Tag Archives: Latinos

Like Oil and Water

I can relate to this article in the Washington Post regarding the many cultural differences within the larger Latino community. As a Mexican-American who grew up in Los Angeles, our small neighborhood was represented by several Latino communities: Cubans, Ecuadorians, Guatemaltecos, Salvadorians, Columbians, Puerto Ricans, and other cultures – including Filipinos and Vietnamese!

Those who assume all Latinos eat tacos and dance salsa should realize that most Latinos will identify with their own cultural roots first. While there are many similarities, assuming that all Latinos “are the same” is a mistake, and I see an increasing trend in our cultural self-identification.

The Rigged Admissions Game

“Students from families in the bottom economic quartile comprise only three percent of enrollment in the most competitive schools, while those from the top economic quartile comprise 72 percent” – this reported by a new Jack Kent Cooke Foundation regarding college admissions. This finding more than 10 years after selective institutions made a public commitment to increase the representation of low-income students (aka – “blind admission” strategies). Video provides an overview of key findings – report can be found here.

Latinos and Women Still Earn Less

Latinos, women, and other people of color still earn less than white men, even with similar education levels.


Among workers age 25 and older with at least a bachelor’s degree, median weekly earnings in 2014 were $1,385 for men and $1,049 for women. Black or African American workers with at least a bachelor’s degree had median weekly earnings of $970 in 2014, compared with $1,219 for White workers with the same level of education. Asians with at least a bachelor’s degree had median weekly earnings of $1,328. The median for Hispanic or Latino workers with that level of education was $1,007 per week.


Latino Growth by the Numbers

Emily Badger shares some interesting demographic changes in the next 15 years and advice on what these numbers might mean:

Projected Latino Population Change 2010-2030. Graphic via WonkBlog.com

By 2030, the Hispanic share of the local population is likely to increase almost everywhere in the U.S…..metro Atlanta’s Hispanic population grows by about 800,000 over 20 years, in Dallas by 700,000, in Charlotte by about 400,000.

The future envisioned in all of these maps means that many communities will have to confront greater diversity in their neighborhoods, among their electorates, in their schools.

“It opens up a lot of really important questions about how we educate kids in the U.S.” Pendall says. Many of the areas with growing minority populations also have high poverty rates in their public schools. “If those states and cities aren’t able to come up with the political and fiscal will to educate kids well — whether because they’re poor, because they’re African American or Latino, both or either one — that to me is one of the most important implications of the whole picture that we’re portraying.”

Thawing Out the Frozen Middle

Expanding diversity in organizations often focuses on increasing the “pipeline” – the flow of diversity talent coming into the organization. However, I agree with Sarah McBride and Noel Randewich who assert an organization has a lot of enough diverse talent within its own corporate walls – the authors draw upon Intel’s recent announcement of investing $300 million to diversify the company’s workforce noting the money should be focused somewhere else:

Diversity advocates say seizing on the supply issue can obscure other causes.

“They are blaming the pipeline for their own faults,” said Vivek Wadhwa, author of “Innovating Women,” noting that many technology companies no longer consider degrees of any sort, including computer science (CS), a requirement for employment.

He and others say technology companies should look inward, working on making themselves attractive to qualified women and minority candidates who avoid or abandon technology careers.

Of all science and engineering graduates, only about 31 percent of males and 15 percent of females work in related occupations, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Just 17 percent of African Americans with science and engineering degrees go on to work in related jobs.

To draw women and minorities, Intel should make managers accountable to specific diversity goals and measure progress through employee surveys, said Katherine Kimpel, a lawyer specializing in discrimination at Sanford Heisler Kimpel LLP.

Lori Nishiura Mackenzie, executive director of Stanford University’s Clayman Institute for Gender Research, said Intel should spend the bulk of its cash on what she called “the frozen middle” just below the top executives.

Our Growing Hyphenated America

So implies Shikha Dalmia who also contends the immigration assimilation argument is often a myth, especially when it relates to Latinos:

But such snapshot comparisons between the attitudes of naturalized and native-born citizens tell us nothing about the assimilability of modern immigrants compared to past immigrants — a good third of whom returned home because they didn’t like America. What’s more, assimilation is a multi-generational process that by all available metrics seems to be proceeding just fine. For example, restrictionists consider Latinos the most resistant to assimilation because of their tenacious fondness for Spanish and their relative proximity to their homeland. Still, 91 percent of the children and 97 percent of the grandchildren of Mexican immigrants to America speak English as their dominant language.

Victoria Stilwell expects this “majority minority” to have significant economic impact in the coming years. Continue reading