On College Forms, a Question of Race, or Races, Can Perplex?

Dear Commons Community,

There is a substantive  article in today’s NY Times on what high school seniors should check off for the “race question”  on college admissions forms.   The question takes on interest because of the growing racial diversity of the American population with many individuals considering themselves multiracial with a number of answers applying to their identity.  For instance, the article mentions that:   “This past spring, at least four applicants to Rice University checked the box for nearly every ethnicity and race.”   Admissions counselors at highly selective colleges such as Rice admit that the chances of minority and multi-racial students being admitted are higher than for the total pool of applicants.

The comments of the high schoolers in this article are Illuminating as to how they feel they should answer the race question.  For instance, they indicate that while many of them celebrate and are proud of their multiracial identity, some would consider gaming the admissions process to get into the college of their choice by checking off their minority race only.