STEP Program

The STEP Program removes financial barriers and provides counseling and academic support so you can succeed in the steps toward completing a degree program or qualifying for a healthcare training program that will accelerate your movement up the career ladder.

The STEP Program supports workers like you in completing the following classes at local Community Colleges:

  1. College Readiness
  2. Prerequisites
  3. General Education (GEs)

Not sure what classes to take? After you apply, your assigned Education Fund Career Counselor will help guide you through the process.

The STEP Application for the Fall 2019 STEP Program is open from March 1 – July 1, 2019. Apply now!

KP NORCAL employees see the bottom of the page for additional information for your region.

Type Of Support

  • Tuition, Mandatory Fees & Required Books paid for every quarter/semester at local community colleges.
  • Work with an Ed Fund Career Counselor who will guide and support you through the process.
  • Receive free one on one online tutoring for difficult subjects like math, English and science.
  • Get on track to reach your education goals and upgrade your career!

Am I Eligible?

Yes, if you

  • Are a regular full or part-time employee who is eligible for benefits from your employer.
  • Work in an SEIU bargaining unit for which the employer makes an Education Fund contribution.
  • Have completed your initial probationary period.
  • Meet the college’s prerequisites for your class.
  • Enrolled in the community college and able to register for your classes.

What Classes Are Covered?

  • Basic Computers
  • ESL (English as a Second Language)
  • English
  • Math
  • Science
  • Microsoft Word & Excel
  • Foreign Language
  • Prerequisites
  • All GE (General Education) Classes required to graduate

What Colleges Are Covered?

Local Community Colleges in these regions:

  • Southern California
  • Central CA/Coast
  • Northern California
  • Oregon/Washington
  • Colorado
  • Nevada

If your local community college is not listed in the STEP online application please contact us at 1-800-888-872-4606.

Online Options?

Online Classes through your local community college – Many of the colleges provide online or hybrid versions of their classes. The STEP Program will support any semester/quarter online or hybrid college credit classes at the community college.

KP NorCal employees see below for additional online options for your region.

How Do I Get Accepted Into STEP Program?

Application Process For New Students

  • Apply for the STEP program. You will receive an email within 10 business days to let you know your application was successfully processed, next steps and a link to the New Student Online Orientation.
  • Complete the New Student Online Orientation. This is a mandatory step that must be completed to move forward.
  • Speak with your assigned Ed Fund Career Counselor to review your application and discuss the next steps of the process. It is very helpful if you can send unofficial transcripts or assessment scores to your assigned Ed Fund Career Counselor. If you need help with this, please ask your Ed Fund Career Counselor for assistance. They are here to support you.
  • Register for your class through the community college’s registration process at the earliest opportunity.

What If I’m Not Sure I’m Ready To Start College?

We suggest that you first meet with a Career Counselor to review your goals, develop a plan, and help you decide if the STEP Program is the next best step for you. Call 1.888.872.4606 to talk to an Education Fund Career Counselor.

If you want to prepare yourself to take a college-level course, we recommend that you first consider completing one of our non-credit  online classes (Intro to Medical Terminology, Intro to Anatomy & Physiology, and Biology) through our Healthcare Career Basics program.

How Can I Get More Information?

Contact the Education Fund at 1.888.872.4606 or contact the Ed Fund Career Counselor in your area directly.

Kaiser Permanente Employees in Northern California

This section includes programs that are only accepting new student applications in 2019 from those employed by Kaiser Permanente Northern California.


STEP CORE is our next level of support within the STEP program for eligible members employed by Kaiser Permanente NorCal.

STEP CORE pays tuition, fees, and textbooks, every semester for Healthcare Training programs at Community Colleges. It also provides free online tutoring and one-on-one counselling support.

The 2019 STEP CORE new student application is only open to those members that are employed by Kaiser Permanente Northern California.

Supported STEP CORE Programs include but are not limited to (Students must be accepted and enrolled in the program at the Community College to be eligible for STEP CORE):

  • Medical Assistant
  • Medical Coder
  • Surgical Tech
  • Diagnostic Imaging: Rad Tech
  • RN
  • And more!

How do I get support?

Those eligible members that work for Kaiser Permanente Northern California can apply for the STEP CORE program through the regular STEP Program Application. Link listed above or apply here.

2019 STEP Accelerated Online Program for KP NorCal

The STEP Accelerated Online Program 2019 is another level of support for STEP Students employed by Kaiser Permanente NorCal.

Our goal is that this program can help you as students obtain your degree in an accelerated fashion combining your in person studies at your local community college with your online studies at Coastline College to finish faster, quicker, and be a successful student!

What is the STEP Accelerated Online Program?

SEIU-UHW West & Joint Employer Education Fund partnered with Coastline College Extended Learning Division to provide accelerated online classes for eligible members.

These classes offered through Coastline College Distance Education are college level, fast paced, and 100% online General Education classes geared toward the working adult learner.

2019 STEP Accelerated NEW Student Eligibility Requirements:

  1. Employed by Kaiser Permanente Northern California, work in a SEIU bargaining unit for which the employer makes an Education Fund contribution, have completed your initial probationary period and are a part time or full time employee eligible for benefits.
  2. Must have a (SEP) Student Education Plan from their local Community College. SEP’s from Coastline Extended Learning Division will not be accepted. SEP must be uploaded when student applies (see below for more info).
  3. Must have received an A or B in a 100% college level online class that is 3 units or more in the past 2 years (Must be uploaded as proof within Application) Or have taken or plan to take the Online Success Class though Coastline “EDUC 108 How to Succeed in Distance Learning”.
  4. Must only be taking GE (General Education) Courses Required for their degree or certification.

What is included in 2019 for New Students?

  1. The Education Fund will cover the tuition cost of approved courses (up to 2 courses in 2019)
  2. Required e-books
  3. Support from an Ed Fund Career Counselor

Ed Fund 2019 Application Process for New Students

STEP 1 Apply Online & upload a (SEP) Student Education Plan (see more below)
STEP 2 Receive “Provisional Acceptance Email”
STEP 3 Watch Online Orientation & Complete Student Guidelines
STEP 4 Receive “Final Acceptance Email”
STEP 5 Start the Coastline Registration process

What is a (SEP) Student Education Plan?

A (SEP) Student Education Plan is created by a college adviser and outlines a suggested course of study for the individual student based on major, transfer plans and sequence of courses.

How do I get a (SEP) Student Education Plan?
If you don’t have a SEP contact your LOCAL COMMUNITY COLLEGE and make an appointment with your adviser to create one.

Why do I need a (SEP) Student Education Plan to apply?
We want to make sure that you are getting the best value from these online GE classes. We want to make sure you are taking the classes you need and are on the right path.

Apply Now

If you meet all the requirements listed above for the STEP Accelerated Online Program apply now!