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UW-Milwaukee Goes After State’s 1st ‘Hispanic-Serving Institution’ Title

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The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee has its eye on becoming the first school in the state to earn federal recognition as a Hispanic-serving institution. But first, it must more than double the number of Hispanic students it enrolls.

School officials announced plans last week to boost Hispanic enrollment at the state university of 21,000, where Hispanics currently make up 9 percent of the student population. In order to become a Hispanic-serving institution (HSI) and be eligible for federal funding to support Hispanic students, that number must grow to 25 percent. (More on what it takes to become an HSI here.)

Demographic trends in Wisconsin indicate that this could be an achievable and relevant goal for UWM over the next 10 years, according to a news release. Latino students will soon represent the state’s fastest-growing group of students heading to college.

UW-Milwaukee is home to the only full-time university-based center in the state that’s dedicated to serving Latino students, and it plans to grow the center’s advising staff and expand office hours.

In addition, the school launched the Chancellor’s Committee for Hispanic Serving Initiatives that will convene bimonthly and be comprised of administrators, faculty and staff, as well as students.

Interestingly, Marquette University, a Jesuit institution in Milwaukee, announced its plans to become an HSI in the next decade earlier this year. It’s Hispanic student enrollment is slightly higher at 9.5 percent.