Armstrong’s success in advancing Latino education in Georgia goes back to 2003, when the university established the HOLA (Hispanic Outreach and Leadership at Armstrong) program to provide a comprehensive Latino outreach, recruitment, progression and graduation initiative on campus. In the ten years since, the Latino enrollment on campus has increased 200 percent to the current 7.3% percent of total enrollment. Currently, Armstrong enrolls over 513 Latino students (Fall 2015)—many of who are first-generation students who are building bright futures for themselves and their communities. HOLA has received $1,146,250 in grants and cultural performance contracts to further its mission.
The mission of HOLA is to help Hispanic-Latino students succeed at ASU by providing support services and culturally sensitive programs engaging students in learning and enriching their university experience. HOLA is a recruitment, retention and outreach program serving Latino students at the university from enrollment to graduation and beyond.
During the past ten years, Armstrong has accomplished the following:
• created HOLA, a comprehensive Hispanic/Latino outreach and leadership program;
• recruited Hispanic/Latino prospects from across the state of Georgia, South Carolina and Florida;
• awarded more than 180 Goizueta Foundation Scholarships to Hispanic/Latino students;
• gained recognition and trust among Hispanic/Latino communities in Georgia;
· spearheaded the first Latino Heritage Month Celebration at Armstrong and in the City of Savannah, which hosted 31 events and impacted over 1,600 students and community attendees
· established an annual fundraising gala for the past three years, which had awarded over $10,000 dollars in scholarships for students.
• retained Hispanic/Latinos at a 72% rate, compared to the national 57% average for 4-year institutions;
• increased the enrollment of Hispanic/Latino students by 200% since 2003; and
• increased graduation rates of Hispanic/Latino students to 34%, or 11.24% above the average Armstrong graduation rate of 29.7%.