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California lawmaker proposes to limit out-of-state freshmen at UC

May 16, 2012 | 12:22 pm

UC Berkeley

University of California campuses would be prohibited from enrolling more than 10% of their freshman classes from outside the state under a measure proposed Wednesday by Sen. Michael Rubio (D-Shafter).

Rubio noted that for fall 2012, the percentage of non-Californians admitted to UC increased to more than 23% of the freshman class, up from about 11% just three years before. He has authored a state constitutional amendment that, if approved by voters, would require 90% of UC freshmen at each campus to come from inside the state.

“SCA 22 ensures that California students get a fair shot at attending our University of California system — and not be turned away simply because a wealthy student from the East Coast or abroad shows up with a checkbook in hand,” Rubio said in a statement.

UC already has a policy limiting out-of-state enrollment to 10% of the undergraduate student body systemwide, and the number is currently at about 6.9%, according to UC spokeswoman Dianne Klein. She said the percentage is higher than 10% at some popular campuses, including Berkeley and Los Angeles.

UC does not have a position on Rubio’s new bill, but Klein said the current policy allows flexibility to adapt to the changing budget situation. "We would love to educate many more Californians but we don’t have the money to do so," Klein said.

Rubio’s measure is sponsored by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 3299, whose members include UC Berkeley custodian Maricruz Manzanarez. "If UC has its way, my kids will be competing with kids from other states to get a chance," Manzanarez said in a statement released by Rubio’s office. "Those out-of-state kids aren't smarter than mine, just richer."


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--Patrick McGreevy in Sacramento

Photo: UC Berkeley students walk through Sproul Plaza. Credit: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images