The US Supreme Court’s June 2015 decision to re-hear Fisher vs. University of Texas at Austin has prompted anxious speculation and genuine concern in the higher education community. While no one knows how the court will rule in “Fisher II,” it seems clear opponents of race-conscious admission will have at least one more opportunity to limit the role of race in college admission decisions. Moreover, independent of the Fisher case, eight states have enacted outright bans on race-conscious admission. But amidst all this controversy and change, one imperative remains constant: the need for American higher education to educate an increasingly diverse American citizenry and make good on its promise to break down longstanding barriers across race and class. Court rulings and ballot initiatives may affect the parameters that govern modern college admission, but they need not affect the central goals admission offices pursue.
It was with this legal and policy landscape in mind that Lorelle Espinosa of the American Council on Education and Matthew Gaertner of Pearson Research & Innovation Network undertook with their colleague Dr. Gary Orfield of the Civil Rights Project at the University of California, Los Angeles, a first-of-its-kind survey study of admission and enrollment management leaders from across the country. This article, A Dream Undone? Advancing Access and Diversity in a Shifting Legal Landscape, provides an overview of the survey study and its key findings.
By: Lorelle Espinosa and Matthew Gaertner, The Journal of College Admission, Fall 2015, National Association for College Admission Counseling
Copyright © 2015 National Association for College Admission Counseling