Fall Undergraduate Enrollment Data

Research Rundown Issue: December '20
Publisher: National Student Clearinghouse
Date Published: November '20


Undergraduate enrollment is down at four-year universities and community colleges across the country. When disaggregated by race, the largest drops are for Black (-8%) and Native American (-10%) students. When broken down further, the largest declines are for community college freshmen, where enrollment is down most significantly for Native American (-29.3%), Latino (-27.5%), and Black (28.4%) students. Digging deeper, the decline is most steep for males than it is for females in each of these groups.

Why This Matters in Minnesota

If not addressed through targeted support and interventions, this trend could have a significant impact in Minnesota—Black, Latino, and Native American students enroll in Minnesota community colleges at the highest rate of any student demographic group. When we consider the economic, health, and overall benefits of receiving a postsecondary certificate or degree in conjunction with the fact that two-thirds of the fastest-growing occupations require some type of postsecondary education, it’s critical that schools support their high school juniors and seniors with getting ready for postsecondary education, including through supplemental academic supports and more equitable access to rigorous coursework.

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