Race In Education
Fall of 1999, I applied for the University of Idaho to pursue a bachelor degree.

I could be the first in my family to obtain this accomplishment. The issue that
always came to mind was will I have enough money? Racial issues in the state of

Idaho were a concern of mine also, for I was a member of a minority group. How
is it possible for an Asian American, from a low-income family, suppose to fund
their education and mentally tolerate racism in Idaho? I felt scared and
uncertain of what the future held for me. I he question, "how does other
minority groups deal and cope with the issues at hand?" When I graduated high
school in 1994, I was uncertain of what I wanted to do. I failed to get a
scholarship in athletics and had no funding to pay for school. So, I thought to
myself "What am I to do for myself now?" Like most minorities I went to work
for a living and eventually got married. Things got worse and worse as time went
on. Things turned for the worst and I got divorced and was working as a
furniture salesman. I spoke to my parents and told them that I was going to go
to college at the University of Idaho. My father laughed and said, "yea right
and pigs fly." Certainly all the odds are stacked up against minorities in
getting a better education. With all the issues brought up in America about
equality in the past decade. We find that minorities do have a lot of lenience
in pursuing an education and pursuing professional jobs, "equal
opportunity." A big question is "how much lenience do we give and who do we
give it to?" In a recent article that I read in the Idaho Statesman,

"Diversity: Idaho and the U.S." was pretty interesting, but yet still a
harsh reality to minorities. It stated that less than 10 percent of Idahoís
population was minority. Idaho is the rated 42 out of 50 states in the lowest
percent of minority residents. With numbers so low, does this impact the
lenience of minorities received in colleges and big corporations? Does company
like Micron and Hewlett-Packard in Boise have recruiting problems in hiring
minorities due to affirmative action? Section 601 of the Civil Rights Act of

1964 provides: No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race,
color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the
benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity
receiving Federal financial assistance. (American Constitutional Law) With these
recruiting problems does this affect the quality of the work? In a interview in

The Idaho Statesman, Mehairi stated, "Nothing makes me want to go there,"
said Mehairi Kassa, a Drexel University student interviewing at a California job
fair where HP (Hewlett Packard) was recruiting." If corporations canít to
hire on the bases of where they canít base their decision on race, religion,
sex, and affiliation of any specific group. Then why do we use these things for
basing funding for education? With all these questions at hand, I was curious
and I started to look into these fascinating things. Among these things I found
in Idaho there are four different racist groups residing in Bonners Ferry, Coeur
díAlene, Idaho Falls, Nampa, and Sandpoint and others in North Idaho. (Idaho

Statesman) "North Idaho College couldnít persuade any person of color to
apply for its presidentís job. Several black female candidates were contacted
but declined when they learned the college was in Coeur díAlene," stated Ron

Bell Interim President. (Idaho Statesman) This gave me a little insight in how
people had perceived the state of Idaho. I think it is perceived this way
because of how Idaho is portrayed in the media. With the whole OJ Simpson case
and how Mark Fermin lived in Sandpoint. It gives a preconceived idea to
minorities considering moving to Idaho. After seeing this insight, I wasnít
going to let it deter me from pursuing an education. I continued to look for all
the possible ways to finance my education. I filled out a Financial Aide form
and pursued several scholarships. After all this, I received enough funding to
attend the University of Idaho. Is this because Iím a minority or because I
come from a low-income family? I feel that I received this due to the image of
how minorities see Idahoís image and that I should reflect how Idaho really
looks. Looking