Undergraduate Race/Ethnicity Pipeline, Universitywide, Selected Years from 1986 to 2007
This graph compares the estimated number of high school graduates from under-represented minority groups who are eligible to attend UC to the number who enroll.
Under the terms of the California Master Plan for Higher Education, the top 12.5 percent of California high school graduates are eligible for admission. "Underrepresented minorities" come from demographic groups whose group eligibility rate is less than 12.5 percent. Currently, African Americans, American Indians and Chicanos/Latinos are considered "underrepresented."
Beginning with the entering class of 1998, the University has been prohibited from considering race and ethnicity, among other characteristics, in admissions. This prohibition came from regental action in 1996, which was reinforced by the voters when they passed Proposition 209 the same year. In 2001, the Board of Regents rescinded its action; however, Proposition 209 is still the law and as a public university, UC must operate within its restrictions.
The proportion of UC's enrolled freshmen who are from underrepresented minority groups has increased steadily since the low point in 1998. Most of this increase reflects growth in the proportion of underrepresented students among high school graduates.
UC faces additional challenges in recruiting talented students from underrepresented minority groups because they often accept offers from private universities that do not face the same restrictions on affirmative action that UC does and can offer more generous and targeted financial aid.
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Source: California Postsecondary Education Commission (CPEC).