America’s Hispanic population is our largest, youngest and fastest growing minority group. In 40 years, the Census Bureau says, it will triple in size to 132.8 million and nearly one in three U.S. residents will be Hispanic.

Beyond the border and its immigration debates, this shift promises opportunities and change – and will inevitably make a lasting imprint across identity, education, politics, media and the arts.

In the classroom, one in five students is Hispanic. But experts say about half of Hispanic students don’t graduate each year from high school, and dropouts from 2009 alone cost the U.S. economy an estimated $335 billion.

Future leaders of America will increasingly be chosen by Hispanics – and many of these leaders will be Hispanics themselves. From now until 2030, an estimated half a million young Latinos each year will reach voting age – and nearly one-third of Hispanics expect a Latino president to be elected in the next 20 years.

If Hispanics were a country, they would rank No. 15 in gross domestic product worldwide. Businesses are increasingly striving to serve this untapped market.

Read our stories to meet young, urban Latinos who define their identity in ways different from their parents; educators who are finding solutions to the dropout epidemic; Hispanics who are mobilizing to increase Latino elected representation; and media entrepreneurs and arts leaders who are embracing this growing bicultural population.

Infographic: Hispanic youth: age, language and identity characteristics