EPCC Trustees participate in National Summit

September 29, 2015


Members of the El Paso Community College Board of Trustees attended the National Association of Latino Elected Officials (NALEO) 11th Annual National Summit.

Dr. Carmen Olivas Graham

The meeting was held on Sept. 18 and 19 in Washington, D.C. in order to discuss and share experiences on Latino education.  

“As one of the Top 10 Community Colleges in the nation and the number one ranked community college in awarding associate degrees to Hispanics, EPCC is a leader in Latino Education,” said President Dr. William Serrata, “Having our Board of Trustees talk about what is happening locally, but also learning more about the national initiatives taking place, will keep EPCC an informed and an innovative leader in higher education with an emphasis on serving Latino students.”


The NALEO 11th Annual National Summit on the State of Latino Education was a two-day professional development opportunity aimed to boost Latino policymakers’ knowledge of the most pressing and timely policy issues in the field of postsecondary education.  

Belen Robles

EPCC’s participating trustees were able to engage with other policymakers such as state legislators, other higher education trustees and school board members.   

The EPCC Trustees along with other policymakers convened to discuss and analyze federal financial aid policies and received an update on the Reauthorization of the Higher Education Act which will imBepact the community college.  


All of this information is taken back to share with other trustee members, EPCC administration, faculty and staff and becomes an important foundation for informed decision making.  

Art Fierro

“The National Summit on the State of Latino Education was a valuable learning experience where school district and community college trustees learned valuable ways to bridge opportunities between high schools and community colleges.  The data on diverse student populations, along with discussing the importance of being sensitive to college costs in addition to tuition, was eye opening,” said Art Fierro, Chair EPCC Board of Trustees, “As Dr. Robert Nelson, President of Sacramento State, said ‘it’s about the students, not the dollars’, I believe we can apply his words to ensure student success at El Paso Community College.”

“Trustees interacted with experts who provided practices and strategies EPCC can implement in order to create an inclusive and supportive environment for the 21st century college student,” said Belen Robles, EPCC Board of Trustees, District 3,  “We learned that consultation, communication, collaboration and coordination with 4-year institutions and K-12 administrators are paramount for community colleges to facilitate student success.” 

“The information we received was most valuable and hopefully, future policy seminars will include even more board members from additional districts so that we can continue working together to improve education in our community,” said Dr. Carmen Olivas Graham, Board of Trustees, District 5.

For more information on the EPCC Board of Trustees, visit www.epcc.edu or contact Pamela Payne, executive assistant to the President and Board of Trustees, at (915) 831-6511.


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