Letter to the Editor
I had two major problems with your recent article on the lack of diversity at the New School.
Firstly, the numbers literally don't add up. Your article states that there are 4,217 white students and 570 black students. Based on the percentages, we can calculate that there are about 975 Asian students, 800 Hispanics, and 50 Native Americans. Totaled up, that is (drum roll, just because I'm an ass)... 6,612 students. Where are the other nearly four thousand students? Am I to believe that there are that many Indians, Arabs and Pacific Islanders running around here? Because that would be really diverse. These numbers seemingly have to be flawed, or we have even bigger issues than we realize.
Which brings me to my second point. Where are the minority students? If about 7 percent of the student population is black, as stated in your article, and less than 50 percent white, why are there classes with only one nonwhite person in them? A 30 person art history class, like the one listed in your story, would be expected to have more than one black person. More importantly, it would be expected to have less than 15 white people. *This* is the real story. Students have somehow been segregated. Perhaps by choice, perhaps for economic reasons, I don't know why, but apparently it has happened. Where have the colored students gone?
If your article is correct about the number of white students, then The New School has the potential to be a diverse place. Over 60 percent of America is non-Hispanic whites. The New School is only slightly whiter than New York City, one of the most diverse metropolises on the planet. Yet somehow we have allowed segregation and ignorance to set in.
We should be working to understand and bridge that divide, not simply point out that it is there.
Also, where are those extra 4,000 students?
We did not include the last three categories which accounted for the above-mentioned missing students. We felt that including the data would overly complicate the article because by press time we did not have a definition for multi-ethnic, and because we were unable to determine how international students impacted the other totals. We see now that this exclusion misrepresented the student body.