Congressman Robert Garcia Secures Nearly $1 Million in Federal Funding for Long Beach City College to Train “Space Beach” Workforce and Bolster Aerospace Program

Press Release

Thanks to the advocacy of Congressman Robert Garcia (CA-42), Long Beach City College (LBCC) will receive $963,000 from the Community Project Funding to update the college’s engineering and aerospace programs. The federal investment will fund advanced manufacturing equipment to train LBCC students as skilled technicians for the growing “Space Beach” aerospace industry hub in Long Beach.

“We are so grateful to Congressman Garcia for his work to secure this vital funding, which helps LBCC boost its Space Beach curriculum into the future,” said Dr. Mike Muñoz, LBCC Superintendent-President. “With over 47% of current aerospace employees having an associate degree or less, community colleges are critical for training this workforce. Key funding like this ensures that LBCC remains prepared to fulfill this need and enables us to grow our aerospace, engineering, and other STEM programs.”

“I am thrilled to see the hard work of our community and the collaboration with NASA come to fruition with this significant opportunity for Long Beach City College. By securing these resources, we are ensuring that LBCC can offer an education that’ll keep our workforce at the forefront of innovation and our industry ahead in the global arena,” said Congressman Garcia. “This funding is not just an investment in cutting-edge manufacturing equipment; it’s an investment in the future of Long Beach, in the bright minds that will lead our space industry, and in the economic mobility of our community.”

“LBCC is very fortunate to be included in the newly formed ecosystem of technology that Space Beach has created,” said Vivian Malauulu, Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) Board of Trustees President. “Our students continue to benefit from the revitalization that Spin Launch and Relativity Space have initiated in our community; first through hands-on instruction and immersive training, and soon through job opportunities. We are grateful for Congressman Garcia’s advocacy and leadership to restore middle-skill aerospace jobs in Long Beach.”

The federal funding will allow LBCC to purchase equipment like 3D printers, a laser wire additive printer, a surface grinder, and more to update LBCC teaching labs. Purchases will be made with guidance from aerospace partners like SpaceX and Relativity Space. 

The revitalized aerospace industry in Southern California, nicknamed “Space Beach”, has led to a surge in demand for skilled workers. Aerospace job postings in LA County grew nearly five times from 2012 to 2022, with technician roles paying $30-36 per hour.

About Long Beach City College
Long Beach City College consists of two campuses with an enrollment of over 25,000 students each semester and serves the cities of Long Beach, Lakewood, Signal Hill, and Avalon. LBCC promotes equitable student learning and achievement, academic excellence, and workforce development by delivering high quality educational programs and support services to our diverse communities. Visit for more information about Long Beach City College.

Stacey Toda
LBCC Associate Director
Communications & Community Engagement
(562) 938-4004