College administrators all over the country ought to pay attention to the preferences of black students, particularly in light of the fact that the Supreme Court is currently considering whether or not to strike down affirmative action and the overall population of college-aged students is declining.

The findings of recent research conducted by the National Student Clearinghouse substantiate the ever-increasing interest in HBCUs. This fall, undergraduate enrollment at HBCUs has shown early signs of increasing by 2.5%, bucking the national trend of falling student numbers in higher education.

Interim director of the Frederick D. Patterson Research Institute at the United Negro College Fund, Inc., a charitable organisation that promotes the interests of its 37 private Historically Black Colleges and Universities members. Students who are undecided about whether or not they will attend college are finding their interest piqued by our organisation.

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The findings of recent research conducted by the National Student Clearinghouse substantiate the ever-increasing interest in HBCUs. Researchers found that undergraduate enrollment at historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) has increased by 2.5% so far this fall, driven by a 6.6% increase in first-year students, despite the overall trend of declining enrollment in higher education (28 HBCUs out of 101 total have so far reported enrollment data to the Clearinghouse).

“Even though there is still a long way to go before freshman classes return to their 2019 levels, it is very encouraging to start seeing signs of a recovery here,” said the professor. “This is very encouraging news.”

For the purpose of compiling this report, the National Student Clearinghouse gathered information from over 3,600 educational institutions, which collectively educated over 18 million undergraduate and graduate students.

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In addition, colleges all over the country have been reporting both increases and decreases in their fall student enrollments. A free community college programme in Maine that targets high school students who graduated during the pandemic led to big enrollment gains there: nearly 2,000 more students enrolled at campuses across the state last fall, which is a 12% jump from the year before. The programme targets students who graduated during the pandemic.

However, a large number of other locations followed the downward trend seen nationally. The University of Arkansas at Little Rock, which is a regional public college offering all four years of education, experienced a decline in enrollment of 3%. Pine Bluff, which is located approximately 45 miles to the south and is home to a second campus of the university that is also a historically Black school, reported a decrease in enrollment of 7% when compared to the year 2021.

According to Mary Hester-Clifton, director of communications and institutional advancement, as quoted by the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, “We are currently analysing the data to determine where and why the majority of the decline occurred.” “The decline can’t be pinned down to a single cause,” the spokesperson said, “but it does appear that the pandemic and economic conditions are having an effect on our enrollment.”

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