Jewish quota

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Jewish quota was a percentage that limited the number of Jews in various establishments. In particular, in 19th and 20th centuries some countries had Jewish quotas for higher education, a special case of Numerus clausus.Jewish educational quotas could be state-wide law or adopted only in certain institutions, often unofficially. The limitation took the form of total prohibition of Jewish students, or of limiting the number of Jewish students so that their share in the students' population would not be larger than their share in the general population. In some establishments, the Jewish quota placed a limit on growth rather than set a fixed level of participation to be achieved.

According to historian David Oshinsky, on writing about Jonas Salk, "Most of the surrounding medical schools (Cornell, Columbia, Pennsylvania, and Yale) had rigid quotas in place. In 1935 Yale accepted 76 applicants from a pool of 501. About 200 of those applicants were Jewish and only five got in." He notes that the dean's instructions were remarkably precise: "Never admit more than five Jews, take only two Italian Catholics, and take no blacks at all." As a result, Oshinsky added, "Jonas Salk and hundreds like him" enrolled in New York University instead.Oshinsky, David M. Polio: An American Story, Oxford Univ. Press (2006)

Jews who wanted an education used various ways to overcome this discrimination: bribing the authorities, changing their...
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