ENLACE in Spanish, stands for ENgaging LAtino Communities for Education. ENLACE began in 2000 with an initial $1.5 million grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation as part of the national ENLACE Initiative. The grants were awarded to increase opportunities for Latinos to enter and complete college. The Northeastern Illinois University grant for ENLACE was one of thirteen sites selected across the United States, and was the only one funded in the Midwest. Additional financial and in-kind support has supported the program's continued success along with the ongoing commitment of Northeastern Illinois University. The program was recognized in 2016 as a finalist for the national Examples of Excelencia award, which recognizes evidence-based practices that increase Latino student success in higher education.

ENLACE's Mission

The mission of Northeastern Illinois University's ENLACE program is to invest in the preparation of leadership in higher education that will create change responsive to the educational needs of an increasingly diverse student population in colleges and universities. There is a particular demand for such leadership given the growth in the number of federally designated Hispanic-Serving Institutions. The program aims to support promising students to work as culturally competent and critical staff and administrators at institutions of higher education immediately after they graduate. The program also prepares highly qualified students for further graduate study and research in doctoral programs so they may pursue a path to tenured faculty and senior administrator positions at colleges and universities.

ENLACE Scholarship

The ENLACE scholarship partially funds the tuition of promising students in the Master of Arts in Educational Leadership with a Higher Education concentration. The selected candidates must demonstrate a strong interest in pursuing or maintaining careers in higher education serving the Latino community, first-generation college students, immigrant students, and other members of under-represented groups. Candidates should demonstrate this interest through past paid and/ or volunteer work experience in higher education or in education or not-for-profit associations/ organizations whose programs address college access and success.

Contact the director for more information.