USC’s new freshman class is the largest and most diverse in the university’s history, reflecting similar trends in the UC system and coming as overall college enrollment numbers across the U.S. have declined amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
In fall 2020, students who are first in their family to attend college comprise 22.5% of USC’s 3,460 freshmen. The class of 2024 includes students who are 31% white; 27% Asian or Asian American; 17% Latino; and 6% Black.
The university saw a dip in enrolled international students, from 15% in 2019 to 12% in 2020. Meanwhile, the number of California residents who enrolled increased from 39% to 44%.
By comparison, about 3,100 freshmen enrolled in 2019, and 15% were first-generation students, according to USC dean of admissions Tim Brunold.
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