Today marks the beginning of Hispanic Heritage Month, lasting until October 15. I am proud to be a cosponsor of two Senate resolutions recognizing Hispanic Heritage Month and celebrating the heritage and culture of Latinos in the United States. Hispanic Americans are the largest racial or ethnic minority group in the U.S. overall and in at least 22 individual states, representing more than 55 million people (17.4% of the U.S. population). The Hispanic Heritage Month resolution recognizes the integral role of Latinos in the economy, culture, and identity of the United States. The second resolution, the Hispanic-Serving Institutions Resolution, recognizes the achievements and goals of the 409 HSIs in the United States. HSIs represent 12% of non-profit colleges and universities, yet enroll 59% of all Latino students. They are located in 21 states (and Puerto Rico) and expand access to a college education for the nation’s largest racial or ethnic minority group.
Let us also take this month to recognize the achievements and contributions the Hispanic community has made to the United States and Pennsylvania. Hispanics have played a vital role in strengthening and enriching Pennsylvania’s economy, culture, and identity. I look forward to working together on issues important to our Commonwealth, and continuing to build stronger communities and promote economic advancement for thousands of young people and their families.