CU Denver | Anschutz pursuing Hispanic-Serving Institution designation

Federally determined status could lead to funding boost

CU Denver | Anschutz is likely to pursue federal designation as a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI), a distinction that could lead to increased funding.

At the Board of Regents meeting Nov. 7 at CU South Denver, Roderick Nairn, provost and executive vice chancellor for academic and student affairs at CU Denver l Anschutz, said the designation is awarded to institutions with a 25% or higher full-time equivalent (FTE) Hispanic student population and other considerations.

Based on fall 2019 undergraduate enrollment, the CU Denver | Anschutz student population is 25.1% Hispanic; CU Denver alone is 25.5%.

During his presentation, Nairn said the U.S. Department of Education’s HSI designation provides additional federal funding, which benefits the institution as a whole.

“We think that the opportunity for students, staff and faculty is worth us exploring,” Nairn said. “It’s an important designation.”

CU Denver | Anschutz likely will apply for HSI designation when the application period opens in January – after spring enrollment numbers are in. Nairn cautioned that because the institution hasn’t historically met the 25% FTE requirement, it might not qualify. The Hispanic undergraduate student population at CU Denver | Anschutz has more than doubled since 2010, going from 1,320 (12.9%) to 2,748 (25.1%) this fall.

Regent Jack Kroll, D-Denver, noted the Hispanic population is expected to account for 36% of the Colorado workforce by 2050. The largest percentage of the anticipated 1.1 million Hispanic Coloradans will be under the age of 18, he said.

“The reality here is that we are in the midst of a massive demographic shift,” Kroll said. “This will position our institution to serve a crucial part of the workforce in Colorado.”