LA community college students can ride the subway for free thanks to a $1 million scholarship

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The Los Angeles Community College District has received a $1 million grant to continue providing free subway passes to about half a million students during the current academic year, officials said.

The initiative, called GoPass, offers a free Metro TAP card to LA community college students for use on all Metro buses and trains, as well as 13 additional transportation companies. The program benefits up to 500,000 students across the province.

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sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) secured $1 million funding through a congressional-led grant to support the extension of GoPass through the 2022-23 school year for all 21 community colleges in Los Angeles County, according to a press release from the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

“Lack of transportation is one of the major barriers for students seeking to complete their education, and that’s especially true in major metropolitan areas like Los Angeles,” Feinstein said.

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The majority of LA’s community college students come from low-income communities, and the district says more than half of its students live at or below the poverty line. Metro U-Passes cost $160 or more per semester.

The GoPass helps eliminate that cost barrier, Metro officials said.

The initiative was launched in December 2021, after a push from student lawyers. The GoPass added 20 school districts in its second year and plans to add 10 more, Metro officials said, as well as free transit passes to students at participating K-12 schools.

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The agency said it plans to double its participation in the coming year.

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