Program for Adult College Education (PACE)

Welcome to PACE

Diablo Valley College’s PACE program helps adults with demanding jobs and family obligations fit education into their busy lives. Whether you’re returning to work after starting a family, changing careers or seeking a promotion, PACE can help you achieve your goals.

PACE program advantages and benefits

  • Reserved seating in impacted courses with dedicated PACE instructors
  • Dedicated counselors 
  • Focused curriculum to help students stay on track
  • Mid-term success reports to help students track their academic progress
  • PACE mentorship support provided
  • Evening and weekend tutoring 
  • Additional graduation ceremony for PACE students
  • Access to transfer partner Universities that also have programs built for busy adults, including CSU East Bay, Saint Mary's College, UMass, Southern New Hampshire University, Western Governors University and more. 

PACE program requirements

  • New PACE Student Welcome Event 
  • Meet with PACE counselor every semester to create and maintain a Student Educational Plan 
  • Enroll in Student Success course during first term (unless previously taken) 
  • Meet with PACE mentors for weekly support or as needed 

*If you are needing two or three classes to complete your educational goal, this program is NOT for you.

PACE degree tracks (two-year course sequences):

Once you complete your Associate degree, you have the option to pursue your Bachelor's degree at one of our transfer partner Universities that also have programs built for busy adults, including CSU East Bay, SF State, and more.

Applying to PACE takes FOUR easy steps:

Step 1

Apply for DVC

If you're a current  DVC student, you can skip this step. 

Step 2

We are now accepting applications for spring 2024.

Apply for PACE

Step 3

Meet with a PACE Counselor
We'll reach out to you after you submit your application to discuss your goals, including transferring to a university, and will help you build an educational plan.

Important - Make sure to send all your official transcripts from other colleges to DVC prior to scheduling your counseling appointment so we can plan around your previous coursework.

Step 4: FAFSA

Complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) 
This application will help determine how much financial aid you qualify for. Most of our students don’t pay any tuition.

If you need help filling out the FAFSA, contact DVC Financial Aid Office  for assistance. 

For more information or if you have additional questions, please contact

Meet the PACE Team

Sheila Lau

Sheila Lau

PACE Program Faculty Coordinator
Office: 925-969-2457

I'm passionate about the PACE Program! Having been a PACE student myself, I understand first hand, the struggles of being a working adult and raising a family all while going to school. I was a transfer student working 3 jobs throughout my undergraduate degree. And then I was a working mother with two boys ages 3 and 5 when I pursued my graduate degree. It was hard, but I did it with the support of a PACE Program, and you will too. I look forward to supporting you through your journey in the PACE Program at DVC.

Shaeehea Hollis

Shaeehea Hollis

PACE Program Faculty Counselor
Office: 925-969-2154

I am so happy to work with PACE students. I was a single mother of two children who worked full-time as I attended community college. I was given a lot of help and support by counselors who inspired me to earn my BA and MA degrees. Being a part of the PACE program at DVC is rewarding, I feel grateful that I can help and support other working adults achieve their goals. I look forward to working with you!

Success Stories

Felicia Hill

Felicia Hill

My name is Felicia Hill and when I first learned about the PACE program (Program for Adult College Education), I thought, this is a program for me! When I met with my counselor, she walked through the educational program and designed a plan specifically for me. I feel the teachers and counselors were available for guidance and were committed to helping us all be successful. Participating in the PACE program, enabled me to obtain my AS degree in Business, Certificate of accomplishment - Real Estate Salesperson and Certificate of achievement - General business within 2 ½ years. I am absolutely satisfied with the PACE program at DVC.

Jeff Heath

Jeff Heath

“I started 4 years ago at the age of 41. I realized I needed a degree in order to reach a higher level in my career. I enjoyed the PACE program and my only regret is not joining PACE from the start of my educational journey
Sheila Lau my PACE counselor was always available when I needed her. She played an important role is seeing me through the pandemic and helped me pick which school I should transfer to.”
Advice for new transferring students: “Start the pace program from day one. Don't be afraid of taking more than one class a semester. Take all of the summer and winter classes you can handle so that you can finish faster. It took me four years to complete an associate's, and I regret not doing more in the beginning.”

Tanya Flucher

Tanya Flucher

I made up my mind in 2016, that I was going to complete my AA transfer degree. I attempted college several times, and I wasn't successful. I entered the PACE Program in Summer 2016. I took public speaking and I got an A in the class. After completing the public speaking class, I had the determination and drive to keep moving forward. I just took things one semester at a time. Every semester I received a tremendous amount of support from the PACE Program advisers. I was working full time, going to school, and supporting my daughter through high school. I encountered several obstacles along the way.  I didn't let that stop me, I persevered. I'm transferring to Cal State East Bay Fall 2020, to obtain my BA in Human Development/ Women's Studies. I'm living proof that it's never too late to complete your educational goals.