Terms and Definitions

Underrepresented Minority Student 

The UW System defines URM students as anyone who identifies as: Native American/American Indian, African American, Hispanic/Latino, Southeast Asian of Vietnamese, Cambodian, Hmong or Laotian descent who entered the U.S. after 12/31/1975, and two or more races (either alone or as two or more race/ethnicities).

International Student 

An international student is defined as an individual who is enrolled for credit at an accredited higher education institution in the U.S. on a temporary visa, and who is not an immigrant, or an undocumented immigrant, or a refugee. Typically international students are F-1 or J-1 visa holders.  

Domestic Student 

Domestic students are American citizens, naturalized U.S citizens, permanent residents, or refugees.  

Undocumented Immigrant 

Undocumented immigrants are foreign nationals who lack proper authorization to be in the United States. These immigrants either entered the United States without inspection according to immigration procedures, or entered the United States on a temporary visa and stayed beyond the expiration date of the visa. 

Permanent resident 

A permanent resident is someone who has been granted the right to live in the United States indefinitely. Permanent residents are given what’s known as a “green card,” which is a photo ID card that proves their status.  


A person who has been forced to leave their country in order to escape war, persecution, or natural disaster. 

Race/ Ethnicity

Race is usually associated with biology and linked with physical characteristics such as skin color or hair texture. Ethnicity is linked with cultural expression and identification. However, both are social constructs used to categorize and characterize seemingly distinct populations.


Prejudice in favor of or against one thing, person, or group compared with another, usually in a way considered to be unfair.  


An opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience.  


Dislike of/or prejudice against people from other countries.


Racism is prejudice or discrimination directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior. 


A microaggression is a statement, action, or incident regarded as an instance of indirect, subtle, or unintentional discrimination against members of a marginalized group such as a racial or ethnic minority. 


The unjust treatment of people based on the race, age, or sex, gender identity, etc.