Supporting College Success for Students of Color


Real Opportunity’: Supporting College Success for Underserved Students of Color Will Move Oregon Forward.

The State of Oregon’s Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) is pleased to present Real Opportunity, a short inspirational and informational video on the need to dramatically improve support for the equitable success of underserved students of color in higher education and workforce training. In addition to viewing it, please consider sharing this video widely with your communities.

This approximately 8-minute video is part of a suite of efforts to broaden understanding of the critical importance of closing equity gaps, building equitable access, and increasing completion rates for historically underrepresented students of color in higher education. It is one component of numerous state leadership activities supported by the Talent, Innovation, and Equity (TIE) Partnership Grant to help eliminate disparities in postsecondary education success rates between Oregon’s overall student population and Black/African American, Latino/a/x/Hispanic, Native American/Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander students.  

Real Opportunity features the passionate voices of current students, state and community leaders, and educators, as well as key statewide data depicting the challenges and opportunities before us. The urgent need to address Oregon’s racial equity and opportunity gaps cannot be ignored. The chance of having a postsecondary education credential ranges from 31-49 percent for adults from underrepresented communities of color, compared to 55 percent for white individuals.* At the same time, completing a postsecondary education credential is a key to prosperity and stability, since the vast majority of Oregon family-wage jobs of the future call for postsecondary education or training.

By sharing these insights, we encourage state investment, tangible action, and community partnership throughout Oregon that will lead to a strong, educated and skilled workforce, a revitalized economy, and thriving, diverse communities. Please feel welcomed and encouraged to share the link to the video, embed it in your communications, post it on social media, and play it at events or trainings. In addition to the video, we encourage you to explore and share information on our website on our commitment to equity and student success, including exciting recent work underway to improve equitable outcomes. This work is grounded in Oregon’s high-reaching educational attainment goals and the Oregon Equity Lens. 

We thank the team at Lara Media who produced the Real Opportunity video in collaboration with our HECC team, each and every participant who was interviewed and featured, and Lumina Foundation for the TIE Partnership Grant which supported this effort. If you have questions, please feel free to contact Osvaldo Avila, Talent, Innovation, & Equity Administrator.

*Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey data, three-year rolling averages of one-year estimates, 2019.

About Author

Endi Hartigan is the Communications Director for the State of Oregon's Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC). The HECC envisions a future in which all Oregonians—and especially those whom our systems have underserved and marginalized—benefit from the transformational power of high-quality postsecondary education and training.

Comments are closed.