Affirmative Action in Engineering

<p>Just was reading through this forum and saw affirmative action mentioned on one of the threads. Made me wonder how much impact affirmative action has in engineering companies.</p>

<p>For the record, my undergraduate institution, University of Nebraska, recently banned from employing affirmative action while my graduate school, Northwestern - Kellogg School of Business, uses affirmative action heavily. One small startup I worked for which made firmware for disk controllers (now out of business), used to have a hiring exam which they were forced to stop using because of civil rights laws.</p>

<p>I decided to join a venture capital firm 10 years ago. I was laid off 8 months ago and am finding it hard to find any good jobs, let alone one that pays as well as my old one. I am only 35. Personally, I object to any method of selecting candidates that is not based on merit and it bothers me when minorities with less qualifications are being selected over me. Affirmative action is still uncommon in venture capital but there are hardly any VC openings these days.</p>

<p>What are your views?</p>

<p>As a URM myself, I believe that affirmative action has its negatives and positives. I worked very hard to get into the #3 high school in the country (in 2007), and I studied diligently to earn my SAT score of 2300…but I often wonder, was my gap-year and ethnicity factors in my college’s admissions decision? Sometimes, I feel like I am forced to overcompensate in my studies and during internships to prove to peers that I am equally–if not more–qualified. </p>

<p>My engineering high school (I concentrated in architecture design) did not use affirmative action in their criteria regarding race, gender, or athleticism. As a result, my class of 100 only had 10 girls, and one underrepresented minority (me, of course). I stood out like a sore thumb, and many of my Harvard and Yale legacy classmates could not relate to my socioeconomic background or female issues (whatever this means). </p>

<p>And please, don’t believe the hype. I urge you to browse through the following link about the widening gap in unemployment between highly-educated blacks and whites:<br>
[Job</a> Losses Show Wider Racial Gap in New York - Readers’ Comments -](<a href=“]Job”></p>

<p>I hope this helps!</p>

<p>The unemployment gap between blacks and whites is widening because in this economy companies don’t want to risk paying somebody who might have gotten their degrees through more than just talent. In other words, companies want the best best bet for their money.</p>

<p>^ </p>

<p>So you argue that Affirmative Action should be helping me in fact since my Kellogg MBA is worth more than a minority’s degree. That sounds quite unfair actually. I had some very smart black classmates.</p>

<p>And it’s been 11 years since I’ve left technology so tech companies think my skills are out of date. I have applied for management jobs but have only had 3 interviews and no offers. Anyways, there still seems to be tech jobs but the industry has become fiercely competitive due to Bangalore. Guess I will just try for whatever job I can get. I may switch careers again - but not by choice.</p>

<p>I think the situation is different in R&D vs. manufacturing, testing and support.</p>

<p>I really doubt companies would risk hiring a candidate who is technically less qualified for R&D work.</p>

<p>@ terah3rtz</p>

<p>Stop bending my words. Why would you assume that I was implying black people are dumber than white people? Oh and your first sentence doesn’t even make sense.</p>