UCLA junior Sy Stokes has created a video which calls attention to the university’s lack of diversity.
The Afro-American studies student, who personally identifies as black, Cherokee and Chinese, recites a spoken-word poem throughout the video that notes staggering statistics.
During an interview with the Daily Bruin, Stokes said he wanted to show potential UCLA students how small the black student population was before the application deadline — Nov. 30.
“We had to do something to put our issues on the map,” Stokes said.
Janina Montero, vice chancellor of student affairs, said in an email statement to the school’s paper that university officials agree that UCLA lacks diversity.
“It is difficult to eliminate this painful imbalance without considering race in the admissions process,” Montero said in her statement.
In 1996, affirmative action was voted down by Californians, preventing state schools from having to accept students based on race.
By Monday afternoon, the video Stokes posted to YouTube had over 213,000 views and over 1,500 comments.
Commentators ranged from supportive to critical. The UCLA student said he doesn’t mind the hateful comments, as long as someone is talking about it.
Watch the video above and let us know what you think in the comments below.
Follow Carrie Healey on Twitter @CarrieHeals.