Universities’ admissions policies scrutinized
The University of Puget Sound makes a huge effort to improve diversity levels on campus, just as many schools do across the country. Ensuring that a wide range of students from different backgrounds and ethnicities attend a college campus creates a more enriching learning experience for all students.
Achieving these high levels of diversity throughout public universities has been threatened recently by a possible ban that could potentially disallow public universities to practice race-conscious admissions. This possible ban has been brought to light because of a recent case that has been going on for many years regarding discrimination between a student and a public university. This case exposes both sides of this issue involving the affirmative action admissions policy that many public universities have adopted. The affirmative action policy allows schools to base a student’s admission on many factors, including race and gender.
There has been much debate throughout the United States regarding the ban that would stop this policy, and how the ban would affect public universities and their admissions strategies throughout the country.
The ban on affirmative action policies would make it even harder to achieve a more diverse campus, forcing admissions offices to resort to different measures to achieve students from varying backgrounds.
Although without race-conscious admissions it would still be possible to achieve a diverse campus, many universities would have to go to more extreme measures to maintain their diversity levels. Going deeper into communities and schools that house many minority or low-income students, universities would have to send in recruiters to encourage high school students to apply.
Some people fear that although this can be done, many universities will not go to these extra lengths to achieve more diversity on their campus. If this were to happen, this ban could deny many students the right to an education at a four-year university.
Many students, even on our small private university campus, believe that diversity is a very important aspect to a complete campus. Dayna Ko is a sophomore and part of a minority on this campus.
“Although I personally don’t notice race very much on our campus, I do believe it is important to have a diverse campus to make all students feel comfortable. Although this potential ban could be fair in some senses, I’m guessing it will also make it harder for universities to keep their campuses diverse,” Ko said. Ko agrees that keeping a college campus diverse is essential to creating a well balanced community.
Puget Sound’s diversity statement declares that, as a campus, “We acknowledge the intrinsic worth of all who work and study here, we aspire to increase the diversity of all parts of our University, and we act to achieve an environment that welcomes and supports diversity.”
With many programs, clubs and events that promote diversity, our campus tries to focus on the bigger picture. The large amount of participation for many of these programs proves that our campus strives to be one whole community.
Although this ban wouldn’t necessarily affect our campus, it serves as a reminder that having accessible means to achieve diversity on campus is an important way to ensure every student is comfortable.