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Dixie State University receives $75,000 grant to reach out to Latino community

DSUHispanicStudentAssociationWeb Dixie State University recently received a $75,000 grant from the Utah State Board of Regents’ Office of Outreach and Access to help the Latino community meet their educational goals.

The Affordable Participation and Timely Completion Grant will support the ¡Adelante! Washington County project, a countywide initiative aimed to increase Latino community members’ access to and participation in educational opportunities.

“We are very excited about the opportunity to reach out and cooperate with other educational providers in the county to enhance and increase participation for the Latino community in the mired of opportunities in St. George,” Daneka Souberbielle, Interim Director of Intercultural Engagement at DSU, said.

The collaborative initiative will likely involve institutions of higher education, high schools and Spanish dual-immersion elementary schools in an effort to reach a variety of individuals in the Latino community, including high school graduates, adult learners and working students.

“I am so pleased that the Board of Regents is committed to the participation and success in education for all Utah community members,” Christina Duncan, DSU’s inclusion and equity presidential officer and associate director of the Multicultural Inclusion Center, said. “Their dedication has allowed us here at DSU to create a program that adds to the rich culture that makes St. George our home.”

The Utah System of Higher Education’s grant program supports the Board of Regents’ goal to provide students with affordable participation and timely completion in Utah’s colleges and universities.

“The grant’s aim is to support and empower a community that is growing and has an important impact on our area,” Souberbielle said. “There is a lot of desire for education in the Latino community, and we hope the grant will create a bridge to those opportunities.”

Additionally, the ¡Adelante! Washington County project aligns with DSU’s strategic plan, Dixie 2020: Status to Stature.

“As part of Dixie State University’s strategic plan, we have set goals to engage with the southern Utah community and promote success of underserved and underrepresented students,” DSU President Richard “Biff” Williams said. “Thanks to the grant from the Utah State Board of Regents, we have the means necessary to make even more progress on both of these initiatives.”

Dixie State University serves many first-generation and low-income ethnic minorities, making the institution a perfect partner in ¡Adelante! Washington County.  The program will promote educational success in the Latino community by offering college preparatory materials in English and Spanish that address the importance of college, minorities in higher education, family legacies, rigorous course of study in higher school, standardized testing, and financial aid preparation.

“Dixie State is dedicated to the success of all our students,” Duncan said.  “Our racial/ethnic student population has grown in the last few years and we are now one of most diverse campuses in Utah; because of this, all of our students have an opportunity to become cultural aware citizens. I am very pleased with the possibilities that this grant will create for our Latino community family.”

To learn more about Dixie State University’s inclusion efforts, visit mcdc.dixie.edu, and for more information about the Utah State Board of Regents, go to higheredutah.org.