Warner Pacific University welcomed colleagues from Mexican Universities last month as part of a World Oregon program.

The visit offered a chance for the groups to exchange ideas about administrative practices, partnerships, and diversity in the U.S. higher education system. 

“It was an opportunity to learn what our Mexican colleagues are doing at their schools,” said Darilís García, Vice President of Enrollment and Student Success & Engagement at WPU. “And to explore what we could do together.”

While no concrete plans for collaboration were made, they did discuss what potential partnerships could look like.

One possibility is to virtually visit each other’s classrooms, as guest speakers.

Though the visitors spoke English, some WPU staff were bilingual and gave their presentation in Spanish.

“I think they appreciated we spoke Spanish,” García said. “I think that was really appreciated by them.”

WPU earned designated as Hispanic Serving Institution in 2018 after meeting enrollment criteria from the U.S. Department of Education that requires over 25 percent of full-time students identify as Hispanic or Latino.

“In our presentation, we talked about our diversity as compared to other institutions in the area,” García said. “How we see the strength in that.” 

García, who has been with WPU for a little more than a year, said that was something that attracted her to the institution.

“I’m a woman of color myself so it made a difference for me personally,” she said.