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College-Educated Latinos Seen As Solution To Better Economy

Audio

Aired 8/10/10

The nation's education czar says graduating more Latino students is a key to fixing the country's economy. That’s because more college-educated Latinos will help the nation compete.

— The nation's education czar says graduating more Latino students is a key to fixing the country's economy. That’s because more college-educated Latinos will help the nation compete.

U.S. Secretary of Education Arnie Duncan says Latinos are the fastest growing minority group in the country. But their high school and college graduation rates are at the bottom.

Duncan says that's a huge concern because America needs a college-educated workforce to compete globally.

California has one of the largest populations of Latino students in the U.S. San Diego County educates 44 percent of Latino students.

Duncan says getting more Latinos to finish college translates into a solution for a better economy.

“The strength of the Hispanic community and the commitment to higher education is going to be phenomenally important, not just for the Hispanic community, but for the community as a whole,” Duncan said.

The U.S. Education Department has redirected $60 billion to increase the number of Pell Grants for college students. Officials have also invested in community colleges, created a new tax credit for tuition, and simplified student aid forms.

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