Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Doing More with Less: An Inequitable Funding Structure at Hispanic-Serving Institutions

Tags: diversity and social justice, higher education, overton-adkins


National Forum on Higher Education for the Public Good releases important policy briefs addressing funding gaps in a time of critical demographic shifts in the US

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Media Contact: Ted Montgomery

ANN ARBOR, MI (March 25, 2014) – The National Forum on Higher Education for the Public Good (National Forum) recently released two briefs – The Placing Our Nation at Risk: Inequitable Funding of Hispanic-Serving Institutions and Advancing Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs): Recommendations for Strengthening Federal Investments that explore the funding structure at HSIs, highlight funding inequities, and provide recommendations for strengthening federal investments.

"Placing Our Nation at Risk: Inequitable Funding of Hispanic-Serving Institutions issue brief confirms the fiscal challenges facing many HSIs by documenting that these institutions receive fewer dollars per student than their peer institutions," said National Forum Director Dr. Betty Overton. "Given these findings, the Advancing Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs): Recommendations for Strengthening Federal Investments policy brief provides two recommendations for the federal government: 1) consolidate all federal HSI grants into one program area [currently Title V of the Reauthorization Act], and 2) create a federal-state match to incentivize states to invest in HSIs."

Likewise, Dr. Jaime Chahin, who is treasurer of the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education and dean of the College of Applied Arts and associate director of social work at Texas State University – San Marcos, conveyed the importance of supporting HSIs by saying, "As a result of the changing demographics and enrollment patterns of Latinos in higher education, it is critical that Hispanic-Serving Institutions have the financial capacity and resources to recruit, retain and graduate Latino Students. It is imperative that states and the federal government intervene with public policies that meet and support the financial needs of students and institutional support systems. The strategic investment in students and Hispanic-Serving Institutions will enhance graduation outcomes for Latinos in America."

Latinos represent the largest and fastest growing minority group in the United States. Despite this demographic growth, Latino educational attainment still lags behind other ethnic/racial groups. Ensuring the financial stability of HSIs is especially important for increasing educational attainment because they educate more than half of enrolled Latino students in higher education. But, without the proper funding and attention to HSIs and this huge population, the future of Latinos in higher education is dim.

In addition to this work, the National Forum has engaged in several initiatives to examine the role of higher education within the context of an increasingly larger Latino population, such as the www.uLEADnet.org resource. The website was launched in 2013 to facilitate dialogue about undocumented student success and provide resources to users who aim to learn and work toward access to higher education for undocumented students.

For more information on this and other work completed by the National Forum, including research on issues of access to higher education for undocumented students, visit the National Forum’s website at thenationalforum.org.

About the National Forum on Higher Education for the Public Good

The mission of the National Forum on Higher Education for the Public Good (National Forum) is affiliated with the Center for the Study of Higher Education and Postsecondary Education (CSHPE) at the University of Michigan and is uniquely positioned as both creator and translator of rigorous empirical research into practice-based outcomes. Our mission statement, adopted in 2000, explicitly states our "commitment to significantly increase awareness, understanding, commitment, and action relative to the public service role of higher education" in the United States.

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