Black college enrollment in South rate passes milestone

For the first time, blacks are as well represented on college campuses in the South as they are in the region's population.

Details are being released today by the Southern Regional Education Board.

The nonprofit organization promotes education.

The board's member states are Mississippi, Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.

In the 16 states measured, blacks make up 21 percent of college students and 19 percent of the population.

The number represents progress but it also has to be seen in context.

A major contributing factor is the South's rapidly growing Hispanic population, which has reduced the proportion of the population that is black. That's made the milestone easier to reach mathematically.