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Driven by their parents and educators, more and more Hispanics are attending college in hopes of securing a place in the US middle class.
This, according to USA Today, represents a growing challenge for educational institutions, as they have served primarily white students.
As they grapple with challenges like higher education bureaucracy and paying tuition in an environment where so few teachers, administrators, and students look like them, many Latino students say they are concerned that higher education institutions are happily taking your money without making sure of your specific needs. Are being fulfilled.
The number of Hispanic students enrolled in college increased from 3.17 million in 2016 to 3.27 million in 2017, making them one of the two largest demographic groups in college, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
That’s nearly double the 1.4 million Latino students who attended college in 2000.
On the other hand, the enrollment of universities, that is, those who enter higher education and remain, has fallen. According to the National Student Clearinghouse, there were 19.2 million students enrolled on campuses for the fall semester of 2015. By early 2019, enrollment had dropped to 17.5 million.
Retention rates among Hispanic students were “less than optimal,” Deborah Santiago, one of the co-founders of Excellence in Education, an association dedicated to empowering Latino students.
But neglecting Hispanic students is bad business these days, he said.
“You can’t just enroll them in college if you’re not going to help them graduate. The only growing population is Hispanics. That is why we say that you should focus on what it means to serve, ”he said.
Another initiative dedicated to helping Latinos graduate is Pa’Lante Project, which gives new college students a platform to gain leadership skills and achieve academic success.
“I felt that the help they offered me was not what I wanted,” Miguel Casimiro, a Latino biology student, told USA Today.
Among the efforts to counteract this, now Latino student aid organizations focus on helping universities to have a welcoming culture for these students and, above all, mechanisms to help them get better use of their studies, such as bilingual classes.
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