In 1996 the State of California passed Proposition 209, which banned state schools from considering race, gender, ethnicity or national origins as part of their admissions process. This ban severely affected several state schools in California, including UCLA.  UCLA’s black student enrollment has decreased since the passing of Proposition 209.  Just in time for the November 30th application deadline, a group of black students are speaking out about the lack of diversity at UCLA, particularly when it comes to black male students.

Sy Stokes, a third year African-American studies student who identifies as black, Cherokee and Chinese and cousin of Arthur Ashe, and other black male students took their message to YouTube to make people aware about UCLA’s issue.

When you look at the fall 2013 enrollment numbers, out of 42,163 total students, only 1,635 were black students.   Stokes points out that black males make up 3.3 percent of the male student population, and that 65 percent of those black males are undergraduate athletes.

In 2006, in an interview with NPR, UCLA sociologist Darnell Hunt said Proposition 209 is just part of the problem. Hunt blames UCLA’s admission process, which doesn’t take into account a student’s background. Hunt also said UC-Berkeley, which has a higher percentage of black students, takes into account other things besides SAT scores and has a more holistic approach when reviewing a student’s file.

“They look at grades and SAT scores in the context of the high school the student went to,” he says. “They also look at the numbers in the context of the family situation.”

No one has a clearly defined solution to UCLA’s problem, but it may help if the university took into account suggestions made by Hunt.


  • https://www.facebook.com/joan.passley Joan Williams Passley

    Powerful video!!!

  • http://lifediasporatic.wordpress.com zumibee

    Hmm, I guess Black power is still for Black men.

  • LemonNLime

    Please, it isn’t like the numbers of black and brown women are anything the brag about either.

  • http://gravatar.com/mademoisellefinanciere Me

    don’t start this crap. if you notice that video is all about black males even though black females are in the same boat at the same school, yet this women’s site still ran the story. i do sometimes feel like the writers here instigate the bm/bw drama, but this ain’t one of the times. so chill with picking fights and focus on the issue.


    So they want more black men to attend so they can run more trains on white girls? California the state where black men who are color struck and practice colorism.

  • Emma

    Hispanics make up 18% of the population at UCLA as undergrads.


    I’m tired of black people complaining about WHITE INSTITUTIONS not accepting them. Y’all should have went to an hsbcu or a more DIVERSE institution. By the time you’re 16 and you’re black you should be hip to racism white supremacy, if you’re just another brain dead negro.

  • Brad

    The issue is about the lack of black students in colleges in California due to Prop 209. In this case black male students took to protest and make a point of the problems. But, I do not think that these students were in anyway trying to disparage black female students whose numbers are also extremely underrepresented.

    There was another story of the same nature concerning Berkly.

    “Why Black Students Are Avoiding UC Berkeley”

    In the post-Prop 209 era, nearly 60 percent of African-American students accepted at Cal are choosing to attend other colleges — often, because they feel unwelcome.

    by J. Douglas Allen-Taylor | East Bay Express

  • Brad

    Wow, just wow I am sorry but, this comment had to have been made by a white supremacy to insight and troll for comments on this site.

  • Brad

    “The number one reason that I hear” from black high school seniors opting out of a Cal Berkeley acceptance “is that they picked a historically black college” instead, said Oakland Tech’s Marsha Rhynes, a longtime high school English teacher in the Oakland public schools. “The top black kids at Castlemont last year, almost all of them, picked [historically black colleges or universities]. That was a choice. They were admitted to one of the UCs. But they wanted a smaller, nurturing environment.”


    Nope I’m black and my comment is true about the majority of black in Cali.

  • Chika

    But I’m willing a lot of these students are California residents which means they benefit from in-state tuitions by going to UCLA. It’s a well-known fact that HBCUs are not good about giving out financial aid. Shoot, my private, PWI college gave me way more financial aid than the HBCU I was accepted which is why I chose the former institution.

  • Truth

    There are many public institutions that are or have taken a similar path in terms of admissions. It’s disconcerting that more than half of the Black male students on the UCLA campus are athletes. There’s a dangerous undertone to that phenomenon.

  • Brad

    It is based on where you live and in California they do have it tougher. But, in Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virgina and all over the south. There are a number of “state” HBCU’s so cost isn’t as big of an issue.

    But, I have heard stories where students with very high GPA’s and ACT scores not being accepted to some of the California schools. In those cases I would think that they wouldn’t have an issue finding dollars.

    But, in fairness some of these PWI’s are throwing the money at black students because they believe in diversity on there campuses.

    In Florida where I live kids are elagable for scholorships based on living in the state as well as scholorships offered by the states HBCU.


    black men in cali*

  • Brad

    FAMU’s “Life-Gets-Better Scholarship”

    Incoming freshmen designated as National Achievement, Hispanic, or Merit Semifinalists by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, having a 3.50 high school GPA and having a 1800 on the SAT or a 27 on the ACT or incoming freshmen who have at least a 3.50 high school GPA and scores of 1900 on the SAT or 29 on the ACT.

    High School students who meet these criteria will receive the following over four-years: tuition and fees; room, board, books, $500 per semester stipend, internships, and a laptop.

    Awardees must major in Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Engineering, Environmental Science, Mathematics or Physics in order to be eligible for this scholarship.

  • BeanBean

    Interesting. What are the demographic makeup of the other minority students? Asians, hispanics, are they as underrepresented at this institution? What is the real reason behind the low acceptance or low application rates? I’m not too familiar with UCLA but I’ve heard that the black people at this school are pretty stuck up. Not sure if that’s true, just something I heard.

  • Nothing but love

    What type crazy comment is this, they are fighting to get more African American male and female representation in a university of higher learning and this is what you say? This comment is straight up crazy and anyone and I mean anyone that agree’s with this comment needs counseling.

  • http://lifediasporatic.wordpress.com zumibee

    Did I ask for the tone police? I was pointing out a fact. It’s great that these young men are pointing out one of the problems with diversity at UCLA but Black men talking about the lack of diversity without including Black women?


  • Emma

    I was curious about that too. This is from the UCLA website. Here is the percentages of students Fall 2013 by ethnicity:

    Black – 3.8%
    Native American- .06%
    Asian- 34.8%
    Hispanic- 18%
    Other- 3.4%
    International- 11.8%

    The school is definitely diverse, but it does seem that blacks are underrepresented at that school.

  • Keisha

    Not brown, just black. The school is very diverse with Asians making the majority of the population followed by large population whites and Latinos. Only blacks make up a very small minority there.

  • Kim

    They didn’t mention Black women.

  • Why here?

    I am trying to understand why this video is on a site geared towards Black women. It is good that these guys are exposing this problem, but it should be on a site for Black men.

  • http://www.yeshacallahan.com Yesha Callahan

    Maybe it’s here b/c we wanted it to be here?


  • rhea

    Shoot, maybe it’s here because black women as a whole benefit from a large community of black men. It does no good to be so literal in support of black women that you cannot see the forest for the trees.

  • Tristan Taylor.

    No matter why it’s here, I hope all of you can take the time to sign the petition and leave a comment.

    Tristan Hill SAINT LOUIS, MO 3 minutes ago
    Graduating from a Predominately white institution in undergrad (Saint Louis University) and attending another PWI for graduate school (Savannah College of Art and Design), I know what it’s like to look around my classroom and not see myself. I know how it feels to feel that I’m being misrepresented or not represented at all and to have some one not of my race tell me that “I’m fairly represented within my campus.”.

    It’s inspiring to see young brothers speak their mind and bring an issue such as this to the media on their own. Continue fighting the good fight.


    Tristan Hill.

  • http://www.labelwhorre.com labelwhorre.com

    I schooled in cali and my dear as a female…PREACH….as a black female PREACH…the few black sisters on UCLA campus are avoided like plague…these guys don’t even give a shoulder to cry on and complain about racism…now they got a video …i even know one of the dudes on there…NEXT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!S

  • chnyere

    This is an honest and serious question: WHAT EXACTLY do they want them to do?

  • BeanBean

    But diversity is not the schools problem. Clearly the school is diverse, but the problem is lack of blacks at the school. What exactly do people expect the school to do to include more black students when they are clearly accepting other minorities??

  • Brad

    Is it really that bad I am not from Cali so I really have no idea how it is out there….

    Maybe the sista’s should look for greener pastures of higher education on the east coast. Knew plenty of sista’s on Tuskegee’s campus or at Spelman and they did just fine.

  • CAsweetface

    Born and raised in California and I attended a University of California institution where I was one of a handful of black students in a sea of Asians and White students. This situation is not unique to UCLA, all of the UCs have this issue. Cal State schools have a little bit less of an issue (Northridge, Fullerton, Sac State, etc). However, California has a race issue period. There aren’t a lot of black people in this state to begin with. Quite frankly, I can’t say that I put the issue solely in the hands of PWI because there is SO much work to be done in high school that would make black men/women more desirable to colleges. If our schools are continuously ranked the worst, with few AP courses to chose from, and everything is supposedly a level playing field (which isn’t true), how do you expect black students in sub-par schools to out perform their White/Asian counterparts? Those lower ranked schools may have the best athletes which make up the 60% of the black male undergraduate student population of UCLA. I hate the “bootstrap” notion but if our school systems are no good then parents and students need to do everything in their power to seek other educational supplemental programs to enrich their kids and aid in better GPAs and SAT/ACT scores. Every summer I was forced by my babysitters, AKA my grandparents, to go to the library once a week and read along with practicing math in cheap workbooks. It’s not much but its why I’ve done decent in school.

    And you are right, I stayed in Cali because I didn’t want to pay out-of-state fees and the smooth application process was appealing. I had applied to HBCUs but didn’t get my acceptance letters until August right before school was set to begin so that counted them out.

  • Southpaw

    Your “strong independent” single parent mothers, who raise their daughters and simple love their sons. Males born into single-parent households are set-up to fail from the start. If you can’t get into UCLA go to Cal-Fullerton or a school that best suits your current abilities.

  • Apple

    I’m sure whites are upset about the lack of diversity too, since half of ucla is now Asian lol

  • Apple

    Omg you too? I got my acceptance letters from hbcu too the day I left for state college ! I thought it was just me!

  • Jamie

    Yes I can’t help but think that whites who voted against affirmation action in this state was thinking it would be benefiting them when it turn it bite them in the butt.

  • leelah

    Although I have no problem with this story being on clutch, I want to question the assumption that black women benefit from these black men at UCLA. This is California, and an elite university, majority of those brothers wouldn’t touch a sister with a ten foot pole. Thats probably why their not worried about black enrollment, just black male enrollment. I’m sure sisters also feel alienated on this campus, especially since they don’t benefit from the shared status or community of sports.

  • leelah

    you totally missed her point. She’s not saying black women are doing better. She’s saying black women are in the same boat, but this protest piece doesn’t mention them.

  • LemonNLime

    @leelah, you are right I didn’t thanks for pointing that out!

  • SayWhat

    Black men as a whole benefit from a large community of black women so I would say that in this case is it your support of black men that is keeping you from seeing the forest for the trees.

    There is absolutely no mention of black women anywhere in that article, and I think it is OK for some of us to withhold support for these men until we find out why.

  • CAsweetface

    As a girl born and raised I the golden state, it’s unfortunately true. Black men wouldn’t spit on a black woman on fire out there…unless she’s high yellow and damn near passing. Hate to admit it!

  • CAsweetface

    I was hell bent on getting out of Cali but all the HBCUs were on the slow shift. It definitely wasnt just you. Crazy!

  • http://www.labelwhorre.com labelwhorre.com

    damn girl you tooo…hell i got my when i was already in school in a DIFFERENT SCHOOL…lets not get started with their financial aid..

  • http://www.labelwhorre.com labelwhorre.com

    @leelah…TEN FOOT POLE INDEED…i swear these cats get to college and they like ” i can date brittany, stacy, josie and every girl but blacks on campus…NO WAAAAAAY”..I had the same experience went to school with my cousin am thinking we family i can cry on his shoulders !! nope!! ol dude was bizzy having fun with the girls who used him to rebel against daddy warbucks and left me to fend and figure out how to have a tuff skin..heck no black male asked how we sistas were doing, the nasty racist remarks they heard about us was like ” oooooooooh thats cold yo” but nothing was done. I feel like telling these young men to shove it…what da hell….GUYS SHOVE IT!!!!

  • leelah

    Here’s the funny thing..at my school, all the racial jokes about black women came from the brothers. They bent over backwards explaining to every white girl on campus why they didn’t date black girls. Trying to understand why black men felt that way,they would spill the beans. Yes black people adhere to racial stereotypes about black people and white people. This is there golden opportunity socialize outside of their social economic and racial group, black women and their struggles just smells too much like poverty to them. Yes an elite university is ten times the lonely for black girls. We don’t have the community of sports, or that sports status. Heck we don’t have the scholarships, stipend, or the tutors that these athletes have. Wasn’t there an article on this very site about black males assimilating easier than black females at white schools?—Here’s my thing, black people fail because we think we are powerless. We howl at the moon, begging white people and their government(because in California thats who runs the admission policy for state schools) to give us a break. These men need to take real action against this problem thats so important to them. As educated young men they need to get out there and tutor and mentor and raise money for a scholarship program. As thick as the black dropout rate is in LA, I know they could do more than looking tough on the libraries’ steps.They changed the laws in California boys, now its time within the system. Adopt an elementary school, a junior high–start taking a long term approach to this problem.

  • Brad

    I wounder what HBCU’s these were cause my oldest was accepted at Howard, Hampton, Xavier & FAMU all with in a couple of months of applying.

    In fact at Howard and Hampton did the early action application which is due November 1st was accepted before the new year. So that gave her an entire semester and summer before Fall semester.

    FAMU and Xavier’s notification came early in her Spring semester of highschool. The finacial aid was awarded from each of these universities early in the spring semester as well.

    For each of these colleges we did apply online so maybe that is what helped us.

  • Brad

    In fact because at that time she was interested in Pharmacy she had to be accepted first into the Pre-Pharmacy program at FAMU.

    You have to be accepted into that program first and then accepted into the university. This is due to it being a limited access major.

    Orientation for each major was about 3 days and that was scheduled during the summer months based on your major. So all applications were processed and students informed way
    in advanced.

    All that being said FAMU pulled it off without a hitch and I didn’t know of anyone that was informed of there acceptance after school started. In fact due to orientation being 4 – 6 weeks before the start of the fall semester that wouldn’t have even been possible.

  • http://gravatar.com/ceecollegegal CeeCee

    I think its great that they are highlighting some issues at UCLA, but they are failing to focus on the real problem. A lot of black boys do not even graduate from high school and then the education that they do receive is not nearly good enough for them to get the test scores needed to get into a school like UCLA. Most minorities are enrolled in public education, which just flat out sucks; if parents are not active in their child’s life then they are not likely to graduate high school let alone go to college.

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