Highlights From “Advancing Diversity and Inclusion In Higher Education”

Published by the U.S. Department of Education in November 2016, this post serves to highlight key finding the report.

Higher education is a key pathway for social mobility. The gap in bachelor’s degree completion has widened for both black and Hispanic adults compared to white adults. (1)

Those in racial and economic isolation have less familiarity with information and kills that are necessary for future success and have less access to counselors who are focused on preparing students for enrolling in postsecondary education. (2)

More than 80 percent of Hispanic, black and Asian students have a gap between financial needs and scholarship grants. (2)

Students report that its important for them to see themselves reflected in the faulty and curriculum to which they are exposed to create a sense of belonging and inclusiveness Strategies supported by research include comprehensive and ongoing support from administrators and peers: peer advising provided by similarly aged students. Student support services are associated with improved academic outcomes. Individualized mentoring and coaching can increase odds that students remain enrolled in school.

Pay gap between college graduates and individuals who did not graduate from college is at a record high and growing. By 2020, experts predict that fully two-thirds of jobs will require a postsecondary education. Data continue to show that the 21st century economy favors college graduates over those with only a high school diploma or GED. However, data also show that too many students of color and low-income students do not receive a higher education comparable to their white peers.

Diverse learning environments help students sharpen their critical thinking and analytical skills: prepare students to succeed in an increasingly diverse and interconnected world; break down stereotypes and reduce bias; and enable schools to fulfill their role in opening doors for students of all backgrounds.

Fewer high schools with high percentages of students of color offer advanced coursework opportunities than do high schools with low populations of students of color. Lower levels of academic preparation than their white peers upon entering college, which can affect degree attainment rates. (6)

Black and Hispanic students are less likely to be enrolled in college, and far less likely to be enrolled in selective and four-year institutions. Students of color are more likely than their white peers to be enrolled in two-year institutions.

The percentage of Hispanic and black adults who have earned a high school diploma or higher has increased.

In 2014, almost half of children under the age of 18 were people of color. According to the Census Bureau, the majority of Americans will be people of color by 2050. In 1974, the percentage of people 25 and older who had completed college was 6 percent for both Hispanic and black residents, compared with 15 percent for Hispanics and 22 percent for blacks in 2014.

The gap in bachelor’s degree attainment has steadily widened between Hispanic and whites as well as black and white U.S. residents. From 1974 to 2014, the gap between Hispanic and white bachelor’s degree attainment more than doubled .

More than 95 percent of jobs created during the economic recovery have gone to workers with at least some college education, while those with a high school diploma or less have not seen a return of their jobs. (16)

For African American males, those with only a high school diploma are three times more likely to be incarcerated by age 34 as their counterparts with four-year college degree. For people of color who have not attained a college degree, social mobility is harder, leading to fewer family resources and educational opportunities across generations. (16)

A four-year college degree is an important factor in facilitating upward mobility for lower-income families and stability for the middle to upper class. (17)

6 million high school students go to schools with law enforcement officers but no guidance counselor. Increasing access to high school counselors improves postsecondary-related outcomes such as applying to college and matriculation.

Students of color have less access to counselors whose primary goal is to prepare students for enrolling in college. One quarter of Hispanic and black students had a parent with a bachelors degree compared to the majority of white and Asian students. Students aspirations to continue their education after high school are shaped by personal and environment factors such as family and community expectations. Lack of sufficient academic and non-academic support, during the summer and first few weeks of college students of low socioeconomic-status leave college.

First-generation college students found that they persisted in postsecondary education and attained credentials at lower rates than their non-first-generation counterparts.

Two-year college is a common pathway for Hispanic students. Blacks often enroll at for profit institutions due to insufficient financial resources, lack of information and guidance about admissions processes. All races have lower graduation rates at for profit institutions.

The overall gap in college enrollment appears to be closing. This trend is partially explained by gradual increases in the enrollment rates of black and Hispanic students, particularly in attending community colleges and less selective schools.

A four-year institutions, black students are more than twice as likely to be enrolled in remedial education. The percentage of students with zero expected family contribution —an indicator of high financial need — is 47 percent for Hispanic students, 60 percent for black students, and 37 percent for Asian students. In comparison, only 29 percent of white students have zero EFC. In order to pay for education, many of these students may need to take out additional loans or work.

Borrowers of color borrow more than white borrowers. Black graduates have an average of $52,000 in student debt compared to $28,000 for white bachelors.

Many of the initiatives, while helpful, are not scalable efforts.

Black and Hispanic students are, on average, more likely to be female and older. In 2014, the percentage of women undergraduates was 62 percent for black students, 57 percent for Hispanics.

Black students who pursue a four-year college degree — particularly men — graduate at a much lower rate than white and Asian students.

In 2012, postgraduate salaries among white and Asian students were higher than those of black and Hispanic students, particularly among students who came from low- and middle-income families. Almost one in three black and one in three Hispanic students beginning their undergraduate studies who had at least one parent with a bachelor’s degree completed their own bachelor’s degree within six years, compared to only one in seven first-generation students of the same race and ethnicity.

Almost one in three black and one in three Hispanic students beginning their undergraduate studies who had at least one parent with a bachelor’s degree completed their own bachelor’s degree within six years. One in seven first generation students of the same race and ethnicity did the same.

The salary that four-year college graduates expect to make is no different if their parents finished college or did not finish college.

High school students of color, low-income students, and first-generation students feel that college is a place they do not belong.

The Hispanic population is booking in the United States and 67% of Hispanic students have parents without a college degree.

202,412 Hispanic students received their bachelor’s in 2013–2014 and 167,120 have associates. For blacks, 191,219 have bachelor’s and 134,483 have associates.

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