Reality check hispanic serving institutions on the texas border strategizing financial aid
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Reality Check: Hispanic-Serving Institutions on the Texas Border Strategizing Financial Aid. Deborah A. Santiago Excelencia in Education June 3, 2011. SFARN Philadelphia, PA. Reality Check. Exploratory research with 8 institutions along TX-Mexico border

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Reality Check: Hispanic-Serving Institutions on the Texas Border Strategizing Financial Aid

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Reality Check: Hispanic-Serving Institutions on the Texas Border Strategizing Financial Aid

Deborah A. Santiago

Excelencia in Education

June 3, 2011

SFARN

Philadelphia, PA


Reality Check

  • Exploratory research with 8 institutions along TX-Mexico border

    • (4 community colleges & 4 public universities)

  • Case study approach

    • Site visits, interviews, focus groups, data review

  • Raised research questions for more rigorous analysis with Latino lens


Why look at Latinos at HSIs and financial aid strategies?

  • HSIs enroll a critical mass of Latinos

  • Latinos in higher education are increasingly nontraditional and representation is growing

  • Look beyond enrollment to completion and what institutions are doing to address this

  • Financial aid is critical for higher education access and a potential tool for institutions to increase retention

  • follow up on acceleration plans


  • Why look at Latinos at 8 HSIs along the TX-Mexico border?

    • Very impoverished service areas

    • Very high Latino student concentration

    • Nationally ranked in enrolling and graduating Latinos, but rarely focus of study for what doing well

    • Very overlooked nationally

    • Already serving nontraditional population with need using limited resources


    Questions

    • What are institutions with high concentrated enrollment of low-income and Latinos doing to improve college completion?

    • Are there financial aid resources, beyond Pell grants and direct loans, that can be used to increase Latino student retention?


    Findings

    • General aversion to borrowing while costs increasing

    • more students work while enrolled (limits persistence and completion rates)

    • Federal financial aid critical (most participation)

    • Limited knowledge of financial aid options

    • Institutions engaged and/ are using financial aid strategies to increase retention


    Effective Aid Strategies at 8 HSIs

    campus-based work-study programs

    Guaranteed need-based scholarships

    Early college high schools and dual enrollment

    Emergency loans and installment/payment plans

    Integration or coordination of outreach activities, program information, and student services

    Improved student/customer service and staff training

    Increased outreach


    Campus-based work-study programs

    Policymaking: position issues and develop strategies based on more representative profile of Latino students


    Link between work-study and retention

    • Work and earn income while enrolled for resources to cover expenses beyond tuition and fees

    • Keeps students on campus

    • Added opportunity to be aware and use institutional services

    • Potential for new or increased interaction with faculty, staff, and other students

    • If linked with discipline, can inform academic experience

    • Provides work experience in academic or community setting

    • Stronger sense of belonging on campus


    Examples of effective strategies

    • Student Tech Services (El Paso Community College)

      • Use student IT fees to hire students for hands-on support in technology needs

    • Student Employment Initiative (University of Texas at Brownsville

      • Hire students who enroll at least 15 hrs, 2.75 GPA, 12 credits at UTB


    For more information please visit:

    www.EdExcelencia.org

    To download “Reality Check” please visit:

    http://www.edexcelencia.org/research/reality-check-hispanic-serving-institutions-texas-border-strategizing-financial-aid


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