University’s Hispanic-Serving Institution status enables grant eligibility


Ryan Corrall

One of several initiatives to diversify Chico State includes increasing Hispanic enrollment. The university can now apply for specific grants as an HSI. Photo credit: Ryan Corrall

Following a record-breaking year of Hispanic student enrollment, Chico State is now eligible to apply for federal Hispanic-Serving Institution grants, a university official said Saturday.

Teresita Curiel, interim director of HSI initiatives, said the U.S. Department of Education has confirmed Chico State’s eligibility, which enables its staff to apply for competitive HSI grants. Grant programs range from $700,000 to $1.2 million per year for up to five years, Curiel said.

“The grants are going to be very important to enhance the experience, not just for Latino students, but for students in general,” Curiel told The Orion in February.

A university or college must enroll 25 percent or more full-time undergraduate students who identify as Hispanic to qualify for HSI benefits, according to the Department of Education.

The director said three Chico State colleges are currently preparing a proposal for the Title III grant competition. The purpose of the Title III program is to “(1) increase the number of Hispanic and other low-income students attaining degrees in the fields of science, technology, engineering, or mathematics; and (2) to develop model transfer and articulation agreements between two-year and four-year institutions in such fields,” according to the education department.

The Colleges of Agriculture; Engineering, Computer Science and Construction Management; and Natural Sciences teamed up for the proposal, which slated for a May submission.

Next fall, Curiel said the colleges will find out if they’re among 109 anticipated grant winners to be selected this fiscal year.

Gabriel Sandoval can be reached at [email protected] or @GLuisSandoval on Twitter.