College Acceptance in Need of Reform


Affirmative action’s appearance in the United States dates back to 1961 with Executive Order 10925 signed by President John F. Kennedy. Today it is often associated with college admissions, illustrated by Fisher v. University of Texas, a Supreme Court case to be heard later this year regarding  Abigail Fisher, a 2008 UT applicant who was rejected for what she believes was her race.

The purpose of affirmative action is to create an equal opportunity for all, regardless of gender, race or religion. However where college is concerned, it has done the opposite by making minority admittance easier, an unfair and offensive advantage.

The use of affirmative action makes me feel like I need extra help in the eyes of college boards. As if my undertakings are not enough to compete with someone who attained more A’s than me in high school.  College admissions should be based on achievement, all things ranging from academics, to community participation and what your favorite teacher said in your letter of recommendation. They should not be based on how diverse a law requires a college to be or how colorful they want their campuses to be so that they can demonstrate their broad and welcoming atmosphere on recruitment pamphlets.

As a female Hispanic I find it unfair that I have a higher acceptance rate than someone who has worked harder or accomplished more than me simply because of my race and gender. Throw in the fact that I am from a country with low representation in the United States and watch as my chances surpass others’ who are not blessed with my differences. Accepting me into a college I may not deserve to be in as much as my competitor does not compensate for the nation’s past wrongs towards minorities.  In addition, it furthers the strain between races as it creates resentment.

Although eliminating affirmative action may reduce the percentage of minorities present in certain colleges, it gives way to those who fit the school’s criteria the best and merit its acceptance.

In order to create fair college admissions, affirmative action and its components should be done away with. Colleges need to re-write their applications so as to omit race, religion and gender. And to further secure the admission process, applicants should be assigned a number, thus riding the applicants name and on the majority of cases their gender. Essays and the other information would then go through the college board, also printed with the applicant’s number and after its acceptance or denial, numbers would be matched with names and the decision sent off for its owner to receive.