The College Puzzle Blog
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Dr. Michael W. Kirst

Michael W. Kirst is Professor Emeritus of Education and Business Administration at Stanford University since 1969.
Dr. Kirst received his Ph.D. in political economy and government from Harvard. Before joining the Stanford University faculty, Dr. Kirst held several positions with the federal government, including Staff Director of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Manpower, Employment and Poverty. He was a former president of the California State Board of Education. His book From High School to College with Andrea Venezia was published by Jossey Bass in 2004.

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My blog discusses the important and complex subjects of college completion, college success, student risk factors (for failing), college readiness, and academic preparation. I will explore the pieces of the college puzzle that heavily influence, if not determine, college success rates.

San Francisco Chronicle Echoes My Concerns Re Latinos' College Struggles

Today’s San Francisco Chronicle ran an excellent article (”College seems out of reach to most Latinos”) on the low enrollment rates of high school Latino graduates in California. For example, one in seven Latino grads enroll in a four year college.

The Chronicle presented the usual issues of inadequate counseling and lack of signals about what students must do for college preparation and college success.

Many Latino students must work in high school and this also hurts their enrollment in required four-year college courses. As a consequence, about 80 % of Latino high school grads enroll in two-year colleges where they face long odds for college completion.

All of this has an even more profound impact on California's economy than the four-year issue in the Chronicle article. I spoke on this issue recently, particularly elaborating on the community college issue and Latinos. The full text of my speech can be seen at

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