A new survey conducted by the Art & Science Group has revealed that one in four college applicants have decided not to apply to a university based on its state’s political climate. Of the surveyed students, 31% of liberal applicants and 28% of conservative applicants rejected colleges in states due to political grounds. Specific issues, such as abortion rights, intolerance of the queer community, and gun laws, were cited as reasons for ruling out specific states. Furthermore, many conservatives avoided liberal states, such as New York and California, for fear of oppressive liberalism.
Elite institutions, such as Tulane University, Stanford University, Rice University, Columbia University, and the University of Miami, rely on out-of-state admissions to form their diverse student bodies. However, the survey suggests that many students ruled out these colleges and their states because of political reasons. Conservatives were most likely to avoid liberal states, while liberals expressed specific concerns about states with restrictive abortion laws. The most avoided states among college applicants were Alabama, Texas, Louisiana, and Florida.
The survey reflects the growing partisan divide in the United States and the impact of local politics on college admissions. Many college applicants have avoided specific colleges or regions for political reasons, but the survey is the first to confirm the extent of this phenomenon. While some conservatives complain about liberal campuses, some liberals worry about becoming trapped in states with no abortion rights, intolerance of the queer community, and Wild-West gun laws. The survey’s findings suggest that politics can be a crucial factor in deciding which college to attend.
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