Does Being Asian Hurt Your Chances Of Getting Into A College?
Entertainment

Does Being Asian Hurt Your Chances Of Getting Into A College?

An open letter to Asian-American students nervous about college admissions.

414
Above the Law

"Dude, if there wasn't affirmative action, all the top schools would be filled with Asians who had perfect grades."

It was freshman year of high school when I heard this statement. I say this like it was long ago, but it's been only two months since I've finished the hell that was the college admissions process. If you're about to Google what exactly affirmative action is, one of the first definitions is simplified in two words: positive discrimination. Essentially, this policy encourages the increased representation of disadvantaged groups and minorities. According to the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau data, only 5.6 percent of the nations population is Asian, with 14 percent who identified as Black and 17 percent as Hispanic. Meanwhile, colleges such as the University of Michigan at Ann Harbor and Harvard University have had lawsuits filed against for their affirmative action policies.

As a first-generation Asian-American immigrant, I was appalled to hear that students of Asian background were at a large disadvantage when applying to colleges. Why? Historically, Asians have been victims of systematic discrimination and prejudice. The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, the unjustified imprisonment of Japanese-Americans during World War II... heck, one of the largest mass lynchings in U.S. history was attacking the Chinese!

The idea of affirmative action infuriated me. Why was it that every minority but Asians could benefit from affirmative action? Looking back throughout time, it felt like 'our' history was being overlooked as if the harassment, oppression, and racism dealt was ignored.

Reading journals, articles, and papers, a common notion I found to be justifying affirmative action was the idea that Asian culture "values education."

First off, this is a grotesque generalization. Just like how the United States is culturally and geographically diverse with various regions, South Asians do not share the same beliefs and values as East Asians. After all, how can you assume the ideas of over 40 countries?

Secondly, a common conclusion is that underrated minorities do not have equal access to resources, opportunities, and thus higher education as its counterparts. I wholeheartedly agree with this and see this as something that anyone that grows up in a low-income household has to face - irregardless of race.

What makes a poor kid working in Chinatown different from a poor kid from the inner city?

Now, before anyone feels like putting up their pitchforks or becomes disheartened, I have to say: I am for affirmative action. When I hear other students use affirmative action, more likely than not they interchangeably use the policy along with another hype word - diversity.

Using race in college admissions is not for deterring students. It is more about the creation of a diverse student body and less about righting the wrongs of previous generations. Asians happen to be over-represented in colleges while Blacks/Hispanics are not.

Overall, I am glad that colleges work to promote diversity of all kinds: politics, cultures, experiences, beliefs, and yes, income and race are all positive attributes.

If you're scared or worried because of affirmative action, don't be. Your race is just one of thousands of thing that makes colleges want you and I promise that you have more to offer than just your skin color.

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

I Started Dating A Guy Before Quarantine, But Now We Rarely Speak Unless I Double-Text

"He's really nice and cute and I like being around him when we see each other, but he's awful at communication."

Each week Swoonie B will give her advice on anonymous topics submitted by readers. Want to Ask Swoonie B something related to dating and relationships? Fill out this form here — it's anonymous.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

This Is Exactly What You Should Eat Today In Quarantine, Based On Your Zodiac Sign

You've probably been eating it the past three months,

If we added up all the minutes of my life I've stood in front of the fridge or pantry mindlessly glazing over options, it would probably amount to several years longer than I'd care to admit.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

If You Don't Think People Are Legitimately Scared To Stay In Lockdown, Think Again

People are terrified of what could happen if states stay in lockdown too long.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to be the topic of discussion for most U.S. residents. From federal reopening guidelines to individual state timelines, the country is all over the place. This sparks conversations within the news, social media, and in family homes about the consequences of reopening the country incorrectly.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

If You Don't Think People Are Legitimately Scared To Reopen States, You're Not Looking Hard Enough

People are terrified of what could happen if states begin reopening too early.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to be the topic of discussion for most U.S. residents. From federal reopening guidelines to individual state timelines, the country is all over the place. This sparks conversations within the news, social media, and in family homes about the consequences of reopening the country incorrectly.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Feel A Lil' Better: Because You Need To Stretch It Out

Your weekly wellness boost from Odyssey.

No matter how good (or bad) you'd describe your health, one thing is for sure: a little boost is ALWAYS a good idea. Whether that's reading a new, motivating book, or listening to a song that speaks to your soul, there are plenty of resources to help your health thrive on any given day.

Flexibility is an important part of life. Yes, you need to be able to go with the flow and adjust when needed, but literal, physical flexibility is equally handy. Not only does increased flexibility keep you safe from injury each time you work out, but a good stretch session is incredibly soothing after a long day. Your body goes through a lot! It needs to cool down and get loose after all the activities you put it through.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

5 Amazing Things That Happened To Me When I Took Just A Week Off From Social Media

I've taken one-week off social media, and here's what I learned.


You’ll think clearer.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments