Special Report

These Colleges Have the Least Diverse Student Bodies

Samuel Stebbins

Source: Courtesy of UTRGV - The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley

10. The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
> Located in: Edinburg, TX
> Chance two random students are a different race, ethnicity, or citizenship: 18.4%
> Largest racial/ethnic group: Hispanic (92.4% of U.S. students)
> Undergraduate enrollment: 24,678
> Avg. cost of attendance: $13,401

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley is one of only two schools on this list where the majority of American citizen undergraduate students identify as Hispanic. Located in Edinburg, Texas, the school is less than 30 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border. By far the newest school on this list, UTRGV was created in 2013 by the Texas legislature.

More than 90% of students who are U.S. citizens are Hispanic.

Source: Courtesy of Alabama A&M University via Facebook

9. Alabama A&M University
> Located in: Normal, AL
> Chance two random students are a different race, ethnicity, or citizenship: 17.0%
> Largest racial/ethnic group: Black or African American (91.7% of U.S. students)
> Undergraduate enrollment: 5,143
> Avg. cost of attendance: $22,886

Alabama A&M University is one of several historically black colleges and universities on this list. Among undergraduates who are U.S. citizens, 91.7% identify as black, well above the comparable national share of 12.7% among American undergraduates.

Alabama has one of the largest black populations of any state as more than one in every four residents identify as black. In addition to the school’s status as a historically black institution, also explaining the large black population at Alabama A&M is that in-state residents pay about half as much in tuition as those from out of state.

Source: Courtesy of Alcorn State University via Facebook

8. Alcorn State University
> Located in: Alcorn State, MS
> Chance two random students are a different race, ethnicity, or citizenship: 16.6%
> Largest racial/ethnic group: Black or African American (95.8% of U.S. students)
> Undergraduate enrollment: 3,173
> Avg. cost of attendance: $22,357

Founded in 1871, Alcorn State University is the oldest public, historically black land grant university in the United States and the second oldest state-supported higher education institution in Mississippi. Today, 95.8% of American students enrolled at Alcorn State identify as black.

Despite being one of the least racially or ethnically diverse schools in the country, Alcorn State recognizes the importance of a diverse student body. The school maintains that “diversity of thought, identity, and life experience offer tremendous resources, and the spirit of multiculturalism must be infused throughout our institution to ensure the richest possible living, learning, and working environment.”

Source: Courtesy of Jackson State University via Facebook

7. Jackson State University
> Located in: Jackson, MS
> Chance two random students are a different race, ethnicity, or citizenship: 15.7%
> Largest racial/ethnic group: Black or African American (93.5% of U.S. students)
> Undergraduate enrollment: 5,331
> Avg. cost of attendance: $22,397

What is now known as Jackson State University was founded in 1877. A historically black university, Jackson State’s undergraduate student body with U.S. citizenship is 93.5% black.

Jackson State is located in Jackson, Mississippi’s state capital. Jackson has one of the largest concentrations of black residents of any U.S. city. Of the nearly quarter million people who live in Hinds County, which covers parts of Jackson and Jackson State University, about 72% identify as black, well above the 12.3% share of Americans nationwide.

Source: Courtesy of Southern University and A&M College - Baton Rouge, LA via Facebook

6. Southern University and A&M College
> Located in: Baton Rouge, LA
> Chance two random students are a different race, ethnicity, or citizenship: 14.6%
> Largest racial/ethnic group: Black or African American (93.0% of U.S. students)
> Undergraduate enrollment: 5,838
> Avg. cost of attendance: $20,689

Southern University and A&M College is the least diverse primarily bachelor’s degree-granting college or university with at least 2,500 undergraduates in Louisiana and the fifth least diverse in the United States. The odds that two random undergraduate students at the historically black university fall into a different racial or ethnic category, or differ in U.S. citizenship status, are just 14.6%. The odds that two random undergraduate students nationwide are of different backgrounds are 69.6%.

Of undergraduates enrolled at Southern University and A&M College, roughly 93% identify as black.