SAC Program Named as Finalist for 2020 Examples of Excelencia Award

August 20, 2020

San Antonio College Office of Marketing & Strategic Communications

The San Antonio College Honors Academy, which supports high achieving, underrepresented students in earning an associate degree and pursuing a bachelor’s, has been selected as a finalist for the 2020 Examples of Excelencia award, an honor bestowed by Excelencia in Education, the nation’s premier authority on efforts accelerating Latino student success in higher education.

Excelencia logo.jpgExcelencia in Education made the announcement today as it presented 20 evidence-based programs from across the United States which are highlighted as finalists.

“Identifying and advancing what works is central to Excelencia’s tactical plan to accelerate Latino student success,” said Deborah Santiago, CEO of Excelencia in Education. “We look to these evidence-based practices and the leaders working directly with students and community as exemplars of what others can do to ensure our students are served well.”

“We’re proud of the San Antonio College Honors Academy’s exemplary work and of this tremendous achievement,” said College President Dr. Robert Vela.  “Being named an Excelencia finalist affirms our national reputation for serving Latino students and our dedication to their success.”

The Honors Academy’s mission is to increase the number of underserved students—English language learners, students of low socioeconomic status, students of color, and first-generation-in-college students—who receive an associate degree and transfer to a four-year university.

The program provides designated honors courses required to complete a bachelor’s degree in Texas, academic and support services from professors and advisors, and transfer and scholarship support for applying to a university.

The Honors Academy program is open to high school graduates or college freshmen with less than 15 hours of college credit. Students must have a minimum of 3.25 GPA. The program supports and values equitable education by promoting non-discriminatory practices, considering the full range of human diversity with respect for all forms of human difference. 

Every year, Examples of Excelencia begins with a national call for nominations encouraging individuals and programs to share initiatives accelerating Latino student success in higher education. Excelencia in Education reviews all program profiles of those intentionally serving Latino students and, this year, identified 20 finalists using rigorous criteria.

Finalists identified in each of four categories—associate, baccalaureate, graduate, and community-based organizations—are presented to a national selection committee composed of higher education leaders, grant makers, and stakeholders. The committee assesses the strength of innovative, intentional, culturally relevant, and effective high-impact practices tailored to Latino students and their communities to select the four Examples of Excelencia.  

In addition to the Honors Academy, the Alamo Colleges District’s AlamoADVISE program also has been selected as a finalist.