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Latinos CAN (College Access Network)

the state of Iowa in a lime color with two green fields and a graduation cap with a multi-colored serape pattern. The bottom of the state has the name Latino Can in all uppercase black letters.

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The Latinos CAN is a statewide initiative that strives to eliminate the educational attainment gap for Latino students in Iowa. We work in partnership with various statewide agencies and organizations to create systems change which will aid Latino students in earning a postsecondary education.

How the Latinos CAN may help


Latinos CAN Educational Guide for New Iowans in English and Spanish - Guia Educacional para Residentes Nuevos en Iowa

Guide in Spanish

Guide in English

Representatives from the following agencies and organizations compose the Latinos CAN


Briar Cliff University

Buena Vista University

Des Moines Area Community College

Des Moines Public Library

Des Moines Public Schools

Dowling Catholic High School

East High School, Des Moines

Employee and Family Resources

Grand View University

Hola Iowa

Indian Hills Community College

Iowa College Aid’ Gear Up

Iowa Department of Human Rights’ Office of Latino Affairs

Iowa STEM Council

Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services

Iowa's Area Education Agencies' AEA PREP

Iowa State University, Extension and Outreach

LULAC, West Liberty Council

Northeast Iowa Community College

Ottumwa High School

Simpson College

United Way of Central Iowa

The work of Latinos Can is supported in large part by Iowa College Aid grant funds. Iowa College Aid provides funding, training, and technical assistance to develop LCANs around the State of Iowa.

Iowa College Aid logo

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Latinos CAN began thanks to the work of Sonia Reyes of the Office of Latino Affairs and David Ford of Iowa AEA PREP (Postsecondary Readiness & Equity Partnership). The two came together to review data regarding the postsecondary education gap for Latinos in the state of Iowa. What they found was that the postsecondary attainment rate for Iowa’s Latino and Hispanic populations is the lowest among all demographic subgroups, nearly 30% lower than all Iowa residents in both high school diploma and postsecondary credential attainment (Metrics That Matter, 2017). They called on community leaders from across the state to address this issue. 

Community leaders were gathered and began meeting in November of 2018. There they identified systemic and cultural barriers in K-12 and post-secondary institutions across the state. The group was invited to apply for Iowa College Aid’s LCAN Grant. The grant was received and the group, now named Latinos CAN (College Access Network), began to organize. A coordinator was hired.

First Latino Postsecondary Education Task Force:

The first meeting of the Latino Postsecondary Education Task ForceAttendies of the first Latino Postsecondary Education Task Force meeting

Latinos CAN Logo Contest:

A contest was held for Iowa students to design the Latinos CAN logo. Congratulations to the winner: Yuchan Wong from Kirwood Community College.

Latinos CAN Logo

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If you are interested in being part of this working network, please contact