Diversity In Our Own Backyard

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Sun Devils unite as one here at Arizona State University.
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Diversity ranges from city to city. Whether that it is with food, jobs, geographic area, academic, ethnic, or racial. At Arizona State University, students will find themselves emerged into a sun devil loving area that is filled with racial diversity, right in the heart of Tempe, Arizona.

76.4% of Arizona’s population happens to be Caucasian, but only 51% of the Arizona State’s undergrads are of that same race. With a school of over 71,000 in enrollment, this is something to be chanting about, according to numbers attained by the Census Bureau.

Although Arizona State is doing well, other schools are not leading the pack in diversity as well. “Schools such as University of Alabama, Miami University- Oxford, Clemson University, and University of Vermont have around an 80% Caucasian student body,” Clary Stolkwell from CollegeFatual stated.   

Ray Vaugh, a social worker and counselor in Chicago, Illinois shared his thoughts on current diversity within universities. Vaugh attended a state university in the upper Midwest: Illinois State University. A school of 21,000, Vaugh offered insight on that of his own school and other schools today.

“I felt a sense of inclusion, even though it was such a small percentage of African Americans at my own university. I believe this was in part of my major so there was more focus of inclusion.”

“Overall, I do not think that schools do a good job at diversity. I think there is a large misunderstanding of different cultures. Schools should spend more time on the melting pot that we are, so that we as individuals and subcultures/group members, we can be more aware and sensitive about our counterparts and society members,” Vaugh said, “I believe we treat people differently when we have a better understanding of diversity, and we need to put aside ignorance and learn more about the diversity around us.”

In comparison to other universities, Arizona State seems to rise above. ASU is ranked 113 out of 2,475 in overall university diverseness. ASU is also ranked 542 out of 2,700 universities in overall student body diversity, according to numbers attained by the Census Bureau.

            Other nearby universities such as University of Southern California and UCLA are also around the 50%-40% Caucasian student body and continue to spread the percentages of diversity within their student body race, which have a more comparable size to that of Illinois State University.

ASU has taken huge leaps, admitting more students and seeing their numbers of geographic diversity rise as well. Over 40% of the students at the university are not from within Arizona, which is a large bonus to the students as they are learning from peers with different backgrounds. Arizona State continues to recognize the importance of diversity in a changing world.

 

“Once we recognize the change and make a change, we will continue to have the issues that we have,” Vaugh ended with, “It is merely a lack of understanding and knowledge.”

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