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Idaho college first Hispanic-Serving Institution in state

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — The College of Southern Idaho has become the first in the state to be a federally designated Hispanic-Serving Institution, officials said.

The designation comes from the U.S. Department of Education and means that at least a quarter of full-time students at higher-education institutions are Hispanic, Boise State Public Radio reported Thursday. The designation allows the school to apply for more federal grants to better serve its students.

About 26% of students at the College of Southern Idaho, located in Twin Falls, are Hispanic.

“We’ve got a growing Hispanic population in the Magic Valley,” President Dean Fisher said. “We’re pleased they’re seeking to enroll at the College of Southern Idaho and very pleased that we can serve them.”

Chris Bragg, dean of institutional effectiveness and communication, said the increase in the number of Hispanic students at the college has largely mirrored the overall growth in the region. The Idaho Commission on Hispanic Affairs said south-central Idaho is 25% Hispanic, making it the region with the most Hispanic residents.

The Commission on Hispanic Affairs said the College of Western Idaho and College of Eastern Idaho have the next highest proportions of Hispanic students among the higher education institutions.

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