Affirmative action newsweek article

  1. Has anyone read the article about the U of Michigan's admission policy (the one that Bush is challenging as unconstitutional)? Basically they use a point system. Out of 150 points, a student can earn 20 points for being from a visible minority group. On the one hand I think this is unfair, on the other hand, there are a lot of other points. A student can earn 110 points for academics alone. A scholarship athlete gets 20 points. A person (regardless of race) gets 20 points for being from a low socioeconomic class. A man who applies for nursing gets 5 points. Legacies get points, etc.

    I do believe diversity is a valuable thing for colleges and universities to strive for, but I have never thought of affirmative action in a positive light, mainly because of my impression that it allows unqualified minorities to jump ahead of qualified candidates. After reading that article though I have changed a bit, because the applicants who got the 20 points still had to get a lot more and prove that they were qualified to go to that school.

    I was very surprised to see that the program Texas instituted when Bush was governor to get rid of "race based quotas" was actually worse for qualified non-minority students and DOES allow less qualified people to universities over more qualified people. The Texas plan was that the top 10% of students from each school were guaranteed admission to state colleges, but this effectively meant that students from lower quality schools who were less qualified would get in before a good student from a tougher school. I tend to favor economically based points because students who are poor and go to inner city or rural schools are at a bigger disadvantage than a rich monority student who goes to a private prep school in a large city.
    So what's the best answer?
    Last edit by fergus51 on Jan 30, '03
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  3. by   Mkue
    I would like to read the article fergus51, sounds interesting. I know that in Michigan a few years ago some students sued the school ( I think U of M) r/t not getting into certain programs even though their points were higher than others. Not sure what the outcome of the lawsuits were.
  4. by   rncountry
    It's at the Supreme Court as we speak, and is the reason for the Newsweek article.