Adams State celebrates Hispanic Serving Institution Week

ALAMOSA – Adams State University has been a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) since 2000. In honor of Hispanic Serving Institution Week and National Hispanic Heritage Month, the Adams State Office of Title V will host workshops for campus and community members, on September 14 and September 15.

The workshop presenters include Dr. Melissa Salazar and Dr. Catherine Martinez Berryhill, who, in 2013, founded ESCALA, after realizing a need for programs designed specifically for the growing number of HSI college instructors. (Escala is the Spanish derivative for ladder, or the analogy of an upswing trajectory).

Salazar will present “Fostering Faculty Leadership on Teaching in Hispanic Serving Institutions: Lessons Learned from Work with 30 Hispanic Serving Institutions,” at noon Thursday, Sept. 14, in Porter Hall room 130. That same afternoon, Berryhill will present “Communicating in Hispanic Serving Institutions: Bridging Cultural Context Divides,” at 3 p.m. in McDaniel Hall room 101.

The first workshop offered, “What it Means to be an HSI, Nationally, Regionally, Locally,” by Darsella Vigil, doctoral candidate, begins at 10 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, in the Student Union Building room 127. In this keynote address, Vigil will review the impact of Hispanic Serving Institutions on the national regional and local landscape of education. Following the presentation, Vigil will facilitate a breakout sessions, “HSI High Impact Practices are Learner High Impact Practices,” which will review high impact practices innovating Hispanic Serving institutions across the nation.

About the workshops

Fostering Faculty Leadership on Teaching in Hispanic Serving Institutions: Lessons Learned from Work with 30 Hispanic Serving Institutions

More institutions of higher education are recognizing that faculty who work collectively to study and improve student learning can have a positive influence on their colleagues and on the students they teach.  Salazar began ESCALA Educational Services LLC in 2013 with the aim of increasing Hispanic student success in higher education using a long-term, cohort-based model, rather than one-shot professional development. Since then ESCALA has worked with over 200 faculty in 30 HSIs across the US, including a cohort of STEM faculty at ASU in 2015. In this lunchtime talk, ESCALA will share some key findings from their work with faculty, including why cohorts incentivize faculty’s work on their teaching, how peer coaching can foster faculty leadership on teaching, and ways that Hispanic Serving Institutions are counteracting stereotypes about underrepresented minority students in STEM.

Communicating in Hispanic Serving Institutions: Bridging Cultural Context Divides

This interactive talk will use Chavez and Longerbeam’s continuum of integrated vs. individuated cultures (2016) to explain common cultural context differences between students, staff and faculty working in HSIs. The audience members will take a short online quiz to determine their preferred cultural context, and then analyze how similar or different their original cultural context is from the context of US educational institutions. Martinez will guide the audience through “low” and “high” bridging strategies that can be implemented in institutions to engage more students with their instructors and peers. Everyone is welcome at this fascinating and interactive session that will give the audience insight into common communication issues that occur not only on college campuses, but in everyday life.

The Graduate Student Success Center (GSSC) will host an open house at 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. Friday, Sept. 15. All are welcome to attend and learn about the opportunities and services available at Graduate Student Success Center, located in the East Campus Building, north end. The GSSC welcomes you to join us as we present who we are, the services we offer as well as the staff that is here to help you attain success in your graduate endeavors. This is brought to you by the PPOHA Grant, Title V Initiative.

About the presenters

After earning several degrees in the science fields including a Ph.D. from UC Davis, Salazar realized her true calling was working with teachers of science and math who work with underrepresented minorities. She now has over 20 years of experience in teaching and coaching STEM educators in both K-12 and higher education. At the same time she has instructed science, math and education courses at a wide variety of two and four year institutions including Northern New Mexico College, University of California-Davis, California State University- East Bay, New Mexico Highlands University, and University of New Mexico-Taos. 

Berryhill received her Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction from New Mexico State University and has over 40 years of experience in teaching and learning from pre-school to the college level. She is the former Dean of College of Education at Northern New Mexico College. Prior to that, Berryhill was a Master Teacher with the Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Math & Science Academy where she was an instructional coach and created professional development programs for math and science teachers. A native of northern New Mexico, Berryhill specializes in cultural disconnects in Hispanic Serving Institutions.

Vigil, a doctoral student in the Higher Education program at the University of Denver, works as a part-time advisor for the Community College of Aurora. She earned her master’s degree in educational leadership, policy, and advocacy at New York University, where she worked for the Higher Education Opportunity Programs, providing academic support to historically underrepresented students. As a first-generation college student herself, Vigil’s research interests include examining post-secondary access and attainment for various underrepresented populations, such as Black, Latino, first-generation, immigrant, and undocumented students. She continues to mentor and support Latino and Black young adults, of all statuses, in both Denver and New York public schools.

Since 2000, Adams State University has been designated an Hispanic Serving Institution. The Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) encourages all Hispanic Serving Institutions to observe National Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) week. Each year, HACU Government Relations office works with several members of Congress to recognize the contributions of HSIs in their communities and submits a proclamation request to the White House.

For more information call 719-587-7591 or 719-587-8833.

Caption: Darsella Vigil