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Press Release

Hispanic Serving Institution goal on track at MSU Denver


Contact: Contact: Tim Carroll, Office 303-556-5136, Cell 303-870-7705

Posted: September 17, 2012



(Denver) Metropolitan State University of Denver continues to lead in diversity by educating a growing number of students of color that now represent one-third of the student population. This has been led by the University’s growing Latino enrollment of 19.5 percent (4,475 students in 2012) compared to 18.2 percent (4,281 students in 2011). 

“We are making a significant progress toward the University’s goal to become a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI),” Associate Vice President of Enrollment Services Judi Diaz Bonacquisti says. “This year we are 1 percent ahead of our goal to reach HSI status by fall of 2018.”

MSU Denver was recognized nationally in 2010 by Excelencia in Education as one of four model institutions that are emerging Hispanic Serving Institutions. Federal recognition as an HSI requires a 25 percent Latino undergraduate enrollment. Securing HSI status is important to MSU Denver because it opens the door to a new level of federal assistance, programs and grant opportunities that benefit not only Latino students but the entire University community.

Overall fall 2012 undergraduate enrollment (22,976 students) is down 2.6 percent from 2011, attributed to a shrinking population of traditional students, increasing options for higher education and students returning to the workforce, Bonacquisti added.

Continuing as the leader in educating undergraduate Coloradans, resident students are 95.6 percent of all students with 92.6 percent coming from the seven-county metro area. The percentage of continuing students was virtually flat from 2011 to 2012, from 75.8 to 75.2 percent.

The new Colorado GED/High School graduate non-resident tuition rate, started during fall 2012, enrolled 237 students (102 continuing, 135 new). The number of Pell eligible students was down 17.3 percent with 30.3 percent of students receiving benefits in 2012 compared to 35.7 percent in 2011.

With the recent completion of MSU Denver’s new Student Success Building, Hotel and Hospitality Learning Center and classroom/office backfill construction has brought an additional 173,000 square feet of space for classrooms, faculty offices and essential programs.

“We can begin to market our programs more aggressively to students, since we now have both the capacity and new facilities to address student needs,” Bonacquisti says.

Nearly 1,599 students are seeking teacher licensure, and the top five majors are:

  • biology – 1,356
  • criminal justice and criminology – 1,279
  • management – 1,159
  • psychology – 1,138
  • art – 916

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About Metropolitan State University of Denver

With 23,000 students, MSU Denver is Colorado’s leader in educating undergraduate Coloradans and enrolls the highest number of students of color among the state’s four-year colleges. The University offers 55 majors and master’s degrees in accounting, teaching and social work. It boasts more than 75,000 alumni, the bulk of whom remain in Colorado after graduation.