Affirmative Action: Why Affirmative Action jeopardizes Asian American students

The process of applying to college is extensive. An applicant must rack up their resume, write numerous essays, and have the perfect GPA to become the ultimate college candidate.

However, could it be easier for some than others? There is a hot debate of whether affirmative action should be allowed in universities. When colleges utilize affirmative action they are favoring minorities that are known to be discriminated against in the past.

As an Indian American senior who is applying to college and has brothers who applied to college, this is really disheartening. Why should colleges take preference to certain minorities over other minorities? Multiple cases have brought the debate to the supreme court.

Some colleges are facing heat for their biased actions, specifically the University of North Carolina and Harvard University. Both colleges have demonstrated taking preferences to certain applicants simply based on their ethnicity. Arguments against the schools claim they are violating equal protection of the law and discriminating specifically against Asian Americans.

In the UNC admission process, race can be considered a “plus factor” along with all the other requirements for an application. The case, Petitioner Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA) v. The University of North Carolina (UNC) covers whether UNC is in violation of the fourteenth Amendment. The school defended themselves saying they “appropriately tailored race-conscious decision making” following the fourteenth amendment.

In addition, Harvard’s admission process includes a “personal rating” for each applicant decided by admission officers. Harvard claims the “personal rating” is a holistic approach of looking at applicants in order to see what type of person the applicant is outside of school. The downside to the “personal rating” is it can allow for discreet Asian American discrimination by the admission officers.

According to statistics on the acceptance rates of students, provided by the Harvard Crimson, unfortunately Asian Americans in the past 20 years have seen an all-time low with an average acceptance rate of 8.1 percent. In comparison, Hispanic Americans had an average of 13.2 percent and African Americans had an average of 10.6 percent.

There are other ways to diversify schools. For example, a socioeconomic diverse campus would allow students from lower incomes households an opportunity to seek higher education; It levels the playing field and allows people from different backgrounds to experience new opportunities together, without involving race.

Colleges need to be evaluated in their acceptance processes because more and more Asian Americans will apply each year and be denied their aspirations for an uncontrollable factor.