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UC Santa Cruz admits fewer students, the first time in years

KSBW Monterey-Salinas logo KSBW Monterey-Salinas 8/17/2022
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Since 2018, the University of California, Santa Cruz has sent out an increasing number of acceptance letters. But for the 2022-2023 school year, the university offered 5,300 fewer student admissions.

According to preliminary data released by the University of California, UCSC admitted 31,075 students for fall 2022 and 36,375 for 2021.

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For the upcoming fall quarter, UCSC will welcome 5,100 new students, which is 700 fewer than last year.

The new admission numbers come amid recent criticisms that the university was admitting more students than it could handle.

"Students are living on the street right? I know a student that literally just put on their Snapchat story saying, 'Hey, I'm looking for somewhere where I can park my trailer for $75 a month. And they are living out of a trailer," said Zennon Ulyate-Crow, a sophomore and president for UCSC's housing coalition advocacy group.

Throughout California, cities have been grappling with a severe housing crisis and the city of Santa Cruz is no exception.

According to the National Low Income Housing Coalition, the hourly wage to afford a two-bedroom apartment in the Santa Cruz area is about $60.

"On campus, there's a whole wide range of living," Ulyate-Crow said. "You have all the way up to six-tuples, which is six people in one room. These are converted lounge spaces that they just stuck a bunch of bunk beds and desks in and called it day. And then off campus, I know people who are living up to nine people in a house."

In a news release, UCSC said, "The campus will provide housing for about 9,300 students, more than half of the undergraduate class. An ambitious construction project underway at Kresge College will increase the amount of campus housing available to undergraduate students, and campus leaders are developing a multi-year housing strategy with a project ladder that has projects in the planning, design or construction stage at all times."

The university has been caught up in multiple environmental lawsuits that has stalled student housing. One of those projects, Student Housing West, would provide an additional 3,000 beds for upper division and graduate level students.

This school year, UCSC anticipates being able to finish Kresge College, which would add 300 beds.

Overall admissions across all UC campuses has dropped by about 5%. That's mainly attributed to a decrease in out-of-state admissions.

The only universities in the UC system to admit more students for the 2022-23 school year are Merced and Riverside.

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