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Updated March 16, 2016

NJ Revilla-Garcia

HSI funding, teacher diversity, financial aid among topics at HACU’s Capitol Forum

More than 150 individuals, including presidents, faculty, staff and students at higher education institutions, were among participants at the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities’ (HACU) 21st Annual National Capitol Forum on Hispanic Higher Education, March 14-15, 2015, in Washington, D.C.

HACU President and CEO Antonio R. Flores opened the Capitol Forum by thanking all the supporters that have been with HACU since its inception in 1986.

Over the past 30 years much has been achieved. The first milestone was the HSI concept,” said Flores. “Prior to 1992 it didn’t exist. So 1992 was a seminal year for Latinos in higher education across the nation when Hispanic-Serving Institutions were first defined in federal legislation.”

Flores noted federal funding for HSIs since then has resulted in nearly 3 billion awarded through HSI grants.

“The amount is exceedingly low with respect to the needs and priorities of this nation. The growth of our Latino workforce is a major driver in our economy,” said Flores.  “About 3 of every 4 new entrants to the U.S. workforce this decade will be Latino, so we have a challenge ahead of us to educate this population.”

Legislation for HSIs, accreditation reform, teacher preparation, diversity and institutional accountability were among the topics discussed on the first day of the forum.

Presenters included representatives of the U.S. Department of Education, the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, the American Federation of Teachers and several others. 

HACU state delegations headed to Capitol Hill Tuesday for visits with key members of Congress after a morning plenary on "Hispanics and the 2016 Election.” Delegations visited Congressional offices from Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Puerto Rico,Tennessee and Texas. 

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NASFAA president discusses concerns on institutional risk-sharing at HACU National Capitol Forum (Source: National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators)