Hispanic-Serving Institutions

History, Resources & a Look at Top HSI Colleges

The Hispanic population is one of the largest and fastest growing non-white population groups in the United States, according to Pew Research. And over the past several decades, the high school dropout rate of Hispanic students has been steadily dropping, and the rate of college enrollment has increased. To better serve these students, many post-secondary institutions have become Hispanic-Serving Institutions, or HSIs. This designation allows them to receive federal funding to better assist Hispanic college students. We’ll take a broad look at HSIs, including their significance and importance in delivering a college education to Hispanic students.

HSIs at a Glance

  • In 1996, approximately 35 percent of Hispanic high school graduates were enrolled in college. In 2016, this number rose to 47 percent.
  • HSIs make up around 13 percent of post-secondary institutions in the United States but educate roughly two-thirds of all Hispanic college students.
  • HSIs and schools that are close to becoming HSIs are present in 37 states.
  • Most HSIs can be found in states with high Hispanic populations (and high populations overall), such as Texas, Florida, New York and California.
  • Two-thirds of all HSIs are public institutions.
  • Most HSIs are small colleges, with student populations of less than 2,000 full-time students.
  • HSIs receive significant federal funding, with over $120 million appropriated for HSI undergraduate programs in 2018.

Sources: Hispanic Association of Colleges & Universities, Pew Research

Understanding Hispanic-Serving Institutions

Hispanic-Serving Institutions are colleges and universities that enroll a significant number of low-income students and who also have a large Hispanic student population. The precise definition of an HSI will depend on the context and purpose of the designation.

For example, to become a member of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU), 25 percent of a school’s total enrollment must consist of Hispanic students. This total enrollment includes all students, at both graduate and undergraduate levels and those who attend school full-time or part-time.

In other words, an HSI is a college or university that meets the eligibility requirements of Title III of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (Title III provides federal funding to post-secondary institutions to help low-income and minority students) but also has a large number of Hispanic students (at least 25 percent of the full-time equivalent population).

But an HSI is much more than a racially and ethnically diverse student population. One quite notable difference is that HSIs excel in graduation rates. To put it in perspective, more than 74 percent of full-time students at four-year HSIs graduated within six years, while the federal graduation rate was less than 43 percent. HSIs also serve Hispanic students by promoting a racially diverse student body, fostering a positive and open campus and providing student services that are specifically designed to help Hispanic students. For instance, school administrators and service providers are bilingual, and the colleges operate Latinx outreach programs at local area high schools.

Within the context of federal funding, the requirements of an HSI are more stringent. To receive federal funds pursuant to Title V of the Higher Education Act of 1965, a school qualifies as an HSI if all of the following requirements are met:

  • At least 25 percent of its full-time equivalent undergraduate students classify as Hispanic.
  • At least 50 percent of its entire student population is eligible for need-based Title IV financial aid.
  • Otherwise meets the requirements to receive federal funding, such as being an accredited, degree-granting institution.

How the HSIs Stack Up

Curious about which schools are HSIs and how they stack up against each other? See how the HSI schools rank against each other in terms of graduation rates, percentage of Latinx student enrollment, financial aid offered and student retention, and learn about the individual schools on our list and what they offer Hispanic students.

4-year schools

METHODOLOGY

Expand All +

RankUniversityLocationRanking ScoreAvg Net Price
1Florida International UniversityMiami, FL98.37$12219% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
67
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
86%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
2California State University, San BernardinoSan Bernardino, CA91.40$8704% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
63
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
91%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
3The University of Texas Rio Grande ValleyHarlingen, TX90.47$4095% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
91
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
91%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
4California State University, StanislausTurlock, CA90.00$6768% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
51
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
92%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
5University of California, RiversideRiverside, CA88.60$12404% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
40
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
87%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
6Fresno Pacific UniversityFresno, CA88.60$14235% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
48
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
100%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
7Texas A&M International UniversityLaredo, TX87.21$4857% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
95
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
90%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
8Mount Saint Mary’s UniversityLos Angeles, CA86.98$28910% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
62
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
100%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
9California State University, FullertonFullerton, CA86.51$8562% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
42
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
79%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
10California State University, Long BeachLong Beach, CA86.28$9654% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
40
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
80%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
11University of California, MercedMerced, CA86.28$13147% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
51
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
94%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
12University of La VerneLa Verne, CA85.58$27718% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
49
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
99%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
13California State University, Dominguez HillsCarson, CA84.42$4957% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
60
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
91%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
14Lehman College, CUNYBronx, NY84.19$2939% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
56
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
88%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
15California State University, Los AngelesLos Angeles, CA83.49$3907% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
64
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
91%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
16St. Mary’s UniversitySan Antonio, TX83.26$17806% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
67
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
97%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
17California State University, FresnoFresno, CA80.70$5879% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
49
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
87%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
18California State University, Monterey BaySeasid, CA79.53$11233% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
45
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
88%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
19San Diego State UniversitySan Diego, CA78.37$13363% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
31
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
59%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
20California State Polytechnic University, PomonaPomona, CA77.44$12634% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
42
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
76%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
21The University of Texas at El PasoEl Paso, TX77.21$6785% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
83
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
84%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
22University of California, IrvineIrvine, CA76.05$13944% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
26
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
65%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
23California State University Channel IslandsCamarillo, CA75.58$14834% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
49
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
81%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
24University of the Incarnate WordSan Antonio, TX75.35$21895% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
57
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
100%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
25Whittier CollegeWhittier, CA74.65$26764% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
47
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
97%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
26John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNYNew York, NY74.65$4891% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
50
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
79%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
27University of California, Santa CruzSanta Cruz, CA74.42$16792% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
30
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
72%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
28South Texas CollegeMcAllen, TX73.02$1825% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
94
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
89%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
29California State University, BakersfieldBakersfield, CA72.56$6794% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
55
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
92%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
30University of California, Santa BarbaraSanta Barbara, CA72.09$16154% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
26
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
64%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
31California Lutheran UniversityThousand Oaks, CA71.63$28241% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
29
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
97%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
32Rutgers the State University of New Jersey, Newark CampusNewark, NJ71.63$12020% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
27
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
81%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
33St. Edward’s UniversityAustin, TX71.16$25669% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
41
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
95%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
34Trinity UniversitySan Antonio, TX70.47$28540% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
21
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
99%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
35New Mexico State UniversityLas Cruces, NM70.47$9449% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
56
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
97%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
36Heritage UniversityToppenish, WA70.00$11742% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
68
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
100%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
37California State University, ChicoChico, CA69.53$14185% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
31
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
77%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
38University of Central FloridaOrlando, FL69.30$15341% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
25
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
87%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
39Azusa Pacific UniversityAzusa, CA69.30$28784% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
31
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
100%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
40The University of New MexicoAlbuquerque, NM69.30$11283% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
46
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
97%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
41Dominican UniversityRiver Forest, IL69.07$18250% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
48
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
100%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
42Saint Peter’s UniversityJersey City, NJ69.07$13377% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
40
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
100%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
43California State University, NorthridgeNorthridge, CA68.84$5958% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
46
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
85%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
44Texas A&M University-KingsvilleKingsville, TX68.84$13017% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
73
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
89%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
45California State University, San MarcosSan Marcos, CA68.60$10454% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
42
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
80%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
46Loyola Marymount UniversityLos Angeles, CA67.21$42459% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
21
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
90%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
47Mills CollegeOakland, CA66.74$26086% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
26
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
100%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
48Northern New Mexico CollegeEspañola, NM66.74$6891% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
67
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
91%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
49Saint Mary’s College of CaliforniaMoraga, CA66.51$33414% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
25
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
98%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
50Hallmark UniversitySan Antonio, TX66.05$10814% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
48
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
80%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile

2-year schools

METHODOLOGY

RankUniversityLocationRanking ScoreAvg Net Price
1Laredo Community CollegeLaredo, TX98.84$6002% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
98
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
84%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
2Porterville CollegePorterville, CA96.05$2215% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
77
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
82%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
3Stella and Charles Guttman Community College, CUNYNew York, NY95.58$4790% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
61
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
86%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
4Oxnard CollegeOxnard, CA90.70$3860% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
74
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
87%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
5Palo Alto CollegeSan Antonio, TX87.21$6795% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
78
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
86%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
6Hartnell CollegeSalinas, CA84.42$10904% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
64
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
85%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
7Southwest Texas Junior CollegeUvalde, TX84.19$6780% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
84
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
77%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
8Ventura CollegeVentura, CA83.49$4011% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
59
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
72%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
9College of the DesertPalm Desert, CA83.49$10002% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
70
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
83%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
10Allan Hancock CollegeSanta Maria, CA83.26$5560% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
57
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
84%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
11Reedley CollegeReedley, CA82.09$3653% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
71
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
90%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
12Mt. San Antonio CollegeWalnut, CA80.70$4890% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
62
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
70%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
13Citrus CollegeGlendora, CA80.23$4052% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
63
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
53%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
14Cossatot Community College of the University of ArkansasDe Queen, AR78.37$5366% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
27
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
83%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
15West Hills College CoalingaCoalinga, CA78.37$9203% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
69
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
87%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
16El Paso Community CollegeEl Paso, TX78.14$4553% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
85
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
85%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
17West Hills College LemooreLemoore, CA77.67$10088% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
60
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
84%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
18Southwestern CollegeChula Vista, CA76.28$5850% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
70
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
80%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
19Los Angeles Trade-Technical CollegeLos Angeles, CA75.58$7797% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
66
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
75%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
20Morton CollegeCicero, IL75.58$4327% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
85
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
68%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
21Mesalands Community CollegeTucumcari, NM74.65$7700% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
39
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
100%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
22University of New Mexico, TaosRanchos de Taos, NM71.16$6725% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
61
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
92%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
23Clovis Community CollegeClovis, NM70.93$7022% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
38
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
83%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
24Northwest Vista CollegeSan Antonio, TX69.07$7269% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
62
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
56%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
25Eugenio Maria de Hostos Community College, CUNYBronx, NY68.14$6334% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
63
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
90%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
26Dodge City Community CollegeDodge City, KS65.81$7704% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
40
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
89%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
27Moorpark CollegeMoorpark, CA65.12$4293% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
33
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
41%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
28Las Positas CollegeLivermore, CA64.65$5932% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
30
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
41%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
29Los Angeles Mission CollegeSylmar, CA64.65$9044% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
79
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
77%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
30Gavilan CollegeGilroy, CA63.72$10124% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
57
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
68%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
31Riverside City CollegeRiverside, CA63.49$7462% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
62
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
76%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
32Fullerton CollegeFullerton, CA62.09$6208% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
55
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
67%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
33Bronx Community College, CUNYBronx, NY62.09$6038% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
64
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
89%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
34The University of New Mexico – Valencia CampusLos Lunas, NM61.63$6408% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
64
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
91%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
35San Bernardino Valley CollegeSan Bernardino, CA61.40$9233% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
67
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
86%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
36Wilbur Wright College, City Colleges of ChicagoChicago, IL61.40$3969% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
62
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
71%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
37Galveston CollegeGalveston, TX61.16$4421% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
37
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
78%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
38Mt. San Jacinto CollegeSan Jacinto, CA60.93$6863% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
49
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
78%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
39Eastern New Mexico University – RoswellRoswell, NM60.00$6231% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
41
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
70%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
40Chaffey CollegeRancho Cucamonga, CA60.00$10526% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
64
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
71%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
41Moreno Valley CollegeMoreno Valley, CA60.00$7998% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
64
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
89%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
42Arizona Western CollegeYuma, AZ59.77$9735% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
71
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
84%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
43Napa Valley CollegeNapa, CA59.53$13068% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
41
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
62%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
44Long Beach City CollegeLong Beach, CA59.07$5526% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
59
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
74%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
45Western Texas CollegeSnyder, TX58.60$5500% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
31
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
74%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
46South Mountain Community CollegePhoenix, AZ58.14$6975% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
54
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
85%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
47East Los Angeles CollegeMonterey Park, CA58.14$9465% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
71
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
60%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
48Hillsborough Community CollegeTampa, FL56.98$4845% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
29
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
76%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available2 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
49San Jacinto CollegePasadena, TX56.05$8932% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
55
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
50%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available1 Twitter FacebookSchool Profile
50Pasadena City CollegePasadena, CA55.12$8030% Hispanic
Students Enrolled
51
% of All Students
Receiving Financial Aid
61%
Alternative Tuition Plan Available Twitter FacebookSchool Profile

Compared to national averages, students at HSIs enjoy high graduation rates, but there are other characteristics that make HSIs quite attractive to potential students. Those are the factors we used when ranking the best Hispanic-Serving Institutions. Some of these factors include:

Percentage of Latinx student enrollment

This number will be at least 25 percent, but a higher percentage can reinforce a school’s strong commitment to diversity. And the higher this enrollment, the more likely the school will have robust services and programs specifically tailored to its Hispanic student population.

Student retention

Everybody loses when a student drops out. The student loses time and money and has little to show for their hard work. The school loses its financial investment in the student. It’s more expensive for a school to recruit a new student than it is to keep an existing one. So schools with high retention rates have more money to spend on educating students rather than looking for new ones.

Latinx graduation rate

A high number of Hispanic students means nothing if they’re not graduating. This metric looks at how Latinx students are doing compared to their non-Hispanic college peers. A Latinx graduation rate that is significantly lower than the school’s overall graduation rate is a potential red flag.

Percentage of students receiving financial aid

This measure shows what proportion of a school’s student population qualifies as low-income, as well as how well the school works to help students receive the financial aid they need. Many schools will have institution-specific scholarships to help ease the burden or a robust financial aid department that works hard on the student’s behalf. This metric can also put a school’s overall cost in perspective, as even a high tuition rate is manageable if the vast majority of students receive significant financial aid.

Student services offered

At some point during their college career, most students need a little boost when it comes to academics or personal issues. Schools with more student services available make it easier for students to receive the help they need to succeed in school.

Affordability

This is one of the biggest factors that affect college attendance for any prospective student. After all, it doesn’t matter how good a school is if no one can afford to go there! But this takes into account more than cost; the school’s cost of living and special financial programs can make an otherwise unaffordable school much more reasonable.

Why are HSIs important?

HSIs are important because they place a special emphasis on educating Hispanic students. Given the growing size of the Hispanic population in the United States as a whole, along with the benefit of a college degree, it’s easy to understand the significance and importance of HSIs. Hispanic-Serving Institutions also have a high percentage of low-income students; the more opportunities these students have to complete their education and earn a higher wage upon graduation, the better.

The statistics back up the benefit of HSIs. The graduation rate of full-time students at HSIs exceeds the federal rate across both public and private four-year schools, as well as two-year public colleges. A higher graduation rate translates into more individuals with a degree that can move them into a higher-paying job, thus encouraging a better life for those who worked hard for that degree. The impact of that higher wage not only serves the person who earns it, but helps their families and communities as well.

Another reason why HSIs are important boils down to money, and how much of it goes to the students who really need it. It’s expensive to operate a post-secondary educational institution. Despite all the talk about the high cost of a college degree, in many schools, the tuition that students pay only covers part of the total cost of their education. That’s why colleges and universities rely heavily on donations and federal funds to educate students.

If a school is recognized by the US Department of Education as an HSI, it is eligible to receive federal grants that are exclusive to HSIs. HSIs receive funds through Title V, which they can use for a plethora of authorized uses, including providing student services, upgrading facilities and improving the quality of faculty and academic offerings. This provides a much better educational experience for students.

How do these schools promote Latinx success?

HSIs have a wide degree of latitude in how they use federal grant money to improve the college education experience of Hispanic students. Let’s take a look at some of the more popular programs.


  • Migrant Retention Programs


    Recognizing that many Hispanic students have migrant and seasonal farm work backgrounds, schools have developed special programs that focus on helping these students stay in school despite their families’ transient living and working arrangements. Specific program activities include cultural affirmation, academic assistance and residential living arrangements.

  • Skills Development


    Today’s economy requires not just a college degree, but tangible skills. HSIs see this need for graduates that can immediately start contributing when entering the workforce and have special programs to teach critical skills. Some of these may be vocational or trade skills, like nursing. But some of the skills are more practical, such as writing ability.

  • Support Services


    For many Hispanic students, English is not their first language. Therefore, many schools offer support services that aim to strengthen students’ English language skills to make them more successful in college. Other HSI support services can include remedial classes and academic assistance to reinforce students’ foundational academic knowledge.

  • College Access


    College is not as accessible to certain students as others. HSIs undertake a variety of program to ensure Hispanic prospective college students have a fair opportunity to make it into college. These programs include outreach initiatives at local area high schools and neighborhoods, cohort learning with fellow peers and providing academic, financial and cultural assistance.

  • Promoting STEM


    Some of the best jobs with respect to earning potential and availability are in the science, technology, engineering and math sectors of the economy. But the education required to enter these fields is especially challenging or intimidating for college students. HSIs encourage Hispanic students to study a STEM field through a variety of programs, including conferences, student tutors, faculty mentoring, student research projects and supplemental academic instruction.

The Growth of HSIs

With the overall growth of the Hispanic population, there has been a corresponding growth of HSIs. When the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) was founded in 1986, it had less than 20 founding member institutions. Currently, HACU represents more than 450 post-secondary institutions in the United States, Spain, Latin America and Puerto Rico.

A significant step in HSI growth began in 1995 when Congress allowed for schools with high numbers of Hispanic students to be eligible to receive federal grants on the basis of Hispanic student populations. During this first year, HSIs received $12 million. In the 2018 year, HSIs received over $120 million. The primary reason for this increase in funding is due to the immense growth in HSIs over the past decade. For instance, from 2006 to 2016, the number of HSIs rose by 78 percent. The number of HSIs, as well the amount of federal money flowing to them, is expected to continue growing for the foreseeable future as the Hispanic population makes up a larger percentage of the United States population

The United States Census Bureau estimates that by 2060, the Hispanic population will reach 119 million and make up more than 28 percent of the United States population. To put this in perspective, as of July 1, 2016, the US Census Bureau estimated that the Hispanic population consisted of 57.5 million individuals and made up 17.8 percent of the total population.

Campus Resources for Hispanic Students

Many HSIs offer robust resources for students, and some of them are quite unique. Here are a few examples of campus resources for Hispanic students that can make an enormous difference in the lives of those who take advantage of them.

California State University, Dominguez Hills – Encounter to Excellence

The Encounter to Excellence (ETE) program is intended to help incoming freshmen make the most of their first year in college. It begins with the Summer Bridge program, where students have an opportunity to brush up on their English and math skills and begin working on their required college courses. After classes begin in the fall, students will receive additional assistance and guidance in the form of peer mentoring, supplemental instruction and academic advising. All these student services are available at no additional cost.

Miami Dade College – Shark Path

Shark Path is a three-phase program to encourage and support Hispanic students who want to attend college. The first step involves sending pre-college advisors to meet with high school students, inform them of the advantages of getting a college degree and help them gain admission to Miami Dade College, should they choose to apply. Once accepted and enrolled at Miami Dade College, students will begin the second step, which consists of partnering with a first-year advisor. That advisor will help the student choose an academic and career goal and then develop a prospective course map to achieve those goals. Finally, the third stage involves meeting with a college mentor, who can provide advice and guidance on post-graduate plans, such as applying to graduate school, landing internships and understanding career options.

University of Central Florida – McNair Scholar’s Program

The McNair Scholar’s Program was created to help disadvantaged students obtain a graduate degree at the doctorate level. Hispanic undergraduate students interested in obtaining a doctorate degree can take advantage of several student services while attending the University of Central Florida. Through the use of seminars and faculty and peer mentors, students can get help in finding research mentors, getting accepted into a summer research program, networking, creating the most effective graduate school application and obtaining general advice on make the most of graduate school.

Resources

  • AdelanteDesigned to help Hispanic college students, Adelante achieves its goals by helping students graduate and lead others.
  • ASPIRAAs a nonprofit organization, ASPIRA’s mission is to improve the Latino community through encouraging education and leadership in Hispanic youth.
  • CHCIThe Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute is a nonprofit organization that operates special programs to help Latinx students and future leaders.
  • Hispanic Scholarship FundThe Hispanic Scholarship Fund assists Hispanics in higher education by providing support services and scholarship aid.
  • Excelencia in EducationAn organization that works to promote Hispanics in higher education.
  • Pathways to CollegePathways to College looks to help under-served minority children achieve a college education.
  • TheDream.usDREAMers are immigrant youth who entered the United States without documentation. TheDream.us works to ensure these individuals graduate college and are ready to enter the workforce.
  • US Department of EducationThe US Department of Education is responsible for administering federal funding for education efforts in the United States. Part of this task includes providing grants to HSIs under Title V.
  • LNESC: The LULAC National Educational Service Centers, Inc.As the educational branch of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), LNESC is a nonprofit organization that implements a variety of programs for helping disadvantaged youth have access to college.
  • HACUThe Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities represents HSIs in the United States and across the globe. The primary mission is to improve college opportunities for Hispanics.

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