Socioeconomic Status, Race/Ethnicity, and Selective College Admissions
Carnevale, Anthony P.
Seeks to expand the traditional debate over race and ethnicity in admissions to selective colleges by analyzing the issue of whether low-income students should benefit from affirmative action policies. Anthony Carnevale and Stephen Rose conclude that race-sensitive affirmative action policies should be retained and expanded to include low-income students. Under current affirmative action policies, racial minorities are underrepresented, while the under-representation of low-income students is even greater. In fact, preferences for minority students and the economically-disadvantaged have actually fallen off over the past 30 years. On average, top colleges do not provide a systemic preference from, and could in fact admit far greater numbers of, low-income students, including low-income minority students, who could handle the work. To remedy this imbalance, this paper urges the expansion of current affirmative action programs to include low-income students because they can add both economic and racial diversity.
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