African American college enrollment remains consistently low nationally and in South Carolina. Black students currently comprise only 9.5 percent of undergraduate enrollment at South Carolina colleges and universities.
Labeled the “Corridor of Shame,” the rural stretch along I-95 where we live has been particularly criticized for low test scores and an inferior educational product, particularly for minority students. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, of the 3.2 million high school graduates ages 16 to 24 in 2019, only 66.2% enrolled in college (4-year, 2-year or armed forces). Only 50.7% of Black high school graduates in the United States, however, actually enrolled in college.
Success for African American students is more than just graduating high school. Success means not only being accepted to college but ultimately enrolling and graduating. Over the past five years at Trinity Collegiate, 100% of our 31 African American seniors have graduated from high school. All of our African Americans have been accepted to 4-year colleges or universities. Of these 31 students, 28 (90%) enrolled in college. The overall college enrollment rate for all Trinity Collegiate graduates is 97%.
We know our African American students will graduate from high school and be accepted to college if they come to Trinity. What interests us now is what level of success they are having in college. Of the 90% of TCS graduates who enrolled in college, 79% currently remain in college, have graduated or have entered the military (3 graduates) but with a plan to return to college. Of those students who did withdraw from college, all are currently employed (for whom the school has follow-up data).
African American families invest in a Trinity education because they want their sons and daughters to go to college.
“The success of our African American graduates is a reflection of the strong academic programs at Trinity Collegiate School,” Head of School Ed Hoffman said.
Moreover, because our African American graduates are succeeding in college, these colleges are more likely to accept current seniors. By offering multiple academic choices, including 21 AP classes, a pre-AP program, a learning resource center and college counseling beginning in the ninth grade, Trinity Collegiate has the academic infrastructure necessary.
If African American students are given the appropriate resources, they can and will succeed. We invite you to come visit us at Trinity Collegiate.
Director of Diversity and Cultural Activities
Director of College Placement