CTBC Bank continues support of the USC College Advising Corps

Community-minded business has invested $300,000 in program since 2014

By Carla Wohl

CTBC Executive Vice President Frida Bank Kourouyan (center, with scarf) and Vice President Mona Fontela (center, tan coat) with USC Rossier staff, students and USC CAC advisers at Fremont High School in Los Angeles. PHOTO BY MARGARET MOLLOY

SINCE 2014, CTBC Bank has generously invested $300,000 in the USC College Advising Corps (USC CAC), and that investment has paid enormous dividends. USC CAC recruits and trains recent college graduates, many of them first-generation college goers themselves, and places them in underserved high schools as mentors to assist students with their college searches and applications. With the bank’s support, USC CAC has expanded to include 47 advisers in 41 schools in the Greater Los Angeles area.

“We have tremendous pride that our support has provided a better future for 15,000 inner city students and their options for a college education,” says CTBC Executive Vice President Frida Bank Kourouyan.

The program, overseen by the Center for Enrollment Research, Policy and Practice (CERPP), has achieved impressive results. Students who meet with a USC CAC adviser are 27 percent more likely to apply to college and 20 percent more likely to be accepted to college.

“It opens up opportunities for many high school students at a critical stage of their lives,” says CTBC Vice President Mona Fontela. “That’s why we’re such huge supporters of the program.”

CTBC Bank, which is one of the first Asian-American–run banks to operate both in the eastern and western United States, has a long history of commitment to the communities it serves. The bank’s slogan is “We are Family.” And now CTBC’s generous leaders and employees are a part of the Trojan Family, too.