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Report: Number of HSIs Fell During the Pandemic

March 17, 2022

The number of Hispanic-serving institutions in the United States decreased during the 2020–21 academic year, from 569 to 559, the first drop in two decades, according to an annual analysis by Excelencia in Education, an organization focused on Latino student success.

The analysis, released Wednesday, uses the most recent public data from the National Center for Education Statistics. It also found that HSIs make up fewer than a fifth of higher education institutions but enroll two-thirds of Latino undergraduates. Most HSIs are public institutions, and 44 percent are community colleges.

While the number of HSIs declined, the number of emerging HSIs—colleges and universities with student bodies between 15 percent and a quarter Latino—grew over the same period, from 362 to 394 institutions.

Deborah A. Santiago, CEO of Excelencia in Education, said drops in Latino enrollment during the pandemic led to the decrease in HSIs, though “Latinos were projected to represent the largest growth in college enrollment prior to the pandemic.”

“This creates an increased urgency for institutional intentionality and public investment in HSIs to rebuild the momentum for Latino students’ access and success in higher education,” she said in a press release.

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