Abortion Bans Are Making Some Students Change College Plans

State abortion bans are making some pro-choice students alter there plans for where they will attend college.

By Erika Hanson | Published

University Warns Professors Not To Discuss Abortions Or Contraception With Students

abortion bans

Last month, when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to overturn the historic, decades-old Roe V. Wade case that made abortions legal across the nation, many pro-choice supporters across the nation were devastated by the monumental decision. As some red states were quick to push through laws now making abortion completely illegal, many people even began talking about relocating out of those states just for that reason. Now, even high school students are changing their college plans because of this decision, and rethinking life-long college ambitions, depending on whether or not the state their dream colleges are enacting sweeping abortion bans.

The New York Post reports that students and college advisers across the nation have reported that teens are rethinking their plans for higher education, specifically because of abortion bans. Altogether, NPR reports that 23 states have, or are very close to, passing laws to make abortion illegal or nearly completely restricted. For many students, this has caused them to change plans for college, if the goal was to attend a college in one of those 23 states. 

Nina Huang, a 16-year-old high school student in California had big aspirations to attend Oberlin College in Ohio because of their prestigious music program. Another reason she had chosen Oberlin was that she hoped to study either medicine or law, which the school is known for as well. But now, Huang has crossed Oberlin off her list, after Ohio swiftly enacted extensive abortion bans last month, as she refused to attend a school in a state that isn’t supporting a women’s right to an abortion. 

Student activists have always been caught in the middle of polarized political debates, but when it comes to something concerning women’s rights, many are relentlessly in opposition, for various reasons. For one thing, some students may choose not to attend a school in states with abortion bans simply out of principle. But for many females, it is out of a fear of not being able to get medical abortion access, if the situation calls for it. 

What’s more, abortion bans aren’t necessarily the only thing leading to some students’ decisions to rethink college. Because of tensions, some fear they will be singled out or discriminated against on campuses because of their beliefs and viewpoints. Gender identity plays big into this as well, as some fear being targeted in certain states’ colleges for being transgender.

While it’s still too soon to statistically measure this finding, even college advisors are pointing to this possible shift in college planning, as per conversations they are having with student prospects. The chief executive of the Florida counseling company, Prepory, pointed to this. Daniel Santos stated that plenty of his student clients have been adamant that they refuse to attend a school simply based on its geographic location and laws enacting abortion bans. 

abortion bans

Abortion bans are a topic of concern for many people across all races, genders, and ages. But for young, pro-choice students, the fear of campus rape, sexual assaults, and worse can easily be enough to deter them from certain colleges. For now, it is unclear whether or not this will lead to a drop in certain states’ college admissions, but time will surely tell.