October 15, 2015
By Brandon Solid
In 1935, Maria Alejandrina Hevia was the first cited Hispanic student at Texas Tech.
Fast forward 32 years and Anita Carmona Harrison became the first Hispanic Lubbock native to graduate from Tech.
Now, in 2015, 6,730 students attending Tech are Hispanic, according to a news release. The number of students enrolled at Tech has doubled since 2005, when 11 percent of the university was Hispanic.
According to the release, Hispanic undergraduate students make up 23 percent of Tech’s population.
Tech is continuing to grow and the recent rise of the number of Hispanic students enrolling at Tech is bringing in more funds for the university and is aiding the growth of the institution, according to the release.
“As a public university, Texas Tech is committed to educating the citizenry of the state, and that includes its growing Hispanic population,” Juan Muñoz, senior vice president for Institutional Diversity, Equity and Community Engagement and vice provost for Undergraduate Education and Student Affairs, said in the release. “But if one looks at the continued record enrollment at the university, it is clear that Texas Tech is becoming the school of first choice for exceptional students of all backgrounds.”
Tech is also working with the local Lubbock schools to bring in more local students.
Lubbock currently has a 36 percent Hispanic population, and Daniel Castro, vice president and investment adviser of the Lubbock-Cooper Independent School District board, said in the release he believes cultural groups such as mariachi bands and organizations are helpful in recruiting Hispanic students to attend Tech.
“When those kids leave Texas Tech and talk about their experiences, it makes it easier to recruit Hispanics to Texas Tech as opposed to other schools in the southern part of the state,” Castro said in the release. “Groups like that being included in those kind of celebrations is helping.”
According to the release, Tech participates in the National Hispanic Institute programming, as well as in community programs in cities such as Austin, Dallas, San Antonio, etc.
The National Hispanic Institute was founded in 1979 in Texas by Ernesto Nieto and its mission is to help increase the number of Latinos that are building strong character and are trying to become the next leaders of the world, according to its website.
Tech is looking to establish a connection with the population growth of Hispanics in Texas, according to the release.
“As Texas grows in the Hispanic population, so too does our institution’s growth reflecting this population across the state and the country,” Ethan Logan, executive director for Undergraduate Admissions, said in the release. “As Texas Tech develops into a Hispanic-Serving Institution, the diversity of the students, faculty and staff all reflect this continuing diversity of culture and ideas.”
Source: Daily Toreador