State not meeting college enrollment goal for Hispanics

The Associated Press
Thursday, July 15, 2004

DALLAS — Texas universities continue to fall short of the state's enrollment goals for Hispanic students, according to a state report released Thursday.

There were 291,959 Hispanic students enrolled in Texas colleges and universities in fall 2003, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board said. The state set a five-year goal in 2000 of having 340,000 Hispanic students enrolled by 2005.

Hispanics are Texas' largest and fastest growing minority group, state demographer Steve Murdock said. Although Hispanics make up 32 percent of the state population, they make up only 23 percent of the state college population, according to the 2000 Census.

Texas already has met its 2005 goals for Anglo and black students.

There were 132,211 black students enrolled in fall 2003, surpassing the goal of 132,000. The goal for Anglos was 591,000, and 626,201 were enrolled in 2003.

David Gardner, an assistant commissioner for the coordinating board, said the board should develop new strategies to reach Hispanics.

The board has conducted outreach campaigns, and many community colleges and universities have similar campaigns.

But Hispanic student leaders said not enough has been done to teach young people about ways to pay for college, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported Thursday.

"They don't know that there is financial aid, there are scholarships, there are loans," said Yazmin Vazquez, president of the University of North Texas' Latino Student Association.

On the Net:
Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, http://www.thecb.state.tx.us/