Bienvenidos a la Universidad de Nebraska en Kearney

Glennis Nagel

Those words greet visitors to one of several new pages on the UNK Web site.

The pages are one of the ways UNK is trying to attract Hispanic students. They cover topics on basic information including admissions requirements, costs, programs and activities.

The students have to be able to speak English to take UNK classes, so the pages aren’t as much geared toward the prospective students as they are to the students’ families. While many of the prospective Hispanic students have families who are supportive of them seeking a college education, the students are often firstgeneration college students. The students and their parents need a source of basic information about UNK.

“One of our primary audiences is parents,” said Admissions Director Dusty Newton. “We are dealing with a lot of parents who aren’t fluent in English.”

Alejandra Núñez, UNK admissions counselor for Hispanic students, translated the pages for the site. A UNK graduate who is originally from Santiago, Chile, Núñez majored in political science and public relations.

While dialects can vary among Hispanics from different areas, Newton said he hasn’t run into any problems dealing with the dialect used on the new Web pages.

Núñez worked with Webmaster Brian Spradlin to add the new pages. Spradlin said that once the pages were translated, the process to add them was similar to adding any other pages.

He said the university could look into adding pages in other languages in the future. The pages are available as a link “En Espanol” from the UNK home page under “About Us” and “Prospective students.”

The Web site is one tool UNK is using in the effort to recruit Hispanic students. UNK has had a full-time Hispanic recruiter since 2001, has produced publications in Spanish and recently developed a DVD in Spanish to aid in recruitment.

Since 2000, Hispanic numbers at UNK have more than doubled— from 87 in 2000 to 221 this fall.