Finding Your Workforce: The Top 25 Institutions Graduating Latinos in Health Professions and Related Programs by Academic Level is the second brief in the Finding Your Workforce series. The analysis is part of a project to inform recruiters and employers of institutions graduating Latinos in key sectors and encourage them to do more to engage Latinos in their workforce.

Recent findings shared in this brief include:

  • Latinos in the healthcare workforce are more likely to be in lower paying support occupations—such as home health aides or nursing aides—than higher paying practitioner and technical occupations—such as physicians, surgeons, or dentists.
  • In 2009-10, 70 percent of Latinos graduating in health fields and related programs earned certificates or associate degrees.
  • At the undergraduate level, the top 25 institutions at each academic level conferring certificates or degrees to Latinos in 2009-10 were located in only six states—Texas, Florida, California, Arizona, Illinois, New Mexico—and Puerto Rico.

What Education and Industry Leaders Are Saying About Finding Your Workforce: Health

"Identifying the institutions graduating the most Latinos in these health fields and critically examining effective institutional efforts to prepare, enroll, retain, and graduate Latinos in these fields can help to meet workforce needs."

- Deborah Santiago, Author, Co-Founder and Vice President for Policy and Research, Excelencia in Education

"The Obama Administration is working with partners to better understand health workforce needs, match resources with demand, and accelerate the development of the next generation of health care providers. We have made the recruitment and retention of primary care professionals a top priority to ensure our healthcare workforce can meet the health needs of Americans. We are investing in new and meaningful opportunities for all Americans to join the health workforce in a variety of key roles.”

- Mayra Alvarez, Director of Public Health Policy, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Health Reform

"Although over 16 percent of the population in the United States is Hispanic, the proportion of Latino doctors is less than one quarter of that, and the percentages of Hispanic nurses and dentists is lower still. Health literacy in the Hispanic population is disproportionately low, and we need more Latino health professionals in the labor force to better communicate with people who have a different cultural view of health and healthcare, and also with people of Limited English Proficiency. This new information from Excelencia in Education will help providers find Latinos with the necessary credentials to continue building our critically important health care workforce."

- Russell Bennett, Vice President, Latino Health Solutions with United Healthcare

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"The future of our nation relies heavily on an educated workforce that can adapt to innovation in an ever-changing global marketplace.With changing demographics, it is incumbent upon us to educate more first time generation students, many of whom are Hispanic. I am very pleased that the University of Texas is recognized as a national leader in conferring degrees to Hispanics, but there is room for improvement, particularly in the doctoral and professional degrees. I applaud Excelencia for this report and the organization’s focus on improving student success and its overall commitment to enhancing higher education in America."

- Francisco G. Cigarroa, Chancellor, University of Texas System

"As one of the top ranked institutions in Excelencia's analysis, we feel this validates the success of our focused and intentional efforts to prepare Latinos for careers in the health professions. For example, our Medical Professions Institute provides a wide range of outreach and services as early as the junior high level and has positioned UTEP as among the most successful undergraduate institutions in the United States preparing Latino applicants to U.S. medical schools. Since nearly 70 percent of our graduates choose to remain in our community, UTEP is having a significant impact on health professions in the El Paso area."

- Donna Ekal, Associate Provost, University of Texas at El Paso

"One-third of the projected fastest growing occupations are related to health care, and Latinos are projected to account for three quarters of the growth in America's workforce by 2020. Excelencia in Education is providing practical information for health care industry leaders to make the direct connection between Latino college completion and America’s future workforce"

- Sarita Brown, President, Excelencia in Education