A new study indicates that for the first time, young Latinos are the largest minority group on United States college campuses.
Just over 12 million young adults enrolled in two and four year colleges across the nation last year. A big surge of Latino enrollment pushed the Hispanic college population to 15 percent of that total. The African American college student population grew just a bit, to 14 percent.
Richard Fry, a researcher at the Pew Hispanic Center, says the new numbers should prompt educators to study how to best serve Latino college students.
"What’s really important is thinking of the prospects of these youths is not just enrolling in college and possibly racking up some college credits," he said. "What we really want to see is – finish some associate's degrees finish some bachelor’s degrees."
Latino enrollment is largest at community colleges. Fry says Latinos need help with transfers to four-year colleges or universities. He adds that Latinos are less likely than other students to move far from home for college, and that’s another barrier that can impede their success.