Discussion on Declining African American Enrollment at UVA - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Discussion on Declining African American Enrollment at UVA

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African American enrollment at UVA drops 25% since 1995. African American enrollment at UVA drops 25% since 1995.

Monday, members of the University of Virginia community are coming together to talk about race issues. One group says diversity at the university is on the decline, and they want administrators to take action.

The University and Community Action for Racial Equity, or UCARE, will host a panel discussion about what its members call an "alarming" drop in enrollment by African American undergraduate students at UVA over the last two decades.  

The panel discussion takes place Monday at 6 p.m. in Minor Hall auditorium. It's free and open to the public.

UCARE says the number of black undergraduate students has declined by 25 percent since 1995. In 1990, African Americans accounted for 12 percent of the undergraduate student body - now that number is down to just 6.5 percent.

UCARE is hosting the discussion to explore the possible causes of the drop in enrollment.

"We feel that it is important to have diversity. We would like to see the University of Virginia mirror college-going rates for African American students and other ethnicities," said Leah Puryear, a UCARE steering committee member.

"If you are at a university, diversity is important. You learn about other cultures, you learn about other people," she said.

Puryear hopes the discussion will spark change and start reversing the trend of declining black attendance.

Clarification:   This story has been updated to reflect new information received. The meeting starts at 6 p.m., not 7 p.m. Additionally, the attribution of the quotes has been updated to Leah Puryear, not Camisha Jones as originally reported.

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