Saturday, April 21, 2012

USC Recognizes Pacific Islander Underrepresentation

Beneath a college newspaper headline that had little to do with the P.I.A. project's mission, I found more evidence of a growing realization in U.S. academia that Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders are underrepresented in higher education.  Where? In the University of Southern California's Daily Trojan's article on USC's acceptance rate which also mentioned enrollment among what they defined as "underrepresented minorities."

Which groups fell under that definition?
The number of students deemed as underrepresented college minorities (Latino, black, Native American, Pacific Islander) increased from 19.5 percent in 2011 to 20.5 percent this year.

USC also tracks enrollment by race and ethnicity, and recognizes Pacific Islanders as a distinct group.  To see enrollment rates for Pacific Islanders, click here: LINK

The actual number of Pacific Islander Trojans is probably much higher than the numbers being tracked. Why? Because they appear to track multiracial students in a separate category, meaning that multiracial Pacific Islanders may be classified in the "two or more races" tracking instead.  This is significant for Pacific Islanders, because Census data continues to show that most of us identify as belonging to two or more races.

One other cool thing about USC: Last year, they held an annual campus visit program specifically for Pacific Islanders.  Here are articles about that: 2011

Does your university do something similar? Let us know!


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