PEW Hispanic Research just came out with a report that examines the impact of the “Great Recession” on the economic vitality of Latinos. Net worth for Latinos fell 66% – mostly related to home losses. Without a doubt, Latinos (and other minorities) were hit the hardest by the last recession. When it comes to employment numbers, the Latino workforce was impacted significantly:
Job losses were higher for Hispanic and black workers than for whites. The Hispanic unemployment rate (nonseasonally adjusted) increased from 5.9% in the fourth quarter of 2007 to 12.6% in the fourth quarter of 2009. The black unemployment rate increased from 8.6% to 15.6%. The increase in the unemployment rate for whites was much less, from 3.7% to 8.0%.
Just came across this fantastic program aimed at supporting Latino men through the educational pipeline. Project MALES aims to create and cultivate a support network for Latino male students at UT-Austin, within local school districts, and throughout the surrounding community.
While all Latinos need support, it is especially true of young Latino men who are showing a widening educational gap as compared Latinas’ educational progress. Kudos to the research team at UT Austin for establishing this great program in cooperation with Austin schools and the surrounding community.
The importance of “emotional connection” in marketing and recruitment cannot be understated. Latino consumer emotional connections go beyond a brand’s logical characteristics. For many Latinos, an emotional connection is created psychologically- often unconsciously. The same can be said about prospective Latino employees. Today’s Latino job seekers search for an organization that has an increased sense of purpose and commitment to the Latino community. Hence, the same characteristics that help position brands to Latinos can also help promote an organization as an employer of choice.
This emotional connection is especially true of Latino talent. My doctorate work focused on the emotional intelligence attributes of Latino professionals and showed that Latinos are highly influenced by emotional intelligence when making decisions. As a result, when Latino job seekers make decisions about which organizations to join, they will often follow their emotional instincts.
I came across this great study by the consulting firm Garcia Trujillo and Newslink (video below) which highlights the emotional connection organizations have with Latinos, or lack thereof. Unfortunately, many organizations still fail in doing so. According to the results:
About one-in-three Hispanics (35%) believe they get a fair shake in the workplace, but nearly two-thirds (65%) report that Hispanic workers face serious obstacles to advancement….
60% [of Latinos] believe U.S. companies are committed to their Hispanic employees; however, when asked to estimate how many Hispanics are currently in management or in leadership roles in companies in the U.S., most Hispanics thought it was 10% or less. Still, more than nine of ten respondents said that it is “very important” (63%) or “important” (34%) for U.S. companies to hire Hispanics in management positions.
My research and this study clearly show that it takes more than branding to recruit and retain Latino talent. Organizations need to “emotionally connect” with Latino talent to effectively recruit them. Organizations not only have to present a compelling reason to attract Latino talent, but provide a better reason to keep them.
The results also show that Americans of all backgrounds believe that economic divides between rich and poor are the most significant contributor to disagreements on important issues – a greater wedge than ethnic, racial, or cultural divides.
Cue the reality report! Indeed, when it comes to providing opportunity to an affordable education, low-income students still face a significant challenge. According to a report by the Education Trust, the vast majority of colleges and universities are still, at least financially, out of the reach for those that need it the most:
Nationwide, nearly 1,200 four-year colleges and universities have comparable data on what low-income students pay for college. Of these, only five institutions demonstrate success in three key areas:
• They enroll a proportion of low-income students that is at least as high as the national average. • They ask these students to pay a portion of their family income no greater than what the average middle-income student pays for a bachelor’s degree. • They offer all students at least a 1-in-2 chance at graduation.
It is noteworthy that none of the highly profitable, for profit college companies, well-endowed public flagships, or private nonprofits appears among this list of five. Moreover, many of the public flagships and private non-profit institutions that do manage to keep costs relatively low for students of modest means enroll far too few of these students. The data in this study show that, increasingly, financial aid policy choices—at the national, state and institution levels—benefit affluent students more than those exhibiting the greatest financial need.
One key demographic factor that’s often overlooked from the census results and the growth of the Hispanic population is age. According to the Salud Today Blog, aging Latinos will be a significant social factor in a few years. The Latino population ages 65 and up will increase by 224% by the year 2050. Hence, there is new a study on the Latino Age Wave by Hispanics in Philanthropy (HIP). The study highlights data and trends related to aging Latinos and their needs. Great data and other information related to the Hispanic workforce.
A great discussion regarding women in the workforce via NPR (Diane Rehm Show). Topics range from pay equity, impact of the recession, research, and leadership development. Startling data regarding how the recovery has negatively impacted women – even during the slight recovery we’ve been seeing over the last few months.
HACR just released its report to measure Hispanic inclusion strategies at all Fortune 100 and/or HACR corporate member companies, as they relate to employment, procurement, philanthropy and governance. According to the study, a majority of Hispanics tend to be in more non-exempt than exempt level positions. Efforts to attract and retain Hispanics have improved. The Hispanic attrition rate fell 15% as compared to other ethnic groups.
Other key findings:
Procurement: For Corporate America, the biggest opportunity is investing in Hispanic owned businesses. As the report details, Hispanic spend hovers at 1% of total diversity spend goals.
Philanthropy: The Center for Philanthropy reported that contributions given by corporations rose to an estimated $14.1 billion, up 5.5%. Nearly one-third of the respondents acknowledged a contribution of 5% or less as their Hispanic give in 2009.
Governance: The results of this year’s report showed that Hispanic representation on corporate boards remained relatively flat, with Hispanics holding approximately 5% of all open board seats.
Hispanic-serving institutions had a 111-percent increase in applications during that period, with an annual average increase of 12 percent, which is not surprising given that Hispanic students are the fastest-growing segment of high school graduates.
The number of Hispanic high school graduates increased by 57 percent between 2000 and 2007
In 2007, about 70 percent of white non-Hispanic recent high school graduates enrolled immediately in post-secondary education, compared to 64 percent of Hispanics and 56 percent of black non-Hispanics.
….special mission institutions had some of the highest growth in the number of applications. Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs) had a 111-percent increase in applications from 2001 to 2008, with an annual average increase of 12 percent. This is not surprising, as Hispanic students are the fastest growing segment of high school graduates. Many of the HSIs are two- and four-year commuting institutions whose students predominantly come from surrounding areas.
Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)—many of them in the South—had an average yield rate of 38 percent, contrasted with Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs), with a very high average yield rate (74 percent). Unlike many HSIs, a large proportion of HBCUs are residential, private, and not-for-profit—which likely explains this difference.
Clearly some good information which is directly related to research that shows Latinos and other minorities have less access to support structures which benefit their college success (note high school to college transition number). The full report can be found here and downloaded for $15.00.
The politics of passing the Dream Act has often been a frustrating and divisive issue. A recent study conducted by North American Integration and Development Center at UCLA try to cut through the political rhetoric and put a dollar number to the benefits of passing the legislation. According to the study,
“…2.1 million undocumented immigrants would become legalized and generate approximately $ 3.6 trillion” over a 40-year period. Another positive effect of the DREAM Act would be that “[a] higher supply of skilled students would also advance the U.S. global competitive position in science, technology, medicine, education and many other endeavors”
This is a significant finding when you consider the U.S. will not be able to find enough skilled and educated workers in the coming decades. You can find the report here.
I’ve written a couple times on the issue how Latino college students pay for their college education (here and here). Here’s a just released report by the Center for Urban Education entitled ”Tapping HSI-STEM Funds to Improve Latina and Latino Access to STEM Professions” which provides additional evidence that Latino success is partially dependent to financial factors. I’ve shared similar information via HTM and presentations regarding how finances impact the type of institutions Latinos attend (not to mention the ability to complete their degree, etc.). Among the many recommendations to increase Latino success in STEM fields (and applicable to other degrees I think):
… gaining a thorough understanding of the resources and institutional supports that are required. Evidence is needed not only on “best practices” but also on how faculty members, counselors and administrators become “best practitioners” to bring about the envisioned improvements.
It’s great to see finance barriers getting more attention as a significant factor in Latino college success.