As an undergraduate at the University of Chicago, Chokal-Ingam says that he shaved his head, trimmed his eyelashes, and started going by his middle name (Jojo) after coming to the realization that he wasn't likely to be accepted at the medical schools he aspired to attend with his current resume.
I became a serious contender at some of the greatest medical schools in America, including Harvard, Wash U, UPenn, Case Western, and Columbia. In all, I interviewed at eleven prestigious medical schools in 9 major cities across America, while posing a black man.
Chokal-Ingam lists all of the documentation that he claims to have received in the course of his application process to "more than 20" American medical schools. He received only one acceptance letter, which makes his claim that he was "a serious contender at some of the greatest medical schools in America"—based on the fact that he had been invited to apply—a good deal overstated.
As it happens, Chokal-Ingam was only accepted at one school, St. Louis University Medical School. He dropped out after two years, the Post reports, and was later accepted at UCLA Anderson’s MBA program as an Asian Indian-American.
"Racism is not the answer," he told the Post, implying that proponents of affirmative action are The Real Racists. "It also promotes negative stereotypes about the competency of minority Americans by making it seem like they need special treatment." But then again, he writes on his website:
My experiences with racism as an African American include being harassed by policy officers and being accused of shoplifting by store clerks, something I had never experienced when I was just another Indian-American doctor’s son.
I discovered that being a black man had some fairly interesting upsides — other than giving me a leg up with medical schools, was that suddenly women SAW me. Not in the profound Návi way, but in the "I wanna bang you. NOW," way.
As a black man I somehow fell heir to a powerful (but thoroughly enjoyable) sexual magnetism that was just as tangible and puzzling to all of my Indian American friends as it was to me.
Haha, oh boy.