Minority Serving Institutions Initiative Coffee Chat Series

The coffee chat series will serve as a space for scholars and practitioners to share ideas, best practices, and other resources related to R1 and Minority Serving Institutions' (MSIs) relationships and mechanisms of support for students that transition from MSIs into R1 institutions for graduate and professional education. The series will highlight examples from U-M, exemplars from across the country, and scholars and practitioners that explore and implement practices that foster positive experiences and outcomes for students from MSIs.

This series is primarily intended for faculty and staff that have existing relationships with MSIs, or for those who do not but are interested in forming relationships, as well as graduate students who have interest in this topic.

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Gina Garcia, Associate Professor of Educational Foundations, Organizations, and Policy, University of Pittsburgh

Session Abstract:

With conversations about increasing the compositional diversity of graduate students and faculty at all institutions of higher education, Minority Serving Institutions are often considered as potential partners. In this session participants will learn about Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs) as potential partners. With 569 colleges and universities now eligible for the HSI designation, there are many things to consider as HSIs are extremely diverse by size, type, and location. Gina Ann Garcia will talk about the changing demographics at HSIs and the progress (or lack of progress) towards racial equity and justice within HSIs.

Dr. Garcia's Bio:

Gina Ann Garcia is an associate professor in the Department of Educational Foundations, Organizations, and Policy at the University of Pittsburgh. Her research centers on issues of equity and justice in higher education with an emphasis on understanding how Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) embrace and enact an organizational identity for serving minoritized populations. She also seeks to understand the experiences of administrators, faculty, and staff within HSIs and the outcomes and experiences of students attending these institutions. Finally, her research looks at the ways that race and racism have shaped the experiences of minoritized groups in higher education.

She has made numerous presentations at national conferences and co-authored multiple publications in top journals. She was awarded a Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship in 2016 and a National Academy of Education/Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship in 2017. She is the author of Becoming Hispanic-Serving Institutions: Opportunities for Colleges & Universities, published by Johns Hopkins University Press, for which she won the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education Book of the Year Award in 2020. She recently edited the book Hispanic-Serving Institutions in Practice: Defining “Servingness” at HSIs, published by Information Age Publishing.

She graduated from California State University, Northridge with a bachelor’s degree in marketing, the University of Maryland, College Park with a master’s degree in college student personnel, and the University of California, Los Angeles with a Ph.D. in higher education and organizational change. She is the scholar mother of two boys, Jovan (age 11) and Jaren (age 8).

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