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Hispanic Serving Institution

The mission of the Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) Division of the U.S. Department of Education is to provide grant funding to higher education institutions to assist with strengthening institutional programs, facilities, and services to expand the educational opportunities for Hispanic Americans and other underrepresented populations.

Program Eligibility

Institutions must be designated as an eligible institution of higher education in order to apply for the Title V program and must meet the program-specific requirements to be defined as an HSI.

To be designated as an eligible institution of higher education, an institution must apply for and receive designation through an application process.

Napa Valley College Awarded $2.9 Million Grant Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) Grant from the U.S. Department of Education

NAPA, CA, SEPTEMBER 30, 2020 – Napa Valley College (NVC) received a competitive $2.9 million Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) grant from the U.S. Department of Education, announced Oscar De Haro, assistant superintendent/vice president, student affairs. 

The five-year grant will fund the Caminos al Éxito Project (Pathways to Success), changing the ways students experience their first year at Napa Valley College. A previous HSI grant initiative supported Project RISE, which bolstered the success of Napa Valley College’s Latinx and economically disadvantaged students. The new grant project will build on that success, supporting development of culturally relevant practices among faculty and staff to best serve the college’s growing Latinx community. This is the third HSI-funded proposal in NVC history since 2014.

To qualify as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, eligible institutions must have an enrollment of undergraduate full-time equivalent students that is at least 25 percent Hispanic students. More than 45 percent of Napa Valley College’s student population identifies as Hispanic/Latinx, and nearly 47 percent are the first in their family to attend college. 

“We are gratified that the U.S. Department of Education selected Napa Valley College to receive another HSI grant,” said De Haro. “The competition was fierce among hundreds of colleges and universities nationwide; I am proud that our proposal received perfect scores from each of the three evaluators. The proposal effort was spearheaded by Robin Darcangelo, our senior dean for student affairs, who will lead the implementation efforts on campus.”

“Our previous HSI grant initiative, Project Rise, worked to strengthen and reinforce early matriculation pathways from high schools in NVC’s service area into the college,” said Darcangelo. “This new project will assist NVC to equip students with the skills, knowledge and resources they need to prosper in tomorrow’s economy, and will include opportunities for parental engagement.”  

Caminos al Éxito will create personalized onboarding and follow-up experiences for new NVC students that will help them visualize and achieve their educational and career pathways, and will work to keep them on that path and overcome any hurdles they may encounter along the way. Using new technology and a set of culturally relevant approaches, the project ensures students will get the help they need at critical stages of their collegiate experience, resulting in increased retention, persistence, completion and transfer success.

NVC selected research-based strategies for implementation that promise the most potential to support the permanent academic and administrative infrastructure of the institution and to continue long after the grant period ends. The activities will become an embedded and permanent part of the infrastructure. By end of grant, the College will integrate new personnel, repurpose facilities, improve equipment and software systems using state funds, continue to create a vibrant student services program and utilize trained faculty/staff to sustain professional development.

About the HSI Grant Program

The U.S. Department of Education’s Developing HSI Program (DHSI) provides grants to make college more attainable for Hispanic students and allows institutions to enhance their academic offerings, program quality and institutional stability. The grants assist schools in furthering educational opportunities for students through faculty development, curriculum development, academic tutoring and mentoring, and other services.