2015 State of Higher Education in California: 
The Black Report


Our newest report, The State of Higher Education in California - Black Report  is being released today. California is home to the fifth largest Black population in the nation, and while our research has some good news - more Black adults today have a high school diploma and college degree than in the past there is also disheartening findings. Black high school students are still less likely to graduate from high school and when they do, less likely to have completed the college preparatory curriculum needed for admission to the University of California and California State University systems compared to other major racial/ethnic groups. Black students who do make it to college are the most likely to be placed into pre-college level coursework, the least likely to graduate from college, and the most likely to enroll in for-profit colleges - some of which have traditionally poor rates of student success and high tuition costs and student debt levels.


Inadequate high school preparation, a broken college remedial education system, and significant funding cuts to the state's public colleges and universities all play a major role in the ability of Black students to both enroll in and complete college. 


A few key findings from the report:


  • Only 23 percent of working-age Blacks in California have bachelor's degrees, compared to 42 percent of their White counterparts.
  • One-third of Black adults aged 25-64 attended college but earned no degree.
  • Black undergraduates are underrepresented at four-year public and private, nonprofit universities and overrepresented at California Community Colleges and For-Profit colleges.
  • Only 37% of Black students earned a degree, certificate or transferred after six years from a California community college.  
  • Only 37% of Black students who started at the California State University system as freshman will complete after six years.
  • At least 2/3 of Black applicants were denied admission to six of the University of California's nine undergraduate campuses.


In addition to the recommendations listed in our report, we have highlighted the work of two San Diego State University professors who launched the Minority Male Community College Collaborative and created free assessment tools that community colleges can use to inform strategies to increase the success rates of Black students. You can access our new report, infographic, press release and the profile using the link below. 


We hope the data and recommendations put forth in this report inform and inspire policy makers and college leaders to enact and implement the type of funding, policies, and practices required to improve outcomes for Black students. We have the power to address the challenges facing higher education and to live in a strong California that works for all of its residents. Change is needed now to ensure the next report has much better news.  


Please save the date for our upcoming webinar on Thursday, June 18 at 10:30am where we will discuss the key findings of both our Latino and Black report. The invitation will be forthcoming.



Michele Signature


Campaign for College Opportunity