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It is a very individualistic culture so don't expect a pity party when it comes to diversity and issues you may have. I have friends off all races and creeds but there are number of students, mostly the rich white/Jewish kids from NY/NJ, that don't really branch out. It is co-exist and live anonymously. If you are a minority, you will feel welcomed.
The "diversity" found at UM has nothing to do with the school, and everything to do with location. Miami has more Cubans than Anglos. Of course there is another language besides English spoken: Spanish. Chances of hearing any other language are slim.
UM is one of the most diverse schools in the country, but year after year, it is becoming more and more White and Asian (like people from China, not Asian- Americans). This is annoying because it is becoming more of an American paradise than a cultural mecca. Miami the city is where the real diversity is. Having said that, the school is more diverse than most colleges- it's just not the diversity that you think of- just skin color, religion, and sexuality.
The thing about UM is that as an expensive private school, there are three ways that attendance is possible. 1) lots and lots of scholarships. 2) lots and lots of debt. 3) (your parents have) lots and lots of money.
So students are often not as economically diverse as at other schools, such as FIU.
Miami as a city is also not all that diverse. There are relatively few Asians, and virtually no Europeans. Diverse means many groups, and Miami does not fit that definition because there are only 2 groups that live there in abundance. Latin American (mostly Cuban) and black, with some white people in the wealthier neighborhoods. And no that isn't racist, just the facts.
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Written by Sana Khan
Like most big cities, Miami has areas that are very cultural, and visiting these areas might feel like stepping into another world. Instead of Chinatown, Miami has Little Havana, the world's largest collection of Cubans outside of Cuba. The huge Hispanic population in Miami is not limited to one area. You'll overhear conversations spoken in Spanish almost everywhere in the city, and sometimes the accents are hard to understand and you end up with totally preposterous things in your McDonald's bag after an unsuccessful trip to the drive-thru. Most students get accustomed to Miami's Hispanic heritage pretty quickly and take advantage of the great atmosphere of Calle Ocho, the street that runs through the heart of Little Havana.
Miami has so many different ethnicities represented that students coming from non-diverse backgrounds may feel uncomfortable at first. As the numbers prove, only half of the students in most classes will be white. This is a great experience for students of any ethnicity. It basically forces you to understand different cultures and people from various backgrounds. It's especially interesting to hear what students from other countries write in English class when culture plays a major part. There are also various religions represented. Christian clubs are popular, as are other religious organizations like Hillel. Homosexual students will also feel right at home, especially in South Beach, a hotspot for gay culture. Don't come to Miami expecting to be surrounded by the same people you would at a school in Iowa. UM is one of the most diverse campuses in the nation, and some students find this to be the best thing about life in Miami.
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