African American Students Weigh Campus Attitudes In Picking Colleges

Jahmia Edwards cried when she opened the letter saying she'd been admitted to UCLA, the college she'd dreamed of attending since childhood.

The 18 year-old senior at Alliance William & Carol Ouchi High School in South Los Angeles quickly dismissed UC Merced, Cal Poly Pomona and Syracuse University, the other schools where she'd been accepted.

It has taken weeks, however, for her classmate, Sabrina Montgomery, 17, to decide on a college, weighing the strengths and weaknesses of UCLA versus UC San Diego, after not getting into her No. 1 choice, UC Berkeley.

Her decision was UCLA. San Diego offered proximity to the beach, but information about some racially charged incidents was dismaying to the African American student, and she said she didn't feel quite as welcome.

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