Excelencia in Education Reports More Hispanic-Serving Institutions Overall, but Growth Remains Concentrated

Excelencia hispanic outlook jobs

WASHINGTON, January 27, 2016— In 2014-15, 13 percent of colleges and universities identified as Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) enrolled 62 percent of all Latino undergraduates in the U.S. according to Excelencia in Education’s annual analysis released today. The number of colleges and universities that meet the definition of HSIs in 2014-15 rose 7 percent from the previous year and are concentrated in 18 states.

“The trend we are seeing is increased Latino student enrollment, and more concentrated enrollment,” said Deborah Santiago, Chief Operating Officer and Vice President for Policy at Excelencia in Education. “HSIs enroll about 1.75 million Latino students; this is an increase of over 350 percent since HSIs were recognized in federal law,” said Santiago. “With 62 percent of Latinos enrolled in HSIs, the role of these institutions in retaining and graduating Latinos to meet our national needs for an educated workforce and citizenry is critical.”  

In 1994, the Higher Education Act defined an HSI as accredited and degree-granting public or private nonprofit institutions of higher education with 25 percent or more total undergraduate Hispanic full-time equivalent (FTE) student enrollment. Excelencia in Education has conducted analysis on HSIs since 2004 and releases the list of institutions meeting the basic definition every year.

“Accelerating Latino student success requires better understanding the institutions where students are choosing to enroll,” said Sarita Brown, President of Excelenciain Education.  “Today’s release is part of an unprecedented body of data on HSIs we continue to analyze in conjunction with institutional practices, policies and leadership that serve students’ academic aspirations and increase degree completion.”

The 2014-15 release also continues to see positive trends for Emerging HSIs– defined by Excelencia in Education as colleges that enroll between 15-24 percent undergraduate equivalent Hispanic students. There are 310 colleges in 33 states and Washington, D.C. that meet this designation, up from 296 in 29 states last year.  

Below are some major points from more than two decades of data on HSIs, available through Excelencia in Education’s HSI Center for Policy & Practice (HSI-CP2):

Number—435; the number of HSIs currently in the United States and Puerto Rico. Twenty-seven institutions have become HSIs since last 2013-14, a 7 percent uptick. In 1994-95, there were 189 HSIs. 

Enrollment46 percent; the percentage of all students at HSIs who identify as Latino.  

Concentrated enrollment—62 percent; the percentage of Latino students that HSIs enroll. In 2013-14, HSIs enrolled enrolled 60 percent of Latino students. 

Location— 18; the number of states with at least one HSI. While more two-thirds of all HSIs are in California, Texas or Puerto Rico, there are also HSIs in Washington, Kansas, Indiana, and Oregon.

Sector—68 percent; the percentage of HSIs that are public institutions. Overall, about 50 percent are 2-year institutions and 50 percent are 4-year institutions. 

Emerging HSIs— 310; the number of institutions of higher education nationwide with 15-24 percent undergraduate full-time equivalent Hispanic enrollment.  This is up from 13-14 where 296 institutions met this designation in 29 states, including Washington, D.C.

Graduate Programs—172; the number of HSIs that offer graduate degrees. This accounts for 40 percent of all HSIs and 80 percent of four-year HSIs.

In 2014, Excelencia in Education launched the HSI Center for Policy & Practice (HSI-CP2) as an online resource for research on policies and evidence-based practices focused on HSIs. To review additional analyses and publications on HSIs, please visit www.EdExcelencia.org/HSI-CP2.