Is 25% Native American enough?

(BLS, URM status, non-traditional, GLBT)
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GTman11
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Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby GTman11 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:19 am

I would like to hear some of your opinions on this. Do you think being 25% Native American is enough to claim Native American/African American status on apps? Personally, I don't think it is. What do you all think?

BTW, I'm 75% black. I wasn't just lumping in the AA for added effect :mrgreen:

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Vincent Vega
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby Vincent Vega » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:20 am

Definitely warrants mention in a diversity statement. I'd check black/AA on the actual app, though.

Batman2
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby Batman2 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:24 am

I have a friend who is 1/16th Choctaw, and is a registered member of the Choctaw nation. He received a bunch of undergrad scholarships in college because of this, and is planning on claiming Native American status on law school applications. How can they say he is not Native American if he is an official member of the tribe?

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GTman11
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby GTman11 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:27 am

Halibut6 wrote:Definitely warrants mention in a diversity statement. I'd check black/AA on the actual app, though.


That's what I was thinking. I don't want these schools to look at my app negatively and think I'm trying to "play" the system and get free URM points.

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Vincent Vega
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby Vincent Vega » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:27 am

Batman2 wrote:I have a friend who is 1/16th Choctaw, and is a registered member of the Choctaw nation. He received a bunch of undergrad scholarships in college because of this, and is planning on claiming Native American status on law school applications. How can they say he is not Native American if he is an official member of the tribe?


I think it is a bit of a stretch to be considered URM for having one great-great-grandparent as a member of a URM group. In some cases it may have an effect, but I think when the tie is that distant and abstract, the person is unlikely to have suffered the hardships and disadvantages in society that URM status is supposed to make up for in the admissions process. OP in this thread, though, has a much more legitimate claim.

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Vincent Vega
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby Vincent Vega » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:30 am

GTman11 wrote:
Halibut6 wrote:Definitely warrants mention in a diversity statement. I'd check black/AA on the actual app, though.


That's what I was thinking. I don't want these schools to look at my app negatively and think I'm trying to "play" the system and get free URM points.


I've seen similar threads on this site before, though, and the best advice I have seen is to just select what you feel has influenced your life. Do you relate more closely to the African American community, the Native American community, or both equally? Has having Native American ancestry affected your life appreciably? In the end, it is up to you, but be able to back it up.

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GTman11
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby GTman11 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:35 am

Funny you mention that Batman b/c becoming a real member of a lumbee tribe was my original plan. I'm just a little scared of law schools thinking of me as a fraud or something because I have never in my life claimed native american. I didn't even find out my grandfather was 100% native american until I was around 15. Of course the admissions committees won't know all of this, but I feel like my scheme is pretty transparent since I applied to undergrad only as an AA.

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babaghanouj
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby babaghanouj » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:36 am

Halibut6 wrote:
GTman11 wrote:
Halibut6 wrote:Definitely warrants mention in a diversity statement. I'd check black/AA on the actual app, though.


That's what I was thinking. I don't want these schools to look at my app negatively and think I'm trying to "play" the system and get free URM points.


I've seen similar threads on this site before, though, and the best advice I have seen is to just select what you feel has influenced your life. Do you relate more closely to the African American community, the Native American community, or both equally? Has having Native American ancestry affected your life appreciably? In the end, it is up to you, but be able to back it up.


tcr

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Vincent Vega
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby Vincent Vega » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:41 am

GTman11 wrote:Funny you mention that Batman b/c becoming a real member of a lumbee tribe was my original plan. I'm just a little scared of law schools thinking of me as a fraud or something because I have never in my life claimed native american. I didn't even find out my grandfather was 100% native american until I was around 15. Of course the admissions committees won't know all of this, but I feel like my scheme is pretty transparent since I applied to undergrad only as an AA.


Being a Lumbee presents a whole new dynamic to the equation. I would guess that 99% of Americans have never heard of them. The Lumbee truly have a unique history, something that should definitely be mentioned in the DS.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby DoubleChecks » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:44 am

so outside of finding out your grandfather was Native American, have you been involved w/ that community whatsoever? Or identify w/ them in any way? I mean you could check the box (think you need the card for proof), but your PS and DS about being AA and maybe even being a part of the NA community is what will really matter in the end.

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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby Batman2 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:45 am

GTman11 wrote:Funny you mention that Batman b/c becoming a real member of a lumbee tribe was my original plan. I'm just a little scared of law schools thinking of me as a fraud or something because I have never in my life claimed native american. I didn't even find out my grandfather was 100% native american until I was around 15. Of course the admissions committees won't know all of this, but I feel like my scheme is pretty transparent since I applied to undergrad only as an AA.


But from their perspective, they might want to have a Native American at their school. You might be helping them.

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GTman11
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby GTman11 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:48 am

Halibut6 wrote:
GTman11 wrote:Funny you mention that Batman b/c becoming a real member of a lumbee tribe was my original plan. I'm just a little scared of law schools thinking of me as a fraud or something because I have never in my life claimed native american. I didn't even find out my grandfather was 100% native american until I was around 15. Of course the admissions committees won't know all of this, but I feel like my scheme is pretty transparent since I applied to undergrad only as an AA.


Being a Lumbee presents a whole new dynamic to the equation. I would guess that 99% of Americans have never heard of them. The Lumbee truly have a unique history, something that should definitely be mentioned in the DS.


Off the top of your head, what do you suggest I say about being lumbee? I have absolutely NO ties to anything native american except for the blood in my veins and my nice hair. How do you write about something that hasn't affected your life at all? I just want to milk being NA for all it's worth, but without lying (which I'm against), I don't think it's going to be worth too much.

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bluejayk
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby bluejayk » Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:52 am

Are you a registered member? I've read that some schools will ask for documentation of tribal membership. If you have that, you're golden. And I might be mistaken here, but aren't native Americans even more under represented than AA or hispanics? If that is the case, you should go ahead and make note of that on your application.

As for what to mention, I wouldn't say anything about it other than checking the appropriate box, since you say you don't really identify with that part of your ethnicity in anyway.

Anyway, my cousin is 1/8th native American and it got him pretty significant scholarship help as an UG.

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GTman11
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby GTman11 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:00 am

BlueJay,

From what I've heard native americans are THE URM. That's why I want to figure this out :D . I like your idea of getting documentation and then laying low about it given my detached nature. I realize some schools don't really take the URM into consideration unless you can make it matter through your PS, but I think most schools would simply be intrigued by the NA/AA designation even if it stands alone on the app.

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Vincent Vega
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby Vincent Vega » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:01 am

GTman11 wrote:Off the top of your head, what do you suggest I say about being lumbee? I have absolutely NO ties to anything native american except for the blood in my veins and my nice hair. How do you write about something that hasn't affected your life at all? I just want to milk being NA for all it's worth, but without lying (which I'm against), I don't think it's going to be worth too much.


bluejayk wrote:As for what to mention, I wouldn't say anything about it other than checking the appropriate box, since you say you don't really identify with that part of your ethnicity in anyway.


Judging from what you have said, you don't significantly draw from your Lumbee heritage, so perhaps mention of it shouldn't be as significant as your discussion of your AA heritage. But, the Lumbee have been discriminated against, IMHO, more than most other NA groups. It was a struggle for them to even be recognized as NA, if I remember correctly. Most North Carolinians, I think, would know what they have gone through without much explanation, so if you're applying to UNC that might be a plus.

I'm certainly not very familiar with your life story or anything, but it might be possible to compare some kind of struggle you have had to fight through to the struggles that your ancestors have gone through over the years. Might be a bad idea, I'm not sure, but it's something to think about, I suppose.

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James Bond
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby James Bond » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:01 am

25% huh? With numbers like that I'd check out Gambling Law at UNLV. If you work on your score a bit you might even be allowed to OWN a casino.

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Vincent Vega
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby Vincent Vega » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:03 am

biv0ns wrote:25% huh? With numbers like that I'd check out Gambling Law at UNLV. If you work on your score a bit you might even be allowed to OWN a casino.


I think that's a little insensitive.

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James Bond
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby James Bond » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:06 am

Halibut6 wrote:I think that's a little insensitive.


bah, I was making a play on words about the numbers game and the traditional stereotype of native americans owning casinos. not to mention that the OP doesn't identify with his NA heritage, but I'd remove the comment if a NA found it offensive.

in other news, people need to relax on this whole being offended by jokes on the internet thing.

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GTman11
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby GTman11 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:14 am

biv0ns wrote:
Halibut6 wrote:I think that's a little insensitive.


bah, I was making a play on words about the numbers game and the traditional stereotype of native americans owning casinos. not to mention that the OP doesn't identify with his NA heritage, but I'd remove the comment if a NA found it offensive.


Don't worry I laughed. When I see my "real" NA friends from high school I do little rain dances around them. They are always like, "man if you weren't a quarter you'd be done!"...kinda funny. I just ultimately want to end up at a top ten school and every little bit helps. My numbers are enough to make this a reality but this NA boost could maybe make some reaches, possibles and some possibles, admits.

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James Bond
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby James Bond » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:15 am

Honestly man, your African URM status will open a ton of doors for you already

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GTman11
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby GTman11 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:18 am

I guess I just don't want to screw this up. We only get one cycle right? I'd hate for it to end and think..if only i did this or that.

Well thanks everyone for your advice. This was the first question I've had that was worthy of asking. I have been in the shadows on this forum for quite some time; Sometimes it's the blind leading the blind, but other times sound advice is passed along.

Thanks for your opinions!
Last edited by GTman11 on Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

Batman2
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby Batman2 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:20 am

Write a PS about how you want to become a lawyer to sue the govt to get your land back. Then no one will ask questions.

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James Bond
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby James Bond » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:21 am

GTman11 wrote:I guess I just don't want to screw this up. We only get one cycle right? I'd hate for it to end and think..if only i did this or that.


no. you can not accept any offer, get some work experience or study for an LSAT retake, and then apply again

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bluejayk
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby bluejayk » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:33 am

GTman11 wrote:From what I've heard native americans are THE URM. That's why I want to figure this out :D . I like your idea of getting documentation and then laying low about it given my detached nature. I realize some schools don't really take the URM into consideration unless you can make it matter through your PS, but I think most schools would simply be intrigued by the NA/AA designation even if it stands alone on the app.


I don't think this is the case at all, if you qualify as a "real" URM, I'm pretty sure that's enough for admissions preference.

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GTman11
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Re: Is 25% Native American enough?

Postby GTman11 » Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:41 am

Bluejay, I'm sure you know 10 times more than I do about this whole process, since I'm very new to it all and have A LOT to learn.

I went to the the law school forum in atlanta recently and a few of the schools said they don't really care about you being a URM unless you can show how it has affected your life. It was only a handful of them, I can't remember the names....they weren't T14 though. I agree that the majority of schools just want to see the checked box. Just trying to cover all my bases.




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