New Data on African American Enrollments in Higher Education

A new report from the U.S. Department of Education reports that there were 20,389,307 students enrolled in degree granting institutions in the fall of 2015. Of these, 2,606,038 were African Americans. Thus, Blacks were 12.8 percent of all enrollees in American higher education.

Of the 2.6 million African Americans enrolled in higher education, 1,727,359 Blacks were enrolled at state-operated institutions and 464,337 Blacks were enrolled at private nonprofit institutions. Another 414,153 Black students were enrolled in private, for-profit schools. Blacks made up more than one quarter of all students in private, for-profit educational institutions.

The reported also shows that 2.9 million students were enrolled in graduate schools. There were 328,816 Black students enrolled in graduate schools. Thus, Blacks were 11.2 percent of all graduate school students.

The full report, Enrollment and Employees in Postsecondary Institutions, Fall 2015; and Financial Statistics and Academic Libraries, Fiscal Year 2015, may be downloaded by clicking here.


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  1. william frederick collins says:

    The category Two or More Races which the US Department of Education insists is so important to tabulate actually gives the appearance of a LOWER number of Black students. These numbers do not include any student who stated that she or he self-classified as “Black in combination with another race”. Using this logic neither President Obama, his daughters , the late Adam Clayton Powell, Haile Berry, etc, would ever be considered, well, Black.

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