The United States Department of Justice has opened up a new probe related to college admissions practices. In this latest probe, the DOJ is investigating Yale University’s decision-making in admissions as it relates to race — particularly with respect to Asian American applicants to the school. As we have long argued, Harvard is not alone in discriminating against Asian American applicants. We believe every highly selective college, including every Ivy League university, discriminates against Asian American applicants in admissions. Admissions officers at these institutions may not realize they discriminate against Asian American applicants but they do so nonetheless. So it’s no surprise to us that the DOJ is now investigating Yale. And you can bet Harvard has breathed a sigh of relief that they’re not the only dog in this fight any more. Sure, schools like Yale can file amicus briefs to show their support for Harvard in their legal battle, but now Yale finds itself in a similar position.
Yale’s Response to the DOJ Investigation
Yale University’s president, Peter Salovey, issued a statement in response to the DOJ probe of Yale’s admissions practices. In it, he writes, “As you may know, the Department of Justice and the Office for Civil Rights of the Department of Education are investigating whether Yale’s undergraduate admissions policies improperly discriminate on the basis of race, particularly in regard to Asian-American applicants. This investigation takes place in the context of legal challenges at other universities aimed at overturning Supreme Court precedent permitting the consideration of race in college admissions. I write now to state unequivocally that Yale does not discriminate in admissions against Asian Americans or any other racial or ethnic group, to share information about our undergraduate admissions practices, and to affirm our unwavering commitment to diversity as a pillar of this university.”
Salovey continues, “The creation of a diverse academic community has not come at the expense of applicants of any racial or ethnic background. For example, over the past fifteen years, the number of Asian Americans has grown from less than 14 percent of the incoming first-year class to 21.7 percent in the Class of 2022. Diversity along many different dimensions strengthens Yale’s community of learning. As part of our mission to “educate aspiring leaders worldwide who serve all sectors of society,” we strive to recruit and retain students, faculty, and staff from all backgrounds and to empower them to pursue their intellectual and professional goals. In our judgment as educators, based on experience with admissions policies at Yale dating back over fifty years—and in my own judgment and experience as a psychologist, professor, and former dean of Yale College—a diverse student body and faculty greatly enhance students’ academic experiences and maximize their future success. By bringing people of different backgrounds, talents, and perspectives together, we prepare our students for a complex and dynamic world.”
It will be interesting to see how the DOJ investigation of Yale’s admissions practices plays out. Will the DOJ soon be probing the admissions practices at the six other Ivy League institutions? Why should Harvard and Yale be singled out? Let us know your thoughts on the matter by posting a Comment below. We look forward to hearing from you!
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