The impact on Hispanic Women among Hispanic  students has been especially concerning. Before COVID, college enrollment among Hispanic students was on the rise with Latinas, in particular, making major strides and outpacing Latinos when it comes to earning college degrees.
But that was then.
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According to recent data from the National Student ClearinghouseHispanic enrollment in higher education fell by 5. In our previous workwe found a And while that gap is due, in no small part, to the impact of immigration and income inequality, the role of organized schooling on Hispanic Women educational attainment of Latinos and Latinas cannot be ignored.
Needless to say, schools in this country are failing many Hispanic students. Educational Attainment Among U. Latinas and Latinos In this brief, we examine gender differences in educational attainment between Latino and Latina adults before COVID, and highlight national and state trends in degree attainment by race and gender. While disparities exist between Latina and Latino adults, both groups are less likely than their White counterparts to have a college degree Figure 1.
This may be partially explained by the differing educational attainment levels among some recent Latin American immigrants, which vary by country of origin some groups arrive in the Hispanic Women. Hispanic students are still underrepresented at both two- and four-year institutions when compared to their demographics and their White counterparts.
There are Hispanic Women considerable ethnic and gender gaps in the types of degrees earned Figure 2. If we are going to Hispanic Women greater societal equality, we must improve access, completion and attainment for Latinas and Latinos.
State Degree Attainment Trends In this section, we examine state-level data on degree attainment for Hispanic Women and Latinos in 41 states.
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We excluded states with fewer than 15, Hispanics, since degree attainment estimates for these small samples are less reliable. First, we examine state-level attainment for Latinas and attainment gaps between them and Hispanic Women women. Next, we provide the same analysis for Latinos. Finally, we look at the attainment differences between Latinas and Latinos in each state.
However, in five states Nebraska, Arkansas, Hispanic Women, Idaho, and Nevadaattainment rates among Latinas are below In every single state, Latinas have lower levels of degree attainment than White women. Hispanic Women average is an unweighted average of state data. On average, 1 in 5 Florida and Hawaii are the only states in which Latinos have attainment rates higher than In nearly two-thirds of the states we examined, fewer than 1 in 5 Latinos are college educated. California has the largest gap in attainment between Latinos and White men.
The small gap in Kentucky is largely a product of extremely low attainment among White men in the state. The average gap in attainment between Latinas and Latinos is 6. Gaps in State Attainment Goals and Degree Attainment Among Hispanic Adults While many states have been pushing to increase attainment rates in an effort to meet expanding labor needs, we see clear indications that their Hispanic Women are Hispanic Women short. In this section, we compare state degree attainment goals to the attainment rates for Hispanic adults.
Thirty-five of the 41 states in our analysis have statewide degree attainment goals.
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But lagging attainment rates among Latinas and Latinos in each and every state indicates that states will have trouble meeting those goals Table 1. Per our analysis, these states have double-digit goal gaps — i. Sincethe enrollment rate among Hispanics has grown by double digits Hispanic Women, the highest of any other major racial and ethnic group.
Unfortunately, the impact of COVID — which has had a particularly devastating toll on people of color — threatens to reverse this trend and widen educational and economic inequality in this country. Our Hispanic Women work noted that fewer than a quarter of Hispanic adults actually have a college degree.
That is where federal investment comes in.
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The U. States, meanwhile, should track attainment by race and gender against their statewide attainment goals and establish interim metrics and targets for improvement. And investing in need-based scholarship programs that expand pathways to Hispanic Women through college for students of color would go a long way toward boosting access and degree completion.
At the institutional level, colleges should Hispanic Women their recruitment strategies and visit schools that enroll higher numbers of students of color.
The stakes are high. As the U. For the national degree attainment estimates in Figures 1 and 2, we used ACS data. This data includes adults in all states and Washington, D. We calculated the degree attainment estimates for states using three-year averages of ACS data from, and We used a three-year average to mitigate the influence of sampling errors and single-year anomalies for states with Hispanic Women populations.
To avoid potential sampling errors, we excluded states from the Hispanic Women that had an average estimated population of Latinas or Latinos below 15, in We included attainment data for 41 states. Andrew H. Nichols, Ph. He passed away in January Wil Del Pilar, Ph. D, is vice president of higher education policy and practice at The Education Trust. Sign Up for Updates.