INDIANAPOLIS — Marian University enrolled its largest ever first-year class, including a record number of Hispanic students this fall semester.
The institution saw a 17.8% increase in enrollment for this population.
"We have been very intentional about the way we are recruiting Latino Students," Executive Director of the Latino Leadership Initiative Manuela Salazar said. "We are also offering more financial support for this population which helps not only with more opportunities for them but also including the families in this process, we provide all the information in Spanish, we guide them in the admission process and include the parents in all these. We are more out in the community and we are not waiting for them to come to us, we are providing a lot of events and outreach."
It's a first for Celedonio Regules' family.
“I’m glad that my dad is proud of me for that. He really wanted me to go to college, basically doing this for my dad and my family," Regules said.
Regules’ family immigrated from Mexico to the United States for a better life.
Today, the first generation college student studies communications at Marian University and has big dreams of going into broadcasting one day.
“I hope I could be somewhere across the world. What I really wanna be is in sports media in England because I live soccer. I wanna talk about it. I wanna be on the news," Regules said.
Also in her first year at Marian, Celeste Salazar studies nursing.
She works as a medical assistant in a clinic and wants to be travel nurse when she gets older.
“I see other teens that they travel around the world with their family or by themselves. I don’t have that opportunity or that ability to travel by myself. So when I grow older I wanna study a good career, get money to help me be financially ready and stable," Celeste Salazar said.
Regules and Salazar are recipients of the John and Phyllis Sullivan Memorial Scholarship, which provides full tuition for all four years to two Indianapolis Public School grads.
“It’s really important because some of us don’t have the opportunity to go to college or our parents since they didn’t live the same as us they didn’t have the opportunity to grow up and go to school or finish school for some reason. It’s important for us to show our community we can make it without anybody helping us," Celesta Salazar said.
The estimated total on-campus cost at Marian University is $52,300 a year.
The university reports 99% of its students take advantage of the $45.2 million in awarded grants and scholarships every year.