College and University Administrator Positions

According to the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR) data, in 2017, Whites represented the majority of all administrative positions, although some positions had a larger percentage of people of color[1] than others. A smaller share of chief student affairs and student life officers than of other types of administrators were White (75.0 percent). About one-quarter of individuals in these positions identified as people of color (26.0 percent).

College and University Administrators, by Position and Race and Ethnicity: 2017


Bichsel, Jacqueline, Adam Pritchard, Jingyun Li, and Jasper McChesney. 2018. Administrators in Higher Education Annual Report: Key Findings, Trends, and Comprehensive Tables for 2017–18 Academic Year. Research Report. Knoxville, TN: CUPA-HR.

Some totals may not add to 100% due to rounding.

CUPA-HR classifies positions into three categories: administrative, professional, and staff. Administrative positions include top executive officers. Professional positions include institutional affairs, student affairs, fiscal affairs, external affairs, facilities, information technology, research professionals, athletic affairs, and safety professionals, among others. Staff positions include office and clerical staff, service and maintenance staff, technical and paraprofessional staff, and skilled craft staff.

[1] People of color include individuals who identified as Asian, Black, Hispanic, or an ethnicity other than White.