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Latinas are earning bachelor’s and graduate degrees at higher rates than in the past, but they earn lower wages than their college-educated Latino and white peers, according to a new brief by the Latino Policy and Politics Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles.

The brief, released today, draws on the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey data included in the institute’s Latino Data Hub. The authors found that the number of Latinas with a bachelor’s degree or higher rose from one million to 3.5 million from 2000 to 2021. The share of Latina adults who earned these degrees rose from 5.4 percent to 20 percent over that same period.

Latinas were also more likely to have bachelor’s degrees or higher compared to Latino men, across descent groups, most age groups, veteran status, nativity and citizenship status, and English proficiency levels. But Latinas who held these degrees earned a median hourly wage of $26 an hour in 2021, $6 less per hour than similarly educated Latino men and $14 less per hour than similarly educated white men.

The brief also revealed “wide disparities within the Latina community by age, Latino descent group, citizenship status, veteran status, and English proficiency,” Citlali Tejeda, co-author of the brief and a fellow at the UCLA Latino Policy and Politics Institute, said in a press release.

For example, Latinas of South American descent were found to be the mostly likely to have completed a bachelor’s degree or beyond compared to other groups. Honduran, Salvadoran and Guatemalan Latinas were the least likely to hold these degrees. Only 12 percent of Guatemalan Latinas and 10 percent of Guatemalan men held bachelor’s degrees or higher.

Younger Latinas also earned bachelor’s degrees at higher rates than their older counterparts. Only 16 percent of Latinas ages 55 to 64 held a bachelor’s degree in 2021, compared to a quarter of Latinas ages 25 to 34, according to the brief.