Diversity

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Diversity

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4 College Freshman

Diversity: This campus is very diverse in every sense except for political. The vast majority of people are very liberal. You will be fine as a more conservative person, but you will need to justify your beliefs a lot. Every other minority will be fine :)

5 College Sophomore

Diversity: Very accepting and tolerant campus community.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Diversity: People come from so many backgrounds that it teaches tolerance from everybody's standpoint. You can't judge because you can easily be judged by being different yourself. It is amazing to learn and live in an environment like this.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Diversity: I feel as if there is a gap between the different races and ethnicities on campus. They seem to congeal together and don't venture out of their created friend groups based on their homeland.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Diversity: The diversity is a major plus.

1 person found this useful Report
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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Whether Amherst is diverse enough is one of the most disputed questions among administration and students. Many call for special programs to attract more minorities to the school, which suffers, as all New England private colleges do, from a stigma of being a WASP-only country club for young adults. The truth is, Amherst makes a considerable effort to make itself known to minorities and to make its expensive education more affordable. The College offers a need-blind application process to American citizens, and large percent of students receive financial aid. International students can also apply for financial aid, although this will reduce their chances of admission. Most importantly, the fact that this issue is debated constantly on this campus shows a level of awareness and willingness to formally admit and socially accept eclectic groups of students each year.

Still, many students feel that more should be done to have a more-diverse student body. The current Amherst student body is far from being all white and will probably never be all white. Living in such a diverse community requires a very high level of tolerance, which is present most of the time. It seems people here don’t really allow racial and discriminatory practices, ideas, and words to penetrate everyday life. In this sense, Amherst does feel like a bubble tightly insulated from the outside world.

Facts & Statistics

African American
11%
Asian
12%
Hispanic
12%
International
10%
Native American
0%
White
41%
Unknown
9%
Historically Black College/University?
No
Tribal College?
No
Out-of-State Students
88%
Common States of Residence
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Foreign countries
  • New Jersey
  • New York
Student Age Breakdown
Under 18: 2%
18-19: 48%
20-21: 40%
22-24: 9%
25+: 1%
Female Faculty
43%
Male Faculty
57%
Faculty Diversity
African American: 3%
Asian American: 10%
Hispanic: 5%
International: 4%
Native American: 0%
White: 77%
Unknown: 0%
Gay Pride
The prevailing notion at Amherst is that a person’s sexual orientation is their business. The campus is very accepting of homosexuality. Here are some student organizations concerned with gender issues on campus: the Amherst College Pride Alliance (LBGTQA), Amherst Feminist Alliance, the Women’s Center, Peer Advocates of Sexual Respect.
Political Activity
The campus is mostly very liberal, although the Amherst College Republicans is a very lively and combative organization. Most students don’t live and breathe politics, but those who do are really ardent about it. Many students like to complain about the student government, but the truth is that they have helpful and practical initiatives, such as arranging for free shuttles to the nearest airports on breaks, and purchasing cardboard boxes for students to put their stuff in on breaks.
Economic Status
Most students come from wealthy families, and there is a considerable part of the student body that comes from a lower economic status. In any case, your economic background rarely comes into play at Amherst in any circumstance, social or otherwise.
Most Common Religions
Catholicism, Protestantism, Judaism
Minority Clubs on Campus
There are many organizations, as well as theme houses at Amherst. They hold many fascinating cultural events during the academic year. Examples: AIKYA, the Asian Student Association, the Black Students Union, Chicano Caucus, International Student Association (ISA), Pacific Islander/South East Asian Students (PISEAS). Culture theme houses: Asian Culture House (ACH); African, African American, and African Caribbean House (Drew House); La Casa.

Student Polls

Have you changed your political affiliation since you started college?    Based on 5 responses

  • 100% No
  • 0% Yes, Democrat to Republican
  • 0% Yes, Democrat to Independent/Other Party
  • 0% Yes, Republican to Democrat
  • 0% Yes, Republican to Independent/Other Party
  • 0% Yes, Independent/Other Party to Democrat
  • 0% Yes, Independent/Other Party to Republican

How would you best describe your personal political beliefs?    Based on 15 responses

  • 20% Progressive/very liberal
  • 47% Liberal
  • 20% Moderate
  • 0% Conservative
  • 0% Very conservative
  • 7% Libertarian
  • 7% Not sure

How would you best describe the political beliefs of campus as a whole?    Based on 15 responses

  • 40% Progressive/very liberal
  • 47% Liberal
  • 13% Moderate
  • 0% Conservative
  • 0% Very conservative
  • 0% Libertarian
  • 0% Not sure

How diverse is the student body in the following areas?    Based on 13 responses

Totally homogenous
Extremely diverse
  • Economic status
  • Ethnic heritage
  • National origin (international students)
  • Political affiliation
  • Religious background
  • Sexual orientation

How diverse is your personal circle of friends in the following areas?    Based on 13 responses

Totally homogenous
Extremely diverse
  • Economic status
  • Ethnic heritage
  • National origin (international students)
  • Political affiliation
  • Religious background
  • Sexual orientation

Have you changed your political views since starting college?    Based on 5 responses

  • 80% No
  • 0% Yes, I became a lot more liberal.
  • 20% Yes, I became a little more liberal.
  • 0% Yes, I became a lot more conservative.
  • 0% Yes, I became a little more conservative.

What political party do you associate yourself with?    Based on 6 responses

  • 0% Republican
  • 67% Democratic
  • 33% Independent
  • 0% Other party not mentioned
  • 0% I don't care about politics

Have your religious views changed since you started college?    Based on 5 responses

  • 60% No, my religious views have stayed the same.
  • 20% Yes. I've become more religious, but I'm still affiliated with the same religion.
  • 0% Yes. I've become more religious and have changed my religious affiliation.
  • 20% Yes. I've become less religious, but I'm still affiliated with the same religion.
  • 0% Yes. I've become less religious and have changed my religious affiliation.

How accepted is the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community on campus?    Based on 6 responses

  • 100% Very accepted. LGBT students are treated no differently than non-LGBT students.
  • 0% Accepted. LGBT students are treated fairly, but there are still some people who aren't accepting of them.
  • 0% Somewhat accepted. LGBT students aren't necessarily out and proud on campus, for fear of intolerance.
  • 0% Not accepted. LGBT students generally stay quiet.

How important is religion in your life?    Based on 5 responses

  • 20% Very important. I regularly attend religious services and also participate in related clubs/organizations.
  • 0% Important. I regularly attend religious services.
  • 20% Somewhat important. I sometimes attend religious services.
  • 60% Not important. I don't affiliate with any religion.

How accepting is the campus community as a whole toward someone who falls into the minority (ethnic, sexual, or religious)?    Based on 15 responses

  • 73% Very accepting.
  • 20% Most students are accepting, except for a few rare cases of intolerance.
  • 7% The campus is split on its acceptance-not all minority groups are as accepted as others.
  • 0% It's hard to be a minority here.
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