WASHINGTON, D.C. (Nov. 20, 2015) — OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates applauds introduction of the Minority-Serving Institutions Fairness Act.
The Higher Education Act currently does not allow institutions of higher education to receive two types of Minority Serving Institution (MSI) grants at once. As such, dual-eligible MSIs must choose between different underrepresented student populations to serve on campus.
Often times, the Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institution (AANAPISI) designation is not prioritized as AANAPISIs are disproportionately underfunded compared to other MSIs, which gives institutions little incentive to select AANAPISI grants when they are dual-eligible. The inability to be granted dual-designation further allows the most vulnerable Asian Pacific American students to face significant barriers to higher education. The bill would allow MSI to apply for more than one MSI grant.
“We applaud Senator Hirono, Senator Cornyn, Representative Chu and Representative Royce, for their leadership in ensuring that all students and the institutions that serve them are fully eligible to apply for funding and resources they need,” said Ken Lee, OCA Chief Executive Officer. “This act is an important step in providing the necessary programs and related assistance for institutions with high concentrations of low-income Asian Pacific American students, many of which are either community colleges or located in the territories.”
OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates is a national organization of community advocates dedicated to improving the social, political, and economic well-being of Asian Pacific Americans (APAs).