In 2006, voters in the state of Michigan overwhelming approved a measure that banned the consideration of race in admissions decisions at state-operated universities. In subsequent admissions cycles, the number of Black students entering the flagship campus of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor dropped significantly. In 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the validity of the voter-approved measure banning the use of race-sensitive admissions.
The University of Michigan recently released new data on the racial makeup of its entering class and the student body as a whole. There are 298 African American students in this year’s entering class. They make up 5.1 percent of the incoming class. African Americans make up 14.6 percent of the Michigan population. Thus, in order for racial parity to prevail, the number of Black students in the entering class at the University of Michigan would have to nearly triple.
Blacks did make progress from a year ago, where there were 240 African Americans among the new first-year students. In 2014, Blacks were 3.9 percent of the entering class.
All told, there are 1,216 African American undergraduate students on the University of Michigan campus this fall making up 4.6 percent of the entire undergraduate student body.
In 2015, there are 585 Black graduate and professional school students at the University of Michigan. They make up 5.3 percent of all graduate and professional school enrollments.
Both Black undergraduate and Black graduate enrollments are higher in 2015 than a year ago.