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Learning Aligned Employment Program

What is the Learning Aligned Employment Program?

The Learning Aligned Employment Program (LAEP) is a 10-year program offering eligible students at public colleges and universities the opportunity to earn additional state financial aid to help defray their educational costs while gaining quality, education-aligned, career-related employment. 

LAEP allows participating students placement in an educationally beneficial position that relates to the student's area of study, career objective, or the exploration of career objectives. The program includes and emphasizes positions for students with employers that are capable of providing them with full-time employment opportunities after graduation, or opportunities to connect with other employers that are capable of providing them with full-time employment opportunities after graduation, within their areas of study.

Which Students are Eligible to Participate in LAEP?

Undergraduate students from an underrepresented background satisfying all of the eligibility criteria may participate in the program. 

First Eligibility Level
The student must match at least ONE of the following “underrepresented background” descriptors to qualify. Underrepresented background applies to the student and cannot be established through a parent:

  • first-generation college students
  • low-income students
  • current or former foster youth
  • homeless students or those at risk of becoming homeless
  • students with disabilities
  • displaced workers
  • students with dependent children
  • formerly incarcerated students
  • DACA recipients or those who have a work authorization permit
  • students meeting the requirements of Assembly Bill 540 of the 2001-2002 Regular Session of the Legislature
  • students who are veterans

Second Eligibility Level
In addition to meeting at least one of the “underrepresented background” descriptors, students MUST meet ALL the following criteria:

  • Enrolled at least half-time
  • Have demonstrated maintenance of satisfactory academic progress
  • Have demonstrated financial need via FAFSA/CADAA
  • Classified as a California resident
  • Eligible to work in the United States

If a student participating in LAEP no longer meets the “underrepresented background” criteria by which they qualified, the institution may reevaluate and document alternate criteria that qualify the student for the program. If the student no longer meets any of the “underrepresented” criteria, the student is no longer eligible to participate in LAEP.

Which Employers Can Participate In LAEP?

Research Centers and Institutions
Research centers and institutions operated by public postsecondary educational institutions, if their learning-aligned employment opportunities provide participating students with direct opportunities to participate in the research that is undertaken by the respective research centers and institutions. Research is not limited to scientific research and can take place outside of an academic discipline. The research should be directed and supervised by faculty, staff or another mentor who will determine the research requirements.

  • If the direct employer is the UC, CSU, CCC, or one of its respective campuses, the program may provide 100% of the student’s compensation. 

Public Schools
Public schools operated by school districts, county superintendents of schools, the Department of the Youth Authority, or the Department of Education.

  • For LAEP positions with public educational institutions or nonprofit corporations, the program may provide no more than 90% of the student’s compensation.

Nonprofit and for-profit employers
Nonsectarian, nonpolitical organizations capable of providing full-time employment after graduation or connection to another employer able to provide full-time employment after graduation. 

  • For LAEP positions with nonprofit employers, the program may provide no more than 90% of the student’s compensation.
  • For LAEP positions with for-profit employers, the program may provide no more than 50% of the student’s compensation.