Return out-of-state admits to UC to 10-12% of freshmen

UC has dramatically increased admissions of non-resident students since 2009, from the historical 10 to 12 percent system-wide up to 30% in 2014.

The University has argued that the extra $24,000 in non-resident tuition these students pay is used to pay for more seats for California resident students. UC ignores the fact that about half the non-resident students come from other states and can pay in-state tuition after their first year.

California families are, of course, worried that the increase in non-resident admissions have reduced the availability of UC to their children.[1] UC claims that it has not curtailed enrollment of California students, that it has added seats to accommodate these extra non-resident students.

UC has indeed added more seats to accommodate out-of-state students. Even as non-resident admits have shot up in recent years, the percent of California high school student admits has stayed around 15% – well above the 12.5% of California high school graduates that UC is supposed to admit under the terms of the California Master Plan for Higher Education.[2]


But increased non-resident enrollments are not without harm. The harm has not been done to accessibility to the University, but to the quality of the education UC provides. UC has been increasing the number of students without increasing investment in teaching them. Enrolling more students without hiring more faculty has caused the ratio of students per faculty to rise 12% above its historic norm, and UC has eliminated much of its building maintenance.[3] This forces students to spend more time in giant, poorly maintained lecture halls or in online courses that provide less individual attention.

Resetting California Higher Ed to 2000-1 levels of tuition and taxpayer support[4] should include cutting out-of-state freshman admissions by two-thirds (back to 10-12% of admissions) to restore historic quality to a California higher education.

[1] “…parents fear that out-of-state students are cutting into slots that could go to Californians, and, as Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, said Tuesday, “UC’s job is to educate California students, not wait-list them.”” Source:

[2] Data source: Accessed March 8, 2015.

[3] “Budget for Current Operations: 2014-15.” Accessed March 8. 2015.

[4] “Financial Options For Restoring Quality And Access To Public Higher Education In California: 2015-16.” Accessed March 8. 2015.

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