Loyola University Chicago School of Law

Loyola Chicago Law, Law School at Loyola Chicago, Dean of Loyola Chicago Law

The Assistant Dean of the Loyola University Chicago School of Law likely didn’t expect her email to this applicant to hit the Internet. It did and we happened to see it (photo credit: Amerique).

As you may know from reading our blog — the most visited blog on the topic of college and graduate school admissions — we take great pride in correcting misconceptions about the admissions process and in pointing out injustices. On this note, we wanted to bring to your attention an exchange between an applicant to the Loyola University Chicago School of Law with Assistant Dean Pamela A. Blomquist. In short, Dean Blomquist got served!

Here is the initial email from the applicant to Dean Blomquist:

RE: Application Rescinded

Dear Dean Yellen and Members of the Admissions Committee:

My name is David Valk and I intended to apply to Loyola University Chicago School of Law for the Class of 2017.

I learned this morning that Loyola Chicago discriminates against gay and lesbian couples and will not perform same-sex marriages on-campus.

My goal is to attend a law school that will help me grow as a public servant and provide me an education grounded in the advancement of social justice. Your university’s policies do not reflect these values.

I have deleted my application from Law School Admission Council and will encourage my peers to do the same.

Sincerely,

David Valk

In response, Dean Blomquist wrote (click on the image to zoom in):

Loyola University Chicago School Of Law

To which the applicant who rescinded his application to the law school wrote:

RE: Re: Application Rescinded

Dear Dean Bloomquist,

Loyola Chicago’s policy to not allow marriage ceremonies on-campus for gay and lesbian couples perpetuates the misguided idea that being gay is wrong. While I am happy the law school enjoys an open and active LGBTQ community, targeted gender-based crimes against LGBTQ people – especially against people of color – continue to rise in Chicago.

Just this summer, another hate-based crime took place in your neighborhood, as reported by the Chicago Tribune.

“The women were beaten Saturday, clutching each other as they were pinned against a car by about 10 men who taunted them for being gay and took turns punching and kicking them on the dark street, one of the victims said.”

Most alarmingly, “A study by the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs found 2,016 reports of violence in 2012 against LGBT people and people affected by HIV. The report also found that LGBT people of minority races are nearly twice as likely to be victims of violence as their white counterparts.”

My decision to attend law school is not a lofty one; I intend to make a life-long commitment to the campus and community I will be part of. However, I cannot, in good conscience, support an institution, academically or financially, that actively promotes policies that denigrate and malign my most basic dignity.

As I send this to you, I have been contacted by four other law school applicants who have committed to pulling their applications this year because of your policy. There is a real cost to discrimination. I urge you to work with OUTLaw and your administration to change this policy today.

Like you, I was heartened by the words of Pope Francis. “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”

Sincerely,

David Valk

Dean Blomquist of the Loyola University Chicago School of Law didn’t stand a chance. Ivy Coach fully supports this applicant’s decision to rescind his application and, while he is not our student, we suspect he will get into a better law school than the Loyola University Chicago School of Law anyhow.

 
 

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4 Comments

  • Mark Tobin says:

    I find this quite alarming. Since when did we stop accepting the religious freedoms of others? As a catholic (private) university they have every right to practice their faith as they see appropriate. Not allowing them to do so is being bigoted — the very form of ignorance the applicant is aiming to defend. Tolerance is not making others like what you do, It is dealing with differing opinions and outcomes even though they are contrary to your own. The applicants choice to not attend seems staged, childish, and ineffective.

    • Bev Taylor says:

      Mark,

      The Loyola University Chicago School of Law is an accredited law school. This private, Jesuit college also receives federal funding. And yet in 2014, you believe this university that takes money from our federal government should have the right to discriminate against the LGBT community? No sir. Not in America. You are on the wrong side of history.

      • Bill Stovall says:

        Bev,

        I completely agree with Mark. While I don’t condone violence or mistreatment of the lgbtq community, I think this published letter is grossly overlapping issues. A faith-based religious institution that has stood for certain biblical principles such as only recognizing marriage between a man and a women is a fundamental right. Just because the institution happens to teach the law that doesn’t change that right. This is completely different than allowing violence against a particular group or in anyway mistreating them. This applicant is welcome to attend Loyola with assurance that the school will treat him the same for educational purposes. However, if he or she has beliefs that is fundamentally at odds with the sincerely held tenants of the religious beliefs of institution whether it be in same-sex marriages, abortions, orgies, having drunken orgies (some people do believe in all of that and think that God is ok with it), he should not expect the school to facilitate those beliefs.

        I stand completely with Pam and Loyola & the comments from Mark.

        • Ivy Coach says:

          Hi Bill,

          And we stand completely against you. Rather, we stand firmly with the LGBTQ community, a community I am so very proud to be a part of. And we proudly stand with universities that are supportive of the LGBTQ community because, yes, even a Roman Catholic university that deeply values its Jesuit teachings can preach love. Georgetown University does it. So too does Boston College. Loyola University is capable of the same. In the years since this post was written, even the Pope has walked back his opposition to same-sex marriage and, most remarkably, LGBTQ Americans have earned the right to marry across this land. It’s a right I marched for on the streets of California in 2008 when religious institutions stripped LGBTQ Californians of our right to marry. You, Sir, are on the wrong side of history.

          Sincerely,
          Brian Taylor

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