How Can Colleges Attract More Minority Students? Hire More Minority Professors, Say College Deans

There are many ways to attract Hispanic students to pursue and complete college and university studies. Probably one of the most important, yet overlooked, ways to generate enthusiasm and interest in higher education is to create a sense of belonging and comfort for students with different cultural backgrounds and language skills. Hispanic professionals in classrooms and lecture halls can make the difference between success and failure for some Hispanic students. For institutions seeking to increase their number of minority students, a multicultural staff could hold the key to building a more diverse student body. In this issue HO presents a list of the top 25 schools with the greatest percentage of Hispanic instructional staff and a separate top 25 list of schools with the most Hispanics as part of their instructional staff. Here’s why this is so important:

hispanic outlook jobs higher education

A survey of business school deans at more than 100 U.S. colleges and universities reveals that hiring minority professors is the key to attracting minority students. Asked to report on their experience since hiring minority professors, 79.8 percent of business schools deans say hiring minority professors has helped them attract more minority students.

"Colleges and universities have tried many methods of increasing student diversity -- but this survey demonstrates that having a diverse faculty is a sure way of attaining that goal," Bernard J. Milano, President of the KPMG Foundation, administrator of The PhD Project, said.
The PhD Project, a multi-million dollar corporate and academicled effort to increase minority representation among business pro-fessors, conducted the survey. Since The PhD Project was founded in 1994, the number of minority professors at U.S. business schools has more than doubled from 294 to 623. The PhD Project surveyed business school deans who have recently hired minority professors to see how these new professors are impacting education in the classroom.

Other results from the survey include: 

*    91.4 percent report that minority professors positively impact the education of minority students
*    87.5 percent say that minority professors are having a positive impact on career mentoring for minority students
*    73.3 percent reported that minority professors are positively impacting the attitudes of non-minority faculty toward minority students and minority issues
*    69.9 percent say that students, (regardless of race) who have taken a class from a minority professor, will be better prepared for a business career

Even though the number of minority professors is projected to rise to 900 by 2006, this still would not provide a minority professor for each of the 1200 U.S. business schools. Currently, less than three percent of business school professors are African-American, Hispanic-American or Native American. “There is much more to do to create a diverse faculty, which will in turn provide a more complete educational experience for all students,” Milano said. 

Story courtesy of PRNewswire and the PhD Project

TOP 25 lists compiled from NCES/IPEDS 2014 database on instructional staff positions at 2-year and 4-year schools in the United States.