Lots of folks are discussing Asian Americans and Asians in Ivy League admissions these days. And we like that. Because there’s a problem. And it’s one deserving of the public’s attention. Indeed there’s an article in “The Daily Pennsylvanian,” the newspaper of the University of Pennsylvania, authored by Caroline Simon entitled “Colleges’ focus on diversity may leave Asians at an admissions disadvantage” that we figured we’d write about. The article discusses a Princeton University study that examines how race impacts admissions decisions. In fact, the study elucidates the impact of race on admissions decisions by quantifying it in terms of points on an SAT (so it’s easily understandable).
As Simon Reports, “The study found that applying as an African-American provides an advantage equivalent to an additional 230 points on the SAT, while Hispanics received a 185-point boost. Asian Americans have a “bonus” of negative 50 points. Although the Asian population in the United States has been steadily increasing, the percentage of Asian students at Ivy League universities — including Penn — has remained roughly the same over the past two decades, according to data provided by the National Center for Education Statistics.” This data seems to be quite telling. If you’re African American, you get an SAT boost when applying to colleges. If you’re Latino, you get an SAT boost. If you’re Asian, you get an SAT handicap. That’s right. A handicap. It’s not right. It’s not fair. It’s high time that action be taken.
As we’ve written before, we’re not sure what will come of the complaint filed against Harvard College by various Asian American groups. It’s certainly not the first time a complaint has been filed against universities for alleged discrimination against Asian and Asian American applicants. But, as we’ve long asserted on the pages of this college admissions blog, when more and more folks lift their voices to criticize the practice of discrimination against Asian and Asian Americans, change can be accomplished. These groups are discriminated against in the admissions process. This is fact, not fiction. The Princeton University study is quite simple and indeed it’s telling. These numbers share the true story. And this isn’t only the case at Harvard. To single out Harvard as the sole culprit would be unfair as it’s the case at every highly selective college across America. It’s high time this changed. Maybe — hopefully — that time is now.
While you’re here, read our post on Asian Quotas in Ivy League Admissions. To be clear, there are no quotas. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t discrimination. Because there is.