The University of California granted a total of 66,123 California high school seniors admission for the 2016-2017 academic school year, a nearly 15 percent increase from the 57,635 admitted last year. Additionally, the acceptance rate into a UC system school showed a 9 percent improvement to 62.7 percent, up from 53.7 percent last year.
This increase in in-state enrollment aligned with UC President Janet Napolitano’s Three-Year Financial Sustainability plan to enroll 5,000 more California students into the 10-campus university system this year, to receive $25 million in the form of state funding as part of a state agreement.
Napolitano told the LA Times, “We’ve intensified our efforts to boost enrollment of Californians at the University and all indications are that these efforts are working.” This has been the largest growth in student admission offers since 1994, when data on this statistic began being collected.
Latinos made up 32 percent of the total high school students admitted, increasing from 16,608 to 22,704 students. African-Americans, who made up 4.7 percent of all admitted freshmen, also demonstrated improved admission statistics with offers given to 3,083 students in comparison to 2,337 last year. Nearly 43 percent of admitted students will be the first in their family to attend college and around 37 percent were from low-income families.
After a $1 billion cut in state funding in 2010, or a third of the university’s core educational budget, admission to nonresidents grew to compensate and maintain the system’s financial stability. These additional funds allowed for the UC to continue to admit the top 12.5 percent of graduating California high school seniors. Decreasing the amount of nonresidents was also a part of the Three-Year Financial Sustainability Plan in order to make more room to serve in-state students.
As an attempt to prevent out-of-state and international students from taking the seats of in-state students, higher admissions standards have been implemented for these applicants. Enrollment caps placed on the three most popular UC campuses — UCLA, UC Berkeley and UC San Diego — remained intact for the second consecutive year. Despite these efforts, the acceptance rate for nonresidents only decreased to 53.7 percent from last year’s 54.6 percent. Around 85 percent of UC undergraduates are in-state students.
About one-third of undergraduates enter as transfer students and UC is expecting a significant increase in transfer students. Admission statistics for transfer students are still being collected and have not been included in the numbers released by the UC.