Hispanic Access Foundation Helping More Latinos Get Into College
Photo: College education
With Latinos now making up nearly a quarter of the 18-and-under population in the country and projected to grow, the importance of promoting and expanding post-secondary opportunities for them has become a critical need. As part of this effort, Hispanic Access Foundation (HAF) has made education one of its four core priorities and will be participating in New Futuro‘s College Prep Fairs.
While Latinos aged 18 and under currently make up 23 percent of the country’s population, the U.S. Census Bureau projects that total to rise to 36 percent by 2020. As of 2010, only 13 percent of Hispanics held at least a bachelor’s degree, while 6.2 percent of full-time college students were Hispanic.
Affordability is often one of the main barriers for Hispanics in attending or completing college. A Pew Research Center study found that 87 percent of Latinos identified lack of resources as a barrier to their higher education and career development.
As part of the College Prep Fairs, HAF is providing workshops for parents and students on how to prepare for and finance higher education, including the use of financial aid, tax-free savings accounts and scholarships. Additionally, Arce is participating on the College Prep Fairs’ panel discussions televised by Telemundo. In the exhibit hall, HAF has been providing laptop giveaways to those students who show their desire to go to college through HAF’s Facebook page.
This work has been an extension of HAF’s other work. In its tax education workshops, held throughout the country, HAF has helped parents and students get their financial documentation in order to apply for financial aid. The organization has also launched youth leadership development initiatives in Colorado.
The next College Prep Fair, which takes place on Nov. 10 in Chicago, is one of five in a series that have taken place this fall. HAF has presented at the fairs in Miami, New York, Los Angeles and Houston.