How Minnesota private colleges stack up in awarding degrees

Where private colleges have the greatest "market share"

The Minnesota Private College Council’s research arm just came out with some new stats on how it compared to the University of Minnesota and Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system in awarding bachelor’s and graduate degrees this past school year.

The aim seems to be to show that private colleges award a larger share of the state’s degrees than you might think, considering their size.

First, a little context:

With an undergrad and graduate enrollment totaling almost 60,000, Minnesota’s Private Colleges (the 17 colleges and universities that belong to the council) enroll 16 percent of the state’s college students, according its Web site. They teach 27 percent of Minnesota students at four-year institutions — a number that excludes two-year colleges and grad students — and 17 percent of those in graduate school.

With that in mind, here are some of the interesting stats you’ll find in the reports. Keep in mind, though, that the stats do not take into account degrees earned from online schools.

  • Bachelor’s degrees: Private colleges award 30 percent of all bachelor’s degrees in the state — the same share as the University of Minnesota’s — and just under the 32 percent of MnSCU’s four‐year institutions.
  • Strongest degrees: The privates were much stronger in certain fields, awarding: 71percent of all Minnesota bachelor’s degrees in philosophy and religious studies; 50 percent in physical sciences; 46 percent in math and statistics; 44 percent in history; and 40 percent of all degrees in health-related professions. Six other fields came in over the 30 percent mark.
  • Total graduate degrees: Private colleges awarded 39 percent of all graduate degrees in the state — again the same share as the University of Minnesota’s — and above the 12 percent awarded by MnSCU’s universities.
  • Master’s degrees: Looking just at master’s degrees, private colleges awarded 45 percent of the state total — above the 34 percent from the University of Minnesota and the 15 percent at MnSCU’s universities.
  • Doctorates: Looking at doctorates, 19 percent came from Private College Council members, and 21 percent from non-council private institutions — rates much lower than the University of Minnesota’s 57 percent but far above the 1 percent from MnSCU universities.
  • Students of color: Students of color earned 10 percent of all bachelor’s degrees awarded by Private College Council members — just under the 13 percent of the University of

    Minnesota and just above the 9 percent at MnSCU’s universities.