In today 's world where the demographic of the population is greatly diverse, higher education should also reflect it in their student body. The purpose of colleges and universities is to provide students with the education and experience they need to succeed in life. Thus, they must provide the same environment that student will live and work in the future. It is then essential for the admission office to consider economic diversity as one of their main priority.
There is a huge achievement gap between students from different economic background and it is continuously growing. As proof, Professor Reardon, a Stanford University sociologist, conducted a study which showed that the gap of standardized test scores between high-income and low-income students had grown by about 40% in comparison to the 1960s. Colleges are currently facing a growing economic divide. Studies have shown that disadvantaged students who receiving federal aids are represented by only 7% of the student body of the fifty wealthiest university. This statistics is call for action to America’s prestigious colleges and universities. They need to improve their admission process and applicant pool because they have the financial means to do so and their reputation set standards for other schools.
There are many reasons in response to why economic diversity in higher education is extremely important, especially in the world we are living in today. First and foremost, college is a place for learning and expanding one’s horizons. Thus, economic diversity broadens every classroom with unique perspectives of those whose voices aren’t normally heard before. For example, Anthony Max, the president of Amherst University from 20...
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...round. These student organizations and events help establish FGLI students’ sense of belonging and continuously support them through their years at Penn.
Although Penn has been a great contribution and role model at increasing economic diversity in higher education, it is nowhere near enough. Other colleges and universities must step up and share the responsibility to make sure that qualified students despite their backgrounds are given the opportunity they deserve to get their education. Other elite colleges and universities who have the financial means should also increase outreach to high schools across the country. On the other hand, schools with already high number of FGLI students should increase their efforts in making sure that their students have a space in which they can express themselves and their concerns as well as create their sense of belonging.
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