Latino students are entering college at unprecedented numbers, yet they are also leaving school at higher rates. The number of Latinos between the ages of 18 and 34 who left college without completing their degree has gone up by 35 percent, while the general non-completion rate has only gone up by seven percent in the last decade. One state with a particularly high gap between the Latino and general non-completion rate is Oregon. We hear from two Oregon State University students, Jasmine Meraz and Miguel Paniagua, and learn about the hurdles students face trying to reach graduation.

To read more about Jasmine and Miguel, and to explore the national trends about Latinos and higher education, visit the special Latino USA collaboration with Community Service Society of New York.

Featured artwork by Zeke Peña

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One thought on “Navigating the Maze of Higher Education

  1. I love the idea that Jasmine and her mother have a close relation because I feel that mother’s should do everything possible to help her child throughout her life time. Mother’s are daughter’s nurturers and serve as spiritual guidance as daughter’s grow up, In this presentation is a young lady named Jasmine Meraz attempting to change the quality of her life. She loved both her parents. Consequently, her parents faced challenges and Jasmine’s father moved out of the family home to return to Mexico. I found that to be stereotyped since father’s adore their daughters and long to be with them. In his absence, Jasmine’s mother fell into a relationship with a man and he was the macho type in the sense of needing to be in control, When things didn’t go his way he would because physically and mentally challenging towards her mother. I am glad that the relationship did not work out because it gave mother and daughter time to work out their indifferences and mend their relationship. Jasmine’s health was declining due to gallstones and mental health issues, As if though a dysfunctional family wasn’t enough, money to continue from Jasmine’s junior year to complete her senior year because a financial burden. Like many Mexican background students, Jasmine found herself applying for financial aide and scholarships because college was just around the corner. Most girl’s have jobs throughout middle school and high school. However, I do not remember hearing that Jasmine had any responsibilities for her education and/or other adult expenses. This is stereotypical because it’s not morally ethical to place that burden on parents. Mexican families are known for work ethics. These ethics begin around the age of seven to nine years old. There was no mention of her having a job on campus. This is how mental illness makes people react.

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