Latinx Students Are Largest Group of U of California Freshmen

For the first time in history.

July 20, 2020
 

For the first time ever, more new freshmen at the University of California system will be Latinx students than any other racial or ethnic group.

They will make up 36 percent of freshmen, up from 34 percent last year. The proportion of Asian American students remained at 35 percent, and white students decreased by a percentage point to 21 percent of admitted freshmen. The proportion of African American students inched higher from 4.8 percent to 5 percent and American Indian students remained at 0.5 percent.

The range of students by ethnic group varies by UC campus. Latinx students are in the majority at the Merced campus and make up smaller shares at other UC campuses.

The UC system is barred by the state from considering race or ethnicity in admissions decisions.

At Berkeley, however, a revamped admissions process -- with more emphasis on outreach to get students to apply -- had a positive impact. The share of Berkeley freshmen who are Latinx increased from 22 percent (where it had been for two years) to 29 percent. And the share of Black freshmen increased from 4 to 5 percent.

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