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ASU Bilingual Press recognized for ambitious scholarly work

The two covers by artist Malaquías Montoya

The two covers by artist Malaquías Montoya for the publications “New Directions: Assessment and Preparation of Hispanic College Students” and “Moving Forward: Policies, Planning, and Promoting Access of Hispanic College Students.”

March 14, 2018

A set of two books by the ASU Bilingual Press has received tremendous praise and a 2018 Book of the Year Award for highlighting the work of over 50 authors and renowned Chicano artist Malaquías Montoya.

The award, given by the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education (AAHHE), was officially recognized at a conference in early March.

The two books are titled “New Directions” and “Moving Forward,” and together examine the preparation, policies and access of Hispanic college students. Montoya provided artwork for the covers of the two volumes.

Besides the AAHHE award, “New Directions” and “Moving Forward” have earned substantial praise. The president of the University of Texas called them “a rich collection of insightful perspectives,” while José Luis Cruz, president of Lehman College, considers them a “must read for educational practitioners, advocates and policymakers.”

The two books were produced by the ASU Bilingual Press, housed within the Hispanic Research Center. Karen Van Hooft, executive editor of the Bilingual Press, noted that the two books are the Bilingual Press’s most ambitious scholarly project to date and a significant contribution to discussion around Hispanics in higher education.

“These are essentially research books … the authors are from all over the country, all people renowned in their field,” Van Hooft said. “They’re scholarly books that will bring people up to date on what the issues are. Sometimes they offer suggestions for what people in the field should be doing to improve the situation.”

One of Van Hooft’s key insights taken from the books is that effort has to be made at colleges and universities to account for cultural differences and different ways of learning, as opposed to just expecting all students to fit the same mold.

While primarily a collection of research papers, “New Directions” and “Moving Forward” also have essay-style discussions, allowing the set to explore many issues in different ways.

“We were thrilled by the response,” Van Hooft said. “[Readers] recognized the value they would have for people, especially people in higher education … people who are making decisions about what programs would be of value and what programs would work.”

The complete book titles are:

• “New Directions: Assessment and Preparation of Hispanic College Students”
• “Moving Forward: Policies, Planning, and Promoting Access of Hispanic College Students”

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