What people say about Color and Money-

"Anyone interested in the inequities of the selective college admissions process will find Color and Money clear-eyed, hard-hitting, enlightening, and informative."--Rachel Toor, author of Admissions Confidential: An Insider's Account of the Elite College Selection Process.
"For those concerned about why the march toward social justice in America has faltered badly for nearly forty years, Peter Schmidt's Color and Money is a highly instructive--and greatly disturbing--guidepost." --Richard Kluger, author of Simple Justice: The History of Brown v. Board of Education and Black America's Struggle for Equality.
"An indispensible guide to the debate over affirmative action in the United States."--Michael Lind, author of The Next American Nation.
"This book is a must read for anyone concerned with access to higher education, especially to the nation’s elite universities, as well as with larger questions of social policy and social justice."--Terry MacTaggart, Former Chancellor, University of Maine System
"Books on the highly-charged issue of affirmative action are usually one-sided and inflammatory. Peter Schmidt's Color and Money is a wonderful exception. It provides an honest and fair examination that is also passionate and illuminating."--Richard D. Kahlenberg, Senior Fellow, The Century Foundation, and author of The Remedy: Class, Race, and Affirmative Action

Peter Schmidt is available as a speaker

Peter Schmidt is available to speak at colleges, bookstores, schools, churches, and at gatherings of education associations. His past speaking engagements are listed at the bottom of this Web site. If interested in having him appear, e-mail him at schmidt_peter@msn.com. He also is available as an expert source for journalists covering affirmative action. Those on a tight deadline should email him at peter.schmidt@chronicle.com.

Hear interviews with Peter Schmidt

Jack Lessenberry of Michigan Public Radio talked to Peter Schmidt about Color and Money in August. You can hear the interview here. Reading the book inspired Jack to write an essay on it, which you can read here. You also can hear Peter Schmidt talk about his book on the NPR program Justice Talking and in a Chronicle of Higher Education podcast.

Color and Money Is a College Course!

Many college professors are now using Color and Money in their classes, but Jack Dougherty, the director of the educational studies program at Trinity College in Connecticut, has gone a big step beyond. He has decided to name a freshman seminar "Color and Money" and to structure the class around the book. He has graciously agreed to share his syllabus, available here, for faculty members at other colleges who may have the same idea.


Thursday, May 13, 2010

New Research on Diversity Yields Surprising Findings

The success of minority college students and students' perceptions of race relations on their campuses are influenced by factors that actually have little direct connection with ethnicity or race, according to a new set of studies discussed in a recent Chronicle of Higher Education article.

Among the studies, all published in the spring issue of New Directions for Institutional Research:

  • An analysis of University of California student survey data that concludes that students' choice of academic major plays a greater role than their race in determining how much discrimination they perceive on campus. Moreover, having large numbers of racially and culturally sensitive students might paradoxically cause a campus's reputation for tolerance to suffer, because such students are more likely to perceive and report bigotry around them.
  • Another study, unusual in that it focuses on a campus where white students are outnumbered, concluded that high minority enrollments do not necessarily lead to increased perceptions of tolerance. At the public university that the study focused on, the share of all students on the campus who reported occasionally or frequently witnessing one or more forms of insensitive behavior rose as the institution became more diverse, with the increase being driven partly by increases in both the number of minority students responding to the survey and in the share of minority students reporting such behavior.
  • A third study, examining the educational progress of freshmen at several institutions, concludes that first-generation college students experience some events on the campus differently than do other students. For example, they appear not to reap the same educational gains from out-of-classroom interactions with faculty members as do their peers with at least one college-educated parent, perhaps because the first-generation students may be somewhat rattled and put off by such interactions, which leave their peers feeling more intellectually engaged, the Chronicle article says.