Hispanic Community December 2021 PREMIUM
One of the central aims of Hispanic Outlook is to empower the Hispanic/Latino community, as well as the broader, increasingly diverse American community overall, through timely, in-depth information and insights on educational trends and opportunities.

The end of the year provides us with an opportunity to gather together the diverse topics that were explored in the pages of Hispanic Outlook, and to present the many things that we have learnt through the articles contributed by educators and institutions from around the country. We hope that the following review will help our readers – dedicated students, counselors, educators, mentors, researchers, administrators, and those from many other fields – to navigate the coming year with more insights into the work that is being done to bolster the success of our community.

2021 The Second Pandemic Year

The past year could be referred to as the second year of the Covid19 pandemic, marked by ebbs and flows that indicate that this situation will probably still take some time to come under control. At the same time, the global community learned a great deal more about ways to deal with the disease, with the help of a particularly important breakthrough: vaccines that have proved to reduce hospitalization and mortality, even as it is also being proven that their protection wanes sooner than would have been desired. Along with vaccination campaigns and a better understanding of how to protect ourselves through “covid-appropriate” behavior, life has resumed a “new normal” course in many areas of the country.

Our understanding of the pandemic and our ways of dealing with it have been extremely controversial, however, with debates raging over macro issues - such as the need to investigate the origins of the pandemic, or the effects of vaccine mandates on public health and on citizen’s rights – as well as over local-level issues, ranging from mask-wearing to how schools should be reopened.

Although these issues are undoubtedly important, Hispanic Outlook has purposely steered away from these controversies – covered extensively by most media outlets – in order to focus on the key issue of how the pandemic has concretely affected opportunities in higher education, particularly for minorities and Hispanics/Latinos, and how these effects can be countered through innovative ideas, collaboration, solidarity and leadership within the educational community.

The derailing effects of the pandemic on educational opportunities for minorities

It is known that in the years preceding the pandemic, minorities overall, and Hispanics/Latinos in particular, were already facing an uphill educational struggle in many respects. At the same time, many important gains had been made, even if at a slow but steady pace. In his article “Latinas And Graduate Education” (April 2021), Gustavo Mellander highlights progress in graduate education, for example, citing the small but steady increase in Hispanic doctoral recipients, from 6.4% of all doctoral recipients in 2014 to 7.1% in 2017. Mellander also discusses the notable gains of Latinas in education and employment in the same article, as well as in “The Unstoppable Women” (October 2021). This article highlights that “Latinas with an associate, bachelor’s, or graduate degree jumped from 17 percent in 2000 to 30 percent in 2017. This 70 percent growth outpaced their Latino male and non-Latina millennial counterparts, who increased 56 percent and 35 percent, respectively”. In addition, “the workforce growth of Latinas is outpacing both non-Latinas and Latino males for the first time in history. To be precise, the Latina workforce grew 93 percent compared to 71 percent for Latino males and 13 percent for non-Latinas from 2000 to 2017.”  (An important corollary to this is the fact that Latino males have been increasingly falling behind, as discussed extensively by Mellander in “Latino Men And Community Colleges”, February 2021, and in an interview with Daniel García, Global Education Advisor at Chapman University, on his research regarding the lack of Latino men in study abroad programs – see “Spotlight on Latino Students Studying Abroad” by Adriana Alcántara, March 2021).

Unfortunately, it has become clear that the pandemic has derailed many of the painstaking gains made over the past years. Various articles in HO highlighted the ways in which the pandemic had devastating effects for the higher education sector: between Spring 2020 and Spring 2021, overall enrollment at US degree-granting institutions decreased by around 600,000 students (a 3.5% drop, the largest in a decade); freshman enrollment at community colleges (which serve a large proportion of minority, first-generation and specifically Hispanic students) decreased by a shocking 27.5%, the highest drop of any higher education segment.1 Gary Stern reported that “Latino college enrollment dipped by 5.4% in the fall of 2020, according to data provided by the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center […]. What’s more, 26.4 percent fewer high school graduates from schools with a high percentage of Black and Latino students went straight to college in 2020 compared with 2019” (see “Pre-College Programs Benefit Latino Students” by Gary Stern, Nov. 2021).

Students of all ethnicities lost jobs and sometimes found themselves needing to support their families after a principal bread-earner lost a job or passed away. These effects were felt especially strongly by minority students, who were more likely to already be in a financially precarious situation. Mellander cites data indicating that Hispanic students “reported a much higher level of food and housing problems due to the virus than did their Caucasian peers. Further, one in four students lost their jobs due to COVID-19. To compensate, forty-eight percent of Black and Hispanic students were much more likely to take on debt to deal with the crisis than their Caucasian counterparts who logged in at twenty-nine percent.”(See “Hispanic Students And The Virus” written by Gustavo A. Mellander, May 2021).

Minority students were also more likely to lack adequate access to online learning, with less ability to pay for internet connections, the need to share a device with many siblings, and class schedules clashing with their jobs or family obligations. Minority and first-generation students were thus more likely to drop out of courses and eventually abandon their degrees altogether.

In addition, many colleges (particularly ones with small endowments) were forced to downsize, eliminating scholarships, teaching positions, and entire areas of study. In some cases, they had to shut down completely, as discussed in “Facing The Pandemic: College Presidents’ Dilemma” By Gustavo Mellander (August 21).

The road to recovery and growth: leadership for harnessing the strength of a dynamic community

The pandemic has laid bare the fragilities of our social and economic systems; however, it has also provided an unprecedented opportunity for communities to come together, strengthen their identities and values, and reflect on the measures they need to take not only to recover, but also to grow and improve upon the pre-pandemic situation.

How do Hispanics identify themselves, and what makes them a distinctive community? This basic yet complex question is explored by Sylvia Mendoza in the article “Beyond Self-Identifying Labels: Check the Box” (Sept 21), which states that identity is multi-layered, making it difficult for people from diverse Latin American roots, and with different personal immigrant journeys, to be categorized in the same box. Indeed, according to recent polls, “most Hispanic adults (57%) say it does not matter to them which self-identifying term is used. However, one in four (23%) prefer “Hispanic,” 15% prefer “Latino,” and 4% preferred “Latinx”[…] Regardless of their background, however, many believe they cannot be defined or self-identify by a singular term.”

The dynamic growth of the Hispanic/Latino community has been evident in recent years: it has grown 23% since 2010, reaching 62.1 million in 2020. This rapid growth means that higher education institutions are increasingly oriented towards recruiting Hispanic students. How can the strength and vitality of the Hispanic/Latino community be harnessed and guided towards greater educational success?

Important pathways in this direction are provided by Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs, a federal designation for institutions with more than 25% Hispanic enrollment that become eligible for federal grants) whose number is set to increase substantially. There are currently 362 “emerging” HSIs, with between 15-24% Hispanic enrollment,2 and 569 designated HSIs, which serve 67% of all undergraduate Hispanic students. Margaret Orchowski discusses the current situation of HSIs in the article “Hispanic Serving Institutions Struggle in the Pandemic” (May 2021), highlighting their growth as well as the need to provide them with increased federal funding, particularly because HSIs have a much greater proportion of students in need of financial support. “Emerging” HSIs that are rapidly becoming HSIs may also have to wait longer for grants if there are insufficient federal funds available.

Several of this year’s articles have also highlighted the importance of national associations and organizations that are dedicated to nurturing and supporting Hispanic/Latino higher education leaders, who will in turn foster the success of students in their colleges and universities.

Excelencia in Education is another organization that has built networks of educators, policymakers and university leaders for the past 17 years in order to accelerate the success of Latino students. Presidents for Latino Student Success (P4LSS) is a broad national network of diverse college and university presidents and chancellors who are committed to “making their institutions learning environments where Latino students thrive”. In addition, the organization has established the Seal of Excelencia, a certification for universities that serve Latino students across many core areas (see “Presidents for Latino Student Success At The Forefront Of Institutional Transformation” by Chino Chapa, Media and Communications Liaison, Excelencia in Education, August 21)

The Aspen Institute College Excellence Program is another essential organization that has focused on building a pipeline of diverse community college leaders through the Presidential Fellowship for Community College Excellence, launched in 2016. The fellowship consists of executive development programs that train senior leaders and current presidents from community colleges nationwide. In the 2021 cohort, over 75% of participants are people of color, and 18% identify as Latino/a/x (see “The Aspen Institute’s Presidential Fellowship for Community College Excellence: Supporting Diverse Leaders” by Aspen Institute College Excellence Program, August 21).

Finally, the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education (AAHHE) is dedicated to “expanding the pipeline of the Latinx community in higher education” through programs for graduate fellows, faculty fellows, and those who wish to become administrators (see “First Fifteen Years of AAHHE In Review: 2005 – 2020” Written by Patricia Arredondo, EdD and Victor B. Saénz, PhD, April 2021).

Universities and colleges: a plethora of measures to support Hispanic/Latino students

Throughout 2021, the pages of Hispanic Outlook have been filled with stories that demonstrate the impressive amounts of solidarity and support that are offered to Hispanic/Latino students by higher education institutions of all kinds – community colleges, liberal arts colleges, medical schools, law schools – and by those that are designated Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs), emerging HSIs, and even institutions with only a small proportion of Hispanic students. These institutions are not building castles in the air or echoing mere catchphrases about diversity: all the articles describe concrete measures that are bolstering the educational and career trajectories of Hispanic/Latino students, from enrollment to academic success to employability.

Pre-college programs

Minority and first-generation students often lack the family support (in terms of knowledge of the system and financial resources) that is needed to make informed choices about higher education and navigate the college admission process. Multiple organizations and universities are helping students to overcome these challenges by offering pre-college programs that introduce them to the college experience, link them with mentors, and facilitate the process of applying for financial aid, among other measures.

In 2021, Hispanic Outlook included articles that illustrate a variety of pre-college approaches. Gary Stern provides an overview of the federally funded TRIO and AVID pre-college programs, which are aimed at first-generation students and focus mainly on assisting them with FAFSA and other forms of financial aid (“Pre-College Programs Benefit Latino Students”, November 2021). Two top-tier, prestigious universities – the University of Chicago and George Washington University –  presented their  pre-college summer programs designed specifically for Hispanics, which include similar components: the opportunity to participate in select university courses on-campus, a commitment to community engagement, writing workshops and help with navigating the admissions and financial aid process (“An Early Taste Of An Exceptional College Experience” by Neubauer Adelante Summer Scholars Program at University of Chicago, March 2021, and “Caminos Al Futuro” by Cisneros Hispanic Leadership Institute at The George Washington University, March 2021).

In addition, North Carolina State University presented its recently created summer program aimed at increasing Hispanic/Latino admission, which includes family activities, assistance with admissions and financial aid, and a unique leadership workshop on the history of Latinos in U.S. higher education (“CAMINOS: Your Journey To College” by Jacqueline López, November 2021). Finally, the Hispanic Bar Association provides high school students with a unique opportunity to visit Washington D.C., interact directly with Latinx leaders, receive mock trial training and compete in a D.C. courthouse at the end of the program (“The Hispanic National Bar Foundation: Advancing Latino/x High Schoolers into College” by Jamie Cotera and Aleesha Khan, November 2021). All of these programs are fully funded and have been transformational for many hundreds of students.

Community outreach and targeted recruitment

Many universities engage in local community outreach activities that aim to boost the enrollment of under-represented groups. This strategy has positive results for everyone: universities become more diverse and can apply for federal funding if they are aiming to become HSIs, students are encouraged to enroll in higher education, and ties are strengthened between the university and the local community.

Hispanic Outlook has included profiles of two “emerging” HSIs that have made concerted efforts to reach out to the growing Latino community in their area: Marquette University, a Jesuit university in Milwaukee, and Rutgers University-Camden, a public research university in New Jersey. Both these institutions have increased Hispanic undergraduate enrollment substantially over the past few years – Marquette from 9.7% of the total in 2016 to 18% in 2021, and Rutgers-Camden from 11.9% in 2014 to 20.2% in 2021. These are the concrete results of recruitment efforts that include Marquette’s Community Ambassadors program of outreach to local high schools, its Encuentros Mentor Program, and transfer agreements with two-year institutions that provide a pipeline for first-generation students; at Rutgers-Camden, these efforts include outreach in Spanish to local high schools, bilingual presentations to families on federal financial assistance, and pairing Hispanic first-generation college students with a Hispanic peer mentor (see “Marquette University Strives For Hispanic ‘Servingness’,” by Jacki Black, Associate Director for Hispanic Initiatives at Marquette University, October 2021, and “Key To Success How Rutgers University–Camden Appeals To Diversity And Inclusiveness” by Antonio D. Tillis, Ph.D., Chancellor, October 2021).

HO also presented three medical schools – the University of Illinois (UIC) College of Medicine, the Marquette University College of Nursing and the CUNY School of Medicine - that believe that doctors and nurses are more effective practitioners when they belong to the same communities as the patients they serve, and thus share a mission to recruit and support students who are underrepresented in the field of medicine. The UIC College of Medicine is the school with the largest number of Hispanic students in the mainland U.S., thanks to its close ties with its surrounding community - the Lower West Side of Chicago which is 80% Latino – its holistic approach to admissions which looks at the entire trajectory and effort of first-generation students, rather than merely their GMAT scores, and its efforts to provide enrichment programs and even tutoring for STEM classes at local schools with diverse populations (see “University Of Illinois (UIC) College Of Medicine: The Medical School That Produces The Highest Number Of Latino Doctors In The U.S.”, by Gary Stern, July 2021). The Marquette College of Nursing hopes to prepare 5,000 nurses over the next decade, 1,000 of whom should be from under-represented backgrounds; its’ outreach strategies are funded by large grants that also provide generous scholarships (see “Empowering Diverse Nurses Enhances Our Workforce” by The Marquette University College of Nursing, July 2021).

Over nearly 40 years, the CUNY School of Medicine (CSOM), located in Harlem, New York City, has enrolled at least three times more medical students from groups under-represented in medicine (minorities) than other US medical schools. In the 2020-21 cohort, 51% of all enrolled students identified as a minority; 14.5% identified as Hispanic/Latino, a much higher rate than the national average of 6.7% Hispanics. This is due to CSOM’s efforts to recruit Hispanic students through two pipeline programs: “The Health Professions Recruitment and Exposure Program (HPREP), that encourages under-represented minority high school students to consider careers in science and medicine; and the Health Professions Mentorship Program (HPMP), an enrichment program for rising high school juniors considering health care careers”. In addition, as with UIC College of Medicine, CSOM takes a holistic view of each applicant during the admissions process; it also provides extra academic support and guidance through a Summer Pre-Matriculation Program. CSOM is proud of the fact that the vast majority of graduates who are now working in primary care careers (primarily in New York State) come from under-represented communities (see “CUNY School of Medicine Sophie Davis Program” by Annabel Santana, Assistant Dean for Academic & Faculty Affairs, CUNY School of Medicine-CCNY, July 2021).

The article “A Mission To Attract Latino And Minority Students: Golden Gate University School Of Law” by Gary Stern, October 2021 highlights this school’s outreach and recruitment efforts, which have made it one of the top five in the country in terms of percentage of Hispanic students (who constituted 30% of its class of 2020). The university creates relationships with pre-law societies at HSIs, partners with the Council on Legal Education Opportunity (which supports minority student enrollment in law schools), hosts workshops to help minority and low-income students prepare for the LSAT, and provides merit-based scholarships. Golden Gate graduates complete the cycle of progress by giving back to their communities – most work in local government and public interest nonprofits.

Funding for institutional programs, scholarships, and Covid19 relief

Pre-college programs, community outreach and targeted recruitment efforts are all important steps for attracting and motivating Hispanic/Latino students, but providing financial support is surely the most essential component for ensuring college permanence and success. Most of the institutions profiled in Hispanic Outlook over the course of the year highlighted the ways in which they secure federal, state and philanthropic grants in order to fund institutional programs, increase financial aid for students in need – particularly first-generation, low-income students; minority students; returning students; and migrant or undocumented students – and provide relief packages in various areas to mitigate the effects of the pandemic.

The federal government has provided large Covid19 relief packages over the past year and a half, through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2020 and the American Rescue Plan of 2021. These relief acts authorized the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), which has provided grants that will be available into 2023.

The San Diego Community College District (SDCCD)  - one of California’s largest, with Hispanics comprising 40% of the nearly 100,000 students - is a good example of the ways in which large higher education institutions have made use of these federal relief funds, along with federal HIS grants and state and local funds, to offset the costs of the pandemic and to support Hispanic students in particular. The SDCCD received $97 million through federal HEERF funding: part of this was disbursed in direct payments to students, part was used to help students remain enrolled by covering the costs of housing, healthcare or tuition fees, and part was used to transition to online learning and provide students with laptops, among other measures. In addition, two colleges in the district were awarded large federal HSI grants to build STEM pathways for Latino/a/x students. Finally, the SDCCD receives state funds for its Dreamer/DACA programs, and grants from the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office to help lower-income students with housing (see “Infusion of Stimulus Funds Making a Difference for Students Of Color At The SDCCD” by San Diego Community College District, May 2021 and “SDCCD: Serving Latinx Students Through And Beyond The Pandemic” by Dr. Carlos O. Turner Cortez, Chancellor, San Diego Community College District, November 2021).

Two large HSIs – the University of California Santa Barbara and the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) – have also contributed articles describing the ways in which they have supported minority and lower-income students throughout the pandemic, through assistance for food and housing, internet connections and laptops, and other support services (see “Spirit Of Collaboration Serves Latinx Students At UC Santa Bárbara” by Dr. Lupe Navarro-Garcia Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Academic Support Services, UC Santa Bárbara, September 2021 and “Getting The Most Out Of Hard Times: The University Of Texas At San Antonio” by Veronica Salazar Mendez, Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President for Business Affairs, UTSA, October 2021).

Colorado State University Pueblo has supported Hispanic/Latino students through federal HSI funds, as well as through state funds that “provide wraparound services to low-income students whose financial status puts them at-risk for leaving the academy, as well as students who have already left and who have difficulty returning due to financial reasons” (see “Colorado State University Pueblo: Elevating HIS Status, Embracing Community and Leveraging Opportunity”, November 2021).

Marquette University, which hopes to become an HSI, has provided Latino students with $33 million in financial aid in the 2020-21 academic year, and also provides more than $250,000 for the Ignacio Ellacuría, S.J. Dreamers Scholarship, among other measures (see “Empowering Diverse Nurses Enhances Our Workforce” by The Marquette University College of Nursing, July 2021).

Michigan State University’s unique and comprehensive assistance for migrant and farmworker students is presented in the article “Beginning at MSU: The Experience Of A First-Generation Farmworker Student” by Henry Mochida (September 2021).  MSU’s College Assistance Migrant Program, or CAMP, “assists students from migrant and seasonal farmworker backgrounds with academic, social and financial support to complete their first year of college”. MSU also offers various scholarships including the Efrain and Francisca Marinez Farm Workers Scholarship and the Todos Organizados Para Cuidar Estudiantes Scholarship, for students who are committed to supporting the MSU Latino community.

Community colleges and workforce training

Community colleges are an entry point to higher education for a majority of Hispanics. Although enrollment has decreased due to the pandemic, these colleges will surely become even more essential in the post-pandemic scenario, as they can provide courses at an accessible cost, have flexible options for students who work full or part-time, and provide opportunities for “re-skilling” – training people to re-enter the job market with new and relevant skills that will also contribute to getting the economy back on track.

El Paso Community College (EPCC), for example, is on a mission to contribute to the post-pandemic recovery by continuing to “prioritize teaching students the skills necessary for a fulfilling and prosperous career while responding to the workforce needs of regional business and industry”, which will in turn strengthen the economy of the entire region. EPCC, recognized for the 16th consecutive year for awarding the largest number of associate degrees to Hispanic students, is a prime example of the successful career pipeline that community colleges create, particularly for low-income, first-generation students. At EPCC, the main focus is on ensuring that students have the financial and academic support they need to complete their studies in programs that teach skills in high demand, and lead to careers with high mobility (see “EPCC Provides Graduates Upward Mobility While Building A Stronger Region” by Keri Moe, February 2021, and “El Paso Community College: Uno De Los Mejores Colegios Para Hispanos” by El Paso Community College, March 2021).

The Alamos Colleges District, located in San Antonio, a regional hub for medical care in South Texas, provides another example of workforce training that translates directly into greater economic and social mobility for Hispanic/Latino students. The District recently obtained a Healthcare Apprentice Grant from the Department of Labor, which is funding a joint Alamos Colleges/Methodist Healthcare Patient Care Technician (PCT) Apprenticeship Program. This program is for full-time Methodist Healthcare employees and results in a national or state industry-recognized PCT credential. Half of those accepted in the February 2021 cohort are Hispanic. According to Alamo Colleges Chancellor Dr. Mike Flores, these workforce training efforts “focus on creating pathways for residents to enter high-wage, high-demand careers,” and help to fulfill the District’s vision of ‘eliminating poverty through education’ (see “Alamo Colleges/Methodist Healthcare Apprenticeship Program: Leading Students From Training Right Into Jobs” by Kay Hendricks, Coordinator of Communication, Alamo Colleges District, July 21).

Likewise, the University of Houston Downtown (UHD), an HSI, has received a Texas state-funded grant that will finance the “re-skilling” of students who left their programs of study due to financial reasons but would like to return in order to learn new skills that are in demand in the job market. UHD estimates that the grant will cover tuition and fees for one to two courses for some 500 students who left without completing their degrees (see “UHD Receives $750K Grant To Help Returning Students” by University of Houston Downtown, February 2021).

University programs that support Hispanic/Latino leadership and community engagement

Over the course of the year, HO published profiles of university programs oriented towards supporting Latino leadership in various fields. All of these programs strive for academic excellence and produce graduates that will give back to their communities and be catalysts for change.

For example, St. Mary’s University School of Law, whose student body is 50% Hispanic/Latino, provides a Legal and Cultural Study Abroad spring break program in Mexico, which is described as “a program of academic excellence with a mission to educate future leaders for the common good through community and social justice”. The program, in partnership with the University of Guadalajara, introduces students to the Mexican legal system through interactions with Mexican law professors, jurists and human rights activists, observation of a Mexican trial, and attendance at a full session of the state congress, among other activities (see “Immersion Into Mexican Culture And Law” by Sylvia Mendoza, April 2021).

At the graduate school level, the Harvard Kennedy School supports students through the U.S. Latino Fellowship for both Latin American students and U.S.-based Latinos, which provides full tuition, health insurance, and a 25,000 annual stipend for a full course of study in the School (see “Latino Leadership Needed For Critical Impact” by Akiesha Ortiz, Educator and Senior Program Manager, U.S. Latino Leadership Center for Public Leadership, Harvard Kennedy School, August 21).

The article “Doctor Of Education In Educational Leadership” by Fairfield’s School of Education and Human Development (August 21) describes a three-year, hybrid program that is meant to “prepare teacher-leaders who are advocates for social justice and anti-racist policies and practices”, and who “want to catalyze systemic change within their classrooms and schools”. This new doctoral program arose as a result of reflections on the disproportionate effects of the pandemic on minorities.

Finally, Frank DiMaria highlights the importance of the AmeriCorps Civic Action Fellows program, in the article “Fellow Program Brings Hope to Students And Their Parents” (May 2021). This federal and state program provides college students with funds and valuable leadership experience in exchange for spending 25 hours per week, over a 22-week period, working with local nonprofit organizations. Students are thus introduced to the importance of public service and become involved in solving local and regional challenges.

University clubs, associations and centers that support diversity and Hispanic culture

Several issues of HO have included profiles of universities’ associations and centers specifically dedicated to supporting Hispanic students and to promoting knowledge and understanding of Hispanic/Latino culture.

The articles “Supporting William Paterson University’s Hispanic/Latino/a Latinx Students: Café Con Leche” by Maria Karidis Daniel (September 2021) and “Adelphi University Latino Student Association Provides A Home For Students On Campus” by Liza N. Burby (October 2021) present the ways in which students’ associations have promoted a feeling of belonging and inclusion among Hispanic/Latino students, providing them with a safe space for open dialogue and peer support.

New Mexico State University (NMSU) in Las Cruces and Colorado State University (CSU) Pueblo, both HSIs with longstanding Chicano Studies programs, have both made notable efforts to expand their cultural outreach to the community:  CSU Pueblo has developed a Ballet Folklórico program that works with local high schools, and NMSU is petitioning for the creation of a Borderlands and Ethnic Studies (BEST) Department that could help to develop a K-12 Ethnic Studies curriculum (recently mandated by the state government). Both of these institutions have recently created new high-level administrative positions to boost inclusion, diversity, and the implementation of HSI initiatives (see “Colorado State University Pueblo: Elevating HIS Status, Embracing Community and Leveraging Opportunity”, November 2021 and “51 Years Of Fostering Diversity At NMSU”, by Judith Flores Carmona and Teresa Maria Linda Scholz, New Mexico State University, November 2021).

Other Key Themes Covered by Hispanic Outlook in 2021

Top institutions: where do Hispanics study?

Each year, HO publishes lists of higher education institutions that have the highest number of Hispanic students, and offer the largest number of degrees in various areas. These lists also include the percentage of total students that are Hispanic. Each list is meticulously prepared using reliable data from the National Center for Education Statistics’ IPEDS database.

Top STEM Schools for Hispanics” by The Department of Education (January 2021)

Community Colleges: Hispanic Enrollment And Degrees Granted” by The Department of Education (February 2021)

Top 100 Colleges And Universities For Hispanics (October 2021)

Hispanic leadership: who are the individuals that are making a difference for the community?

Throughout the year, HO presented the individual trajectories and contributions of inspiring Latinos, ranging from those who are making a difference in their local communities and specific fields, to those who have become university presidents and chancellors.

Latina Golfers Association: One Woman’s Quest to Level the Playing Field” by Silvia Mendoza (March 2021)

Spotlight on Latino Students Studying Abroad” by Adriana Alcántara (March 2021) (Encouraging Hispanic/Latino students to explore the world: Interview with Daniel García, Global Education Advisor at Chapman University)

Hispanics/Latinos in STEM Careers” by Frank DiMaria (April 2021) (Engineering Student Juan Cardenas Uses Bridge Design to Inspire Students to Pursue STEM Careers)

Keeping Your Dreams Alive” by Amaryllis Sánchez Wohlever, MD (July 21) (Amaryllis Sánchez Wohlever, MD is a family physician, a life & leadership coach for physicians, and the author of Recapturing Joy in Medicine, among others)

Texas School Counselor of The Year Rhonda Ramirez: Pushing Through A Pandemic To Serve Students” by Sylvia Mendoza (November 2021)

University leaders

President Madeline Pumariega Comes Home” by Sylvia Mendoza (August 21)(President of Miami Dade College)

Pedro Rivera: Always Gazing Through The Right Lens” by Frank DiMaria (August 21) (President of Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology)

Outstanding Leadership Trajectories: Hispanic Chancellors Of The Nation’s Largest College Systems” by Adriana Alcántara (August 21)

Dr. Elsa Núñez: Working Towards Equity and Inclusiveness”, by Frank DiMaria (September 2021) (President of Eastern Connecticut State University)

Career counseling: what strategies can students use to bolster their academic and career prospects?

HO has offered tips, strategies and advice for students on a variety of issues:

15 Tips to Major and Succeed in STEM Careers” by Gary Stern (January 2021)

Tips For Minority Students To Get Accepted Into Elite Universities” by Gary Stern (February 2021)

12 Steps Into Graduate School” by Gary Stern (April 2021)

15 Tips On How Latino Students Can Afford Their Graduate School Education” By Gary Stern (May 2021)

How to Find, Land, and Succeed in a Virtual Internship” by The DeBruce Foundation (May 2021)

A Plethora Of Career Pathways: Overlooked Jobs In The Field Of Medicine” by Marianna Seefeldt (July 2021)

Four Key Tips for Success in Medical School” by Alyssa Dean (July 2021)

Public Liberal Arts Colleges: Leveraging Options For Low-Income And First-Generation Students” by Frank DiMaria (Nov 2021)

Pre-College Programs Benefit Latino Students” by Gary Stern (Nov 2021)

Arts and culture: which people and programs have highlighted the community’s collective identity?

From Carnegie Hall To Colegas: Gilberto Santa Rosa’s Musical Trajectory Was Purely Magical” by Danny Torres (Jan 21)

Cuban Arroz con Leche” by Alejandra Suarez (Feb 21)

Spanglish TV Newscasts: Break The Mold And Resonate With Younger Latinx Viewers” by Jesús Ayala (June 21)

Buenos Aires Street Art” by Pablo Navazo (June 21)

The Power Of Music: School Mariachi Programs As Catalysts Of Change” by Adriana Alcántara (June 21)

The Contemporary Art Modern Project” by Maria Gabriela Di Giammarco (June 21)

Modesto Lacén: Career, Fatherhood And The AfroPuerto Rican Experience” by Danny Torres (June 21)

Tango: An Inclusive Art” by Alejandro Figliolo (June 21)

Ballet Hispánico: A Cultural Legacy” by Kiri Avelar and Michelle Manzanales (June 21)

CSUDH University Art Gallery and PRAXIS Program” by HO Staff. Edited by Aandrea Stang, CSUDH (June 21)

King Juan Carlos I of Spain Center: An Iconic Representation Of Spanish Culture And Civilization In The Heart of Manhattan” by Jordana Mendelson (Sept 21)

The Voces Oral History Center: A Mission To Preserve Hispanic Heritage” By Voces Staff (Sept 21)


Prepared by Adriana Alcántara and Alejandra Suárez  for Hispanic Outlook

1. Data cited in “Facing The Pandemic: College Presidents’ Dilemma” by Gustavo Mellander, August 2021, and “Latino Men And Community Colleges” by Gustavo Mellander, February 2021.

2. HACU data, cited in “Colorado State University Pueblo: Elevating HIS Status, Embracing Community and Leveraging Opportunity”, November 2021.


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