Mar 17, 2006, 12:50 AM
Post #15 of 100
"The funding does in fact revolve around race. Look it up, and you will see: there's a hispanic package, an afro-american package, etc. This implies that they are looking for X amount of certain ethnicities to bestow each year. That is a quota. Or quota-like, you may argue. The funding does not take into account financial need; only race. I don't know if I need to spell this out further (something tells me I do)"
Re: [poetastin] MFA Programs and Diversity
Hmm... I've looked around the Indiana CW website, and I just don't see anything like what you describe:
Maybe you looked somewhere else I didn't see, but it seems like their is a single CW fellowship specifically for ethnic-minorities, and then general IU grad school minority fellowships. This does not seem extreme or even exceptional compared to any other program or school that I have looked into, and hardly a "quota" system.
Additional quotes from the IU website regarding admissions and diversity:
"Each committee member reads every application sent to us carefully, with a decided emphasis on the manuscript portion. We look for talent that genuinely excites us and that we feel we can work with and develop. The manuscript portion of the application is, by far, the most important part of the application and the main criterion on which decisions of acceptance are based. "
"The M.F.A. Program has a strong commitment to, and history of, diversity. Applicants to the program frequently cite the diversity of its faculty and student body as an important factor in their decision to seek admission. Currently over a third of our first-, second-, and third-year M.F.A. students are African American, Latino/a, Asian American or Native American. We have also sought to make the program a congenial and supportive environment for gay and lesbian students, international students, first-generation college students, and students who are single parents. Our program makes every effort to recruit the strongest and most diverse annual entering class of students possible and offers students of color the Neal-Marshall Graduate Fellowships in Creative Writing in addition to all of our other fellowship lines."
They seem to be proud of the fact that 1/3 of their students are from ethnic-minorities, not that 1/3 of their accepted students HAVE to be ethnic-minorities.
Perhaps I missed something, or maybe this is all essentially a non-argument based upon misinformation and/or misunderstanding. But there's nothing structurally in IU's acceptance process (as stated on the website) that requires them to accept any minority students.
If there is affirmative action going on, than it is in it's most benign innocous form. I only write all this because it bothers me when people mischaracterize any and all applications of affirmative action as "quota systems". Quotas are wrong and counterproductive, I agree, but I don't see that or anything even resembling that going on here. I don't think what Indiana is actually doing can be seen as anything but positive.