Black Californians Face Uneven Opportunity in Education, Employment, and Quality of Life

Equity Gaps In Education and Employment Impact Black Californians

California Competes recently launched its new California Postsecondary to Prosperity Dashboard, which offers critical insights into educational opportunity, economic mobility, and quality of life across the state. With breakdowns by race, ethnicity, region, and other demographics, the Dashboard shows how California needs to consider equity, inclusivity, and accessibility when it comes to its higher education system and post-pandemic economic recovery.

For instance, the Dashboard offers powerful data on the educational experiences and economic outcomes of Black Californians. Constituting 6 percent of the state’s population—a share that has stayed level for the last 17 years—Black Californians have made gains in postsecondary degree attainment but have not reached the state average for postsecondary and workforce outcomes.

By better understanding how demographics relate to outcomes, policymakers can begin to build more equitable and inclusive systems that will give all Californians the opportunity to prosper.


    • Black Californians enroll at the UC, CSU, and CCC at lower rates than other groups and are more likely to enroll in private, for-profit institutions.
    • Black Californians are slightly more likely to face unemployment than Californians as a whole, and even when employed, Black Californians are less likely to earn a living wage than all Californians (51% vs 64%).
    • Black Californians are equally likely to have health insurance but less likely to own a home than Californians as a whole.

To learn more, explore the California Postsecondary to Prosperity Dashboard.

Featured Items


Postsecondary to Prosperity: Black Californians

California Competes

Postsecondary to Prosperity: Examining California’s Opportunity Landscape

July 29, 2020

Postsecondary to Prosperity: A Conversation About Transforming an Inequitable System to Fuel Opportunity

California Competes
July 29, 2020