The Indiana Latino Institute & Goshen College begin partnership to recruit, retain Latino students

Goshen College has joined a consortium of Indiana colleges and the Indiana Latino Institute (ILI) to collaborate on culturally responsive approaches that improve Latino student access and facilitate completion.

Goshen College is one of 14 colleges and universities in Indiana with which ILI is pledging to collaborate over five years to offer $11 million in scholarships for academically gifted, low-income Latino youth. Goshen will provide one scholarship for up to full tuition annually to a student in ILI’s scholars program, beginning in fall 2022.

“Goshen College is enriched by the diversity of ethnic heritages and life perspectives of our Latino students,” said Goshen College President Rebecca Stoltzfus. “We are excited to partner with the Indiana Latino Institute to support more Latino Hoosiers in pursuing higher education at GC.”

Since 2017, ILI has been convening representatives from Indiana colleges and universities to discuss the state of Latino education in Indiana through the creation of the Indiana Latino Institute Higher Education Consortium. Presidents, chancellors and other higher education administrators discussed best practices for helping Latino students learn about post-secondary educational opportunities, assisting them with matriculating and developing academically and professionally, and ultimately preparing these students to graduate and move on to high quality jobs. After the March 2020 consortium meeting, two Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) — an agreement to join the consortium and a commitment to offer scholarships — were presented to and executed by the institutions.

“Recognizing that more Latino students will succeed by adopting proven, effective strategies, the secondary educational institutions and ILI signed a collaborative agreement to exchange ideas and create action plans that will increase enrollment and degree attainment for our growing Latino population,” stated Indiana Latino Institute President and CEO Marlene Dotson.

As many Latino students face financial obstacles, the Scholarship MOU commits the institution to offer scholarship opportunities annually for Indiana Latino Institute Education Program participants. These generous scholarships will be used to highlight available financial aid options for Latino students.

“With Latino high-school graduates enrolling in college at significantly lower rates than their White peers,” affirmed Indiana Latino Institute President and CEO Marlene Dotson, “these substantial scholarships signal to Latino students that they are valued and sought after, and that financial aid is available to them.”

“Indiana’s economy will benefit from a better prepared Hoosier Latino workforce,” said Indiana Latino Institute Board Chair Rafael A. Sanchez. “I applaud the colleges that have recognized the increasing number of Latino students and have made commitments to offer scholarships and support these talented students and future Hoosier workers.”

The Indiana Latino Institute is a 501(c)3 non-profit statewide organization committed to serving Latino communities in Indiana. Its mission is to improve health and advance education for the Indiana Latino community through advocacy, research, and culturally responsive programs.