Berkeley High School senior Chris Carlisle isn't planning to apply to University of California-Berkeley this year. In fact, he's not sending any applications to college.
"I want to be a firefighter," Carlisle says. "I just ain't thought about college."
Carlisle's decision reflects a growing national trend -- fewer men are choosing to go to college, and now make up just under 44 percent of students enrolled in degree-granting institutions across the country.
With this phenomenon, UC Berkeley's gender gap has reversed. At 54 percent of the college-age student body, women outnumber men in every ethnic group except among whites.
"It's pretty cool," says junior sociology major Maritza Barajas. "Before, women experienced so many restrictions when it came to higher education. Now we're less dependent on men economically."
But among minorities, the gap is extreme. Of about 1,200 black students on campus this fall, nearly 800 are women. Asian-American females outnumber Asian-American males by more than 1,000.
Such an unbalanced increase in female presence on college campuses may not be altogether healthy, some experts say.