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White Hispanic?

DrawYourSwordsDrawYourSwords Registered User Posts: 53 Junior Member
edited August 2014 in Hispanic Students
Hi everyone! I was wondering about my classification.
My maternal grandfather is from Mexico and my maternal grandmother's family is directly from Spain. My mother identifies as Mexican
My father's family is completely American, hailing from Western Europe at least a century ago.

So that makes me 1/4 Mexican 1/4 European Spanish and 1/2 White Caucasian.

I live with my father and step mother (white), but I look not-white and speak Spanish very well. (If that counts for anything, it's just hard to word. I'm pretty much just a Texan)

What is the exact percentage one needs to be to claim Hispanic origin?

Replies to: White Hispanic?

  • celesterobertscelesteroberts Registered User Posts: 2,332 Senior Member
    NHRP uses 1/4 as their benchmark. Mexico and Spain both count by their definition, which makes you 1/2 Hispanic.
    http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/psat/about/nhrp.html

    This article is 3 years old, but quite good:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/14/us/14admissions.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
  • DrawYourSwordsDrawYourSwords Registered User Posts: 53 Junior Member
    Is it technically honest for me to identify as Hispanic even though in ever other aspect I identify as White? At any Texas college I will apply to I doubt my mixture is anywhere near URM but I am applying to colleges in the midwest, where Hispanics are in short supply.

    I read the NY Times article you posted and agree with it. From a scientific standpoint I am part Hispanic, but I don't feel that I am. Basically I just want to be truthful in every aspect here.
  • GumbymomGumbymom Forum Champion UC Posts: 23,522 Forum Champion
    I am of White European decent and my husband is Hispanic. Neither of my sons look Hispanic but they identified themselves on their college applications as Hispanic/White. They are not fluent in Spanish but took 3 years in HS. They do not feel they are Hispanic but it is still part of their ethnic background. I would use any advantage I could when apply for college.
  • DrawYourSwordsDrawYourSwords Registered User Posts: 53 Junior Member
    Well I guess I'll put it down then :). Thanks guys! I wish this process wasn't so complicated.
  • ScienceGirlMomScienceGirlMom Registered User Posts: 413 Member
    I was hassled a little bit by people who don't know the system about whether my daughter was genuinely Hispanic. My answer was that she is Hispanic by NHRP standards. Just remember that it doesn't matter what anyone outside the system thinks; all that matters is that you have met the NHRP standard.
  • entomomentomom Registered User Posts: 23,662 Senior Member
    edited August 2014
    While I said good-bye to this forum, I am returning briefly to clarify a few points since no other members have chosen to do so.

    1. Ethnicity (Hispanic) and race are two different concepts, that's why they're asked in two separate, not mutually exclusive questions on college applications. Hispanics can be, and are, of any race(s). This is clearly stated in the OP of the Definition sticky thread at the top of the page which I have referred members to many times over the years. Appearance, surname, fluency in Spanish, etc. are NOT determining factors for Hispanic status.

    2. NHRP is ONE definition/standard of Hispanic status. It is the definition used for NHRP recognition and scholarships, it is NOT the definition used for college admissions. Colleges use the US Census definition, again found in the OP of the Definition sticky thread. It is NOT NECESSARILY the definition used by other recognition/scholarships/programs for Hispanics, each organization has their own definition of who qualifies as Hispanic.

    Any help in the future in referring new members to the Definition sticky thread and/or clarifying the usual misconceptions/misinformation about ethnicity and race would be a great service to this forum.
  • celesterobertscelesteroberts Registered User Posts: 2,332 Senior Member
    Sorry if I appeared to be using NHRP defn as definitive, NPI(no pun intended.) It seemed the OP is conflicted about labelling herself Hispanic. The Census defn is SO vague and all-encompassing you could push an elephant through and I didn't think that would reassure her. She easily meets, and exceeds, the more concrete NHRP standard and I thought she might feel better about that.

    Or do I misread the Census defn? Is it saying something clearly that I am not understanding?
  • DrawYourSwordsDrawYourSwords Registered User Posts: 53 Junior Member
    I just find the whole definition of sorting people based on ethnicity silly. Some of my european ancestors chose to have children with Mexican natives (although i honestly don't know a lot about that quarter, just general knowledge of the time period) creating the start of mestizos. Then the other quarter of my ancestry that gives me Hispanic status are Catalans from Northern Spain.

    I will put down White as race and Hispanic as ethnicity for college purposes, I just do not consider myself Hispanic. To say I'm Hispanic (to me at least) says I am claiming a very rich and divided culture that I don't consider myself apart of. I just consider myself White, and an American.

    The fact that anyone, from someone who is 1/4 Spanish to someone who is a full Puerto Rican can put Hispanic down just seems weird to me. Of course, I don't think there is a right answer here.

    Thanks again to @celesteroberts‌ for all your help in a few of my threads :D
  • entomomentomom Registered User Posts: 23,662 Senior Member
    My point is that there is not a one size fits all Hispanic definition. Colleges and scholarship programs use different, though often overlapping, definitions. The information is out there and readily available, so students should read, understand and use them accordingly rather than assuming a single threshold. I'm not sure why anyone would prefer to use less information when more is available and applicable.

    Just two examples:

    NHRP includes students with Brazilian backgrounds in their definition of Hispanic, the US Census does not.

    Hispanic Heritage scholarships include ancestry from Portugal and the Philippines in their definition of Hispanic, the US Census and NHRP do not.
    I just do not consider myself Hispanic

    Then don't check the box, the decision is up to you.

    Rather than silly, I think the definition of Hispanic is complex and cluttered with often false preconceptions.

    Carry on.
This discussion has been closed.