For years, the largest ethnic group represented in California state schools was whites. Until Latinos became the plurality in the state; now, more Latinos are enrolled as freshmen in the University of California system this fall for the first time. The benchmark isn't a surprise. The politics might be.
"Latinos account for 28.8% of the 61,120 Californians admitted for this fall's freshman class at the UC system's nine undergraduate campuses," The Wall Street Journal reports. That's 2 percentage points higher than the number of white freshman who will be attending the state's nine UC schools — or about 1,200 kids. Not big, but a first.
Which brings us to that related data point. Earlier this year, Latinos became the largest ethnic group in the state, according to California's Department of Finance. The Journal notes that the state's Latino population is also disproportionately young, with about half of the state's 15 to 19 year-olds being Latino. And according to the Department of Finance, that trend will continue: by 2060, nearly half of the state's residents will be Latino, and they'll be on-average younger than their white, Asian, and black neighbors. In other words, we're still at the front end of a rash of similar firsts.