- The University of Missouri's high school will graduate 151 international students this weekend, a milestone that officials say is a sign of the university's growing pipeline to increase racial and ethnic inclusion in its college enrollment.
- Using a first-of-its-kind blended on-site and distance learning module, the 'MizzouDirect' program currently enrolls more than 800 students from Brazil and Vietnam.
- Total enrollment at the high school exceeds 6,000 students, with almost half of the student body hailing from Brazil.
A few short months ago, Mizzou was ground zero for a national movement which spurred African American students to call out institutional racism, real and perceived, across the country. So it's understandable that the school would now highlight its outreach to minority communities, through its international high school feeder program.
But what Mizzou and other campuses should consider highlighting is the effort to make themselves more inclusive, not more attractive, to minority students. Many schools have the marketing and branding power to convince minorities in the U.S. and students from around the world of the value of a degree and the experience of diversity, but the key is making that experience a reality for every cohort of minority students.
Campuses like the University of Maryland - Baltimore County and the University of Southern California have strong minority student recruiting pipelines, but have also faced criticism from students about microaggressions and policies which help to foster racism. Colleges across the country will need to recognize the future of college student population, and population in the United States, centers around the growth of Hispanic and African American communities.