On John Leo’s new Minding the Campus blog, Anthony Paletta notices that UCLA is celebrating results of its “holistic” admissions process, “which was promoted as a means to improve the relative chances of disadvantaged students who lacked AP courses and other academic opportunities that wealthier peers enjoy.” That didn’t happen: UCLA will have fewer low-income students in the fall and fewer who’ll be the first in their family to go to college. But it will have more blacks.
The number of students from families with incomes under $30,000 declined from 955 in 2006 to an estimated 689 for 2007. The number of first-generation students fell by about 400.
What do University administrators have to say about the results? Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Janina Montero declared to the UCLA Daily Bruin “We are certainly out of crisis mode.” Acting Chancellor Norman Abrams was “very pleased” with the result.
How is this? Well, black enrollment increased from 96 in 2006 to 203 for the present year.
These figures indicated admitted students who say they intend to enroll. By wooing blacks, UCLA boosted the percentage of black admits who say they’ll be there in the fall. The pressure to get more low-income and first-generation students to choose UCLA is . . . nonexistent.
Also on Minding the Campus is an essay by Heather MacDonald on the mendacity of college affirmative action officers. The job requires the promotion of false propositions. First and foremost:
The fact that your college still has not achieved proportional representation of blacks, Hispanics, and women in certain fields, such as the sciences, is because it hasn’t put enough effort into finding them. The problem is not that there is an insufficient number of qualified minorities and women to go around. (It is acceptable here to imply that your college may even be discriminating against “diverse” candidates.)
She includes an e-mail exchange with Jorge Huerta, chief diversity officer at UC-San Diego. Since the University of California is banned by law from considering race and gender in hiring and admissions, Huerta’s job requires “a shameless display of diversity doublespeak.”