What does MSI stand for?

Minority-serving institutions

When discussing education, MSI stands for "minority-serving institutions." This designation describes colleges and universities that focus on serving Black, Hispanic, Native American, and other minority students. For example, historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) are a subset of MSIs.

Most often, MSIs are discussed in contrast to predominantly white institutions (PWIs). For example, a social media user may discuss how MSIs often do not receive the same level of funding or respect as PWIs, despite the fact that MSIs produce similarly successful students.


I'm comparing graduation rates at MSIs and PWIs

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Updated September 9, 2021

MSI definition by

This page explains what the acronym "MSI" means. The definition, example, and related terms listed above have been written and compiled by the team.

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