Wednesday, October 12, 2011

What if my academic programs includes some Pacific Islander groups, but not others?

Q. Our academic program already includes one specific Pacific Islander group, but not all. Why should we include Pacific Islanders as a group?

A. When you're only including part of the Pacific Islander community, you're leaving out others.

And the data is clear: as a whole, Pacific Islanders are significantly underrepresented in higher education. You've already taken an important step by including at least one part of the Pacific Islander American community -- Why not go all the way?

Have you already taken the step of including one or more segments of America's Pacific Islander community, such as Native Hawaiians or Polynesians? Bravo! You are ahead of the curve, and we applaud you for taking an interest in including part of America's Pacific Islander community.

Now that you've already made the decision to include some Pacific Islanders, why not take the next step by including the rest of the them? Over 20 years of U.S. Census data shows that as a group, Pacific Islanders have been -- and continue to be -- underrepresented among college graduates. By allowing all otherwise qualified Pacific Islanders to apply, you can reach more underrepresented minorities. Who knows what difference you could make in their lives.

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