The U.S. Department of Education has awarded College of the Mainland (COM) a $3 million Title V (Hispanic Serving Institution) grant to support Hispanic students on their journey to a successful higher education experience. The Title V: Pasos Hacia el Futuro: Improving Achievement Through Culture, Community, and Care grant provides funding for improving engagement, belonging and outcomes for Hispanic students.

In support of expanded student support opportunities, the five-year award will provide funding for a new Hispanic Cultural Center and will support additional mental health services and cultural awareness programming. In addition to supporting student services, the grant will provide for the creation of several positions related to supporting sustainable year-round outreach opportunities for Hispanic students and families.

“Through this investment, the Title V grant allows us to boldly reinforce our continuous commitment to support the diverse needs of our students and community,” said COM Vice President for Student Services, Dr. Helen Castellanos Brewer. “We know that many of the first-generation college students that we serve may not be familiar with the wealth of opportunities that exist. By providing our college community with ongoing awareness and well-rounded educational experiences here at COM, we help ensure that they are better prepared and ready for whatever their next chapter may entail.”

The Title V grant will focus on the following objectives:

  • Increasing the number of degree-seeking Hispanic students enrolled at COM
  • Increasing fall-to-fall retention rates for Hispanic students
  • Increasing three-year graduation rates for first-time-in-college Hispanic students
  • Increasing the number of Hispanic students earning a workforce degree

A Hispanic-Serving Institution is an eligible institution of higher education that has at least 25 percent Hispanic students. Of COM’s 4,181 credit students enrolled, 35 percent are Hispanic.

To learn more about the Title V grant, visit