South Asian Americans in Higher Education: Background and Future Directions
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South Asian Americans are one of the fastest-growing ethnic groups in the United States. Though research has broadly attended to Asian Americans as an aggregate racial or ethnic group, calls to specify the complex experiences and identities within this group have increased. This is particularly true for South Asian Americans, or Desi, groups as their ethnic and cultural identities have been increasingly scrutinized and racialized since September 11th. This backgrounder discusses South Asian Americans within higher educational institutions. More specifically, I provide an overview of identity development models, contextualize their unique challenges, and relate these models to South Asian Americans. The backgrounder concludes by outlining opportunities for supporting South Asian American students in higher education.