The 2020 Census data on race and ethnicity released last month showed that the share of white people in the United States dropped below 60 percent for the first time in the Census's history, reports The Chronicle of Higher Education.
The state of Maryland experienced the largest increase (6.6 percentage points) in the Census Bureau's diversity index, which measures the probability that two people chosen at random will be from different racial and ethnic groups, reported the Chronicle. Maryland was also one of two states (the other was Nevada) whose population turned majority nonwhite over the last ten years.
The Chronicle looked at federal enrollment data for public colleges in the state to see how closely their student bodies reflected the state's diversity. The study, in general, found that the demographics at the colleges mirrored state demographics. For example, at McDaniel College, the percentage of black students tripled to 21 percent since 2010, and the share of white students fell from 81.8 percent to 57.2 percent.
Morgan State and Coppin State Universities, both of which are historically black, were the only two institutions in the group that saw their share of white students increase (just barely from a base of less than 2 percent for both), the Chronicle reported.
Most of the state's colleges' American Indian/Alaskan Native and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander student populations remained flat.
The University of Maryland College Park has become more diverse over the last decade but lags behind the diversity of the state's population of traditional-age students, the Chronicle study found. Nearly one-third of 18-24 year-olds in the state were black in 2019; the share of black students at the university that same year was 11.5 percent.
The Chronicle of Higher Education