Yale Lawsuit: Aa an Overview

Challenging the Yale Law School’s Admission Policy on Race and Immigration

In today’s interview, Barbara also takes up the status of the new EEOC health regulations with regard to vacated incentives in January of next year. Then, as part of their, she spends some time going over the Yale lawsuit as well as her perspective about the situation. This is one of the most comprehensive and thought-provoking discussions that I have heard on this particular topic.

Ms. Bok speaks very highly of Yale and its effort in resolving the Yale lawsuit.

She especially praises Yale’s efforts in dealing with the racial issues at Columbia University and in maintaining its position as a top educational institution. However, she expresses dismay at the recent spate of faculty firings at other prominent colleges and universities-especially at Harvard University and Cambridge University. According to Ms. Bok, these episodes are disheartening because “students are being treated differently at the racial other institutions when compared to Yale”.

As one might expect, Ms. Bok then delves into discussing the implications of such an action for students at selective universities who wish to pursue a PhD in healthcare law or a similar degree.

She notes that such cases can disrupt the academic process, as well as disrupt the well-being of minority groups at the university. Specifically, she notes the need for further explanations about the disparate treatment of students with Disabilities and racial or ethnic backgrounds, as well as the disproportionate number of minority students who are affected by these actions.

Following that discussion, Ms. Bok next delves into the current state of affairs at American universities, particularly at the top-tier Ivy League universities.

Her discussions understandably focus on Harvard, Cambridge and Yale, but as you may guess, she also takes a look at what lesser-known “securities” exist at other Ivy League universities. This, of course, is a somewhat relevant issue based upon the current federal court case at Yale, which resulted in a vote nullifying the University’s racial preferences in its undergraduate admissions process. While that case was ultimately overturned, many believe that the decision will have a chilling effect on the willingness of smaller Ivy League universities to admit minority applicants, particularly those from lower economic and academic status levels.

The third chapter focuses on the experiences of Asian American applicants in the country’s higher education system, as compared to the experiences of white applicants.

In doing so, Bok correctly notes that Asian American students often go through what she calls “the broken windows theory”, whereby they are individually admitted to multiple schools but are denied entry to the institution of their choice because of systemic racism. She goes on to detail the aforementioned lawsuit at Yale and the ongoing struggles faced by minority students at Ivy League universities. While the specifics of this case vary, Bok makes a strong case, “Racial and ethnic minority applicants experience systematic discrimination in their applications for admission to the most elite academic institutions.” Given her lengthy research period and attention to the details of these cases, it’s no wonder that Bok has so thoroughly outlined her concerns with the law as it relates to protecting the rights of minority applicants.

I also appreciated Bok’s emphasis on structural racism as an explanation for why some racial and ethnic groups are under-represented in top-ranking universities.

As she notes, a history of slavery or the enforcement of Jim Crow policies in the past continue to impact minority educational opportunities. In light of recent events like the Michael Brown shooting and the OJ Simpson case, I thought it was especially timely to revisit some of the examples presented throughout this book, which show just how pervasive forms of institutionalized racism can be today. It is the goal of this book, as I see it, to present the reader with the detailed case studies of real people from all walks of life who have been affected by these institutionalized policies, and to show how serious students’ civil rights can be trumped due to the structural racism of our nation’s schools and universities.

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