Hidden Gem Colleges with the Most Ethnic Diversity | 2022 Rankings

When searching for a college, many students seek out schools with high ethnic diversity. After all, college is a time to meet people from all walks of life and learn more about this wide world of ours. We wanted to create a list of Hidden Gem colleges that have the highest rate of ethnic diversity.

The ethnic diversity is calculated by using the standard deviation of the percentage of the student population in each of the nine classifications of ethnicity as reported by IPEDS. By this calculation, schools with a lower stddev are more diverse because that means that there are more students in more ethnicity groups.

We kept our list within the Top 500 schools in the overall College Raptor rankings. Schools with a higher diversity are listed higher up on the list, regardless of rank.

To qualify as a Hidden Gem, a school must meet the following requirements:

  • Receive fewer than 5,000 applications per year
  • Have fewer than 7,000 undergraduate students
  • Offer 5 or more unique majors
  • Have a 10% acceptance rate or higher

Hidden Gem Colleges with the Most Ethnic Diversity

Harvey Mudd College has under 1,000 students and offers programs only in science and engineering. It has a 14% acceptance rate, 97% first year graduation rate, and an 8 to 1 student to faculty ratio. Part of the Claremont Colleges, their colors are black and gold. The men’s teams are known as the Stags and the women are known as the Athenas.
Location Claremont, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 904
Founded in 1918, Otis was the first independent professional art school in Los Angeles. Back in the 1940s, Normal Rockwell was an artist in residence at Otis. The school offers 7 programs: Digital Arts, Design and Visual Communication, Fine Arts, Fashion Design, Design and Applied Arts, Industrial and Product Design, and Environmental Design / Architecture.
Location Los Angeles, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,183
The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, also known as Cooper Union, has under 1,000 students and only a 15.5% acceptance rate. Cooper Union only offers a few majors including Fine/Studio Arts, Engineering Studies, and Architecture. The school also boasts a high first year retention rate of 91% and has an 8 to 1 student to faculty ratio.
Location New York City, NY
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 952
Often abbreviated to RISD, this school was founded to expand access to design education to women. Nowadays, 68% of the undergraduate class consist of female students. The campus is located on the Providence River. Systems Science and Theory is the most popular major, followed by Illustration and Graphic Design.
Location Providence, RI
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 2,501
One of the Seven Sisters, Agnes Scott College is a women’s undergraduate school, but offers co-educational graduate programs as well. The school underwent many name changes since it was founded in 1889, starting with the Decatur Female Seminary. The school has a number of interesting long standing traditions including Class Colors, Pestle Board, and Black Cat.
Location Decatur, GA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,067
“Veritas Fax Ardens” is the Latin motto of Dominican University of California, which means “Truth is a Flaming Torch.” That said, their mascot is a penguin named Chilly. Black, gold, and white are the official school colors. 78% of students receive financial aid from the school to help cover tuition costs.
Location San Rafael, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,878
The Maryland Institute College of Art is one of the oldest art colleges in the country, having been founded in 1826. Illustration, Graphic Design, Multimedia, and Painting are commonly chosen majors. The school has a 9 to 1 student to faculty ratio and an 88% first year retention rate. 90% of applicants are accepted.
Location Baltimore, MD
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 2,227
With campuses in both Brooklyn and Long Island, St. Joseph’s College is a private baccalaureate college. The Brooklyn campus consists of 81% undergraduate students and 19% graduate students. Special Education and Teaching is the most popular major, followed by Business Administration and Nursing.
Location Brooklyn, NY
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,185
Commonly called CalArts, the school offers up to the doctor’s degree level of arts education. In fact, 33% of attendees are graduate students. CalArts has a 28% acceptance rate and a cozy 7 to 1 student to faculty ratio. Notable alumni of CalArts include Brad Bird, Tim Burton, Glen Keane, Lauren Faust, Stephen Hillenburg, Alex Hirsch, Craig McCraken, and Henry Selick.
Location Valencia, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,520
A women’s liberal arts college, Bryn Mawr College is a Seven Sisters college. It was founded by the Quakers in 1885. The school receives around 3,300 applications a year and accepts only 38% of them, making it a very selective school. Bryn Mawr means “large hill” in Welsh. Notable alumni include classicist Edith Hamilton and actress Katharine Hepburn.
Location Bryn Mawr, PA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,723
Mills College is a liberal arts school for women. Its motto is “Una destinatio, viae diversae” which means “One destination, many paths.” Psychology is the most popular major at Mills College, followed by English and Political Science. Mills has a 10 to 1 student to faculty ratio. 70% of the school’s incoming class call California home.
Location Oakland, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,122
Located along the San Francisco Bay, the California College of the Arts was founded in 1907. Popular majors include Illustration, Animation, Graphic Design, and Human Computer Interaction. CCA has an acceptance rate of 85% and 67% 6 year graduation rate. The school also has a cozy 8 to 1 student to faculty ratio.
Location San Francisco, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,860
Maroon and gray are the official colors of the University of Redlands Bulldogs. Their mascot is portrayed by a real dog. 97% of students receive financial aid from the university. The school has a first year retention rate of 85% and a 6 year graduation rate of 71%. A giant R was carved into the side of San Bernardino Mountains in 1913 and is still there today.
Location Redlands, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 4,931
“Biola” actually references the school’s original name from 1908 - the Bible Institute of Los Angeles. Today, Biola University sits on a 96 acre campus and offers more than 150 programs of study. 34% of Biola’s students study at the graduate level. 71% of undergrad students are expected to graduate within six years.
Location La Mirada, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 6,103
Also known simply as Cal Maritime, this academy’s motto is “Laborare Pugnare Parati Sumus” which means “To work, to fight, we are ready.” It offers seven programs, six undergraduate and one graduate: Marine Science, Mechanical Engineering, Business, International Studies, Marine Engineering Technology, and Engineering Technologies.
Location Vallejo, CA
Institution Type Public
Student Enrollment 941
Purple and gold are the official school colors of Knox College. Their sports teams, known as the Prairie Fire, compete in the Midwest Conference in events like football, basketball, track, soccer, and more. Knox has a 3-3 academic calendar instead of the common semester system. Creative Writing is the most popular major.
Location Galesburg, IL
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,258
Drew University goes by the nickname “University of the Forest” due to the fact it is on an 186 acre wooded campus. The school’s motto is “δωρεὰν ἐλάβετε, δωρεὰν δότε”, which is Greek for "Freely ye have received, freely give” from Matthew 10:8. Blue and green are the school colors and the sports teams are known as the Rangers.
Location Madison, NJ
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 2,319
Pitzer College accepts only 17% of applicants, making it a highly selective school. A majority of these students come from California, Washington, and Oregon. It is one of the Claremont Colleges and focuses on media studies, behavioral studies, social sciences, and international programs. Environmental Science, Psychology, and Economics are popular majors.
Location Claremont, CA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,086
Founded as a Catholic women’s college in 1927, Regis College only became coeducational in 2007. There are more graduate than undergraduate students on campus, with a 58% and 42% split respectively. 100% of Regis students receive financial aid from the college to help cover costs. Their school colors are crimson and gold.
Location Weston, MA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 3,194
Located on Sarasota Bay, the Ringling College of Art and Design is a small school that offers up to the bachelor’s degree. 95% of students receive institutional financial aid to help cover college costs. Animation is the most popular major, followed by Illustration and Art Studies. It’s name is often shortened to RCAD.
Location Sarasota, FL
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,658
Pacific University has four total campuses, though the main one is in Forest Grove, OR. Offering up to a doctor’s degree, Pacific University has a student body that is 51% graduate students and 49% undergraduates. Biology is the most popular major. Only 41% of incoming students are from Oregon, with many coming from neighboring states California and Washington.
Location Forest Grove, OR
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 3,832
Mount Holyoke College is the oldest member of the Seven Sisters colleges. Their motto is Psalms 144:12 – “That our daughters may be as corner stones, polished after the similitude of a palace.” The campus features a botanic garden, the art museum, and John Payson Williston Observatory. Computer Science, Biology, and Econometrics are popular majors.
Location South Hadley, MA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 2,300
Austin College has a rather unique mascot - a kangaroo. The Fighting Kangaroo teams wear crimson and gold to represent the school colors. Alumni of Austin College have gone on to have impressive careers as musicians, politicians, educators, athletes, and authors. The school does not charge application fees.
Location Sherman, TX
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,314
“Vita Lux Hominum” is the Latin motto of Earlham College, which means “Life is the Light of Man” in English. Earlham offers up to the master’s degree and has a 59% acceptance rate. Popular majors at Earlham include Biochemistry, English, Computer Science, and Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution.
Location Richmond, IN
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 998
A for-profit college founded in 1988, DigiPen Institute of Technology has three campuses: the main one in Washington, and two abroad in Spain and Singapore. DigiPen offers 7 programs of study: Computer Programming, Animation, Human Computer Interaction, Modeling, Music Theory, Computer Engineering, and Computer Software Engineering.
Location Redmond, WA
Institution Type Private
Student Enrollment 1,174

Interested in any of these schools? Check out College Raptor’s free match tool to see if they’re a good fit for you!

Methodology

Colleges are ranked based on a combination of factors, including graduation rates, campus diversity, endowment per student, and other data as reported via the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) for the most recently-available enrollment year. Some colleges may have been excluded from rankings based on certain criteria, including specialization and classification. Learn about our full methodology.

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