The fellowships are available through a consortium of higher education institutions in the Southwest, including UT Pan American, known as the Hispanic Border Leadership Institute. The institute, funded primarily by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, is working to prepare educational leaders in part by providing doctoral fellowships to eligible Hispanics studying education.
"This program seeks Hispanic people with master’s degrees who will be able to spend three years in residence at UT Pan American," said Dr. Patrick Lynch, director of the program at UT Pan American. "This is a special opportunity for educators and administrators, and the program will prepare them for administrative and policy positions. This program is the first of its kind at UT Pan American."
Selection for the fellowships will be based on national application and competition, said Dr. Hilda Medrano, dean of the UTPA College of Education.
She said UTPA was selected to join the consortium after receiving approval from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to offer a doctoral program in educational leadership in the Rio Grande Valley.
"We also were selected because of our position geographically on the border of Mexico and the United States, and because we wrote a proposal that was funded, but most importantly because of the needs and challenges that we face in the Rio Grande Valley," she said. "We are very excited about having this opportunity, and being able to give this opportunity to some of our educators in the Rio Grande Valley."
HBLI was originally funded in 1996 to establish a consortium of four Southwest universities — Arizona State University, New Mexico State University, Paradise Valley Community College in Phoenix, Ariz., and Southwest Texas State University — with the overall mission of improving the education of Hispanics. UT Pan American and the University of Southern California joined the consortium this year.
It has three major emphases: to prepare a new wave of educational leaders with a broader understanding of issues affecting Hispanics at all levels; to provide leadership development to Hispanic board members serving K-12 school districts, community college trustees and university regents; and to analyze and shape local, state and national policy that has a direct influence on the education of Hispanics.
"HBLI was born out of the realization that while Hispanics have made some progress in achieving access and success in education, their status has not improved much over what it was in the past," Dr. Medrano said. "The institute seeks to address issues that affect the education of Hispanics at all levels, K through 16, particularly in settings located on the U.S.-Mexico border."
The Kellogg Foundation’s original six-year, $2.8 million grant in 1996 to establish the program was followed up this year with a $1.2 million expansion grant, with additional contributions by the participating consortium members.
For more information on HBLI, access its web site at http://www.hbli.org. For more information on doctoral fellowships, contact Dr. Lynch by phone at 956/316-7173, by fax at 381-2941, or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.