepted beginning March 12, 2020. The last day to submit a Census form is July 31, 2020. For more information about the California Census, visit


This article is written by guest contributors Paul Fiest, Vice Chancellor of Communications for the California Community Colleges, and Paige Marlatt Dorr, Director of Communications for the California Community Colleges