May 11, 2007
CUNY Asian Student Data

Online Notes
CUNY Asian Student Data

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  • Undergraduate enrollment has increased for all ethnic groups at CUNY (16.0%), with Asians showing the strongest growth of the five racial/ethnic groups tracked at CUNY (29.3%) (Table 1A).
  • There were 31,061 Asian undergraduates enrolled at CUNY in fall 2006, representing 15.8% of the undergraduate population.  Asians comprise a slightly larger percentage of the CUNY undergraduate population in fall 2006 than they did in fall 2001(Table 2)
  • Asians represent just under 20% of undergraduates at the senior colleges, almost 10% at the comprehensive colleges, and 15% at the community colleges (Table 2).
  • In terms of both number and percentage, Baruch has more Asian students than any other college where 34.3% or 4,393 undergraduates are Asian (Table 2).
  • The gender composition of Asian undergraduates is more balanced than for the CUNY undergraduate population overall.  Fifty-three percent of Asian undergraduates are female, whereas 61% are female overall (Table 3).


  • More than half of all Asian students live in Queens, and a quarter are from Brooklyn (Table 4).
  • Among Asian first-time freshmen, the largest and fastest growing segment is students of Chinese ancestry.  In 2001, nearly a quarter (24.5%) of students reported Chinese ancestry, five years later, this number had grown to nearly one-third (32.4%).  Conversely, the percentage of students identifying as Indian has declined from 2001 to 2006 (Table 5).
  • Nearly one-quarter of all Asian students report that their native language is English (24.3%), this is an increase of nearly seven percentage points from 2001.  More than one-third of all Asian students report a native Chinese language, including with both Cantonese and Mandarin highly represented (Table 6).
  • More than three-quarters (78.3 %) of all Asian students attended New York City public high schools.  Nine percent graduated from a foreign high school (Table 7).

 Academic Programs

  • Over 11,000 Asian students are currently pursuing an associate degree at CUNY; and almost 17,000 are pursuing a baccalaureate degree.  A small number are seeking a certificate and the remaining 2,800 are not enrolled for a degree.  Asian enrollment growth at the baccalaureate level outpaced that at the associate level between 2001 and 2006 (Table 8).
  • Business and Management is the most popular major for Asians in baccalaureate programs (juniors and seniors), with 37.2% of Asian students choosing a business major compared to 22.9% of all students.  In 2001, 20% of all Asian baccalaureate students were majoring in computer and information science.  Five years later this percentage had declined from to 4.7%, a more precipitous drop than for the overall population at CUNY (declined from 9.0% in 2001 to 3.3% in 2006 (Table 9).
  • The majority of Asian undergraduates pursuing an associate degree are enrolled in Arts and Science or General programs (29.5%) with many others pursuing degrees in Business and Commerce Technologies (27.7%).  As with the baccalaureate level, enrollment in computer-related programs at the associate level has declined sharply since 2001, both for Asian students and for the CUNY population as a whole, while Health Services Technologies has experienced strong enrollment growth, particularly among Asian students (Table 10).

Prepared by the CUNY Office of Institutional Research and Assessment




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