As the population of Hispanics in Texas moves closer to becoming the majority in the state, it is incumbent upon colleges and universities to provide opportunities that will ensure competitiveness.
The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education magazine's annual list of the Top 100 colleges for Hispanics ranked the University of Houston among the top 20 colleges and universities conferring bachelor degrees and doctorates on Hispanic students. This year, UH is ranked 15th for conferring bachelor degrees and 16th among those conferring doctorates to Hispanic students. Last year, UH ranked 15th and 17th, respectfully, in those categories.
We are strengthened by our broad diversity," said UH President Renu Khator. "These rankings affirm our commitment to prepare our students for competition in the global marketplace and to provide opportunities for students to work with, and learn from, world-class faculty in nationally ranked programs."
Several professional degree programs were highlighted in the list. The UH College of Optometry ranked No.1 among like-programs in the country. Last year's list ranked the program second.
"We are proud to lead the top optometry institutions in the nation," said Dr. Earl Smith, dean of the college. "We are educating Texans and Houstonians. Our student population reflects our community and our commitment to be inclusive."
The college is one of only 19 optometry schools in the nation. Students may earn graduate degrees, a Ph.D and a combined doctor of optometry O.D./Ph.D. The Top 100 Colleges for Hispanics is an annual list compiled from data derived by the U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics and its Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System.
Concerning this year's findings, the magazine noted, "the greatest percentage of Hispanic degree earners come from Texas universities." Additionally, more women than men obtained master's degrees, according to the latest figures, continuing a trend first noted in the magazine's 2009 Top 100 list. In all categories-bachelor, master's and doctorate-women graduates consistently outnumber men at UH.
Additionally, in their individual categories, the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture ranked third, the Jack J. Valenti School of Communication ranked tenth, while UH business and marketing programs ranked eighth.
Among other UH institutions, University of Houston-Downtown ranked 36th among institutions granting bachelor degrees to Hispanics; UH-Clear Lake ranked 61st among those awarding master's degrees to Hispanic students. UH-Downtown ranked seventh for its business and marketing programs. Additionally, UH-Downtown ranked eighth in multi/interdisciplinary studies.