One of my dreams is to spend all of my time helping deserving students get to and through college and help them find ways to pay for it. Until then, supporting local organizations who play their own role in this process is the next best thing. Last week, some of San Antonio’s own organizations were celebrating their recognition by the White House as Bright Spots in Hispanic Education that are working to increase the educational attainment of the Latino community in key areas, including: early learning; K-12 and college access, science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education; Latino teacher recruitment; and postsecondary completion.
The San Antonio Education Partnership (SAEP) and cafécollege are the only San Antonio-based college access organization and program, respectively, to receive recognition as Bright Spots in Hispanic Education from The White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics. SAEP and cafécollege are part of a national online catalog that includes over 230 programs that invest in key education priorities for Hispanics.
The Initiative seeks to leverage these Bright Spots to encourage collaboration between stakeholders focused on similar issues in sharing data-driven approaches, promising practices, peer advice, and effective partnerships, ultimately resulting in increased support for the educational attainment of the Hispanic community, from cradle-to-career.
“This is such an honor,” said Adriana Contreras, Ph.D., Executive Director of SAEP. “To have our work recognized at a national level, and by The White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, is both humbling and inspiring for all of us who work at SAEP. As we strive to achieve our mission to create college opportunities, access, and success for our community, we know that this work cannot be done alone and it is so impactful for our staff to know we have the support of The Initiative and our peer organizations recognized as Bright Spots.”
Other San Antonio educational organizations were recognized along with SAEP and cafécollege are:
- Northwest Vista College, College Connection
- Coca-Cola Valued Youth
- Academy for Teach Excellence at UTSA
- Graduate Support Center at UIW
- San Antonio College & Grants Development Department
- Hispanic Leadership Development Foundation
- UTSA, Office of P-20 Initiatives
- SAISD STEM Strategic Plan
Recognizing the work that is already happening in San Antonio is so important because statistics show that there has been improvement in graduation rates nation-wide. However, as fast as the Latino community is growing in the United States, only 16% of Latinos hold a Bachelor’s degree or higher. We still have a lot of room for improvement. Let’s celebrate the success and continue to work together for a better and more successful education for our students.
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Photos courtesy of SAEP.