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September 24th 2008

Excelencia in Education Celebration, Houston

Excelencia in Education Celebration, Houston

Blogging from Houston, today, where I represented COS Puente at the Celebracion de Excelencia at the National College Access Network conference.

I was happy to be present in Houston where COS Puente was announced as a semi-finalist for one of the 2008 Excelencia in Education grants.  Excelencia‘s president, Sarita Brown, explained that when Excelencia was founded in 2004, it’s primary goal was to collect and disseminate information on effective programs supporting Latinos in higher education, to work with “policymakers, higher education administrators, and other stakeholders improve opportunities for Latino students to succeed in postsecondary education” and to develop, document, and evaluate “demonstration projects and other programs to support the application of effective practices in public policy and in education institutions.”

Excelencia publishes several important reports on what is working for Latinos in higher ed, including Modeling Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs): Campus Practices That Work for Latino Students and VOCES (Voices): A Profile of Today’s Latino College Students.  Both these reports can be downloaded by following the links, as well as a forthcoming compendium of effective practices which will include COS Puente.

I met a number of interesting people at this “Celebration,” including Teri Lee from the University of California MESA program.  She mentioned our own Duane Goodman and the recently reserected MESA at COS.  Not only was it great to talk to a kindred spirit (this was the first conference I’ve attended where I knew no one), but she was representing the state program, which had also been a semi-finalist for a grant.

Look for more good things to come as we have a chance to be featured in the 2008 compendium of “best practices” for Latinos.

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August 29th 2008

labor day!

labor day!

It’s Labor Day and we’re on vacation in Placerville, CA, on Highway 50 about 30 minutes out of Sacramento.  We always stay at the same Bed and Breakfast, and if you ever are in that area, don’t push on through to Lake Tahoe, stay at the GlenMorey House a night or two!  Family run, Tom and Alison have 3 kids with another on the way–we’ve been coming here almost four years, now, and it’s something to watch the family grow and the B & B to change.  We love it there.

We’re up here, in part, because my father-in-law lives in Placerville and we’re taking him to a Cal fooball game this weekend!  They play Michigan State in their home opener and since dad was a Cal grad, we’ll be in our gold T-Shirts, screaming for the Bears.  It’ll be a welcome escape from the valley heat and a good game I hope.

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