This fall, the college welcomed to campus more than 2,100 new first-year and transfer students, and the college is celebrating its most culturally diverse (defined as students who self-identify as Hispanic, Asian, African-American, Native American, Pacific Islander or in more than one category) student body in the college’s history: 25.8% of the total undergraduate and graduate population, including a record-setting 33.8% of the first-year class, up 3.2% from last year’s first-year class and an 80% increase from 2010.
“At SUNY Oswego we have been collaborating across lines of students, faculty and staff, drawing input from a broader array of perspectives represented in this vibrant college community. We have been building new traditions for several years, working together to unite and carry forward important values,” President Deborah F. Stanley said.
The recent increases in culturally diverse student enrollment are translating into more diverse programs and participation across campus. For example, in 2015-16, more than 25 percent of study abroad participants identified as culturally diverse students compared to just 13 percent in 2010-11.
“We know good students are attracted to an environment where they will be challenged in their studies and where they will have the opportunity to explore, grow and succeed. However, they are more likely to persist and graduate and then engage with the campus as alumni if they can see themselves in the student population and in the faculty, staff and administrators who are there to support and enrich them,” said Dean of Students Dr. Jerri Howland.
This fall, SUNY Oswego also welcomed 81 new faculty and professional staff, of which 28 percent self-identify as culturally diverse, more than doubling the number of last year’s culturally diverse new hires.