The 50 Top Ethnically Diverse Colleges In America
Presidential Medal of Freedom award winner, author, and poet Maya Angelou said, “It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty, and there is strength.” It is true, there is strength in diversity. Students educated in racially and ethnically diverse settings perform better academically and reap greater professional success than peers from more homogeneous learning environments. The advantage of a multicultural education extends far beyond the classroom and professional life. The idea of democracy is truly dependent on the next generation of leaders, leaders who are prepared to engage with individuals and groups that make up the Melting Pot we call America. Only those who can rejoice in the beauty of our differences while valuing human life will change the world.
Our list was based on the following criteria:
- No race can have more than 45% representation
- At least three races are represented by over 12%
- Percentage of total minorities graduated 2012-13
- Scholarships, clubs, organizations, and associations available for ethnic groups
*Statistics and definitions of race/ethnicity were gathered from the National Center for Education Statistics and Diverse Issues in Higher Education.
50. University of Washington – Tacoma
Part of the University of Washington network, UW Tacoma is located in the historic Union Station District with beautiful old brick buildings. UW Tacoma is much smaller than UW Seattle, with 4,500 students, of which more than 80 percent of students transfer from community colleges or other universities. Commitment to diversity at all levels is evident at UW Tacoma. The Office for Equity and Diversity was created to help cultivate differences, and the Diversity Task Force “serves to bring to life the campus’ expression of its value of diversity, and to provide campus guidance for equity, diversity, and multicultural teaching and learning.” The Diversity Resource Center also aides in enhancing campus education, developing community partnerships, and building diversity. Student life includes an MLK Day Unity Breakfast or attending events such as the upcoming 2015 Diversity Summit, titled
“Oppression: Know More.”
49. Western New Mexico University
Founded in 1893, Western New Mexico University (WNMU) has grown to serve about 3,700 total students. Located in Silver City, New Mexico, WNMU is surrounded by much natural beauty, including the Gala National Forrest. There are over 18 countries represented on campus, and 44 percent of undergraduates are Hispanic. WNMU is designated as a Hispanic Serving Institution. There are multiple cultural clubs to choose from and students participate in Black History Month, Cinco de Mayo, Chinese New Year, and other multicultural celebrations. AT WNMU, there is a strong effort on serving local needs, for example, the Gardner Learning Center “offers affordable access to education with an
appreciation for the multicultural, multilingual nature of our population.”
48. Houston Baptist University
Houston Baptist University is a private Baptist institution founded in 1960. It is located in Greater Sharpstown in Houston, Texas. It was formed by the Baptist General Convention of Texas on November 15, 1960, culminating from many years of work and study. The aim of the College founder was Celebration of life as well as the quality of learning. Within the campus community, there is a great diversity amongst the students, with 13 percent Asian, 20 percent Black or African-American, 26 percent Hispanic/Latino, and 26 percent White. Students are supported by a variety of cultural organizations including the African Student Association, Filipino Student Organization, International Student Organization, Hispanic Student Organization, and Vietnamese Student Association.
47. Pacific Union College
Diversity is part of the essence of Pacific Union College in California. The college is a Seventh-Day Adventist school in the liberal arts tradition and was founded in 1882. Their most popular programs are nursing, biology, business administration, communication and visual arts. Amongst the student body, 17.7 percent are Asian, 27.7 percent White, and 27.1 percent Hispanic/Latino. The campus is alive with many multi-cultural flavors. There are 30 cultural, academic and special interest clubs for the nearly 1700 undergraduates at the Pacific Union. Specifically, there are six cultural clubs or unions for Asian, Black, Filipino, Latino, and Korean students. Interestingly, Pacific Union sends over 1300 student missionaries to places all around the world, adding to the ethnic and global feel of the college. The Campus Center at PUC seeks to implement the interaction of the diverse student body with a “Neighborhood Night” every Monday; students interact with other clubs and participate in community events.
46. New York University
Founded in 1831, New York University has always been marked as “open to all.” Their website states, “We continually strive to foster a dynamic and rigorous teaching and learning environment that represents a diversity of viewpoints. As a community of scholars (faculty, students, and staff) that is inclusive of divergent backgrounds and historically underrepresented groups, NYU engages a diversity of
viewpoints, perspectives, and approaches.” This noble mission is upheld and supported by many student resources including the Center for Multicultural Education and Programs, the Student Resource
Center, and the Office of Equal Opportunity.
45. The University of North Texas at Dallas
Located on 264 acres in southern Dallas in the University Hills, the University of North Texas at Dallas (UNTD), which is smaller than other Texas schools, stands tall. With 2,600 students, UNTD has a diverse student population: 35 percent Hispanic, 33 percent African-American, and 27 percent White. The Office of Student Life offers multicultural programs and events to foster appreciation and recognition of the diversity with an International Day of Peace, Hispanic Heritage Month, Irish-American Heritage Month to name a few. There is also a League of United Latin American Citizens student group. This year, UNTD Office of Student Affairs is hosting a Leadership and Diversity Summit with speakers, workshops, and topics to increase knowledge and awareness of diversity.
44. Golden Gate University – San Francisco
Located in the Financial District of downtown San Francisco, Golden Gate University is a private university that specializes in educating professionals through its schools of law, business, taxation, and accounting. The University offers two undergraduate degrees with eight concentrations and 15 graduate degrees with 24 concentrations. The mission of the University is to prepare individuals to lead and serve embracing ethics and diversity. Living up to that mission is a vital part of a Golden Gate education. Student Clubs help fulfill that mission by providing opportunities for students to learn, network and socialize outside the classroom. Whether it is the International Student Association, Japanese Student Club, Persian Professionals Club, or many others, there are ample opportunities for students of difference ethnic origins.
43. University of Washington – Seattle
Just a quick perusal of University of Washington – Seattle’s (UWS) website creates a strong impression that UWS is committed to diversity. In their words “diversity is integral to excellence.” Besides having a strong academic record, with 35 Rhodes Scholars, the school offers many opportunities for ethnic minorities. The Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity seeks to increase diversity by offering over $18 Million dollars in financial aid, 47 percent of which are granted. Ana Mari Cauce, the interim president recently made an institutional commitment to combat racism and inequity. UWS offers a Diversity Minor, American Indian Studies, American Ethnic Studies, a Diversity Research Institute, Center for Multicultural Education, and Institute for Ethnic Studies in the United States as part of their commitment to diversity and excellence. Student groups are also available to serve the many different cultures and interests of the nearly 54,000 students.
42. University of Maryland – University College
The University of Maryland University College (UMUC) serves over 90,000 students worldwide and is one of the largest distance learning institutions in the world. Classes are offered on campus at the Academic Center in Largo, and at satellite campuses throughout Maryland, as well as Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. Because the UMUC serves such a vast number of students in a variety of locations, the ethnic diversity found in the student body is vast. In fall 2014, 30 percent of UMUC’s stateside students were African-American students and minority students constituted 46 percent of the total enrollment.
Also, in 2014, 37 percent of the master’s degrees conferred and 30 percent of all degrees and certificates were awarded to African American students.
41. George Mason University
Students call it “Mason Nation” as George Mason University serves 34,000 students from all 50 states and 130 countries and is one of most diverse universities in the nation. It is Virginia’s largest public research university and offers many academic options. Student life is vibrant with over 350 clubs and 1000 events per year. With Washington D.C. nearby, the diverse and global feel is enhanced. A few events celebrating ethnic diversity are Hispanic Heritage Month, Native American/Indigenous Heritage Month, Black Heritage Month, Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, and International Week. The
Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Multicultural Education (ODIME) offers many resources that promote, encourage, and assist the diverse population at GMU. For example, ODIME has an ongoing partnership with Learning Services which offer tutoring services to students in need. With this kind of support, it is no wonder GMU ranks on our top 50 most ethnically diverse schools.
40. University of Nevada – Las Vegas
Diversity is key at the University of Nevada – Las Vegas (UNLV). In December 2012, the U.S. Department of Education designated UNLV as a Minority Serving Institution because of the high percentage of minority students. To receive this designation, institutions must meet specific primary indicators, which include diversity of the student body by race and ethnicity. Other indicators include the number of minority students who qualify for federal assistance including the Pell Grant, Work-Study, Perkins Loan or Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant programs. UNLV meets the requirements as an Asian-American and Native-American, Pacific Islander Serving Institution and is an emerging Hispanic Serving Institution. The university is ready to meet the needs of these racially and ethnically diverse students with 52 different cultural, ethnic, and religious-based student organizations.
39. Humphreys College
An independent liberal arts college located on campuses in both Modesto and Stockton, California, Humphreys College was the first institution of higher education in the area. Founded in 1896 by John R.
Humphreys Sr., the college has been run by members of the Humphrey family since its conception. Humphreys College serves a diverse population: 22 percent of students identify as white, 13.8 percent
identify as Black or African American, 13.3 percent identify as non-resident alien, and its largest Population identify as Hispanic/Latino at 38.6 percent. Serving its local community, most of Humphreys.’
students are from San Joaquin and the neighboring counties, making Humphreys College an important institution of higher education in the area.
38. Rutgers University
Rutgers University is home to an ethnically diverse student body. There are many clubs and student Organizations that support various ethnic groups, as a well as scholarships available for minorities. The G. O. A. L. S. Minority Scholarship was created to increase diversity at the School of Management and Labor Relations and is available to Rutgers students. There are six centers on campus that are focused on providing friendly, welcoming, inclusive environments, and rich, diverse programs to Rutgers students. Rutgers University is a public research university and is the largest institution of higher education in the state of New Jersey and is one of the nine “Colonial Colleges” founded before the American Revolution.
37. University of Texas – Dallas
With a diverse ethnic make-up, the University of Texas-Dallas is notable in their commitment to inclusion and education. The Office of Diversity and Community Engagement (ODCE) coordinates resources, events, activities for the promotion of diversity and inclusion at all levels of the university and in the community. A few highlights of the ODCE are the Diversity Speaker Series, the Minority Scholars Symposium, the Multicultural Dinner Dialogues, and the Regional Symposium on Diversity in Academia. The Multicultural Center is also a major part of UT-Dallas and their dedication to diversity. The MC, as it is called, “provides cultural programs, support services, resources and cultural education programs.”
Some events the MC hosts are Black History Month Celebrations, Asian-American Heritage Celebrations, the MLK Jr. Breakfast, and Multicultural Living and Learning Community. UT-Dallas also offers a variety of scholarships available for minorities, has many groups to choose from, and provides great support for all students.
36. Saint Leo University
Saint Leo University seeks to “create a student-centered environment in which the love of learning is of prime importance. Members of the community are expected to examine and express their own values, listen respectfully to and respond to the opinions of others, serve the community in which they live, welcome others into their lives, and care for all of God’s creations.” Living up to this noble mission, Saint Leo is home to almost 2,200 students from 44 states and territories as well as 56 countries around the world. This ethnically diverse student body works hard to study, serve, and play together in the community while celebrating differences. Saint Leo University is Florida’s first Catholic institution of higher education and is located in Saint Leo, Florida.
35. Andrews University
Andrews University is one of the best-known Adventist educational institutions in the world today, and home to an ethnically diverse population. Founded in 1874 as a tiny school by teacher Mr. Goodloe Bell with only 12 students in Battle Creek, Michigan, Andrews University has grown to be the largest Evangelical Christian University in the state of Michigan. An Andrews education focuses on four Core Strengths, one of which is to engage globally, where students are offered “distinctive ethnic and cultural diversity opportunities that equip them to understand better, serve and change the world around them in God-centered, thoughtful and meaningful ways.”
34. University of Texas – Arlington
The University of Texas – Arlington is an exciting and growing school that challenges students to be leaders. Like the state it resides in, UT-Arlington is large, serving 51,000 total students from over 100 different countries. With 180 degree programs and ten different schools, choice abounds. The student population is a medley of different cultures and ethnicities. The most represented four races are: Asian at 10.7 percent, African American at 14.8 percent, Hispanic/Latino at 23.8 percent, and White at 41.4 percent. With this diversity the university has an annual tradition of celebrating International Week with a parade of banners, international food, fashion show, nationality exhibits, and a Global Extravaganza talent show to name some of the exciting events. There is also the Semana De Cultura showcasing the Latino culture and traditions. The Diversity Certificate Program (DCP) is interesting in that students work with a DCP advisor to individualize, supplement, and enhance their major by studying aspects of human diversity.
33. University of Maryland – Baltimore County
The University of Maryland – Baltimore County (UMBC) is a public research university that integrates teaching, research, and service to benefit the citizens of Maryland. It is an Honors University that offers academically talented students a strong undergraduate liberal arts foundation to prepare them for graduate study and entry into the workforce. The mission of UMBC states that the university is “dedicated to cultural and ethnic diversity, social responsibility, and lifelong learning.” UMBC is living up to this mission with its ethnically diverse student body and the many opportunities they offer. One student group is the Intercultural Living Exchange that specifically aims to promote cultural diversity.
Residents are monitored by international students and participate in social events and cultural festivities. Students earn academic credit for participating in this group. This group, along with many others, is just one reason UMBC earns a spot at the top of the list.
32. University of San Francisco
Located in the ethnically diverse city of San Francisco, the University of San Francisco directly reflects its cultural environment. With a diverse student body, the University is constantly looking for ways to support these students in their college endeavor. The Cultural Centers team works closely with various culturally-focused student clubs, organizations, and programs, as well as the Culturally-Focused Clubs Council that work together for intergroup communication and collaboration. There are currently 22 Cultural Clubs on campus, ensuring that there is a place for everyone. Representatives from each club meet regularly to participate in leadership development, cultural competency, and ally-building training.
31. Florida Atlantic University
Florida Atlantic University is a public university located in Boca Raton, Florida. With a hugely diverse student body, over 60 percent of students are of ethnic descent, the University is ready to meet the needs of their students. “A Campus of Difference” is an anti-bias diversity training program which helps participants increase their self-awareness and learn to appreciate diversity on campus. The goal of this training enhances the university’s ability to build a stronger community. This then is to lead the to proactive changes regarding the challenges faced on campus by helping participants recognize bias and the harm it inflicts on individuals and society. Students will also explore their own personal and cultural identity. Programs like this diversity training are just one way that Florida Atlantic University creates a positive environment for students of all ethnicity.
30. St. Peter’s University
St. Peter’s University offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and is located just outside of New York City. On this diverse campus, 32 percent of the student population is Hispanic, 26 percent are African-American and 8 percent are Asian; there are many cultural organizations on campus ready to meet the needs of this racially and ethnically diverse student body. Along with the many special interest groups at St. Peter’s, there are opportunities for performing arts such as dance, chorale and theater, pre-professional and academic clubs, honor societies, service oriented activities, publications and media, student government, newspaper, radio, and Division I athletics. pportunities abound at St. Peter’s University.
29. St. John’s University – New York
St. John’s University is a private Catholic school founded in 1870 “in response to an invitation of the first Bishop of Brooklyn, John Loughlin, to provide the youth of the city with an intellectual and moral education.” The university serves about 16,000 undergraduates. There are four campuses in New York and two international campuses. Serving such a large student body, recognizing ethnic diversity is a crucial element of a St. John’s education. One specific program at St. John’s that promotes diversity is the School of Law’s Diversity Program, which seeks to recruit minority or underrepresented groups. The President’s Multicultural Advisory Committee was established “to address both the broad issues of multiculturalism in higher education and the specific multicultural needs of the St. John’s University community.” Their Vincentian Institute for Social Action engages in issues of injustice, some of which deal with racial or ethnic issues.
28. University of California – Berkeley
The University of California – Berkeley was founded in 1868, born out of a vision in the State Constitution to be a university that would “contribute even more than California’s gold to the glory and happiness of advancing generations.” UC Berkeley has around 34,000 students and a reputation for pioneering and progressive thinking. When it comes to diversity, Berkeley’s commitment is strong.
There is a Division for Equity and Inclusion with purposeful focus on creating a respectful environment for all people. The Current Vice Chancellor of the Equity and Inclusion, Na’ilah Nasir, has a big dream for UC Berkeley: “We can create a climate at Berkeley that people would emulate across the nation.” With ambition like this and a host of student groups Berkeley is a leader in creating a diverse campus. To note, there is a thriving Multicultural Center, Multicultural Education Program, African American Student Development Center, Gender Equity, and Staff Initiatives of Diversity as well.
27. Nyack College
Nyack College sees it as their mission to be “intentionally diverse” and have the desire to bring people from all ethnicities together to study, learn, and make the world a better place. The belief in intercultural education has led Nyack to become the most ethnically diverse Christian College in the history of American higher education. Celebrating this feat is an important part of their effectiveness and identity, Nyack remains committed to the task of enhancing this diversity in every decision, from curriculum to hiring, to pricing. This noble mission is being fulfilled on a daily basis throughout Nyack’s
flourishing student body.
26. Texas Wesleyan University
Founded by Methodists in 1890, Texas Wesleyan University achieved university status in 1935 and hasn’t looked back since. The mission at Texas Wesleyan University is “to develop students to their full potential as individuals and as members of the world community.” Now educating 2,600 students, a school theme is “Smaller. Smarter”. Even though Texas Wesleyan is a small school, it is diverse and inclusive. The most represented ethnic groups are: African American at 14.2 percent, Hispanic/Latino at 22.9 percent, and Caucasian/White at 31.1 percent. As for commitment to inclusion and diversity, Texas Wesleyan offers a Black Student Association and a Bilingual Education Society focusing on the Spanish language and culture. Texas Wesleyan is located in Fort Worth, Texas, one of the fastest growing cities in the country.
25. University of North Carolina – Pembroke
Founded in 1887 by American Indians and located in the heart of the large Lumbee Tribe, the University of North Carolina – Pembroke (UNCP) is home to a large group of Native American students, almost 15 percent of the student body. Many of the students live only a few miles from campus, and the university is set up to assist Native American students in their studies and college life. “Too often Native students can be intimidated in higher education,” said Lawrence Locklear, who organized the orientation for UNCP’s Southeast American Indian Studies program. “Like many American Indian students, I was a first-generation college student. I couldn’t get help from my family. That’s why we’re here today – to help.”
24. San Francisco State University
San Francisco State University is home to the Cesar Chavez Student Center, which serves as a focal point of student activity. The Center opened in 1975 and has continued to evolve, lead by student leadership
as it strives to meet the growing needs of the student population. The Center provides many services including restaurants, meeting rooms, and a conference hall, as well as programs that are student focused. The mission of this Center is to provide facilities, programs, and support services that enrich the educational, social, and cultural needs of the richly diverse student body at San Francisco State. In
addition to this fantastic facility, there are numerous clubs and organizations for members of varying ethnic communities, ensuring that there is place for every student to call home.
23. CUNY – Brooklyn College
Brooklyn College, part of the City University of New York, is a hub of ethnic diversity. The college strives to foster the cultural plurality found on campus, part of their mission beautifully reads, “Brooklyn College is committed to values and policies that enhance respect for individuals and their cultures. In fact, the college’s cultural, racial and ethnic diversity — our pluralism — is one of our distinguishing characteristics. Our student body and our workforce are notably composed of people of color, women, immigrants, older adults and persons with disabilities. Students at the college can trace their ancestry to more than 120 different countries. To reap the rewards of diversity, the college has developed and will continue to develop programs that combat bigotry and other biases in all their forms and will build on the strengths offered by our multicultural, multiracial and multigenerational campus.”
22. Stanford University
One of the world’s leading research universities, located in California’s Bay Area, and one of the most culturally diverse areas of the nation, Stanford University boasts an ethnically diverse student body. Since its founding in 1891, diversity has been a core value; founder Jane Stanford promised to “resist the tendency of stratification of society by keeping open an avenue whereby the deserving and the exceptional rise through their own efforts.” Today, the university is living up to this noble mission. Students at Stanford will find a plethora of Ethnic and Cultural Clubs including Armenian Students Association, Black Family Gathering, Black Men’s Forum, Native American Graduate Students, Vietnamese Student Association, and Chinese American Association to name a few.
21. Georgia State University
Georgia State University (GSU) is a large public university serving 32,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The student body is comprised of 40.8 percent African-Americans, 28.8 percent White, 11.9
percent Asian and 9.3 percent Hispanic/Latino. At GSU there are great opportunities for minorities through strong scholarships, institutes, student groups, and centers. Of note is the scholarship program in the state of Georgia for ethnic minorities called HOPE. Since 1993, over $3.8 billion has been awarded to more than 1.1 million students attending Georgia’s colleges, universities, and technical colleges. GSU also has the Confucius Institute, which provides “comprehensive services for promoting Chinese language and culture” and fosters intercultural exchange. The Multicultural Center, within the Department of Student Affairs, has many resources dedicated to diversity and education as well. Students and the community also enjoy Heritage Celebrations throughout the year.
20. University of California – Los Angeles
University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA) is diverse in many ways. Ethnically, the most populous by percentage are: Asian at 30 percent, Hispanic/Latino at 19.6 percent, and White at 27.8 percent. With multiple centers and institutes, the university serves many diverse cultures and histories. The Institute of American Cultures fosters ethnic studies scholarship and research; it is a collaborative initiative among the four ethnic studies centers on campus — the American Indian Studies Center, the Asian American Studies Center, the Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies and the Chicano Studies Research Center. There are about 42,000 students and over 1,100 student groups giving students every choice imaginable. In addition to supporting diversity through centers and clubs there are multiple scholarships available for ethnic minorities: multiple American Indian Scholarships available, ethnic minorities for engineering, academic scholarships for ethnic minorities, and more. All in all UCLA ranks high on the most ethnically diverse schools.
19. CUNY – Bernard M Baruch College
There is an impressive commitment to diversity at Baruch College, part of the City University of New York (CUNY). There are 18,000 students who speak more than 110 languages and trace their heritage to more than 170 countries at Baruch College. In light of this diversity, the school has many resources available for furthering the pluralistic and multicultural community in all areas of university life, academics, administration, and faculty. Continuing research is utilized in the pursuit of constant improvement. There are 29 specific groups, initiatives, and clubs that exist to promote the school’s vision in regards to diversity, as well as a Jewish Research Center and the Center for Equality, Pluralism, and Policy.
18. California State University – Long Beach
California State University – Long Beach is one of the largest universities in the state of California, and one of the most ethnically diverse universities in the nation. From 1996 to 2009, the African-American graduation rate more than tripled to 46 percent, Latino and Asian rates more than doubled, and rates for Native American students increased to 61 percent. These increases are due in large part to a campus-wide diversity plan. Components of this plan include student success, academic freedom, respect, appreciation, inclusiveness, engagement, equity, modeling, and academic quality. Using these goals, California State University – Long Beach is living up to its mission to have an “appreciation of diversity that includes an awareness of the many issues and challenges that confront underrepresented groups.”
17. Wellesley College
In October 2009, Wellesley College launched the Initiative for Diversity and Inclusion for Students (IDIS) to “engage members of the Wellesley community in collectively casting a concrete vision of how Wellesley should enhance its efforts in supporting diversity and inclusion for all students over the coming years.” Through this process, the Office of Intercultural Education was created, which is responsible for educating students for national and global citizenship and equipping them with the awareness, knowledge, and skills needed for life in our world today. In addition to preparing students to flourish in a multicultural world, students are supported by advisors in the Department of Intercultural Education, which is geared for the needs of students of different ethnic origins.
16. California State University – Fullerton
With nearly 40,000 students, California State University-Fullerton (CSUF) is a mosaic of diversity. Hailing from 81 different countries, the student body has three groups that emerge as the most represented: Hispanic, Caucasian, and Asian/Pacific Islanders at 36, 25, and 21 percent respectively. At CSUF, one is struck by the beautiful campus and many bustling activities in state-of-art buildings such as the Arboretum, Student Union, the new Performing Arts Building, or the huge, 87 million dollar Steven G. Mihaylo Hall, home of Business and Economics. The Human Resource, Diversity and Inclusion division has a strong vision. HRDI seeks to build a rich and diverse community of learners prepared for global society that incorporates all of university life, from the top down. In 2014, the College and University
Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR) presented the Inclusion Cultivates Excellence Award to CSUF for “institutional initiatives and programs that impact the promotion of inclusive and equitable workplace practices, particularly those that bring about cultural change.”
15. University of California – Davis
University of California – Davis is a large school of over 35,000 students, with four colleges and six professional schools. Of those students, the top three ethnicities represented are: Asian at 34 percent, Latino/Hispanic at 18 percent, White at 29 percent. With an Office of Campus Community Relations, Campus Council on Community and Diversity, nine support programs, and Cultural Days on campus, students of ethnic descent are not overlooked. The Cultural Days include Black Family Week, Asian Pacific Culture Week, La Raza Culture Days and Native American Culture Days. In addition to their commitment from the administration, there is a great page on student groups and multicultural resources on their website. A few noteworthy student groups are the Black Engineers Association, the Russian Cultural Center, and Students for Justice in Palestine.
14. California State University – East Bay
Located on two beautiful campuses overlooking San Francisco Bay and Mt. Diablo, California State University – East Bay (CSUEB) serves 14,500 students. CSUEB takes inclusion seriously with a specific office for promoting diversity. “The Office of University Diversity seeks to foster an environment where tolerance, justice, equity, and nondiscrimination prevail for all of our students, faculty, and staff.”
Through the Office of University Diversity, staff has created a program to help all students learn: “The program is a gateway for cultural and social understanding on campus and houses around four programming assistants that host a variety of programs ranging from debates, speeches, concerts, and social gatherings.” Besides this program there are host of other initiatives such as Campus Climate activities and a Week of Inclusion Excellence.
13. Amherst College
Amherst College is a private, liberal arts college located in Amherst, Massachusetts, and is one of the most diverse liberal arts colleges in the country. Amherst has a goal to bring together a diverse and inclusive community of students, and has met that goal year after year. Currently, over 43 percent of Amherst students identify themselves as students of color. In order to meet the needs of a diverse community of students, the Office of Admission plays a central role, sponsoring several special programs, including Diversity Open Houses and Diversity Interns. Amherst is also home to the African and Caribbean Student’s Union, a group for students who identify themselves with the African and/or Caribbean culture, and is also open to students of all cultural/ethnic backgrounds.
12. Holy Names University
Holy Names University was founded in 1868 in the beautiful wooded hills in Oakland, California. The university serves about 1400 students of diverse backgrounds, cultures, and ethnicities. The largest groups based on percentage are: Hispanic, White, African-American, and Asian. At Holy Names, the Center for Social Justice and Civic Engagement “strives to enrich the understanding of social issues through personal exploration and socially responsible leadership…within the local and global community.” In collaboration with the CSJCE, there is a specifically designed project to further those ends. The university is intentional in regards to creating unity in diversity with a series of university-sponsored focus groups with students, faculty, and community members to explore social justice. In addition to this intentional focus there are a variety of clubs and organizations for service and engagement.
11. University of California – San Diego
University of California – San Diego (UCSD) looks at diversity as an opportunity for education. There are multiple major and minors that focus on ethnic diversity: Ethnic, African, Middle-East, Judaic Studies, and Chicano/Latino Arts and Humanities to name a few. UCSD also has strong support programs and centers: the Black Resource Center, Cross-Cultural Center, and Raza Resource Centro. Scholarship is also fostered through Thurgood Marshall College, one of the six colleges within UCSD, TMC requires “Dimensions of Culture-Diversity, Justice and Imagination”, a writing sequence that examines American society as part of the general education requirements. With this kind of strong commitment to education in diversity it comes as no surprise there is financial aid to ethnic minorities. UCSD definitely ranks high on our most ethnically diverse schools.
10. California State Polytechnic University – Pomona
California State Polytechnic University (CSPU) – Pomona knows diversity. As one of only two polytechnic universities in the state, CSPU is located on 1500 acres in Los Angeles County. The campus serves more than 20,000 students, faculty and staff who come from diverse backgrounds. The Office of Student Life and Cultural Centers organizes, promotes, and oversees the mission “to empower students toward success through engagement, leadership development, and diversity enrichment.” AT CSPU diversity is celebrated and explored with four specific cultural centers: African-American, Asian, Hispanic/Latino, and Native American. Students look forward to the collaborative work of the César E. Chávez Center and the Ethnic and Women’s Studies Department for the annual cultural event of Dia de los Muertos. To encourage more diversity, CSPU offers the Hilda L. Solis Scholarship Dinner and Reception program, where student scholarships are given for academics and campus/community service.
9. San Jose State University
The President of San Jose State University, Mohammad H. Qayoumi, says in a statement on the website, “San Jose State is an engaged learning community committed to preparing our students with adaptive skills and knowledge for the global 21st century. Our campus’ diversity is a vital asset that enriches our students’ learning experience.” San Jose State University is home to a large and diverse student body, and is ready to serve this broad population. Whether it is the African American Student Success Task Force or the MOSAIC Cross-Cultural Center, there is something for everyone at San Jose State University.
8. Nova Southeastern University
When a few civic-minded pioneers gathered in the early ’60s, they couldn’t imagine their dream would become Nova Southeastern University (NSU). Founded in 1964, the founders’ vision was to create an MIT of the South. NSU is a private, not-for-profit research university with about 7000 students located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on a 314-acre campus. Diversity at the school is taken seriously and incorporated into their focus on research. A quick perusal of their website illustrates a commitment to helping students of every race and ethnicity. Multicultural programs, events, training, and services are offered in an effort to “create a campus environment that is genuinely respectful of every human experience.” Shark Pride is a campus-wide initiative along with others such as “Do Something Different” and the Inclusion and Diversity initiative that make this goal reality. Overall, NSU is committed to creating an inclusive experience and earns a spot in the top 10 most ethnically diverse schools.
7. Cambridge College
Cambridge College is a center of ethnic diversity, over 65 percent of students are members of a minority group. Students of ethnic background flourish at Cambridge due to the inclusive culture that produces a positive educational experience. The International Student Office is ready to offer services and assist students from over 50 different countries who are studying in all majors at all levels. Known primarily as a college for adult learners, Cambridge provides a top-notch education while keeping tuition low and providing financial aid to those who qualify. Tuition is less than the cost of the average four-year college, and over 60 percent of students receive financial aid.
6. University of Houston
The University of Houston is a center for ethnic diversity. When looking at the total student population, 21.6 percent are Asian, 10.8 percent are Black or African-American, 30.7 percent Hispanic/Latino, and 27.7 percent White. Amongst this highly diverse student body, there are a plethora of student clubs and organizations available for students. There is the Afghan Student Association, Albanian Coogs, Bangladeshi Students Association, Black Student Union, Chinese Student Association, Mexican-American Pharmacy Student Association, Middle Eastern Student Association, Russian Coogs, and the South Asian Law Students Association, to name a few. There is something for everyone at this ethnically diverse mecca.
5. CUNY – City College
Townsend Harris, the founder of CUNY – City College said, “Open the doors to all. Let the children of the rich and the poor take their seats together and know of no distinction save that of industry, good conduct, and intellect.” CUNY – City College is still living up to this mission today. A university that is flourishing with ethnic and cultural diversity, it is a public university with public purposes, it also seeks to contribute to the cultural, social, and economic life of New York. The Office of Student Life oversees more than 200 student organizations, many of which have an ethnic or cultural focus. Some of the most active clubs on campus are the Asian Cultural Union, Caribbean Students Association, LAESA-SHPE (Hispanic Engineers), The Middle Eastern Music and Dane Club, Muslim Students Organization, and the
National Society of Black Engineers, all of which have a cultural focus.
4. Harvey Mudd College
Harvey Mudd College is known as one of the nation’s top liberal arts colleges of engineering, science, and mathematics. Chartered in 1955, and opening its doors in 1957 when the Space Race made technical education a top priority in the United States, Harvey Mudd was ready to meet the challenge. The founder’s goal was to attract the nation’s brightest students and offer them a rigorous scientific and technological education with an emphasis in the humanities and social sciences. Today, Harvey Mudd is continuing to complete the founder’s vision: out of the students from the Class of 2018, 40 percent were valedictorians or salutatorians, and 87 percent were in the top 10 percent of their class. Not only does Harvey Mudd have an excellent academic reputation, they have a focus on diversity. The Office of Institutional Diversity works to foster diversity on campus knowing that “diversity benefits the entire campus: learning with and from people from a variety of backgrounds foster innovation and encourages collaborations and perspective taking.”
3. The University of Hawaii at Manoa
Residing in the middle of the Pacific Ocean has its advantages for attracting a globally diverse student body. At the University of Hawaii at Manoa, serving about 20,000 students, diversity is integral. There are countless opportunities to engage in ethnic or cultural groups and activities, with over 200 student clubs and organizations. Amongst these organizations, over 20 have a cultural focus. Asian groups are the most populous as they represent 36 percent of the total student population, and students hail from over 100 countries around the world. If one is seeking a large campus, beautiful setting, and a thoroughly diverse student life, University of Hawaii at Manoa may be a perfect fit.
2. University of Hawaii – Hilo
The University of Hawaii at Hilo is a public university and is one of ten branches of the University of Hawaii system. This diverse university is home to students of many ethnicities: 17 percent are Asian, 12.7 percent are Hispanic/Latino, 11 percent are Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander, and 22.8 percent are White. Promoting and celebrating ethnic diversity is a central part of a the University of Hawaii at Hilo education, and the Performing Arts Center at the university is the major educational and cultural center on the Big Island. The purpose of the Performing Arts Center is to offer significant educational and diverse cultural opportunities where dialogue and the exchange of cultural and artistic ideas are encouraged.
1. Swarthmore College
For over 60 years, the Black Cultural Center at Swarthmore College has been home to Swarthmore’s accomplished Black Community, a community that has received national accolade and is considered a model for many who are concerned about the development and well-being of Black college students. This thriving community has reinforced Swarthmore’s commitment to multicultural education, working with Black students to develop intellectually and culturally. Along with the Black Cultural Center, Swarthmore has an Intercultural Center that “promotes change toward a multicultural perspective across the institution and fosters community-building and collaboration among diverse groups.”
Swarthmore College is located 11 miles from Philadelphia on a gorgeous 425-acre arboretum campus featuring rolling lawns, a creek, wooded hills, and hiking trails.