Is it racist to eliminate race as a qualifier for college financial aid?

by Grace

When the Wisconsin State Assembly recently deliberated on a proposal to eliminate race as  a qualifying condition for a state-sponsored college scholarship program, opponents labeled it a racist action.

“What it is is racism in its highest institutional level,” said Rep. Tamara Grigsby, D-Milwaukee….

Rep. Brett Hulsey, D-Madison, called the proposal a “racist race to the bottom”…

But others argued that race should not matter.

Rep. Robin Vos, R-Caledonia, defended the proposal, saying the point of the Talent Incentive Program grants were intended to target poor students. Whether you also are a minority shouldn’t matter, he said.

The scholarship program targets “nontraditional’ students.

Applicants must be poor and a nontraditional student. To be a nontraditional student, the applicant must meet one of several criteria including being in prison, a first-generation college attendee or black, Indian, Hispanic or Hmong.

The administrator of the scholarship program claims it has actually not used race as a qualifier since last year as a result of a formal complaint.  However, a check on the official Wisconsin website still shows race as a criteria.

The proposal passed the Assembly, and is awaiting a hearing in the Senate planned for next year.

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One Comment to “Is it racist to eliminate race as a qualifier for college financial aid?”

  1. My graduate school gives full ride scholarships, and stipends, to everyone, and I mean to everyone, except to white students – regardless of their academic profile. ONLY white kids pay tuition. THAT is racism at the “highest institutional level”. Hispanics, Asians, Native Americans/Mestizos, African Americans, and Pacific Islanders all get full ride scholarships plus a stipend of many thousands per year. I will come out of the same program $60,000 in debt, although my family is single parent (dead father), broke, and I have a 4.0 GPA.

    In addition, the white kids are emotionally burdened with the knowledge that they are predetermined by their race (discriminated against) to be the only ones to pay tuition. They are reminded of that racism with every hour of class and every minute of effort that they endure toward the end of gaining their degree so that they can finally leave the racist University behind them. After school, they will be reminded of this racism with every student loan bill that they pay for one to two decades, that the people of ANY other race in their program are not.

    Racism is not over. We do not live in a post-racist world. We live in a world where racist discrimination is openly encouraged and instituted against whites. This will be the legacy, and minorities will one day realize that they have squandered their opportunity to end racism through exuberantly embracing it themselves.

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