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What Higher Ed Is Doing Right … Or Wrong

It’s always interesting to review year to year which college and universities produce the most minority graduates in a given discipline, and furthermore, which universities occupy the No. 1 position for graduating the most students of color in any given field. Our annual “Top 100” undergraduate and graduate editions allow you to do that.

For instance, this year and last, the University of Phoenix-Online and Nova Southeastern University produced the most minority master’s degree recipients and the most minority doctorates respectively for all disciplines combined. For first professional degrees, namely dentistry (D.D.S.), law (J.D.) and medicine (M.D.), the two universities held on to their No. 1 spots for producing the most minority graduates in dentistry and law respectively. But this year, the University of Illinois at Chicago produced the most minority graduates in medicine, bumping last year’s No. 1 producer, the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, to No. 2.

As we focus on graduation rates, Diverse senior writer Ronald Roach looks at a recent Educator Sector report, which examined the colleges and universities that have the highest and lowest Black/White graduation rates and the largest and smallest Black/White graduation gaps. It is interesting to see, for example, which schools do an outstanding job of graduating their Black students at the same rate as their White students. At the same time, there are far too many schools where the Black/White graduation gaps should be considered unacceptable. Read more in Ron’s “Monitoring the Graduation Rate Gap.”

Lastly, in “The Meyerhoff Model,” senior writer David Pluviose talks to several alumni of the Meyerhoff Scholarship Program at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, which focuses on increasing the number of underrepresented students pursuing graduate degrees in the fields of math and science. Celebrating its 20th year and boasting 200 alumni, the program has been modeled after and replicated at other universities, but Meyerhoff alumni say that UMBC President Freeman A. Hrabowski’s leadership is what makes the difference. Says one Meyerhoff alum, “What he (Hrabowski) always reinforces in all of his Meyerhoffs and in all of the students at UMBC is to expect the best from themselves.”

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