PACE Promise

PACE Promise / Partners Advancing College Education

The PACE Promise is a joint program of San Marcos Unified School District (SMUSD) and California State University San Marcos (CSUSM) funded via The San Marcos Promise (TSMP). The PACE Promise guarantees CSUSM admission to all district students continuously enrolled in the district from 9th through 12th grade who meet entrance requirements. This program began with the SMUSD graduating classes of 2009.

The Promise provides a step-by-step plan of preparation for college. Beginning in ninth grade, San Marcos Unified students must work to fulfill program expectations. Meeting these requirements also prepares students for admission to most California public and private universities and colleges. Students who meet all academic benchmarks receive a $1,000 scholarship for up to four years. A total scholarship benefit of $4,000 per student.  To maintain PACE eligibility, students are required to maintain concurrent full-time enrollment at CSUSM (12 unit minimum), a 2.0 GPA, and complete 20 hours of community service per reporting guidelines to The San Marcos Promise.

Purpose of the Promise

  • To provide students the necessary academic tools for entering college without remediation.
  • To improve access, retention and college completion for underrepresented students.
  • To raise academic expectations and ensure that students not only qualify for college admission but thrive when they get there.
  • To expand comprehensive support services and to target every student in every school.
  • To offset tuition and mandatory fees that may be an obstacle to attending college.


$1,000 scholarship for up to four years to attend California State University, San Marcos

This requirement can be satisfied in one of the following ways:

  • 11th grade CAASPP Early Assessment Program (EAP) status of “Standard Exceeded” (Level 4). These scores can be found on your CAASPP report
  • CAASPP EAP status of “Standard Met” (Level 3) means you are “Conditionally Ready” and you must:
    1. Math– must be enrolled in a senior year math course with a prerequisite of Algebra 2 or higher and earn a grade of “C” or better both semesters
    2. English– must be enrolled in a senior year English course and earn a grade of “C” or better.
  • Scores of at least 500 in English, and 550 in math on the SAT, or
  • Scores of 22 in English and 23 in math on the ACT, or
  • Score of 3 or above in Advanced Placement English or Math

Deadline: November 30, 2018

Deadline: March 2, 2019

Deadline: July 15, 2019

  • Submit your OFFICIAL final high school transcript to Cal State San Marcos via or visit your high school counseling office

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Get ready to take the next steps toward a great future! CSUSM has provided our organization with a presentation which includes valuable information regarding admissions, programs on campus, and important deadlines. Click above to view the presentation. If any questions occur, contact the appropriate department related to your questions. The contact information is below:


(760) 750-4848


(760) 750-4850


(760) 750-6060


(760) 750-4930


(760) 750-3711

2018-19 PACE Promise Deadlines

  1. CSUSM Application for Admission
    • November 30, 2018
  2. Intent to Enroll & Enrollment Deposit
    • MyCSUSM – Deadline May 1, 2019
    • $150 Deposit – Deadline May 1, 2019
  3. Financial aid & scholarships
    • Priority Deadline – March 2, 2019
  4. Financial Literacy Online Course
  5. TSMP Scholar Application
    • March 2, 2019
  6. Orientation & Registration
    • Orientation programs begin in June 2018 & continue thru August 2018
  7. Final Transcripts
    • Submit official high school & college transcripts – Deadline July 15, 2019