Press Release updated: Jun 25, 2020 10:00 EDT


In these turbulent times there is great opportunity for higher education to more intentionally SERVE Latino students, and all students, better. The pandemic and calls for equity in education underscore the need to increase the number of doctors, engineers, educators, and other professionals that must come from the young and growing Latino population to meet our national needs.

“We are living through a unique period, when each day institutional leaders must respond to dramatic changes for their campuses, their communities and the country,” said Deborah Santiago, Excelencia in Education Co-founder and CEO. “In this period of uncertainty, we remain committed to accelerating Latino student success as a key to ensuring America’s future. By sustaining our commitment to identify, support and promote institutions choosing to intentionally serve Latino students and confront structural barriers, we are setting the pace for needed institutional transformation.”

Institutional leadership is fundamental to the higher education transformation students need and deserve. Excelencia is honored to work with over 100 trend-setting presidents and chancellors who accept this challenge. These leaders constitute a network (https://www.edexcelencia.org/presidents-latino-student-success) committed to be institutions where all students thrive.

This network represents 4% of all institutions of higher education and enroll 10% of all postsecondary students in America. These Excelencia-affiliated institutions enrolled 1 in 4 (24%) Latino students and graduated 1 in 3 (35%) Latinos earning degrees this past year.

Some institutions are striving up Excelencia’s “Ladder of Engagement” and holding themselves accountable to intentionally SERVE Latino students by pursuing the Seal of Excelencia (www.edexcelencia.org/2019-seal-excelencia-recipient). In 2019, nine institutions in the country were the first certified with the Seal of Excelencia: Arizona State University, Austin Community College District (TX), California State University Channel Islands; El Paso Community College (TX); Florida International University; Grand Valley State University (MI); South Texas College; University of Arizona and University of Texas-El Paso.​

They earned the Seal of Excelencia by demonstrating alignment across the three core areas of data, practice, and leadership that showed:

●        Positive momentum for Latino student progress

●        Evidence of effectiveness and intentionality in institutional practices serving Latino students

●        Alignment of data and practice in serving Latino students

●        Strategies in leadership that clearly articulate institutional focus on advancing Latino student success.​

Today, Excelencia in Education announces 14 institutions in Excelencia’s network have chosen to show their intentionality and leadership by pursuing Seal certification in 2020. These institutions are pressing forward despite the current turmoil and public heath challenges. Excelencia will announce the 2020 Seal of Excelencia cohort on October 1.

​“Leaning in to serve Latino students and all their students, despite significant obstacles is what leadership looks like,” said Sarita Brown, Co-founder and Excelencia President. “We are proud to work with leaders and institutions ready to enroll Latino students, support their academic goals and develop the highly educated workforce and civic leaders our country needs for a brighter future.”

Media Contact: Chino@edexcelencia.org

Source: Excelencia in Education