State universities want more students to graduate - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

State universities want more students to graduate

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Despite deep cuts in state funding, public universities around the country are launching campaigns to boost their college graduation rates. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon) Despite deep cuts in state funding, public universities around the country are launching campaigns to boost their college graduation rates. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — American colleges and universities are shifting their focus from attracting more students to making sure the ones they have get a diploma.

Public university systems around the country are launching campaigns to boost graduation rates. It's true especially among low-income and minority students who trail their classmates in earning degrees. California State University, the nation's largest four-year system, is one of 24 state university systems that have pledged to close that gap. Together those systems contain about 20 percent of the country's undergraduates.

Cal State has also announced an ambitious initiative to increase the percentage of students who graduate in six years, from 46 percent to 54 percent by 2016.

But state budget cuts have led to big tuition hikes, fewer instructors and more problems getting into classes.

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