Hispanics are not a current trend. They have been here for centuries and embody an integral part of the United States and higher education.
Every racial term—including Hispanic, Latino/a, and more recently Latinx and Latine—is imperfect and problematic. There is no consensus about what works best. Despite this reality, the lives and stories of non-White faculty are essential to the future of Christian higher education.
Each author shares their account of working in a predominately White Christian institution. Filled with triumphs, struggles, and penetrating insights, the chapters explain what it is like to experience the shifting demographics of today’s universities, which are bringing increasing numbers of Hispanic students even as the overall number of Hispanic colleagues remains exceedingly small. This book will be especially useful for leaders who may be unaware of how difficult it is to navigate the challenges of Christian higher education as Hispanic faculty.
Benjamin D. Espinoza serves as Vice President of Northeastern Seminary at Roberts Wesleyan University. Espinoza graduated from Cedarville University, Asbury Theological Seminary, and Michigan State University, where he earned his PhD in Higher, Adult, and Lifelong Education. He is the editor of Theology and the Star Wars Universe and lead editor of Story, Formation, and Culture. Ben has written numerous articles in the areas of Christian formation and ministry, race and diversity, theological education, and leadership.
Octavio J. Esqueda is Professor of Christian Higher Education and Director of the PhD and EdD Programs in Educational Studies at Talbot School of Theology at Biola University. He graduated from the University of Guadalajara, Dallas Theological Seminary, and the University of North Texas, where he earned a PhD in Higher Education. The author of several journal articles on theological education, Christian higher education, and literature, Esqueda has coauthored Anointed Teaching and The Cruciform Faculty. More info can be found at octavioesqueda.com.
“If you read one book this year, make it this one. Christian higher education is only excellent when the faculty who serve students looks like the students Christian universities are committed to admitting and graduating. Presidents, provosts, deans, and college trustees will find The Hispanic Faculty Experience a treasure. Read it today.”
—Shirley V. Hoogstra, president, Council for Christian Colleges & Universities
“Here is an essential work for all those ministering in Christian higher education to hear the voices of Hispanic professors in shaping our shared future.”
—Robert W. Pazmiño, Valeria Stone Professor of Christian Education, emeritus, Andover Newton Seminary at Yale Divinity School
“This anthology brings a seasoned, informed, and thoughtful group of Latina/o scholars and educators to share eloquently about their joys and pains, their struggles and achievements, and their sacrifices and victories in following a personal and Christian vocation in predominantly white schools within the orbit of Christian colleges and universities.”
—Luis R. Rivera-Rodríguez, vice president, Hispanic Association for Theological Education
“Mirroring the diversity of Latine in the United States, this collection of stories allows all readers to truly understand their Hispanic colleagues’ doubts, frustrations, commitments, and dreams. A must-read for senior administrators seeking to increase the number of students, faculty, and staff among their ranks.”
—Alvin Padilla, professor of New Testament; dean, Latino and Global Ministries at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary
“Latine people as well as non-Latine people will gather wisdom, grace, and love from the offering of the gifts of these lives. Read only if you are ready.”
—Elizabeth Conde-Frazier, director, Association for Hispanic Theological Education
“It is incumbent upon White culture to remember Hispanics not as a current trend in new enrollments but as a population overlooked and underserved for decades. The authors challenge us to mentor the next generation of young faculty, especially those from minority backgrounds, toward success, an opportunity too important to ignore.”
—James R. Moore, director of accreditation, Association of Theological Schools
“This book is the first to focus exclusively on the Hispanic faculty experience. I trust these voices to shepherd Christian colleges and universities into the increasingly diverse and hopeful future that God has in store.”
—Robert Chao Romero, author of Brown Church: Five Centuries of Latina/o Social Justice, Theology, and Identity
“Drs. Esqueda and Espinoza provide faculty and administrators with a clearer understanding of the Hispanic leaders’ narrative and how that narrative is to be heard in the border context.”
—Mark Maddix, dean, School of Theology and Christian Ministry, Point Loma Nazarene University
“Timely. Necessary. Affirming. Through the powerful use of stories, each essay in this volume creates a window to the various and often overlooked experiences of Latina/o faculty in Christian higher education. The Hispanic Faculty Experience is a critical resource for understanding the Latina/o faculty experience in the United States.”
—Norlan Hernández, director, Jesse Miranda Center, Vanguard University
“The Hispanic Faculty Experience is full of tears, frustrations, joys, and sincere moments of vocational questioning. All authors are valientes (courageous) and an example of a faithful testimonio (testimony) that the Holy Spirit sustains in each step of the journey.”
—Oscar Merlo, director, Center for the Study of the Work and Ministry of the Holy Spirit Today, Biola University
“This book is especially valuable to executive leadership in education, who are invested and committed to diversity, inclusion, and equity and are making them an integral component of their educational culture. The educational life journeys of the scholar’s stories represented in The Hispanic Faculty Experience will help the reader see many blind spots in our educational systems and in cultural understandings.”
—Joanne Rodríguez, executive director, Hispanic Theological Initiative