A lawsuit filed Monday accuses Harvard University of discrimination because of their alleged higher standards of admittance for Asian students. According to Fox News, the suit claims that Asian students weren’t admitted to Harvard despite having higher test scores and GPAs than other minority group students that were accepted.
Edward Blum, who runs the Project on Fair Representation, filed the suit on behalf of the rejected Asian students. He also filed a suit last year that went up to the Supreme Court against the University of Texas on behalf of a white applicant over its affirmative action admissions policy. That decision is still pending. Blum stands on point:
“Quotas and racial balancing are strictly against the law.”
Harvard’s general counsel defends the university with this statement:
“The College considers each applicant through an individualized, holistic review having the goal of creating a vibrant academic community that exposes students to a wide-range of differences: background, ideas, experiences, talents and aspirations.”
“The University’s admissions processes remain fully compliant with all legal requirements and are essential to the pedagogical objectives that underlie Harvard’s educational mission.”
There are good arguments for both sides.
For the students, no particular racial or ethnic group should be held to higher standards than any other group as a strategy of limiting the admittance of one group of people. Achieving an academic record worthy of an Ivy League isn’t an easy feat — for a young person to have worked so hard to attain that, only to be rejected from a university because of their racial makeup, seems highly unfair.
But Harvard has some pretty good reasons for adhering to their policy — it’s for the greater good. A world-class educational institution can’t provide a proper environment for learning if they compromise their diversity, which anyone can argue is a base requirement for growth of any kind. Harvard would simply cease to be Harvard if it was full of Asians, because according to the numbers, it would be.
Should Harvard stick to their policy of “balance,” or should discrimination be shot down and hardworking students be admitted regardless of race?