Number of California students offered admission to UC Davis rises for fall 2019

UC Davis Chancellor Gary May talks about a lack of diversity in education

FILE - UC Davis Chancellor Gary May discusses why he believes colleges should have more diversity after his unanimous confirmation to the position by UC regents in early 2017.
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FILE - UC Davis Chancellor Gary May discusses why he believes colleges should have more diversity after his unanimous confirmation to the position by UC regents in early 2017.

UC Davis admitted about 300 more California residents for fall 2019 than last year, officials reported this week.

The university offered 40,350 freshman and transfer students admission for the coming year, according to a UC Davis news release Monday. Of those, 19,656 were California freshman applicants, an increase of 208 over last year, and 7,931 were California transfer applicants, an increase of 91, the university said.

California residents accounted for 64.4 percent of admitted freshmen and 80.6 percent of transfer admissions, the release said.

Eligible California community college students have a guaranteed spot at one of the UC campuses through a transfer program created in 2015. Earlier this year, UC and California community colleges announced an agreement to make the transfer process easier.

UC Davis has enrolled the most California resident undergraduates of all the UC campuses since 2010, according to the university.

While the number of California students admitted for 2019 rose, the total number of students admitted dropped by 3.8 percent, according to data released by the university.

In total, UC Davis admitted 30,508 freshman applicants, 5.2 percent fewer than last year, and 9,842 transfer students, a rise of 0.8 percent.

Students from historically underrepresented groups, including African Americans, American Indians and Latino students, accounted for 31 percent of the admitted freshman class.

The university says that about 41 percent of California students admitted would be the first generation of their family to graduate from a four-year university.

Of those accepted for the fall, about 8,800 were international students and nearly 4,000 were from other U.S. states, representing declines of 16.7 percent and 3.1 percent, respectively.

In recent years, UC leaders have been criticized for increasing international enrollment, sometimes at the expense of California residents. In 2017, The Sacramento Bee reported that UC Davis accepted 8,415 of about 14,000 international freshman applicants — an admit rate of 60.4 percent. At the same time California freshman residents were admitted at a rate of 35.9 percent.

UC officials defended their policies in the past, saying that out-of-state tuition provides much-needed revenue for the institution.

In 2019, the number of international applicants increased by 2,500 students, and 42 percent were admitted, the university said. California residents were admitted at a rate of 35.5 percent.

UC system sets records

Systemwide, the University of California announced Monday it had admitted a record number of students to its nine undergraduate campuses for 2019, including the greatest number of freshman and transfer students in UC history.

Out of 176,695 freshman applicants, UC admitted 108,178, including 71,655 Californians – another record number, officials reported. Of the 28,752 transfer students accepted among 41,282 applicants, 25,700 were from California community colleges, representing the largest cohort yet from that group.

The admission rate for California residents climbed 3 percentage points to 62 percent of all incoming freshmen, UC reported. For state community college transfers, the rate held steady at 76 percent.

Students from underrepresented groups constituted 40 percent of all California freshmen admitted UC-wide, up from 38 percent least year, UC reported. First-generation students accounted for 44 percent of all freshmen accepted.

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Sawsan Morrar covers school accountability and culture for The Sacramento Bee. She grew up in Sacramento and is an alumna of UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. She previously freelanced for various publications including The Washington Post, Vice, KQED and Capital Public Radio.