Women and under-represented minorities, historically the largest group in the U.S. college admissions process, are the fastest-growing demographic in the country, according to a new report.
While women made up just over 40 percent of the overall U.A.E. population in 2016, women accounted for more than 50 percent of undergraduate admissions to the University of Texas at Austin in the past two decades, the National Council on Admissions and Recruitment reported Thursday.
The data shows that women are now the largest single demographic group in college admissions in the United States, surpassing men and non-Hispanic whites, with more than half of women and non–Hispanic whites in the group receiving an offer of admission to a top-tier school.
In 2016, a record number of women were accepted to top-level universities.
Women make up about 44 percent of all undergraduate students at the U of A, according the National Center for Education Statistics, while more than 20 percent of applicants to the university are women.
The number of applications submitted to the U Texas College of Letters and Science has grown by nearly half since 2006, from 5,821 in 2010 to 12,058 in 2016.
The number of students accepted to the college from underrepresented groups has also grown by more than a quarter, from 13,937 in 2010, to 21,000 in 2016.(AP Photo/John Raoux)The National Council for Admissions & Recruiters (NCAER), which administers admissions to all the nation’s colleges and universities, said it found the increase in applications from under-represented groups is “not surprising,” but noted that it could be the result of higher acceptance rates for underrepresented students.
The data, however, shows that a growing percentage of applicants are women, according, and that is an indicator that women have a greater chance of being accepted to a university, the NCAER report said.
“The growth of women is a good sign for the future of our nation, but more needs to be done to ensure that all students of color, underrepresented minority students, and underprivileged students have the opportunity to attend a top tier institution,” said Nicole P. Stiles, NCAERS chair and executive director.
The NCAERT report noted that the majority of women in the current undergraduate population attend private colleges.
Among all undergraduates in 2020, more than 45 percent were women, compared to 43 percent in 2020.
The numbers are also consistent with the rise of the so-called “pre-med” demographic, which includes high school seniors with no college experience.
Among women ages 18 to 24, the number of underrepresented undergraduates enrolled in private colleges has more than doubled over the past decade.
The new data shows there are about 17.3 million students who are either currently enrolled or who have completed their freshman year of college.
The most recent data for women of color and under the age of 18 was from 2020.