2024 Press Releases All Stories

WCSU designated a Hispanic-Serving Institution

HSI Designation logo

HSI Designation logoDANBURY, Connecticut — Western Connecticut State University has received federal designation as a Hispanic-Serving Institution. According to the U.S. Department of Education, a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) is defined as an institution of higher education that has an enrollment of at least 25 percent undergraduate Hispanic students.

As a result of the HSI designation, which also requires financial measurements, WCSU will be able to apply for federal Title III and Title V grants. Grant funds may be used for activities such as: scientific or laboratory equipment for teaching; construction or renovation of instructional facilities; faculty development; purchase of educational materials; academic tutoring or counseling programs; funds and administrative management; joint use of facilities; endowment funds; distance learning academic instruction; teacher education; and student support services.

In a letter announcing the HSI designation to the university community, WCSU Interim President Dr. Manohar Singh wrote, “I am pleased to announce a significant milestone in the history of Western Connecticut State University (WCSU) – we have achieved the designation of a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI). This accomplishment marks a pivotal moment in our progress toward fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion within our campus community.

“The HSI designation is not merely a label; it is a testament to our commitment and devotion to serving and supporting our Hispanic students, faculty, and staff. It represents our dedication to providing equitable opportunities for all members of our community to thrive academically, professionally, and personally. We look forward to additional accomplishments. HSI designation, which must be renewed every year, allows us to apply for federal grants available only to Hispanic-Serving Institutions.

“This achievement reflects the hard work of our entire WCSU community. It is a tribute to the collaborative efforts of faculty, staff, students, alumni, and partners who have worked tirelessly to create an environment that values diversity and promotes inclusivity.”

The Biden-Harris Administration announced in September 2023 that it would award more than $40 million to Hispanic Serving Institutions to support Hispanic and Latino students and the institutions preparing them for the future. A Department of Education press release outlined the intent of the grants:

“Through the Developing Hispanic-Serving Institutions (DHSI) program, 64 grants totaling more than $37 million were provided to assist HSIs to expand educational opportunities and improve the attainment of Hispanic students. Through the Minority Science and Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP), which assists predominantly minority institutions with funds to improve science and engineering programs and to increase enrollment of underrepresented minority students, particularly women of color, in scientific and technological careers, more than $3.8 million was awarded to 15 HSIs. These grants build on the historic Biden-Harris Administration investments in HSIs including nearly $15 billion in funding from the U.S. Department of Education.”

For more information, contact WCSU Communications and Marketing at pr@wcsu.edu.


Western Connecticut State University changes lives by providing all students with a high-quality education that fosters their growth as individuals, scholars, professionals and leaders in a global society. Our vision: To be widely recognized as a premier public university with outstanding teachers and scholars who prepare students to contribute to the world in a meaningful way.