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Op/Ed: People Are More Than SAT Scores

Education Professor Says Harvard Treats Asian-American Applicants as Individuals

By Julie J. Park

Harvard gate

Gates photo by Wikimedia Commons; Park photo by John T. Consoli

Gates photo by Wikimedia Commons; Park photo by John T. Consoli

Julie Park, an associate professor in the College of Education, served as a consulting expert for Harvard in a case joined by the U.S. Department of Justice alleging discrimination against Asian-American applicants to the university. In an opinion piece in Inside Higher Ed, she argues that in a university filled with stratospheric GPAs and SATs, Harvard gives Asian Americans a fair shake.Julie Park

As students gear up for the new semester, Emma Choi is settling in as a new member of Harvard College’s Class of 2022. Emma happens to be a recent graduate of my local high school, with a steady stream of mentions in our community paper. She has written and directed several plays, including one performed off-Broadway and another being performed at the D.C. Capital Fringe Festival. These are impressive accomplishments for anyone, let alone an 18-year-old. Cambridge is lucky to have her.

There is no shortage of Asian Americans like Emma attending Harvard, but the pending lawsuit Students for Fair Admissions, Inc. (SFFA) v. Harvard alleges that Harvard intentionally discriminates against Asian Americans in admissions. One of the plaintiffs, “Applicant,” had a perfect ACT score, was a National Merit Semi-Finalist, scored perfect 800s on two SAT IIs (Math II and History), raised money for National Public Radio, tutored, and volunteered at a tennis camp. Great accomplishments, no doubt, but do they guarantee admission to the Big H?

Read more of Park’s op/ed in Inside Higher Ed.



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