If these are the schools you're considering, go for it. The worst they can tell you is, "No".
Does a high ACT score compensate for a low GPA? I got a 30 on the ACT, but my GPA is only 2.46. Also, I am half White and half Mexican. This is my senior year in high school and am thinking about the following colleges and wondering if I am being too ambitious:
University of Illinois
University of Minnesota
Now when you do apply, colleges do allow for explanations, whether it is on the application itself or in a separate essay. This is where you give explanations for what was the cause for the low grade point average. For example, if you experienced any personal or family hardships that interfered with your studies (had to work to support the family, medical situations, etc.) If the low grades were just due to being a slacker and just doing enough to get by, then explain that you have matured and realize it's time to take things seriously, set goals, and strive for those goals. Also if your grades have improved tremendously within the last year, point that out as well.
On the application, do put that you are Mexican. Colleges do look for diversity. Also if you are the first person in your family to graduate from high school or to go to college, also emphasize that on the application as well.
When you are writing your explanations (or essay), take it seriously. Whatever reasons you put, elaborate. Remember, you are trying to convince them to admit you to the university.
If you do not get into any of these universities, then spend a year going to a community college, take your basics, do your homework in your classes, get excellent grades, and then apply again. You now have a college grade point average that will prove that you are capable of handling college course work.
Don't procrastinate in applying. Do it now. Many colleges have cut off dates for admissions. The sooner you apply the better your chance of getting in.
A high school teacher