Press Release: Announcing COVID College Connect



May 5, 2020                   


Claudine Battisti  

[email protected]                                                  


UNITE-LA serves as the convener of the L.A. Compact 

LOS ANGELES - UNITE-LA, as the convener of the L.A. Compact for more than a decade, is proud to partner with L.A. City Mayor Eric Garcetti in launching COVID College Connect – an initiative where Los Angeles students set to graduate high school this year will be able to connect with counselors for free to help them through the college admissions process. 

The students can fill out a form, describing their barriers related to starting college once the pandemic subsides. Students will then be contacted by a counselor from their high school, a representative from the college they were admitted to or other professionals to help them navigate the admissions process. 

This initiative is being done in partnership with the L.A. Compact, a powerful platform for regional collaboration to transform education and workforce systems and improve equity of opportunity for our local students from cradle to career. COVID College Connect will engage the Office of Mayor Garcetti, school district leaders, community-based organizations, and the L.A. Compact’s Institutions of Higher Education Collaborative, comprised of 11 regional public and private non-profit colleges and universities as well as the L.A. Community College District, to support the Class of 2020 in realizing their college aspirations. 

“At the heart of UNITE-LA’s mission is ensuring equity and access to a quality education, particularly for our most vulnerable youth. Our graduating seniors in the Class of 2020, many of whom will be the first in their families to attend college, are facing even greater challenges and difficult decisions about their college plans in the midst of this public health and economic crisis,” said David Rattray, president & CEO, UNITE-LA. “UNITE-LA, as the convener of the Compact, understands the vital role it plays in bringing area leaders together to help students begin their college career as the pandemic begins to recede. We are incredibly grateful to the Mayor and his team for their leadership with COVID College Connect, a critical endeavor during this time.”  

“We can’t allow COVID-19 to hold the Class of 2020 back from their dreams,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “Thanks to L.A. Compact’s partnership and leadership, our COVID College Connect initiative will honor the courage, sacrifice, and achievement of our high school seniors by helping them navigate this difficult moment –– and stay on the path to higher education and a brighter future.”



Over the past 20 years, UNITE-LA has been a trusted business intermediary, dedicated to supporting the development of an effective local public education system, so that all children and youth succeed in college, career and beyond. Through the intersection of programming, policy, and systems change efforts, UNITE-LA works to increase access to high-quality early childhood education, develop career pathways in high-growth industries, improve college access and success, and ensure workforce readiness, especially for individuals with high barriers into the workforce. Visit 

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