Study: Asian Americans Don’t Suffer From Admissions Rejection
A new study concludes that Asian American students do not face negative consequences in college when rejected from their first-choice colleges and universities.
The study — published in Educational Researcher, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Educational Research Association — was conducted in response to claims by two groups representing Asian American students that say admissions rejection leads some of their members to suffer diminished interest and participation at school.
"It is what students do in college, rather than the level of institutional prestige alone, that most determines educational outcomes," said study coauthor Mike Hoa Nguyen, an assistant professor of higher education at the University of Denver.
The two groups, the Coalition of Asian American Associations (CAAA) and the Asian American Coalition for Education (AACE), say that U.S. colleges and universities, specifically prestigious schools like Harvard and Yale universities, discriminate against Asian American applicants.
The CAAA and AACE assert that those students spend less time on leadership, public service and co-curricular activities; are less satisfied with their academic institutions; hold a negative attitude toward academics and lower academic achievement; lack self-confidence and assertiveness; and have negative racial interactions.
In 2018, these assertions became part of a U.S. Department of Justice probe of affirmative action admissions processes at Harvard and Yale.
Seven researchers at the University of Denver and the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA) looked at student outcomes of Asian American college students based on their admissions and enrollment decisions.
Researchers analyzed data from two national surveys of 1,023 students who identified as Asian American: the 2012 Freshman Survey and 2016 College Senior Survey, both administered by the Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA.
The researchers assessed 27 student outcome measures spread across six general categories: academic performance and perception of academic abilities; satisfaction with college; self-confidence and self-esteem; level of student involvement; willingness and ability to contribute to society; and diversity of racial interactions.
"We found that only small differences, if any, exist between the self-reported outcomes of Asian American students who were admitted to and attending their first-choice university and those students who were not," said Nguyen.
The U.S. Justice Department on August 13 said Yale University “illegally discriminated against Asian American and white applicants in its undergraduate admissions process."
“The findings are the result of a two-year investigation in response to a complaint by Asian American groups concerning Yale’s conduct,” the department announced.
Its investigation into Harvard University continues.
In October 2019, a federal judge ruled that Harvard had not discriminated against Asian and Asian American applicants.
"Overall, our findings countered the claims made by the two groups that served as the impetus of the Justice Department's investigation," Nguyen said.
Nguyen's coauthors include Connie Y. Chang, Victoria Kim, Rose Ann E. Gutierrez, Annie Le and Robert T. Teranishi at UCLA, and University of Denver scholar Denis Dumas.
"It is important to note that college choice and admission outcomes are not the only factor contributing to students' college satisfaction," Nguyen said. "Prior research indicates that feeling welcome and valued, instructional effectiveness, racial identity, and faculty and student interactions all impact college satisfaction."
In the "willingness and ability to contribute to society" and the "self-confidence and self-esteem" categories, across seven indicators, the groups showed no differences, according to the study research.
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In a commencement speech at Colorado College, the Wyoming Republican repeated her fierce criticisms of Trump but steered clear of talking about his 2024 reelection campaign or her own political future.
Cheney, who graduated from Colorado College in 1988, recalled being a political science student walking into a campus building where a Bible verse was inscribed above the entrance that read, "Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free."
"After the 2020 election and the attack of January 6th, my fellow Republicans wanted me to lie. They wanted me to say the 2020 election was stolen, the attack of January 6th wasn't a big deal, and Donald Trump wasn't dangerous," Cheney said Sunday in Colorado Springs, connecting her experiences as a student to her work in the U.S. House of Representatives. "I had to choose between lying and losing my position in House leadership."
In three terms in office, Cheney rose to the No. 3 GOP leadership position in the House, a job she lost after voting to impeach Trump for the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection at the Capitol and then not relenting in her criticism of the former president.
Cheney's speech touched on themes similar to those she has promoted since leaving office in January: addressing her work on the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol and standing up to the threat she believes Trump poses to democracy. She also encouraged more women to run for office and criticized one of the election-denying attorneys who worked for Trump after the 2020 election for recent remarks about college students voting.
"Cleta Mitchell, an election denier and adviser to former President Trump, told a gathering of Republicans recently that it is crucially important to make sure that college students don't vote," Cheney said. "Those who are trying to unravel the foundations of our republic, who are threatening the rule of law and the sanctity of our elections, know they can't succeed if you vote."
In an audio recording of Mitchell's presentation from a recent Republican National Committee retreat, she warns of polling places on college campuses and the ease of voting as potential problems, The Washington Post reported.
Most students and parents in the audience applauded throughout Cheney's remarks, yet some booed. Some students opposing the choice of Cheney as speaker turned their chairs away from the stage as she spoke.
Cheney's busy speaking schedule and subject matter have fueled speculation about whether she may enter the 2024 GOP presidential primary since she left office. Candidates ranging from Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley have calibrated their remarks about Trump, aiming to counter his attacks without alienating the supporters that won him the White House seven years ago.
Though some have offered measured criticisms, no declared or potential challenger has embraced anti-Trump messaging to the same extent as Cheney. She did not reference her plans on Sunday but has previously said she remains undecided about whether she wants to run for president.
Though she would face an uphill battle, Cheney's fierce anti-Trump stance and her role as vice chairwoman of the House committee elevated her platform high enough to call on a national network of donors and Trump critics to support a White House run.
A super PAC organized to support of her candidacy has remained active, including purchasing attack ads on New Hampshire airwaves against Trump this month.
After leaving office and being replaced by a Trump-backed Republican who defeated her in last year's primary, Cheney was appointed to a professorship at the University of Virginia and wrote "Oath and Honor," a memoir scheduled to hit shelves in November.
Two of Cheney's five children as well as her mother are also graduates of the liberal arts college.
Cheney's speaking tour appears to be picking up. She is scheduled to appear Thursday at the Mackinac Policy Conference in Michigan.
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