Blacks Are Making Solid Progress in Attainment of Two-Year Community College Degrees

Community colleges are an important part of higher education, particularly for African Americans. About 42 percent of all African-American enrollments in higher education are at the nation’s two-year community colleges. Census data shows that blacks with some college or a two-year associate’s degree significantly increase their earning power over blacks with only a high school diploma.

In 2005 nearly 82,000 African Americans were awarded two-year degrees. This is more than double the number from 15 years ago.

As is the case in bachelor’s and graduate degrees, black women hold a large lead over black men in two-year associate’s degrees. In 2005 black women earned 56,285 two-year college degrees compared to 25,472 for black men. Thus, black women earned nearly 69 percent of all associate’s degrees won by African Americans.