Becoming Hispanic-Serving Institutions: Opportunities for Colleges and Universities

Becoming Hispanic-Serving Institutions: Opportunities for Colleges and Universities

by Gina Ann Garcia


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Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs)—not-for-profit, degree-granting colleges and universities that enroll at least 25% or more Latinx students—are among the fastest-growing higher education segments in the United States. As of fall 2016, they represented 15% of all postsecondary institutions in the United States and enrolled 65% of all Latinx college students. As they increase in number, these questions bear consideration: What does it mean to serve Latinx students? What special needs does this student demographic have? And what opportunities and challenges develop when a college or university becomes an HSI?

In Becoming Hispanic-Serving Institutions, Gina Ann Garcia explores how institutions are serving Latinx students, both through traditional and innovative approaches. Drawing on empirical data collected over two years at three HSIs, Garcia adopts a counternarrative approach to highlight the ways that HSIs are reframing what it means to serve Latinx college students. She questions the extent to which they have been successful in doing this while exploring how those institutions grapple with the tensions that emerge from confronting traditional standards and measures of success for postsecondary institutions.

Laying out what it means for these three extremely different HSIs, Garcia also highlights the differences in the way each approaches its role in serving Latinxs. Incorporating the voices of faculty, staff, and students, Becoming Hispanic-Serving Institutions asserts that HSIs are undervalued, yet reveals that they serve an important role in the larger landscape of postsecondary institutions.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781421427379
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publication date: 03/12/2019
Series: Reforming Higher Education: Innovation and the Public Good
Pages: 176
Sales rank: 739,804
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.44(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Gina Ann Garcia is an assistant professor of higher education at the University of Pittsburgh.

Table of Contents


Introduction. What It Means to Serve Students
1. Creating the Dominant Narrative: The Racialization of Postsecondary Institutions
2. White Institutions Becoming HSIs: The Case of Chicago
3. Enhancing the Cultural Experience of Latinx Students
4. Serving the Latinx Community in the Third Space
5. Pushing the Bar on Legitimized Outcomes
6. Reframing the HSI Narrative


What People are Saying About This

Mildred García

"Dr. Garcia provides an in-depth analysis and evaluation defining, in addition to demographics, what it means to become an HSI: taking the challenge head on and identifying the strength of HSIs and the important role they play in educating Latinx students and the underserved. The vitality and viability of our nation is anchored in educating this new majority."

Antonio Flores

"This is a groundbreaking narrative on HSIs in American higher education. It expertly captures the complex issues HSIs face, including the evolution of their identities as Hispanic-"Serving" Institutions. A must-read for anyone interested in better understanding the essential role that HSIs play in advancing Hispanic educational success and America's future."

Sylvia Hurtado

"As the first to explore Hispanic-Serving Institutions based on actual case studies, Garcia describes not only what is, but also what can be the tremendous potential for institutions that do the nation's work in educating a diverse population. Institutional leaders will find insights and guidance in advancing equity goals."

Anne-Marie Nuñez

"This book brings readers inside the world of HSIs. It disrupts conventional perspectives about institutional performance and expands considerations of how HSIs advance equity in US higher education. It will quickly become essential reading for anyone seeking to better understand these institutions and the students who attend them."

Lorelle Espinosa

"As the largest minority-serving institution type, HSIs are at once ubiquitous and yet often overlooked. Gina Garcia unpacks the history, organizational cultures, and counterstories of HSIs to bring these critical institutions into full view while at the same time interrogating just what it means to truly serve Latinx students."

Jesse Perez Mendez

"A nuanced perspective on HSIs that will interest academics, practitioners, and graduate students alike. The book is rich in content and context."

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