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How will being Hispanic help my admissions chances?

Brown2012HopefulBrown2012Hopeful Posts: 50Registered User Junior Member
edited February 2012 in Hispanic Students
Hi - like the title says, I'm wondering how much being Hispanic (born in Central America - where my mom is from, but my dad is from Minnesota) will help me in applying to college? I'll be applying to Brown Early Decision (love the school to death - I could probably go on and on about how it would be the perfect school for me...). I have a good gpa (3.74 - might seem supbar for Brown, but I go to a VERY rigorous and competitive private boarding school in the east coast) and I'm aiming for a 2000+ on the SAT (didn't do that well the first time, but I've been studying this past summer and still have a month before the Oct. test date - if I still don't do well, I'll study even more and take it once again in Nov.). I have excellent EC's with many leadership positions, I know that two of my three recs will be amazing (don't know about the third...it might be good), my essays should turn out well, and I have what some of you might even consider another hook (have lived in 8 countries, all of which are considered "3rd world" - I've only lived in the US for one year and it's been quite an adjustment).

I keep on hearing that being a URM works as a hook, specifically a URM with pretty good stats, however, I've also been hearing that applying as URMs is getting even tougher (applicant pool wise - while there is the generalization that Hispanics will naturally have lower stats than average applicants at top schools, the applicant pool is actually with URMs that have the same exact stats as Asian geniuses - whereas, my stats aren't exactly AMAZING for Brown)? And, in going back to the Class of 2015 thread, admissions decisions were pretty brutal last year...

So, taking everything into consideration, how much will my Hispanic (and also nomadic) background help me in college admissions?

Thank you :)
Post edited by Brown2012Hopeful on

Replies to: How will being Hispanic help my admissions chances?

  • floridadad55floridadad55 Posts: 2,262Registered User Senior Member
    First, let me say that if you are going to a private boarding school, I fail to see why you should get preference over an asian kid who went to an inner city public high school, and has better grades and sat scores, merely because you are "hispanic". (I do fully agree with the policy that people who truly grew up in tough socio-economic backgrounds, but who have still done well, deserve special consideration).

    But given that this is the world we live in now, it is my impression that it is still not easy to get into Brown, even if you are a URM.

    So, instead of needing a 2200 or 2300 on your SAT, you might only need a 2100.
  • Brown2012HopefulBrown2012Hopeful Posts: 50Registered User Junior Member
    The private boarding school I go to gives financial aid to 40% of the school. I myself am on full financial aid; if I hadn't gotten a full-ride I wouldn't have been able to attend. So please do not just assume that since I go to a private school I am affluent. I am far from being wealthy.

    I was merely asking how much does being hispanic help in admissions, and specifically in my case.
    I do fully agree with the policy that people who truly grew up in tough socio-economic backgrounds, but who have still done well, deserve special consideration.

    Wouldn't you say someone who isn't well off and who has lived in impoverished countries their entire life would fit that category? I'm pretty sure going to school where you don't even speak the primary language and living in the poorest country in the western hemisphere trumps going to an inner city public high school on all aspects.

    I don't mean to sound arrogant/ignorant/or even mean. It just sounds like you have a very strong critique against the way college admissions is nowadays and your response was rather harsh. Sorry if my response comes off the same way.
  • entomomentomom Posts: 23,658Registered User Senior Member
    floridadad,

    On this forum, the aim is to discuss the realities of college admissions for Hispanic students, not opinions of what one thinks it should be, etc. For those kinds of comments there are plenty of threads on the main College Admissions forum, including:

    http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/college-admissions/927219-race-college-admission-faq-discussion-8-a.html?highlight=race

    OP,
    Please take the time to read the sticky threads at the top of this forum as well as other threads here, as this topic is discussed frequently.

    In brief, there are many factors that are taken into consideration WITHIN the pool of Hispanic students. Some of these are: country of origin, SES, HS attended (eg. private vs. underserved), overcoming adversity, association with Hispanic community. In addition, how Hispanics are viewed varies with the college. For instance, some small, rural colleges have a more difficult time recruiting and retaining URMs, while most of the highly selective colleges have many qualified URM applicants.

    This thread might also be helpful:

    http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/hispanic-students/931488-ivy-league-admissions-nhrps.html
  • sbjdorlosbjdorlo Posts: 3,284Registered User Senior Member
    Sorry but what is SES? Thank-you.
  • entomomentomom Posts: 23,658Registered User Senior Member
    Socio-Economic status
  • admissionsproadmissionspro Posts: 6Registered User New Member
    Being hispanic will help quite a lot. Your test scores and grades can be far lower than the average. When schools report ranges of the middle fifty percent of their students (25 percentile to 75 percentile), you should know that the overwhelming bulk of the bottom 25 percent of the entire class (those below this middle range) is made up of underprivileged minorities - i.e. blacks and hispanics - at the elite schools, which try to admit about 25 percent of their classes from these underprivileged minority groups. Of course, these students are not necessarily underprivileged now, and they are overwhelmingly of higher economic status within the minority communities from which they come. The top 25 percent (above this middle range) are almost all Asian and white. Most of those in the middle range (25 percent to 75 percent ranking) are also mostly Asian and white, with athletes, legacy candidates, children of VIPS, at the low end of that middle group.
  • sbjdorlosbjdorlo Posts: 3,284Registered User Senior Member
    Well then I guess my son, 1/2 Puerto Rican, breaks the rules since he's in the top 25% for gpa, SAT I, and SAT II (4.0/4.84; 2320 and 1590 for M and CR; 800, 800, 730) and probably in a lower socio-economic bracket than most students at Princeton (under 80K) where he's been accepted. But it was really his ECs, letters of recommendation, and essays that made him a top student; he's more than his test scores and his URM status.
  • entomomentomom Posts: 23,658Registered User Senior Member
    admissionspro, your user name is a misnomer as you seem to know very little about admissions.

    Rather than digging up an old thread, please post your OPINIONS on the sticky Race FAQ thread on the College Admissions forum where you will find many kindred souls.
  • ShrinkrapShrinkrap Posts: 11,697Registered User Senior Member
    Admissionspro, I wonder if you have any links to date to support that you have posted ( but first, what is "far lower"?, hopefully without just the data from the students of 20 plus years ago applying to elite schools in the Espenshade paper.)

    "the overwhelming bulk of the bottom 25 percent of the entire class (those below this middle range) is made up of underprivileged minorities - i.e. blacks and hispanics - at the elite schools, which try to admit about 25 percent of their classes from these underprivileged minority groups".

    Wouldn't that mean 25 percent of the school is URM? How often is that the case?

    Also, are confusing underprivileged with underrepresented?
  • AdmissionsKingAdmissionsKing Posts: 1Registered User New Member
    The fact is that the URM designation now has very little relevancy within the Hispanic community. These candidates usually have two parents who are professionals with above average incomes. Increasingly, admissions offices look for Hispanic candidates who really have overcome life obstacles and are not just gamers who play the system.
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