June 15, 2019
June 15, 2019
June 19, 2019
The demographic face of the United States is changing in a way never before seen. The year 2035 will see the culmination of three major forces: (1) the last of the Baby Boomers turning 65+ years of age (2030), (2) the cross-over where the number of people 65+ years of age outnumber the youths under the age of 18 (2035), and, (3) the recognition that the primary driver for population growth in the U.S. will be from international migration (2030).
These three major events will take place over the upcoming decade. Each of which, by itself, may appear relatively harmless and unnoticed. Together these three transformative changes paint a forever changing face of the demographics of the U.S. The impact of these three primary drivers of demographic change are already being felt in the faces and diversity ratios in higher education. Colleges and universities are scrambling to accommodate these, still to be fully understood, tectonic shifts.
The new demographic of the United States has had a negative impact on enrollments in higher education. New minority populations are not equally prepared, financially or otherwise, to participate in higher education as the current non-Hispanic White majority population. To this end, 25 years of researched literature materializes into multiple changes currently being implemented by institutions of higher education to accommodate this new minority majority population.
This paper, while addressing the changing nature of higher education, deals explicitly with the greater cultural implications of these many demographic changes and their impact on higher education. This paper addresses the basic subconscious and unconscious qualitative behavioral characteristics at the root of major decisions. It looks at the decision process itself and how the process errors on the side of an often times referred to term in higher education - “collegiality”. This paper lays a foundation for making better, more informed decisions on inclusivity in higher education.
In the final analysis, this paper recognizes the many potential, highly charged and emotional implications of changing demographics. It concludes with potential solutions for culturally adjusting to this new American demographic reality.
Springer, M. L., & Newton, K. A. (2019, June), Transformative Diversity Changes in U.S. Demographics: Recognizing the Cultural Implications in Higher Education Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. https://peer.asee.org/33459
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