Addressing Cultural Diversity and Global Competence: The Dual Language Framework

Addressing Cultural Diversity and Global Competence: The Dual Language Framework

Amy Beth Rell (Regis University, USA), Rita A. Puig (Regis University, USA), Fabiola Roll (Regis University, USA), Veronica Valles (Regis University, USA), Monica Espinoza (Regis University, USA) and Alba L. Duque (Regis University, USA)
Copyright: © 2017 |Pages: 21
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2145-7.ch007
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Abstract

This chapter addresses Hispanic college students' matriculation at Regis University through its Dual Language Program. It covers the inception of this program through completion, describing each phase of the program, its structure, staff, and partnerships, as well as the students' development, struggles, and successes. The research presents new data for Hispanic undergraduate and graduate students in a bilingual setting, resulting in the funneling of new bilingual culturally competent professionals in this diverse and increasingly global world. It also provides recommendations for future research.
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Demographic Analysis

Although Hispanics are seeking college in greater numbers than ever before, achievement gaps remain. Indeed,

Hispanic college students are less likely than their white counterparts to enroll in a four-year college (56% versus 72%), they are less likely to attend a selective college, less likely to be enrolled in college full time, and less likely to complete a bachelor’s degree. (Fry & Taylor, 2013, p. 5)

Completion rates echo this achievement gap. In 2000, only 10% of Hispanics aged 25–29 had earned a bachelor’s degree or higher compared to 34% of whites and 18% of African-Americans (Llagas & Snyder, 2003).

Although Hispanics have historically been underrepresented in higher education, the data suggest that this trend is ending, requiring universities to examine how to serve Hispanic students and modify strategies that encourage completion among the Hispanic population. For the demographic data presented to culminate in improved graduation rates and long-term higher success levels for Hispanics beyond graduation in addition to creating a diverse university environment, a response to the surge in Hispanic college attendance confronted with low completion rates merits attention and responsiveness.

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