It seems a storm is brewing on the horizon about admission policies of prestigious schools and the effect it has on Asian American applicants. The realization that affirmative action policies have both positive and negative consequences should have been clearly evident at the advent of implementation. Now, it seems in order to maintain a desired demographic, it is much harder for an equally qualified Asian American to enter the hallowed halls of Harvard, Princeton, Yale, etc. than it is for other racial demographics.
If anyone has ever heard of Occam's Razor, the belief is that in a problem the simplest answer is often times the most effective. The simplest solution to this problem is to no longer apply to these sort of schools. I look at the past precedent of historically black colleges as a possible model for Asian Americans. With some slight adjustments, I think creating new institutions designed to cater around a proper educational experience for Asian Americans is not only beneficial, it is absolutely critical.
Unsurprisingly, the highest percentage of Asian student population is the University of Hawaii Manoa Campus, according to Asian-Nation. 71% of the student body is APA (Asian Pacific American). Coming in second is University of California Irvine at 56%. So, when the running joke that UIC (University of Illinois Chicago) stands for University of Indians & Chinese is mentioned, the numbers don't exactly speak for themselves.
There has been an acquiescence to belong to top notch schools as there is a belief it will help career paths. And yet, Asian Americans are severely underrepresented in management positions, executive roles, and underperform their white alumni. I don't see a solution to this problem that doesn't create internescene class and racial warfare, which is really good for nobody. This only serves to exacerbate a new "Yellow Peril" in an increasingly xenophobic society.
We have played by the rules for quite some time. Like many ethnic groups who have been shit on by the government, we have experienced laws and rules designed to restrict and prohibit our growth and development. I think what separates Asians is we mostly took this lying down and did our best to adjust to the new normal. Well, I say no longer. I believe we are uniquely qualified to change the narrative of “What is a well educated student?” and, “What institution this should this person come from?”
Imagine a new university geared specifically for Asians. An institution with incredibly high standards and if you meet them, you're in. If a white, black, hispanic, Native American student wants to apply, go right ahead. You’d just better be able to meet the requirements. I would say make the admission standards even harder than the Ivies. Create an environment that can challenge MIT for technological and scientific hegemony. Push the University of Pennsylvania for finance and economics. Make Johns Hopkins worry about its medical dominance.
We have too many children working too hard to be unfairly considered at their dream schools because the belief is the school is too Asian-y as it is. Fuck that. We don't have to take this silently anymore. And, filing lawsuits of discriminatory acceptance policies only confirms we want in on an exclusive playground that is becoming clear we aren't wanted on. I hope there is a day where as a demographic, we get fed up with this bias and decide to change the narrative once and for all ourselves. I even have a suggestion for a name for the first school of this kind: Phuc Yu University.