Why Give

College of the Desert Foundation helps ensure COD can provide the educated workforce that serves as the engine for the region’s economic growth. Our impact is significant throughout the valley. We are training and educating the next generation of clean technology professionals, childcare providers, allied healthcare workers, architects, golf professionals and programmers to build the next web-based platforms.

By the community. For the community.

The College is a sound investment from multiple perspectives. Students benefit from improved lifestyles and increased earnings. Taxpayers benefit from a larger economy and lower social costs. Finally, the community benefits from an improved valley quality of life to increased job and investment opportunities, to higher business revenues, greater availability of public funds, and an eased tax burden.

Since 1958, College of the Desert has built its reputation on student excellence, quality education and faculty and community benefit. Year after year, COD continues to supply the Coachella Valley economy with its workforce and a much needed economic engine.

  • Each year more than 13,000 students choose to pursue their higher education with COD.
  • 33% of COD students are full time. 52% are part time and 15% are non-credit.
  • 56% of all COD students enrolled are female. 55% are Hispanic.
  • 41% of students are ages 18-21. Average age is 28.
  • More than 70% of all students are the first in their family to attend college.

Degrees and Certificates

COD awards more degrees and certificates each year than all other local higher education providers combined. In 2009, COD awarded 646 degrees and certificates. 308 students transferred to Cal State. 56 students transferred to University of California system. 364 students transferred to 4-year colleges. COD offers over 1,000 classes in 89 different course areas in multiple locations throughout the Coachella Valley

Workforce creation and support.

COD activities encourage new business, assist existing business, and create long-term economic growth. The College enhances worker skills and provides customized training to local business and industry. It is estimated that the Coachella Valley workforce embodies about 1.3 million credit hours of past and present COD training. These added skills promote business productivity and increase income in the region.

Our list of community partners reads like a who’s who of education, business and civic leaders:

  • Coachella Valley Unified School District
  • Palm Springs Unified School District
  • Desert Sands Unified School District
  • University of California Riverside
  • California State University San Bernardino Palm Desert
  • Local cities and Riverside County
  • Eisenhower Medical Center
  • Desert Regional Medical Center
  • John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital
  • First Solar
  • Wells Fargo
  • Merrill Lynch
  • Bank of America
  • Coachella Valley Auto Center
  • Marriot Hotels
  • The Vintage
  • Berger Foundation
  • Desert Healthcare District
  • Kaiser Restaurant Group
  • Union Bank
  • Solar Millenium
  • Big Horn
  • Building Industry Association

Our local economic footprint.

College of the Desert's economic impact is significant to the valley. We are one of the regions largest employers and impact local businesses.

  • COD payroll and benefits and the College’s spending for supplies and services generate a net impact of $29.3 million in added income in the economy each year.
  • COD employed 282 full-time and 169 part-time faculty and staff in the 2008-09 reporting year. Total salaries, wages, and benefits at COD amounted to $39.6 million.
  • COD had a total operating budget of $74.7 million, of which an estimated 58% was spent in the Coachella Valley for supplies and services.
  • The increased productivity of workers due to the accumulation of past and present COD skills in the Coachella Valley workforce contributes approximately $252.7 million in added income each year.

We all benefit.

An estimated 95% of COD students remain in California and contribute to economic growth. Students who enter the workforce expand the tax base by generating higher earnings and reducing social costs.

Benefits to students obtaining a community college education level includes:

  • Higher student earnings and associated increases in property income generate about $5.1 million in added tax revenue each year.
  • State and local government will save approximately $259,700 in avoided social costs each year, including savings associated with improved health, lower costs of law enforcement, and fewer welfare claimants.
  • State and local government allocated about $69.4 million in support of COD in FY 2008-09. For every dollar appropriated by state and local government to COD, taxpayers will see a return with a cumulative added value of $1.40 in the form of higher tax revenues and avoided social costs.
  • State and local government will receive a rate of return of 5.1% on their investments in COD.