Survey finds 30% of white college applicants lied about race

Kayla Aaron

In a recent survey from, 34% of white Americans falsely claimed to be a racial minority on their college applications, with almost half of these students claiming to be Native American.

“Native Americans, out of all of the options, most closely resemble these people that are lying,” Eric Vazquez, a Baruch College sophomore and finance major said in an in-person interview with The Ticker. “It’s the easiest way to not get caught.”

This theory is addressed in the article from

“The prevalence of applicants who claim Native American ancestry is possibly due to the popular narrative that for many Americans, a small percentage of their DNA comes from a Native American tribe,” Kristen Scatton,’s managing editor, was quoted as saying in the article.

Thirteen percent claimed to be Latino, 10% claimed to be Black and 9% claimed to be Asian American or Pacific Islander, the survey found.

The survey reported two main reasons why these people lied.

The majority did so to improve their chances of being accepted, making up 81% of the surveyed students. Fifty percent of the surveyed students did so to benefit from minority-focused financial aid.

“I can see why they did it, but they shouldn’t be doing that because I feel like that just takes resources from people who would actually need it,” Reem Hussein, a Baruch freshman finance major, told The Ticker in an in-person interview.

Men were three times more likely than women to lie about their race on their applications, the survey said.

“I can see why,” Vazquez said. “The more ‘not white male’ that you are, it could better your chances [of acceptance].”

Of the students who were surveyed, 77% were accepted to the colleges that they lied to in their applications.

Although there are many factors that contribute to acceptance, 85% of these students believe that it was because they lied on their applications that they were accepted into these schools.

The results of the article come after the college admissions scandals centering around celebrities Lori Laughlin and Felicity Huffman. The children of these wealthy celebrities were said to be athletes as a way to gain admission to prestigious schools such as Yale University, Stanford University and the University of Southern California.

“Lying on a college application about anything, including your race, is never a good idea,” Scatton said. “Colleges can and will rescind admissions offers if they discover students lied during the application process.”

The Baruch Admissions Office ignored The Ticker’s request for comment.