In a recent piece touting Massachusetts as a leader in attracting Latino college students, Boston Globe higher education writer Mary Carmichael spotlighted Amherst as setting the gold standard. She spoke with Ilan Stavans, Lewis-Sebring Professor in Latin American and Latino Culture, about the college’s doubling its Latino enrollment in the past decade, and with Tom Parker, director of admissions, about Amherst’s generous financial aid package.
“Amherst’s healthy endowment means it can afford to give students plenty of financial aid - the average award is $41,150 and includes no loans,” Carmichael wrote. “During recruitment season, the school flies almost 200 kids from around the country to campus for ‘diversity open houses.’ Once students are enrolled, it buys them two round-trip plane tickets apiece every year. That can make a big difference to Latino students from the Southwest, [said Parker], because ‘these may be kids who have never been to Massachusetts - maybe kids who have never even been in an airport.’”
The piece drew the attention of a blogger at NBC Latino, who followed up with a piece also featuring Tom Parker. “The last three classes at Amherst have been 42 percent American students of color, including Latinos, and 10 percent non-US citizens … We are just trying to reflect what the U.S. looks like,” he said.