What are the challenges facing Asian Americans? Affirmative Action – College Admission

1) Why is College Admission controversial?

 Asian particularly Chinese culture attach great importance to education as a means of enhancing a person’s worth and career. China’s imperial civil service examination played an important role in Chinese history of education. It created a group of well-educated officials serving the country. Many Asian American parents, both rich and poor, are willing to make great sacrifices to have their children attend and graduate from elite colleges.

The admission policies of Harvard (and other elite universities) are not transparent and have higher bars for AAPI applicants, requiring them to have higher SAT scores, scoring them lower on personal traits and in general placing higher “barriers” on them.


2) Does an elite college degree set you up for life?

 Many parents think that a degree from an elite college will make a lifetime difference for the graduate. However, for most students, it simply doesn’t matter, according to many and notably, a paper by Stacy Dale, a mathematician at Mathematica Policy Research, and Alan Krueger, an economist at Princeton University*

Other researchers have concluded that “C” students do better than “A”s later on in life. C’s are not necessarily less intellectually capable, they just do not place such a high value on letter grades. Furthermore, C’s are not afraid to fail and are willing to be innovative and think outside the box.


3) How does the University of California handle “Diversity”?

In the early 1970s, Allan Bakke sued the UC Davis Medical School for their quota system. His case went to the Supreme Court which ruled 5-4 that “quota” is unconstitutional while promotion of “Diversity” is allowed.

The University of California has a policy of admitting all students graduating in the top 9% according to their admission index.


* https://www.nber.org/papers/w171592019.05.24


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