Denison, which typically has an enrollment of 75-80% white students will see that number decrease with the entrance of the class of 2017.

The new freshmen hold the most diverse class in the college’s history, with 33% identifying as international or students of color, according to a press release from University Communications today.

The new class is statistically closer to overall college enrollment by race in the United States. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2010, 63% of college students were white, 14% were black, 12% were Hispanic/Latino, 7% Asian/Pacific Islander, and 1% Native American.

A diversity statement adopted by Denison faculty in the fall of 2006 reads in part: “Denison is committed to the idea that our community should include people from a wide variety of religious, cultural, ethnic, racial, gender, sexual orientation and socio-economic backgrounds in order to realize the goals of a liberal arts education[…]It is important to the realization of our educational goals not only that students have opportunities to speak about racial, ethnic, and other differences, but that they also get a chance to speak across these differences. This can only happen if there is diversity in the classroom and, more generally, in the college.”

The class of 2017 will begin their four years at Denison with August Orientation, beginning Sunday, August 25.