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UPTOWN CHICAGO COMMISSION

Uptown in the News  

March 7, 2004
Chicago Tribune
1 college, 2 languages
A handful of bilingual colleges in the U.S.---including Chicago's St. Augustine College---are dedicated to making higher education more accessible for Hispanics not yet fluent in English.
By Barbara Varro, Special to the Tribune


St. Augustine College in Uptown is one of a handful of bilingual colleges in the country. The average age of St. Augustine's students is 31, and females account for 78 percent of its 1,700 enrollment. Its students primarily are of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Columbian and Ecuadorean descent. Tuition is about $7,200 a year, and the majority of students receive financial aid.

The way bilingual colleges usually operate is to teach courses in Spanish during the first year while students learn English proficiency. Most courses are taught with English texts, and faculty members are bilingual. Proponents of bilingual higher education make no bones about its rationale: helping Hispanics who are not yet fluent in English pursue higher education.


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