How It Feels To Be A Minority Student Attending A Primarily White College During Trump's Presidency
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

How It Feels To Be A Minority Student Attending A Primarily White College During Trump's Presidency

Well, it's not the easiest thing in the world, but it's not all bad either.

How It Feels To Be A Minority Student Attending A Primarily White College During Trump's Presidency
Nissa Diaz

As much of the United States and the rest of the world anxiously awaited the election results, I had already lost hope. I cannot pinpoint at what point I lost hope during the four years of Trump's presidency, but at some point, I gave up on the future of the United States.

I was watching people be openly racist online and even in-person, and even at my own university, without any consequences. I watched this hateful rhetoric be spewed, children being separated from their parents and locked in cages with poor conditions, Black people being murdered by police, mass shootings in schools, racism and hate crimes on the rise, and I could not see an end in sight.

I attend a PWI, and at first, racism had not even crossed my mind. I grew up in an area that was predominately Hispanic, and I was fortunate enough to have not experienced racism. I simply believed everyone was equal and was ignorant in thinking racism was not as prevalent anymore.

I was wrong. I could not understand little things that happened to me, such as people ignoring me and speaking to the white person sitting next to me, people refusing to sit next to me on the bus, and not making friends. I was disheartened, I thought maybe I just didn't have people skills and it was just me until I realized these were all tiny acts of racism.

Before I even stepped foot on campus, I had a fellow male Hispanic student reach out to me through social media. We became fast friends, and I was grateful he was giving me tips on how to navigate campus. It wasn't until a few weeks into talking when he informed me he was glad I befriended him, as I was an "easy target" on campus.

I was taken aback, an easy target? I asked him to clarify, and he stated, "You're a minority, Hispanic, woman. You have to be careful." Perhaps ignorance is bliss, I didn't let this bother me.

I noticed when I sat in my assigned seat for my Animal Science class, the student next to me seemed to always have a displeased look on her face and tried her best not to touch me. I simply thought, it's 8 am, nobody wants to be here right now.

Then, I would try asking her questions, and they seemed to fall on deaf ears. So I stayed quiet the rest of the class, until one day, a student who sat next to me tripped in front of me. I reached out my hand and asked if she was okay, and she chuckled and laughed it off with me. Then, when the student who sat on the opposite side of me came to class, she asked the girl next to me questions. When I had the answer I tried to answer, however, she ignored me.

I never concluded this was a small act of racism, I thought I attended a university that truly upheld their core values.
As the season changed to winter, I began riding our university bus around to classes. I noticed whenever I sat, I always had an empty seat next to me. I would even watch students pass my seat and stand on the bus.

Beto O'Rourke ran while I was a freshman, and I attended his rallies and showed my support for him. This would be the first election I would be eligible to vote in, and I was not going to pass up voting after the 2016 Presidential Election. Beto gave me hope again, I had hoped he would truly work on immigration reform, propose healthcare for all, work to help the impoverished, I was voting for human decency. When he lost, I cried in my dorm room, as other students outside cheered.

When a new semester began, and I found myself in an accounting class, I was already uncomfortable. It was not until a few weeks into classes, I would be embarrassed. At the time, I was an Agribusiness major, and I was required to take a higher level of accounting. When the professor was reading the introductions he had us email him, he found me in the class and continued to read off my introduction. "Agribusiness, I didn't even know we had that major." The class began to laugh as my face turned a bright red. "Are you sure you're in the right class?" The class laughed again, and I answered him this was part of my degree plan. He asked yet again, as the class began to laugh.

I also thought this was just me, until a few months ago, when students began speaking out about racist acts that happened to them, with the hashtags #RacismAtTamuFeelsLike and #hateisthehiddencorevalue.

Even after these tweets and openly racist incidents occurring to students, such as this white student using the n-word at a party, and this Black student being a victim of a hate crime, Texas A&M students have yet to see any true action. In fact, these tweets and the student reporting his hate crime was somehow flipped. We were the problem, not the openly racist acts that occurred to us.

Even this summer, there was a protest to remove the statue of Confederate Soldier Lawrence Sullivan 'Sul" Ross. This was met with an intense backlash from former students. Former students even showed up with signs that read, "Maroon Lives Matter" and went so far as to ask a Black student, "Are you an Aggie or a blackie?"

Despite all of this, I do not plan on going anywhere. I have faced small acts of racism, been rejected from organizations and positions, but I will not let this define my path in life. If anything, this has made me grow stronger, more resilient, and I plan to own my space when I step back on campus.

After the 2020 Presidential Election, my faith in the country has returned. I will no longer stay quiet, step aside on the sidewalk, allow people to mispronounce my name, or be ashamed of being Latinx. I will continue moving forward, owning my space, and I will remain at my university.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Everyone's been here. And, truthfully, it sucks. But in order to move on and get past something you need to allow yourself to feel it for what it is--all of the heartbreak and pain--and then you can start to take steps move on.

Keep Reading... Show less

The Christmas season is coming to an end, but it's not too late to get some last-minute movies in! Unfortunately, this year didn't look like a typical Christmas. While we can't have any big Christmas parties or family gatherings, we can still celebrate at home! Christmas is the best time for nostalgia, and we could all use some warm and fuzzy feelings as we wrap up a tough year and enter a new one that hasn't been proven any calmer, either.

As a kid who grew up in the 2000s, I can think of some of my favorite staple Christmas movies. If you're looking for recommendations or just a walk down memory lane, check out the list below.

Keep Reading... Show less

As we enter the new year, you might be looking for a great show to kick-off 2021. Look no further, I have the perfect recommendation. "The Wilds" was released on Amazon Prime last month and has been gaining traction steadily since then. This series of 10 one-hour episodes tells the stories of eight girls who find themselves on a deserted island after their plane crashed while they are on their way to a resort. Unlike other survival shows, there's a bit more to the story than what first meets the eye. This show is unique in characters, storytelling methods, and plot.

If you aren't convinced yet, allow me to provide you with a list of further persuasion.

Keep Reading... Show less

10 Things TikTok Made Me Buy, And Now My Life Is So Much Better

Where would I be without my Revlon hair dryer or CeraVe skin products?! Thanks, TikTok.


TikTok is a great way to see what products are trending. People are sharing tips and tricks about items that they use to make their life happier, healthier, or just easier.

Keep Reading... Show less

Online classes and virtual reality in general have been the staple of 2020. One day in March, everything shut down and we all had to learn how to work, teach, study, do therapy, and take classes remotely without much preparation. So, it's been a roller-coaster experience, and definitely not what we expected.

Keep Reading... Show less

11 TV Characters Who Are Irritating BEYOND Belief

Maybe they never really did anything seriously wrong, but oh my god they are annoying af.


Have you ever been watching your favorite show, all comfortable and relaxed, and then that one character that you just can't stand pops up on the screen and ruins your mood? I know I certainly have. These characters aren't necessarily evil or horrible people, but they do have personalities that make them incredibly irritating. They're the kind of characters that make you want to yell at the writer, "what the hell were you thinking with this one?" Perhaps they have never hurt a fly, but it doesn't matter since their character just straight-up sucks.

By the way, some of my arguments contain spoilers, so fair warning.

Keep Reading... Show less

20 Songs You Should REALLY Add To Your Winter Playlist

Watch the snow gently falling out your window and put these songs on to get in the winter mood.


For the majority of these songs, I can't really explain why, but they remind me of winter. Maybe it's their slow pace, their magical synth sounds, or their melancholy lyrics, but all of these songs give me winter vibes. If you're looking to add some songs to your winter playlist, give these ones a listen.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments