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3 College Junior

Diversity: One moment that has stuck with me is when I first got to Davidson and a professor told a group of us freshman 'It is up to you to make an effort to create a friend group that does not look like yours from high school'. Many people don't try to make this happen, but I did. It wasn't difficult at all and it was one of my favorite things I've done at Davidson. I love having friends from all over the country and the world and from all different types of backgrounds. It really rounds out my views on things.

5 College Freshman

Diversity: There are plenty of organizations and clubs on campus regarding LGBT and race

3 College Freshman

Diversity: Economic diversity is probably the least addressed form of diversity on campus. Though the diversity probably exists (since roughly 50% of students receive financial aid), no one talks about it. Most students seem to just assume if you are a Davidson student, you are more likely than not wealthy, and that is really frustrating.

There a lot of international students, and they are a great addition to the student body, and in most cases tend to get along with all kinds of people. In some cases international students from the same country will stick exclusively with other people from the same country, but that is rare. As far as ethnicity goes, Davidson has a diversity percentage somewhere around 20%, which is more than other places, but it still does not make the campus terribly diverse. There almost no latino students.

There is a small LGBTQ population on campus. Because many Davidson students are of a more liberal mindset, LGBTQ students do not seem to be ostracized. However, most LGBTQ students hang out with one another, and sadly, their presence is not very open on campus.

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3 College Freshman

Diversity: As a freshman, there could be more diversity than I realize, and I just haven't met enough people yet to get a real idea of what it's like. However, from what I see, the level of diversity is higher than what it is at a lot of schools, but still not as high as it could be.


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 328th
    Most Open-Minded Schools
  • 446th
    Most Conservative Schools
  • 950th
    Most Liberal Schools

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Annie Maietta
Weston, MA
View all previous student authors

If Davidson consistently fields one criticism as an institution, this is it. Diversity is a hot topic on campus, resurfacing in conversations among students and admissions officials alike. Each semester, the Davidsonian, the student-run newspaper, prints multiple articles addressing issues of diversity on campus, all stemming from one basic conclusion—there simply isn’t enough of it. The numbers reflect this, with just above 12 percent of the student body composed of racial minorities each year. At a school of 1,700, that’s about 200 people. For many minorities on campus, the lack of diversity is an everyday challenge. Minority students continually express concerns that their sole purpose at Davidson is to make the school look good, or that they’re only a number or a statistic. Others say that the school is not truly dedicated to shedding its “white Christian male” foundations.

Despite the setbacks in terms of diversity on paper, however, this is very much an accepting and respectful atmosphere. Many students here have friends of all races and religions, and a primary frustration for many is that “diversity” is frequently made into more of an issue than it needs to be. Most Davidson students will tell you that their outlook is entirely colorblind. And diversity, you’ll learn at Davidson, comes in forms other than color. Needless to say, the great variety of individuals and ideas presented on campus makes Davidson seem a great deal more “diverse” than the numbers might indicate.

Facts & Statistics

African American
Native American
Historically Black College/University?
Tribal College?
Out-of-State Students
Common States of Residence
  • Florida
  • Foreign countries
  • Georgia
  • New York
  • Texas
Student Age Breakdown
Under 18: 1%
18-19: 50%
20-21: 43%
22-24: 6%
25+: 0%
Female Faculty
Male Faculty
Faculty Diversity
African American: 2%
Asian American: 5%
Hispanic: 5%
International: 0%
Native American: 0%
White: 85%
Unknown: 2%
Gay Pride
Organizations such as the Gay-Straight Alliance and YANASH (You Are Not A Stranger Here) actively work to integrate the gay and straight communities on campus, as well as to promote acceptance of different lifestyles. Though Davidson has a long way to go, students are generally accepting and gay-friendly; the number of open homosexuals on campus is on the rise, and the population as a whole supports them. It is not uncommon for homosexual students to feel somewhat separated from the straight community, however.
Political Activity
It is difficult to classify in which direction Davidson's political meter points, as the "liberal" in "liberal arts education" pulls strongly to the left, while the Southern roots of many Davidson students push strongly to the right. While political sentiment on campus is not overwhelming, campus political organizations and their ringleaders are certainly a visible force. Political groups from both sides were incredibly active this year because of the 2008 Presidential Election. Davidson also made an active effort to educate its students on the issues; there were numerous forums and discussions to ensure that students were aware of the issues surrounding the election.
Economic Status
Though Davidson's upper-middle class stereotype still generally holds true, the expansive financial aid options now available have made Davidson accessible to a much broader range of people. In 2007, Davidson changed its financial aid system to meet 100% of demonstrated need and eliminated loans from its financial-aid packages entirely by offering grants and work-study jobs instead. As a result, there are students from various socioeconomic backgrounds, and many paying their own way.
Most Common Religions
Of religious students on campus, a majority are Christian (predominantly Protestant, some Catholic). There is also an active Jewish student organization, as well as a small Buddhist minority. While Davidson has its share of Christian fundamentalists, an equally large number of students are self-proclaimed agnostics or atheists. For those who are religious, Davidson's campus plays host to a Presbyterian worship service, a Catholic mass, a Muslim prayer meeting, an Episcopal Eucharist, and a Quaker meeting each week. Shabbat services and Hillel Fellowship programming are also staples of Davidson's on-campus religious life.
Minority Clubs on Campus
The Black Student Coalition (BSC) is one of the largest minority organizations along with the International Student Association. More recent organizations include the Association of Students Interested in Asia (ASIA) and the African American fraternity Alpha Phi Alpha.

Student Polls

How would you best describe your personal political beliefs?    Based on 20 responses

  • 5% Libertarian
  • 5% Not sure
  • 5% Very conservative
  • 15% Conservative
  • 30% Moderate
  • 35% Liberal
  • 5% Progressive/very liberal

How would you best describe the political beliefs of campus as a whole?    Based on 19 responses

  • 5% Libertarian
  • 0% Very conservative
  • 16% Conservative
  • 58% Moderate
  • 11% Not sure
  • 11% Liberal
  • 0% Progressive/very liberal

How diverse is the student body in the following areas?    Based on 17 responses

Totally homogenous
Extremely diverse
  • Economic status
  • Ethnic heritage
  • National origin (international students)
  • Political affiliation
  • Religious background
  • Sexual orientation

How diverse is your personal circle of friends in the following areas?    Based on 17 responses

Totally homogenous
Extremely diverse
  • Economic status
  • Ethnic heritage
  • National origin (international students)
  • Political affiliation
  • Religious background
  • Sexual orientation

How accepting is the campus community as a whole toward someone who falls into the minority (ethnic, sexual, or religious)?    Based on 20 responses

  • 0% It's hard to be a minority here.
  • 5% The campus is split on its acceptance-not all minority groups are as accepted as others.
  • 25% Most students are accepting, except for a few rare cases of intolerance.
  • 70% Very accepting.
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