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Race and the Common App

academician11academician11 Posts: 224Registered User Junior Member
edited October 2010 in College Admissions
During school today a girl in my class who is applying EA to Stanford was talking about the demographics section of the common app. She told us that she isn't indicating what her race--white-- is on her application because she thinks it would hurt her more than it would help her. In an attempt to further justify her decision she told us that "the only person who benefits from indicating his or her race on the common app is an URM." (I would like to emphasize that this is not my thought, it is hers) I find this to be ridiculous; I think that college admissions officers would appreciate the applicant's honesty who chose to include his or her race without worrying about whether or not it might influence his or her application. Do you think that it is wise to refrain from indicating one's race on the common app?
Post edited by academician11 on

Replies to: Race and the Common App

  • quakerlovequakerlove Posts: 41Registered User Junior Member
    she doesn't have to put anything if she doesn't want to. it's not lying
  • drusbadrusba Posts: 8,639Registered User Senior Member
    As to being and indicating you are a URM, yes it will help for colleges such as Stanford that consider URM status as a factor in admission. As to indicating caucasion, it means nothing except that the information is used by the college to publish statistical information on the race and ethnic make-up of its incoming class. Some believe that designating asian may actually be a disadvantage. As to whether you should answer the question, it is entirely up to the applicant and failure to answer indicates nothing about the honesty or dishonesty of the applicant.
  • glidoglido Posts: 5,353Registered User Senior Member
    Some people just think it is rude to be asked their race. There is nothing wrong with declining to answer.
  • academician11academician11 Posts: 224Registered User Junior Member
    Do you feel that she is correct in her assumption that there is an advantage to choosing against indicating your race on the common app if you are not an URM?
  • MadshockMadshock Posts: 402Registered User Member
    I think it's more of an advantage if you are URM, and lack of an advantage if you aren't. Which would translate to the same lack of advantage if you don't respond. But that's just my guess.

    EDIT: By lack of advantage, it could still be perceived as a disadvantage, such as if it's between persons A and B, very similar applications, except one is URM, if they run out of spots. But it's basically more or les just lack of "preferential" treatment in that area in the admissions process, I think.
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