Harvard outpaces Oxford in admitting African-American, Latino students

April 13th, 2011 - 5:39 pm ICT by ANI  

David Cameron London, Apr 13 (ANI): Harvard University has outpaced Britain’s Oxford University in admitting a record number of African-American and Latino students.

Reports say that 11.8 percent of its new students for this autumn will be African-American and 12.1 percent Latino, which is believed to be record proportions of the two minority groups, The Guardian reports.

According to the 2009 data, 10.8 percent of students at Harvard were African-American, compared with 8.2 percent at Princeton, and seven percent at Yale. African-American students made up 14 percent of US college enrolments in 2008.

Earlier, British Prime Minister David Cameron had criticised Oxford University after claiming that the institution had admitted only one black student in 2009.

Meanwhile, former Higher Education Minister David Lammy has suggested that part of the reason Harvard does better on race is that it writes to every high-achieving minority student, adding that the institution sends admissions officers every year to schools in every US state.

Its ethnic minority recruitment is assisted by a team of undergraduates who handle campus visits and answer questions on academic life.

In its defence, Oxford can point to 1,500 school outreach events it conducted in 2009, of which 80 percent were in the state sector. Applications from state-educated candidates have been rising for the past decade and high-achieving black candidates are more likely to apply to Oxford than their white peers - suggesting that its outreach is stimulating demand.

According to reports, the proportion of students on federal Pell grants at Harvard was 15 percent in 2008-09. By contrast, data collated by the Sutton Trust charity indicates the percentages of pupils eligible for free school meals at leading English universities range from 0.8 percent at Oxford and Cambridge to 5.3 percent at King’s College in London. (ANI)

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