Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Increase black enrollment at UCLA by quotas!

Edumaction: Very disappointed to see an urban league chapter chomping at the bit for this nonsense.

As one activist described it, the reaction was disbelief when the African American community learned that this year's freshman class at UCLA included only 96 blacks. Akili, who goes by one name, told an audience at the First African Methodist Episcopal Church how he tried to fathom the news — 96 out of about 4,800 freshmen. "What? That can't be," he recalled saying to himself. Heads throughout the meeting room nodded, as if recalling their own similar responses. Disbelief, along with anger and disappointment, were the dominant themes voiced when about 250 people gathered recently for a town hall meeting at the Los Angeles church to discuss what can be done to boost black enrollment at the university.
Discounting the fact UCLA is a racist school in politically correct Cali. I would take a stab at maybe getting better grades that can compete with other incoming freshmen would do the trick of boosting black enrollment. But this is California so we go to something politically correct and insulting to anyone who has self-respect.
Spurred partly by the concerns of the alliance and others, UCLA announced in September that it would shift immediately to "holistic" admissions, in which students' achievements are viewed in the context of their personal experiences. UC Berkeley uses a similar process. UCLA has said it must abide by Proposition 209, the 1996 initiative that barred the state's public colleges from considering race in employment or admissions. In the often slow-moving world of academia, UCLA's decision to change the admissions process was unusually swift. The Westwood campus is racing to implement the new system to handle applications for the 2007 freshman class. The alliance has called on the university to admit 300 black freshmen next year, a goal Taylor and others described as reasonable. Lawrence H. Lokman, a university spokesman, said he welcomed the assistance of the alliance, alumni and other community leaders, but "it would be unlawful to establish or endorse a specific target for the admission of students from any specific group or community."
How would this new holistic admission work, take a look at two places, the University of Wisconsin system.
"....Speaking at an informational meeting for guidance counselors from area high schools, the admissions officers said they've been doing comprehensive reviews of applicants behind the scenes for years, admitting certain students who don't meet their academic guidelines. The official policy change in fall 2008, they said, is simply a matter of making that public. In many cases, the schools will be removing academic guidelines - minimum ACT scores and class rank - from their Web sites and publications and providing an academic snapshot of their incoming freshmen instead. While the guidelines will continue to be the most important factors considered behind closed doors, non-academic factors will also be of importance for borderline students, including the students' "accomplishments, demographic factors, extracurricular activities, leadership qualities and racial and ethnic heritage, socioeconomic status, special talent and work experience," according to the UW presentation. "This eliminates the mechanical language," Heather Pearson, associate director of admissions at UW-Eau Claire, said at the meeting, at UW-Waukesha. "For students who you may have said would not get in, you can now say: You've got some really great talents, you should apply."
Now at at University of Washington.
"....What impact have the new requirements had? For this fall, the University of Washington had 16,597 applicants. Of those, 11,320 passed the new admissions requirements and were invited to attend. The UW hoped that about 5,100 of those accepted actually would enroll, but in fact final enrollment is around 5,600. The average GPA of those students is down just a touch from last year's record high -- to 3.67 from 3.69 in 2005. SAT scores also are down a tiny fraction, to 1,193 from 1,198 in 2005 (but up from 1,183 in 2004). To Ballinger, the real bonus is that grades and test scores have stayed on par with those in recent years, while the number of students who are ethnic minorities has gone up. African Americans, American Indians, Asian Americans and other ethnic groups all have seen increases in enrollment for this fall. In 2005, for instance, 218 African-American students enrolled at the University of Washington, while this fall 273 are expected to attend -- a 25 percent increase. For the most part, the new admissions policy has won praise from high school guidance counselors, students and others. "I think it's been a resounding success," said Bob Drewel, executive director of the Puget Sound Regional Council, which has made improved higher education one of its priorities. "Everyone says that the region with the most smart people wins, but you also cannot have a successful, competitive region without a successful university that reflects the global population."
Wait..so before universities reflected the "global population" there were no successful competitive regions? Getting back to UCLA, which model of holistic will they choose to get around the fact you can't choose by race? The Washington model sounds tougher but how much is a smoke screen to get around the ban on race to get the quota they really want in schools? Holistic sounds nice, but not to put a focus on objective grades and test scores with this kubaya approach doesn't send a message that the k-12 system may need to be worked on to allow more kids to be eligible and ready for a college workload. Lets face it, UCLA will take the path of least resistance on this to make this group happy that more blacks are admitted to the school while trying to get around the ban to make sure they do not get sued.

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