HETS 2011 Winter Board Meeting Sets 2011-2014 Focus

The HETS January Board of Directors Meeting was successfully held at the University of the Sacred Heart in San Juan, PR on January 13 and 14.

Besides allowing the discussion of the key accomplishments of the organization during the first semester of the 2010-2011 year, this meeting was crucial in setting the focus for the direction of the organization from 2011 through 2014.

The next three years will continue to be essential in the continuous growth and development of the HETS Consortium and the capacity-building of its member institutions. After the evaluation and discussion of not only possibilities, but also current needs and future challenges, the Board decided to continue pursuing the accomplishment of the Consortium’s mission through three core areas of focus: access to postsecondary opportunities for Hispanics, retention of the Hispanic learner, and assessment of learning strategies for Hispanic Students. Representatives of 17 out of 29 member institutions present at the meeting agreed on the key role of the Boards Finance and Planning Committee, established during the past summer meeting, in guiding and supporting the development of specific objectives and strategies for each of these areas as part of the 2011-2014 strategic planning process.

The meeting also gave place to the discussion of priority activities for the next semester. Priorities include the coordination and delivery of several events tailored to the needs of member institutions and the challenges of the Hispanic Higher Education scenario. Considering the importance and the impact of the educational agenda of the HETS Consortium, Board members gave their approval to the Second Annual HETS Best Practices Showcase, to be held in February 2012 in Puerto Rico. This event will continue to celebrate the innovative use of technology in postsecondary education as a means to foster true learning and promote the success of Hispanic college students. This time, the event will be a mixed-media conference in order to allow those who are not able to physically attend to still take advantage of the topics discussed and topics shared. To learn more about the 2010 Best Practices Showcase, please visit http://www.hets.org/content.php?cn_id=170. HETS will also be developing this year new professional development events, including several online training opportunities. Some will be available in both Spanish and English in order to fulfill the needs of all HETS members and impact larger audiences.

As customary, the HETS Board Meeting also incorporated relevant discussions about the organization’s accomplishments during the first semester of the 2010-2011 year, including the launch of the HETS Online Journal and the results of the work of the actively involved HETS Task Forces. In addition to this, during the meeting, the newest institutional member, EDP College, was introduced. The Board had also a chance to share with some of the Consortium’s corporate affiliates, including the first ever HETS Major Corporate Partners: Ramona Munsell and Associates, Blackboard, and Knowlity. Corporate affiliates had an opportunity to exchange ideas with the Boards Executive Committee during a morning Corporate Networking Session prior to the beginning of the Board Meeting. Other corporations represented in this session included: Educational Testing Services (ETS), Consorcio de Bibiliotecas Metropolitanas (COBIMET), and the Hispanic Information and Telecommunications Network (HITN).

At the end of the first day of the meeting, Board members and representatives, corporate partners, and the HETS staff shared with one another at a reception and dinner event. The HETS Board of Directors and the HETS office appreciates the hospitality and extraordinary attentions of the host institution: the University of the Sacred Heart. Also their gratitude and special recognition to the Inter American University and the Polytechnic University for their collaboration with the reception event and ground transportation, respectively, during the meeting.