Race in College Admissions

Race in Admissions, Race in Admissions Decision-Making, Race as Factor in Admissions

A ban on race as a factor in college admissions decisions will be up for debate again before the Supreme Court.

During a week in which the United States Supreme Court will be hearing arguments on two prominent gay marriage cases, the High Court also made a decision with regard to race in college admissions. Today, the Supreme Court agreed to probe further into the ruling of “a lower court to overturn the voter-approved initiative that bans the use of race in decisions of college acceptance in Michigan,” according to “JD Journal.” The Court will hear arguments for and against appealing the decision of the 6th Circuit Court in Michigan.

According to “JD Journal,” “Earlier in the current term, the court considered a challenge to the process used by the admissions office at the University of Texas. The admissions office considers race as a factor when it chooses its freshman class. The court has yet to issue a ruling after hearing arguments in October. The majority of the appeals court ruled that the ban ‘reorders the political process in Michigan to place special burdens on minority interests’ while also violating the Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection.”

There are similar bans on the use of race in college admissions in Florida and California. So the decision of the Supreme Court in this case could have repercussions well beyond Michigan. There are some legal experts who believe the Court took up this case because they intend to rule on the Texas case narrowly — as in they won’t apply their decision to other universities throughout the country (just the University of Texas). This would be their way of asserting that what they decide in that case also applies to other schools in other states.

What do you think the HIgh Court will rule? Do you think that race should be considered as a factor in admissions? Do you think the public should have had a say in banning race as a factor in admissions or should such decisions not be left up to voter referendum? Let us know your thoughts on the matter by posting below. And, while you’re here, check out this previous post on the use of race in admissions at the University of Michigan.


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