Texas State University is the latest institution to be nationally recognized for its services to Latino students.
Excelencia in Education, the nation’s leading authority on accelerating higher education success for Latino students, announced Friday that Texas State University has been certified with the prestigious Seal of Excelencia in 2022 for demonstrating through data, evidence-based practices, and leadership, how it intentionally serves Latino students.
Texas State is one of only six institutions certified in 2022 and joins 30 colleges and universities nationwide with the prestigious recognition.
Other institutions newly certified as Seal of Excelencia include Mercy College, San Antonio College, University at Albany – State University of New York, University of California, Santa Cruz, and University of Texas at Arlington.
This marks the fourth year that Excelencia, a Latina-led organization founded to accelerate Latino student success in higher education, has offered the Excelencia Seal – a national certification process supporting institutional transformation to serve Latino students. and all.
“We are proud to join this list of forward-thinking institutions that combine innovation, data and intentionality to enroll, engage and graduate today’s students, including Latinos,” said the president of the University of State of Texas, Dr. Kelly Damphousse. “Our university reflects the diversity of Texas, and the seal is now one of our greatest points of pride that reaffirms our commitment to student success.”
“I want to thank Excelencia in Education for this great honor – and for creating a framework that recognizes the importance of Latino students to the future of our country,” he added.
The state of Texas has been designated as an institution serving Hispanics since 2011.
In 2021, Hispanic Outlook magazine recognized Texas State as one of the Top 100 Colleges and Universities for Hispanics. The state of Texas was ranked nationally in seven categories, including 13th in total bachelor’s degrees granted to Hispanics, 28th in total Hispanic enrollment among four-year schools, and 47th in the total number of master’s degrees granted to Hispanics. Currently, 40.5% of the student body identifies as Hispanic/Latino.
Excelencia launched seal certification as one of the organization’s transformation strategies to move colleges and universities beyond simply enrolling Latino students and providing the means to use data and practice in instilling intentionality in service to Latino students.
“Excelencia in Education created the Excelencia Seal to differentiate institutions that have become Hispanic-serving institutions due to demographics and geography from those that are Hispanic-serving due to intentionality and ‘impact,” said Deborah Santiago, co-founder and CEO of Excelencia. “The seal provides a roadmap for all institutions, driven by data, practice and leadership, that does not end with certification. It supports a path to intentional progress in service to Latino students.
A “rigorous” process
The Seal of Excelencia framework has been developed with colleges and universities over many years as an institutional self-assessment tool. The seal is not a ranking or a reward. This is a rigorous verification process that culminates in certification.
Seal certification is valid for three years, and institutions embarking on a journey of transformation to intentionally serve their Latino students may choose to apply.
An institution earns the seal by demonstrating alignment in the three core areas of data, practice, and leadership, which show:
• Evidence of effectiveness and intentionality in institutional practices serving Latino students.
• Positive momentum for the progress of Latino students in their data.
• Dedication to transforming the institution into an environment where Latino students thrive.
• Leadership strategies that clearly articulate the institutional focus on advancing Latino student success.
Excelencia co-founder and president Sarita Brown said her organization launched the seal in 2018 “because after years of offering information and evidence-based tactics and strategies to support colleges and universities, we have seen a slow response to the vibrant and growing Latino student population.”
“Excelencia has 18 years of experience and expertise in supporting institutions and their leaders who are ready to transform to SERVE Latino students,” Brown said. “We recognized that Excelencia could do more to support these institutions and that together we would go faster.”
Brown says her organization has been encouraged by the community’s response.
“We are driven by the positive and committed responses to the Excelencia seal from many people and institutions,” she said. “The response to the Excelencia seal by colleges and universities is proof of leadership within higher education and its ability to meet this moment in our country. Excelencia continues to make common cause with the leaders of all sectors that recognize that supporting the success of today’s Latino students grows our nation’s talent and secures America’s bright future. [email protected]