Addressing the Health and Well-being Crisis Among California's Community College Students

Resolution Number
Assigned to
Executive Committee
Transfer, Articulation, and Student Services Committee
Local Senates

Whereas, The physical health and mental well-being of California's young adults is currently at a crisis level, with potential devastating long-term effects on both the health status and financial stability of the state [1], and the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges affirmed the value of lifelong learning courses, including health, kinesiology, and physical education, in the Spring of 2023 with Resolution 15.02 [2];

Whereas, The California Community Colleges system is steadfast in its commitment to reducing equity gaps and dismantling systemic barriers within the education system, and Latinx, Black, and Native American Californians experience lower health outcomes compared to other Californians, reflecting a concerning health disparity [3];

Whereas, The implementation of the California General Education Transfer Curriculum relegates lifelong learning courses to elective status and sends a signal to students that physical literacy, health, and wellness courses are less important, thereby reducing the likelihood that students would enhance their knowledge, competency, and motivation to adopt healthy behaviors through California community college physical education, kinesiology, or health classes; and

Whereas, Decades of research identify that regular physical activity is one of the strongest markers of overall physical and mental health, with cardiorespiratory endurance as the greatest predictor of longevity [4], and, furthermore, when physical activity and health education courses are part of required curriculum, students are more physically active during and after collegiate enrollment with enhanced well-being [5];

Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges acknowledge and work to address the current crisis in the physical health and mental well-being of California community college students; and

Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges encourage local academic senates to initiate, reinstate, or maintain kinesiology, physical education and health education courses in local general education requirements for associate degrees to ensure that California community college students have the benefit of education in critical areas that affect their academic success, health, and well-being.


1. California Community College Physical Education, Kinesiology, and Dance Association (2023). Health and Physical Literacy: An imperative for student success at California Community Colleges.  Position statement.
2. ASCCC SPRING 2023 RESOLUTION: 15.02 S23  Include Lifelong Learning and Self-Development as a Graduation and General Education Requirement.
3. Aurrera Health Group. (October 22, 2021). Health Disparities by Race and Ethnicity in California: Pattern of Inequity.  California Health Care Foundation, California Health Care Almanac and Center For Disease Control. Equitable and Inclusive Activity. Active People, Healthy Nation.
5. Bradley J. Cardinal , Spencer D. Sorensen & Marita K. Cardinal (2012) Historical Perspective and Current Status of the Physical Education Graduation Requirement at American 4-Year Colleges and Universities, Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 83:4, 503-512, DOI: 10.1080/02701367.2012.10599139 and Moo Song Kim & Bradley J. Cardinal (2019) Differences in university students’ motivation between a required and an elective physical activity education policy, Journal of American College Health, 67:3, 207-214, DOI: 10.1080/07448481.2018.1469501.