American Sociological Association

Racial Expropriation in Higher Education: Are Whiter Hispanic Serving Institutions More Likely to Receive Minority Serving Institution Funds?

Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs) are colleges with 25 percent or higher Latinx student bodies. Categorization as HSI permits institutions to apply for restricted competitive federal grants that are meant to help alleviate Latinx educational inequalities. However, HSI designations have increased fivefold over recent decades, leading to greater competition between them for these racially designated resources. This is the first known study to investigate patterns of racialized resource allocation to this subset of colleges. Multivariate results indicate that HSIs with larger white and smaller black student bodies are more likely to receive competitive funds, whereas the proportion of Latinx and Asian students is unassociated with funding receipt. These findings point to important distinctions among racialized organizations. Despite their overarching categorical racial designations (e.g., Hispanic Serving Institutions), racialized organizations’ institutional proximities to whiteness and distance from blackness may still shape the distribution of opportunities and resources.


Nicholas Vargas