What is our Focus and Goal

The main focus and goal of the Cardinal Latina Mentoring Program is to increase the retention, persistence and graduate rates of UIW undergraduate Latina students in the fields of science, technology, engineering, math, health, education and business. The success of the program will be measured by the overall and semester GPA of each individual student, on-time course completion, retention, persistence and four-year graduation rates as well as the gainful employment and/or participation into a graduate or professional school program after graduation from UIW.

What is our Approach

The University of the Incarnate Word's Ettling Center for Civic Leadership (ECCL) will coordinate this initiative on the university campus in collaboration with the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (SAHCC). This collaborative effort between the two entities has allowed both organizations to emphasize their strengths to benefit this initiative. For example, the Ettling Center plays a key role in the development and implementation of the mentoring training and curriculum for this program, while the Hispanic Chamber provides expertise in leadership development and curriculum.

Participants of the mentoring program are required to attend mentor/mentee trainings, events, discussions, and social programs in order to ensure strong and impactful relationships are developed and maintained between the mentor and their mentee.

How Mentoring will create impact on Academic Career

The Institute for Higher Education Policy published Pathways to College Network in 2011 nothing the importance and critical impact mentoring can have on students, specifically minority students.

  • Mentoring minority college students results in those students being twice as likely to persist as non mentored minority students and have higher GPAs (Crisp and Cruz 2009).
  • Undergraduates who receive out-of-class mentoring demonstrated increased academic achievement, while mentored first year students are significantly more likely to return to college for a second year (Terenzini, Psacarella, and Blimling 1996).
  • After one year of mentoring by faculty, students with mentors have higher GPAs and are more likely to stay in college compared to academically similar students who do not have mentors (Campbell and Campbell, 1997).
  • Students at both the undergraduate and graduate levels report that mentoring helped them develop skills and behaviors necessary to succeed professionally (Schlosser, Knox, Moskovitz, and Hill 2003)

What will be the impact on UIW

The inaugural cohort of Cardinal Latina mentees have 100% retention from Fall 2015 to Fall 2016 and posted an average GPA of 3.03 entering the 2016- 2017 academic year, both measures are higher than the traditional UIW student profile. Moreover, one of the Mentees have recently been admitted to the Nursing program at the University of the Incarnate Word's Miller School of Nursing & Health Professions.