Friday, April 13, 2012

Research Blog 13- The Interview

I decided to choose Professor Ebelia Hernandez, a professor at Rutgers University. She is very knowledgeable about Latinos in Higher Education and is currently doing some research on it. I am actually involved in one of the research programs she is conducting called “RU Latina”, where she interviews the same group of Latina girls at Rutgers over four years getting their experiences and tracking their progress. She is also currently doing two other research projects, one that is like RU Latina, but instead she talks to guys of all ages in college, not necessarily starting her interviews from the beginning of their college experience. The last one she is currently in involves, getting the surveys that Rutgers sets to all the students and figures out the statistics of Latinos and how they are answering these questions and if the statistics have the same meaning that they would for different cultures. Much like the SAT, there is some controversy that that exam might not be helpful to Latinos or really a good predictor of Latino success in high school. I learned that one thing that she didn’t expect to see as an influence in Latino College students was the impact that religion had on their decision. She gave great information about the Latino society at universities and her take on everything. One thing that she brought up that I thought was very important was the importance of building a network with faculty. She thinks that many of the statistics would change is Latino students made ties with faculty because they have someone to look up to, someone to give them advice about school, and it also helps in understanding the material better, lastly it is a great asset for someone to know a professor for recommendations.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Research Blog 14

Toppo, Greg. "Hispanic Students Aspire To Higher Education But Face Barriers." USA Today. Gannett, 9 Oct. 2009. Web. 07 Apr. 2012. <>.
The reading that I found on USA Today is about the barriers that Hispanic students face when it comes to education. It gives a few statistics, and the major reason why students don’t continue to pursue an education is because of the need to support family.

Greg Toppo is the author of the article and he graduated from St. John’s College. He is hired as the national K-12 education reporter for USA Today. So because he has done a lot of research about school and the system I feel like he’s a very knowledgeable person to write about this article.
This article really does not have any key terms or concepts that it talks about. Its very straightforward with the statistics about why Latinos don’t pursue a degree, and of those that do pursue it how much actually complete it.

“Many Hispanic students settle for pursuing a two-year degree at a community college, but only about one in 10 eventually earn one.” (
This really helps me with my paper and interests me because I know that many families encourage community college for practical reasons but the chances of success are clearly very slim. 

“…[M]any Hispanic families "tend to be more debt-averse," students are reluctant to take on heavy loan debt — instead, she says, many take on part-time jobs, which makes it harder to succeed in class.” ( This is something that can also be looked at. This is very true I know personally I have to maintain a job in order to help pay for school and I have totally noticed a decrease in my grades.

“Nearly nine in 10 Hispanics say it's "necessary" to get a college education to get ahead in life — more than any other ethnic or racial group in the USA.” ( This is a very astonishing statistic because the actual reality of it is that Hispanics have such a low rate of success. This statement is a great point for me to start discussing the barriers that Latinos face.

All of these statistics are very important to my paper. Statistics really can form a picture to the reader and I think that this is so important.  I really do believe this paper will be of great help to me.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Book Review - Research Blog 12

DuBois, Brenda, and Karla Krogsrud Miley. Social Work: An Empowering Profession. Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon, 2011. Print.

This book although it’s about the profession of Social Workers it brings up many facts about many minorities, especially the Latino community. It also provides great statistics and useful information about the trends of Latinos within the United States and it also brings light about what issues they may face. Although my paper is related to school and Latinos this book really helps me understand the Latino community better.

The author Karla Miley is a professor in Black Hawk College in Illinois and she teaches Psychology, Sociology and Social Work. Brenda DuBois has a master’s degree in Social Work and she is also a Professor at St. Ambrose University in Iowa teaching Social Work classes.

A term that is defined in this book is race. Race is defined as “…a classification that emphasizes biological or physiological differences”(DuBois & Miley, 153). It also defines minority as “those groups, including women, older adults, people with disabilities, and gays and lesbians that have less access to power than the dominant groups” (DuBois & Miley, 154).

The three quotes that I think would be very helpful to me are “The particular culture of minorities defines family support systems, confers self-identity and self-esteem and imparts an ethnic philosophy and outlook on life. All of these factors are potential resources in times of crisis and stress”(DuBois & Miley, 154). This really helps my topic because it discusses the things that make up a culture and the factors that go into defining what a culture or minority is. “Hispanics are the fastest going minority group in the United States” (DuBois & Miley, 165). This is good to know because this minority group will be a majority in number soon but we still won’t get the same opportunities as the upper class and those that run the government. Last quote, “Demographic data indicate that Hispanic American are less educated, have higher rates of poverty, and are more likely to live in inner city neighborhoods” (DuBois & Miley, 165). This is a great piece of information because it proves that Spanish people are not as well off economically as other people as well as educationally and my paper will try to explain the reasons for these statistics.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

book cover 2

Maria, Teresa. "2/Historical Perspectives On Latino Access to Higher Education." The  Majority in the Minority: Expanding the Representation of Latina/o Faculty, Administrators, and Students in Higher Education. By Jeanett Castellanos, Lee Jones, and Victoria Maria MacDonald. Sterling, VA: Stylus Pub., 2003. Print.

This reading is about Latinos in Higher education and the issues that they encounter and have encountered in the past.  It not only shows the points of the students but also of the staff and faculty that work in this field. They even have graduate students, staff and faculty talk about their personal experiences as a Latino in Higher Education in order to have better insight into the issues that come with being a Latino.

Dr. Jeanett Castellanos s a professor in the University of California and she has her doctorate in Philosophy. Her specializations are “Latina/os students’ psychosociocultural college experiences, Racial ethnic minority persistence patterns and experiences in higher education, Cultural competence in higher education” (
Dr. Lee Jones has a Doctorate in Organizational Development. He also “served as the Director for the Division of Multicultural Student Services and Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership at Washington State University”. ( This experience has made him knowledgeable in the area of diversity in Higher Education.  These are just two of the people but all of the contributors show great potential and experience in the idea of diversity in Higher Education.

La Familia is a term that is defined as the family in the literal sense. But it’s more than just mom, dad, sister, brother in the family.  Families are considered a huge part of our lives and include aunts, uncles, cousins, godparents and grandparents. The second term described is la comunidad, the community. Families reach out to many different organizations; many Hispanic families are religious and take the advice of the community of the church. They also talk to the neighbors and they are all interconnected somehow. From personal experience, it always seemed like one Spanish family had ties to the next Spanish family and this is because we are very bent on having a tight knit community.

“We recommend that academic deans and other hiring agents engage in dialogue with senior Latina/o faculty to learn more about how they can nurture and retain us” (280) I believe this to be important because the faculty should try their best to keep the dropout rate for Hispanic Students low. In fact, they should work on keeping any of the dropout rates low and this is important to every group and culture for them to have a sense of belonging in the environment where they are expected to learn.

“A second issue raised by research about Hispanic faculty concerns their number in higher education (Aguirre, 2000; Arce, 1976; Garza, 1988; Haro, 1989; Milem & Astin, 1993; Olivas 1988) (244). This is another interesting point that relates to my topic or could. My topic focuses on Latinos in Higher Education but I feel this quote is interesting because it discusses the faculty perspective instead of a student perspective which is what I’m focusing on. But this is an interesting topic as well.

“The pioneers of the pre-1960 era demonstrated that Latino youth could succeed in college if they attained access” (27) I particularly enjoy this quote because it helps to start off the topic that Latinos can be successful if given the opportunity and it’s a good transitional sentence to start the history of early higher education for the Latino community.

This material helped me think of new ways to expand my topic by not only looking at just the student perspective but by also talking about the faculty and staff positions and how Latinos are doing in those fields. Are they succeeding? Are they getting a lot of jobs? And if not, what is holding them back? All good questions to think about. These ties into the other book cover I did because it also explicitly talks about the Latino community in college and how to help them succeed and become better students as well provide them with access to learn about the opportunities.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Blog Argument

I feel like a potential argument to the argument that I made earlier in my blog is going against privatization.  I spoke about privatization and how it affects other people, especially Hispanics. But can the Hispanic community take some responsibility for their lack of success. America is a place where one must be persistent in order to succeed and must make lay out their own path to success. The quote “The cost of college is a chief concern. Many Latino families do not know the actual cost of a college education or the sources of financial aid and therefore conclude college is not affordable for their children" (Brown, Sarita E., Deborah Santiago, and Estela Lopez, p.42). In some ways yes it is true but that is not to say that college is not do-able. If a Latino had the drive to succeed he might be smart, by starting off in a community college and working full time saving money for the first two years before they transferred over to a four year university. There are many options that a school provides to help pay for an education and if the right career is picked it is easy to take up loans and pay them off like the rest of the people that are in attending college. It is common knowledge to say that most people know that the way to succeed in this nation is to work hard and do whatever it takes to step away from the negative statistics.  There are counselors and people whose jobs are dedicated to helping people find a way to pay for college, paying in increments, taking out loans, student work options all of these things can help make college a realistic goal. It’s not fair for people to sit and complain about the cost because the truth is that everyone has to deal with it and with a college degree it will not only benefit the person but it will also benefit the future generations. If we want something to change we need to change it not to sit around and complain and talk about how race and all these things affect how many people go to college because the truth is there is poverty in every nationality, race and ethnicity.