The Missing Demographic Box: The Importance of Arab-American Representation in Higher Education

Although higher education institutions recognize various ethnic identities, the Arab identity and the sub-identities within continue to receive little to no recognition. In addition to lack of recognition, the media and society continue to associate the Arab identity with a negative stigma. Consequently, our Arab students are not feeling as supported as they should. The purpose of this study is to understand the Arab-American experience in public, four-year higher education institutions in California. 25 volunteers participated in a survey which gathered information on their experience as an Arab at their campus. In addition to the surveys, the existence of clubs and organizations related to the Arab identity was examined in these higher education institutions.