Race and Ethnicity as a Barrier to Opportunity: A Blueprint for Higher Education Equity
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The United States is in the midst of one of the most significant demographic shifts in the history of the country. Already, America’s young adults are the largest and most diverse generation ever. Among the 75 million Millennials, about 40 percent are people of color—African Americans, Latinx individuals, Native Americans, and Asian & Pacific Islanders—significant growth from the previous generation. The country is on track to be a majority-minority nation in just three decades. This report explores racial and ethnic disparities in higher education and proposes a package of equity-focused federal policy solutions that can help close gaps moving forward. The report identifies a set of measures—informed by a series of conversations with young people across the country—of higher education equity with the goal of highlighting gaps between racial and ethnic groups along three categories: college access and affordability, attainment and success, and repayment and post-collegiate outcomes.