According to Education Trust, Black students should make up 17.1% of all Undergraduates in Michigan.
In 2016 it was at 8.7%.
The Study ‘Broken Mirrors’ looked at 41 states. Michigan was third from last for Black student enrollment in public universities.
Miracle Chapman attends Michigan State University and is the President of the Black Student Alliance. She grew up in Detroit and credits Mentors and her Parents for encouraging her to go to College. Chapman believes there is a shortage of mentors and resources in Detroit, which leads to people deciding against College.
“The neighborhoods are kind of segregated in my opinion. Most of the Black people in Michigan grow up in certain neighborhoods, underprivileged neighborhoods, where the school and the education system is not working in their benefit.”
Getting Black students into College is the first hurdle, the next is keeping them there.
Retention Rate is an issue. A few years ago Michigan State University had a 58% retention rate amongst Black students.
Chapman is the youngest of six, and she is the only one of her siblings who did not drop out of College.
“I think that growing up in Detroit, many students when they do get to college they are not prepared for the workload, I think that finances is another big issue that most black students face, they don’t have the finances to complete four years.”
John Ambrose is Interim Director of Admissions at MSU. He says they have made a concentrated effort to recruit Black students.
In 2017 MSU had the largest class of Black freshman out of the Big Ten Schools. Its retention rate has also improved to 65%.