Report Urges Focus on Latino College Completion Rates

October 3, 2011

The nation's educators must work to improve college completion rates for Latino students if the United States is to remain economically competitive in the world, according to a report released Friday by the College Board. While Latinos make up the fastest growing group of students in the nation, they are behind the national average for college completion by more than half. At present, 19.2 percent of Latinos who enter college complete college, while the national average hovers around 40 percent, according to the report.

Gaston Caperton, president of the College Board, said the report is a "call to action." “Our nation will not become No. 1 again in college completion unless we commit ourselves to giving these students the support they need to achieve their full potential,” Caperton said.

To attain better completion rates for Latino students, the report recommends making voluntary preschool education available to low-income students, improving middle and high school counseling and simplifying the financial aid system, among other things.

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