UNCG NAMED TO PRINCETON REVIEW’S
‘BEST COLLEGES’ LIST FOR
19TH CONSECUTIVE YEAR
By UNCG University Communications
For the nineteenth straight year, UNCG has been named to the Princeton Review’s “The Best 382 Colleges” list for excellence in undergraduate education. UNCG joins UNC Chapel Hill, N.C. State University and UNC Asheville as the only UNC system universities to receive the prestigious recognition.
In addition to making “The Best 382 Colleges” list, UNCG was also named to the “Best Southeastern” list for academic excellence and to the “Green Colleges” list for its sustainability efforts. In its profile of UNCG, the Princeton Review highlights the university’s “strong academic programs,” as well as its “low cost of attendance” and “breathtaking campus vistas.”
The guide, published annually since 1992, recognizes the nation’s best institutions for undergraduate students. Just 13 percent of the nation’s approximately 3,000 four-year colleges are included in “The Best 382 Colleges” listing, which is based on a wide range of quantitative and qualitative data, including feedback from students, admissions officers, deans and presidents.
For more information about the rankings and the methodology, visit princetonreview.com/best382. To learn more about campus life, academic programs and the admissions process at UNCG, visit admissions.uncg.edu.
UNCG NAMED MOST AFFORDABLE
COLLEGE IN N.C. BY BUSINESS INSIDER
By UNCG University Communications
UNCG is the most affordable college in North Carolina, according to new rankings by Business Insider. The rankings include only institutions listed in the U.S. News & World Report’s top 220 national universities. Business Insider used tuition data from the 2016-17 academic year to compile the list.
For more information about UNCG tuition, financial aid and scholarships, visit to admissions.uncg.edu.
UNCG RECOGNIZED AS LEADER IN CLOSING
GAP BETWEEN WHITE, BLACK STUDENTS
By Alyssa Bedrosian
UNCG was recently recognized as a top-performing institution in a report by The Education Trust that investigates black student success at the university level. The recent report, “A Look at Black Student Success,” goes beyond national averages to understand and highlight patterns in student success and identify the top- and bottom-performing institutions.
UNCG is among eighteen institutions recognized for success in graduating black students. According to data from 2012-2014, the six-year graduation rate for black students at UNCG is nearly 60 percent – compared to a national average of 45 percent.
“UNC Greensboro is committed to closing the gaps in student success by ensuring that all admitted students have the academic support they need to graduate and pursue their goals,” Provost Dana Dunn said. “We’re proud to be a national leader in this area and we look forward to continuing our commitment to access and opportunity for all.”
Nationally, the graduation gap between white and black students is 19.3 percentage points. However, at UNCG, black students graduate at a higher rate than their white counterparts.
The report indicates that many black students encounter financial, academic and social challenges that can make the path to a degree completion more difficult. Closing the national completion gap requires addressing inequities within individual institutions, changing enrollment patterns so that selective institutions with higher graduation rates enroll more black students, and improving completion rates at institutions where black students are more likely to attend.
The Education Trust is a national nonprofit advocacy organization that promotes high academic achievement for all students at all levels, particularly for students of color and students from low-income backgrounds. To learn more, visit edtrust.org. To read the full report, visit edtrust.org/resource/blackstudentsuccess/.
BREAKING DOWN BARRIERS
FOR LATINO FAMILIES
Photography by Jenna Schad
In August, Dr. Laura Gonzalez (right) kicked off the third year of Padres Promoviendo Preparación
with a community picnic for program participants and their families and friends
Article from a UNCG Research Magazine story by contributor Chris Burritt
College bound. Few phrases make parents prouder. For many parents, planning for their children’s higher education commences before they enter high school.
But some families face more barriers than others.
Among the biggest hurdles facing our nation’s Latino immigrant families? Researchers at UNCG have found that parents who experience language barriers – or don’t understand how U.S. schools work – don’t know how to best participate in their children’s education, even if they have big dreams for them.
Since her arrival at UNCG in 2009, Dr. Laura Gonzalez has focused on understanding the Latino immigrant community and using what she learns to help parents and their children. The associate professor in the Department of Counseling and Educational Development began collaborating with Dr. Gabriella Stein, associate professor of clinical psychology. Their interviews with Latino adolescents about their experiences in schools and at home informed Gonzalez’s current outreach program, Padres Promoviendo Preparación.
Talking with more than 100 students individually and conducting focus groups with about twenty parents produced a consistent storyline: Parents want to be more involved with their children’s education but are not familiar with the U.S. educational system. At the same time, children wish for more assistance from their parents but understand their limitations.
“Latino parents are in this unusual bind where maybe they moved to this country hoping for better futures for themselves and their kids, so emotionally they’re very supportive,” Gonzalez says. “But as far as understanding how to help their kids get there, they don’t know the steps.”
Starting in 2012, the first phase of the program consisted of a two-year pilot for parents in several locations, including Asheboro City Schools and the Latino Family Center of Greater High Point. It was funded by the College Access Challenge Grant Program and UNCG’s Coalition for Diverse Language Communities.
Gonzalez, fluent in Spanish with help from her husband, a native speaker, shared teaching duties with Donna Weaver, the Spanish language coordinator for the College Foundation of North Carolina. When the two realized their teaching style was “too wordy,” their approach changed.
“It became more interactive and more personal, with less focus on passing along information and more on community building and getting comfortable with one another,” Gonzalez says.
Gonzalez continues to refine that approach in nearby Winston-Salem, where the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust has provided three years of funding for Padres Promoviendo Preparación. Since 2014, the program has reached more than 100 families in Forsyth County. Group facilitation is provided by teachers, pastors and others as part of efforts to prepare community partners to continue the program after UNCG’s involvement ends.
“There are few programs out there focusing on Latino parents currently,” Gonzalez says.
But that’s changing.
“We’ve had inquiries from people in other states, interested in replicating what we are doing,” Gonzalez says.
UNCG HOSTS COLLEGE READINESS CAMP
FOR LATINO HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS
Photography by Martin W. Kane
Latino high school students attend a class taught by a UNCG professor
By Alyssa Bedrosian
Sixty-one Latino high school students from across the state traveled to Greensboro in July to take part in UNCG CHANCE (Campamento Hispano Abriendo Nuestro Camino a la Educación/Hispanic Camp Opening the Path to Education), a three-day, intensive college readiness experience.
Students attended classes taught by UNCG faculty, participated in cultural activities, learned about financial aid and enjoyed all that UNCG’s campus has to offer – including meals at the Caf and a game night at the Leonard J. Kaplan Center for Wellness.
“This program is so important because many Latino students don’t realize that going to college is feasible,” said Kattya Castellón, associate director of Latino education affairs in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. “Because of the lack of exposure to the higher education system or other obstacles they may encounter, they may not see college as an option.”
In addition, students worked in groups – with help from UNCG faculty – to create videos about how their experience at CHANCE impacted their lives. On the final day of camp, students presented these videos to their parents. For UNCG graduate student Marisa Gonzalez, one of sixteen CHANCE mentors, the program was an opportunity to give back.
“I was once in their shoes, and I still remember how difficult it was,” she said. “This program inspired students – they saw firsthand that it is possible to go to college and that there is a lot of financial help available.”
CHANCE was funded by the Frontier Set, a new model of partnership and sharing best practices to improve student outcomes in higher education. The Frontier Set is managed by the American Association of State Colleges and Universities through funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. CHANCE also received support from the Office of Enrollment Management, the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, the Office of Intercultural Engagement and other units across campus.