Why is Diversity Important in Colleges?
When it comes to trade schools, career colleges, and four-year institutions, your educational experience can greatly benefit from learning in a diverse school environment. Moreover, a diverse faculty and staff contribute to a culture of innovation and can foster a more positive work environment, which benefits everyone at the institution.
When talking about school diversity, this includes demographics beyond racial identity and refers to students, faculty, and staff from all sexual identities, orientations, and genders, as well as first-generation status and socioeconomic standing.
Strong school diversity means students are learning in an environment that best reflects our growing and diversifying workforce. Why not learn from and study with students and faculty whose voices and ideas more accurately represent our diverse society in your area of study?
How To Measure Diversity in Colleges?
Much of the diversity statistics available on two- and four-year institutions today have not accounted for the full set categories mentioned above, including diversity in sexuality identity, sexual orientation, genders, and socioeconomic background. Diversity statistics can be found in graduation rates and the racial makeup of student, faculty, and staff populations, among other factors.
This data provides valuable insight into which institutions may better support a diverse student body. We considered six categories while searching for the most diverse trade schools and career colleges:
Top 20 Most Diverse Trade Schools and Career Colleges in the U.S. 2022
We considered trade schools and career colleges of 100 or more students and evaluated them based on the above criteria. Here is a list of the most diverse trade and career institutions for 2022.
20. East San Gabriel Valley Regional Occupational Program
Located in Los Angeles County, East San Gabriel holds regional accreditation from the Western Association of School and Colleges (WASC). The program offers career preparation classes that take place at local high schools and businesses. East San Gabriel prides itself on offering students hands-on experiences in the classroom and strives to help them secure internships for additional real-world instruction. The school serves roughly 120 students, ~70% of which are Hispanic/Latinx and ~68% who identify as female.
East San Gabriel allows high school students and recent graduates to earn credits that typically transfer to community colleges. Students in high school can receive credit toward their diploma while earning credits for college at no extra cost. The program offers dozens of programs, including:
- Early childhood education
- Medical pathology
- Retail sales
- Sports physical therapy
- Python programming
19. Concorde Career College-San Antonio
Concorde is a career-focused institution with 16 campus locations in eight states across the U.S. The school holds accreditation from the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) and offers more than a dozen certificates, diplomas, and associate degrees in six medical or dental subfields.
The San Antonio campus is located near Leon Valley, Balcones Heights, and Castle Hills. The student population is 84% women, and roughly 57% identify as Hispanic/Latinx.
Students interested in pursuing a program in healthcare choose from programs in health information management, practical/vocational nursing, medical assistant, and cardiovascular sonography. Concorde’s dental programs include a diploma in dental assistant and an associate degree in dental hygiene.
18. New York School for Medical and Dental Assistants
NYSMDA holds accreditation from the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) and has served Queens, Bronx, Brooklyn, and Manhattan for more than 50 years. Students choose from two associate degree programs in medical assisting or dental assisting. There are about 380 students enrolled, 92% of which identify as female. The largest ethnic group represented in the student population is Hispanic/Latinx at 63%.
Prospective students for either associate program must be at least 17 years old with a high school diploma or GED to apply. Interested students must also participate in an admissions interview and obtain a letter of recommendation from a NYSMDA admissions representative.
17. The College of Health Care Professions-Southwest Houston
CHCP is a private school established in 1988. The for-profit institution is based in Houston, Texas but boasts seven campuses throughout the state. The student population is largely Hispanic/Latinx at about 46%, followed by 32% of students identifying as Black or African American. CHCP has a mostly female student body, with 93% of the population identifying as women.
CHCP offers both on-campus and online associate degrees and certificates.
- Radiologic science management
- Health care management
- Cardiovascular sonography
- Health and medical administrative services
- Nursing (LVN to RN)
- Surgical technology
- Vocational nurse
- Pharmacy technician
- Medical assisting
- Healthcare office administration
- Medical billing and coding
- And many more
16. Concorde Career College-Aurora
Concorde’s Aurora campus is located just outside of Denver, Colorado. The private, for-profit school offers programs in radiologic technology, medical assisting, nursing, surgical technology, and more. Students follow asynchronous learning formats with new classes in most programs starting every month. The average completion time for students across programs is 11-21 months.
The Aurora campus has about 780 students, 60% of which receive funding through the Pell grant. Of the Pell recipients, 61% graduated with a certificate, and 12% completed an associate degree. The program is 86% female and includes a large Hispanic/Latinx population. Both Asian and Hispanic/Latinx student populations hold the highest graduation rates at 79% and 78%, respectively.
15. Instituto Tecnologico de Puerto Rico-Recinto de Manati
Located in Manati, Puerto Rico, ITPR is a public institution with about 600 students. The school offers a wide variety of associate degrees in these areas:
- Computer and information sciences
- Natural resources and conservation
ITPR is 52% male and has an entirely Hispanic/Latinx, in-person student population. Most of the students are enrolled as full-time students, 90% of which are 24 years old or younger. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 505 students received Pell grants during the 2019-2020 school year. Up to 99% of Pell recipients earned their associate degree.
14. Pima Medical Institute-El Paso
Founded in 1972, PMI is a private for-profit institution with 18 campuses around the western U.S. The school holds national accreditation from the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).
Popular certificate programs include:
- Dental assistant
- Pharmacy technician
- Phlebotomy technician
PMI also offers associate degrees in areas including radiography, occupational therapy assistant, and diagnostic medical sonography. The largest ethnic demographic in the student body at PMI is Hispanic/Latinx, at 74%. The school is largely students who identify as women, at 81%. Students who identify as Asian, Black or African American, or multi-racial have a 100% graduation rate.
13. Liberty Junior College
Located in Cayey, Puerto Rico, LJC is a two-year private institution offering associate degrees and certificates. The for-profit institution boasts a 98% graduation rate. Of its Pell recipients in 2012-13, 99% of them earned their certificate. The vast majority of students attending LJC identify as Hispanic/Latinx.
Students choose from programs in the culinary arts, entertainment, personal services, or health professions. Popular programs include respiratory care therapy, nursing science, emergency medical technology, and cosmetology.
12. Spartan College of Aeronautics & Technology
Established in 1928, Spartan is a private, for-profit aviation school in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The school serves approximately 400 students and offers associate degrees and certificates. Students can also access classes at four other locations, including Los Angeles and Denver. Available associate programs include aviation electronics technology, aviation maintenance technology, and aviation flight. There’s also a Bachelor of Science in Technology Management.
About 68% of Spartan’s student body is enrolled full-time and 91% male. The largest racial demographic identifies as Hispanic/Latinx at 57%, with Asian and Black or African American following at 11% and 9%, respectively.
11. Concorde Career College-North Hollywood
Concorders North Hollywood has offered healthcare training programs for more than 60 years. Today, in-person students can take advantage of diploma and associate degree programs in dental assisting, allied health, patient care, and nursing. Popular programs include its 10-month dental assistant diploma program and its 21-month physical therapist assistant associate of science degree program.
The North Hollywood campus serves mostly on-campus students, with 68% of the total student body identifying as female. At least 46% of the learner population identifies as Hispanic/Latinx. Concorde-North Hollywood reports a 100% graduate rate during the 2017-2018 year for students who identify as multi-racial, 83% for Asian students, and 58% for Black or African American students.
10. SABER College
Located in Miami, Florida, SABER is a private nonprofit institution. It holds accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy (CAPTE) and offers associate degrees in nursing and physical therapist assistant.
SABER serves a small student population of about 40 each year. The population is about 56% male and 44% female, with 100% of students identifying as Hispanic/Latinx. All of the students are in-state students, 90% of which are ages 25 or above. The school also boasts a 100% graduate rate for male and female students.
9. Concorde Career College-Southaven
Concorde’s Southaven campus in Mississippi, located just beyond the Tennessee border near Memphis, offers four diploma and associate degree programs. Students attending Concorde in Southaven can earn a diploma or associate degree in dental assisting or medical assisting. The school also offers diplomas in massage therapy and medical office professions.
The diverse student population is 94% female. At least 70% of the students identify as Black or African American, with 12% and 13% of students identifying as white or multiracial, respectively. The school also serves students identifying as Hispanic/Latinx, Indigenous, and Asian. The Southaven campus boasts a 100% graduation rate for Hispanic/Latinx students.
8. Concorde Career College-San Diego
Concorde’s San Diego campus offers a wider range of programs than some of its other locations. Associate degree-seekers can complete the dental hygiene, physical therapist assistant, or surgical technology program in 18-21 months. For those looking for a diploma, Concorde-San Diego offers nine-month programs in medical office administration, medical assistant, and dental assistant.
The San Diego campus serves only about 750 students. As of Fall 2020, about 79% of the student body identified as female. At least 30% of the total students on-campus identify as Hispanic/Latinx, followed by Asian and Black or African American students at 5% and 4%. More than half of the population is 25 years of age or older.
7. Concorde Career College-San Bernardino
Concorde’s San Bernardino campus serves about 700 students and offers the school’s full range of healthcare training programs. For diploma-seekers, the private for-profit institution offers 8-13-month programs in dental assistant, medical assistant, vocational nursing, medical office administration, and polysomnographic technology. The San Bernardino campus also boasts associate degree programs in dental hygiene, neurodiagnostic technology, respiration therapy, and surgical technology.
About 82% of the student population at San Bernardino is female. At least 41% and 11% of the total student body identify as Hispanic/Latinx and Black or African American. The highest graduation rates exist among female students, at 78%, and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander students, at 89%. Close behind in graduation rates are Hispanic/Latinx and Asian students, at 82% and 79%.
6. Medical Allied Career Center
Located in Santa Fe Springs, California, this four-year private institution offers programs in vocational nursing and nursing assistant. The 20-month vocational nursing curriculum requires 58.5 credits for graduation, along with 960 hours of clinical work. Required classes include anatomy and physiology, psychology, and nutrition. Students in the nursing assistant program complete 160 clinical hours and need about two months to finish.
The for-profit school serves only about 80 students per year. About 81% of the student body identifies as female. Hispanic/Latinx students make up the largest ethnic group, at 82%. Graduation rates at Medical Allied Career Center are high across the board, with Asian and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Island graduating at 100%. Graduation rates for Black or African American and Hispanic/Latinx students are 80% and 72%, respectively.
5. New York Medical Career Training Center
A private, for-profit school in Flushing, New York, NYMCTC offers 11 training programs for aspiring healthcare professionals. Students choose from programs such as nurse aid/assistant (CNA), pharmacy technician (PTCB), diagnostic medical sonographer, medical assistant, and dialysis technician.
NYMCTC serves about 100 students per year, 90% of which are female. Hispanic/Latinx and Asian students make up its largest ethnic groups at 37% and 34%, respectively. Graduation rates are high at this institution, with students from all ethnic groups boasting a 95% or higher rate. Hispanic/Latinx and Black or African American students have the highest graduation rates, both at 99%.
4. Concorde Career College-Garden Grove
Concorde’s Garden Grove offers both associate degrees and diplomas for students looking for entry-level careers in healthcare. The private, for-profit institution offers associate degrees in dental hygiene, physical therapist assistant, and respiratory therapy. Diploma-seekers can take advantage of its programs in medical assistance, medical office administration, pharmacy technician, vocational nursing, or dental assistant.
The Garden Grove campus serves approximately 600 students, 71% of which identify as female. The two largest ethnic groups represented in the student body are Hispanic/Latinx at 36% and Asian at 19%. Students at Garden Grove who identify as multiracial have a 100% graduation rate, followed by Asian and Hispanic/Latinx students at 90% and 86%, respectively.
3. Cambridge Institute of Allied Health & Technology
Located in Altamonte Springs, Florida, Cambridge Institute is a private, for-profit institution with certificate and diploma programs, as well as associate and bachelor’s degrees. The school has robust online and in-person options in both healthcare and information technology. Associate degree programs include data and project management, diagnostic medical sonography, and occupational therapy assistant. Available bachelor’s degrees include computer networking, cyber and network security, and health information management.
Out of approximately 400 students, the largest ethnic group identifies as Black or African American at 52%. The second-largest group, comprising 26% of the student population, identifies as Hispanic/Latinx. Students at Cambridge Institute largely identify as female at 94%.
2. Hacienda La Puente Adult Education
A public, two-year institution in La Puente, California, Hacienda La Puente serves approximately 680 students. In addition to courses in effective parenting techniques and basic adult education, the institution offers various vocational programs. Students can choose from more than a dozen concentrations, including esthetician, pharmacy technician, cosmetologist, electrician, barber, and combination welder.
About 46% of the student population identify as female. The largest ethnic group, at 63%, identifies as Hispanic/Latinx. The second-largest group identifies as Asian, at 20%. The institution boasts an 87% overall graduation rate, with female students graduating at 91%.
1. Unitek College
Located in Fremont, California, and coming in for our #1 most diverse trade/career school is Unitek College. This private, for-profit institution has several programmatic accreditations, including credentials from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Students can choose from certificates, associate degrees, and bachelor’s degree programs in nursing and general healthcare. In addition to associate and bachelor’s degrees in nursing, students can also pursue programs such as medical assisting, medical office administration, and dental assisting. Unitek has about 2,150 students, of which 90% identify as women. Asian and Hispanic/Latinx students make up a large portion of the student body at 22% and 20%, respectively.
If you’re looking for other schools that offer diverse trade school programs, check out the Find Your Perfect “U” tool. You can search over 6,000 colleges and universities with 11 different filters to find the perfect school for you!
Resources for Diverse Communities
Interested in learning more about what to look for in a college or university that embraces diversity? Our Ultimate Guide to Diversity-Embracing Colleges and Universities offers some insight and a list of progressive schools with agendas to support a diverse student body.
- The Century Foundation: “How Racially Diverse Schools and Classrooms Can Benefit All Students” provides an in-depth look, written by education experts and researchers, with hard facts on how diversity improves the quality of our education.
- Purdue University’s Guide to Scholarships for Minority Students provides valuable tips for students applying for need- and merit-based scholarships reserved for minority students. The site also includes links and information on 45 excellent scholarships.
- Lastly, you can use our scholarship search tool to find students of all ethnicities: Black, Asian, Hispanic, Native American, as well as religious affiliations, disabilities, and much more.
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