Santa Cruz Good Times

Sunday
May 24th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

The Changing Face of UCSC

signSLUG REPORT > With the incoming UC Santa Cruz freshman class comes a new set of demographics, and, this is year, some unprecedented numbers.

Forty-five percent of freshmen are on track to be the first in their families to graduate from a four-year university, the highest percentage ever for UCSC. And one third of students are from what the UC system calls “underrepresented” backgrounds—up 4 percent from last year.

Michelle Whittingham, associate vice chancellor of enrollment management and director of admissions at UCSC, gives two reasons for the high number of first-generation college students despite the tough economy.

“One [reason] is the changing demographics in the state of California,” she says. “We’re seeing more and more first generation students in high school working very, very hard to not only be eligible for the UC system, but actually competitive. And I think there’s more of a recognition of the value of a college degree.”

Although being accepted is an accomplishment in itself, Whittingham did admit that first-generation and minority students face challenges unique to their peers. This could be compounded by the fact that Santa Cruz remains the “whitest” UC.

“When you can’t call home and ask [your] mom and dad ‘How do I navigate this?’ it’s tough,” she says.

However, UCSC has several organizations that strive to serve these specific students, such as the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) and Engaging Education, a student-initiated outreach program that Whittingham was particularly enthusiastic about.

“I think this is something that really does stand apart,” she says. “A lot of award-winners [at graduation ceremonies] came up on this. When students are under-represented, it helps to see others like themselves succeeding.”

Despite everything stacked against the freshman class—fee increases, cut classes and majors, and the general difficulties everyone faces when moving away from home—Whittingham expressed confidence that their graduation rate will be high.

“When we select students, we’re selecting future alumni,” she says.

 

Comments (2)Add Comment
...
written by Letters, October 12, 2011
Occupy:

50 D Street
Santa Rosa, Ca
95404
...
written by Woody, September 22, 2011
Congratulations to the incoming freshman class "Slugs"
It would be good to see more "stats" on UCSC students in our community generally.
How many are women?
How many are local from the Monterey Bay and San Francisco Bay Areas?
How many come from out-of-state, or other California areas?
If a third are "under-represented", who are these minorities and how do they stack up with past years?
If UCSC is the "whitest" campus, what does "white" mean? Of European background?

It is a surprise that nearly half of the incoming freshmen and women will be the first in their families to graduate from a four-year university. My sympathies and admiration for their pluck and determination. They will need it.
It was so for me (and my brother) more than 50 years ago, when we had to work part-time to be the first in the family to attend college. I had a partial UCLA scholarship that paid $250 a semester tuition and a small book allowance. He had a family of his own to support as well as school costs.

It's a lot more expensive today--with many fewer part-time jobs available.



Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Gate Openers

Up-and-coming artists like Ryan Bingham are a great reason to show up early to the Santa Cruz American Music Festival

 

Gemini Sun, Pentecost, Shavuot—Enlightenment and Gladness

As the sun enters Gemini on Sunday, sign of speaking, communication, thinking, inter-relations, writing and understanding languages, the feast days of Pentecost & Shavuot (Catholic and Jewish festivals) occur. During Pentecost’s 50 days after Easter, tongues of fire appear above the heads of the disciples, providing them with the ability to understand all languages and all feelings hidden in the minds and hearts of humanity. It’s recorded that Pentecost began with a loud noise, which happened in an upper room (signifying the mind). The Christ (World Teacher) told his disciples (after his ascension) when encountering a man at a well carrying a water pot (signs for Age of Aquarius) to follow him to an upper room. There, the Holy Spirit (Ray 3 of Divine Intelligence) would overshadow them, expand their minds, give them courage and enable them to teach throughout the world, speaking all languages and thus able to minister to the true needs of a “seeking” humanity. Pentecost (50 days, pentagram, Ray 5, Venus, concrete and scientific knowledge, the Ray of Aquarius) sounds dramatic, impressive and scary: The loud noise, a thunderous rush of wind and then “tongues of fire” above the heads of each disciple (men and women). Fire has purpose. It purifies, disintegrates, purges, transforms and liberates (frees) us from the past. This was the Holy Spirit (Ray 3, love and wisdom) being received by the disciples, so they would teach in the world and inform humanity of the Messiah (Christ), who initiated the new age (Pisces) and gave humanity the new law (adding to the 10 Commandments of the Aries Age) to Love (Ray 2) one another. Note: Gemini is also Ray 2. Shavuot is the Jewish Festival of Gladness, the First Fruits Festival celebrating the giving of the 10 Commandments to Moses as the Aries Age was initiated. Thus, we have two developmental stages here, Jewish festival of the Old Testament. Pentecost of the New Testament. We have gladness, integrating both.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Off Her Meds

Kristin Wiig runs wild—and transcends her sketch comedy roots—as a truly strange character ‘Welcome to Me’
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Flats Bistro

Pizza with an artisan twist comes to Aptos Beach

 

What’s your take on Santa Cruz locals?

Santa Cruz locals are really friendly once you know them. I think a lot of them have a hard time leaving, and I would too. Ryan Carle, Santa Cruz, Biologist

 

Soquel Vineyards

If Soquel Vineyards partners Peter and Paul Bargetto and Jon Morgan were walking down the street wearing their winning wine competition medals, you’d hear them coming from a mile away. This year was particularly rewarding for the Bargettos and Morgan—they won two Double Gold Medals and five Gold Medals at January’s San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.

 

Enlightened Flavors

Squash & Blossom’s artisanal alternative-flour delights, beet kvass from Cafe Ivéta, and the Santa Cruz Baroque Festival