Judge Upholds University of North Carolina’s Affirmative-Action Policies

POLITICS & POLICY
Students walk at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, N.C., September 20, 2018. (Jonathan Drake/Reuters)

A federal judge ruled on Monday that the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill did not discriminate against white and Asian applicants in its admissions process, in response to a lawsuit by conservative legal group Students for Fair Admissions.

U.S. District Judge Loretta Biggs said the university could continue to consider an applicant’s race during the admissions process, writing that “because race is so interwoven in every aspect of the lived experience of minority students, to ignore it, reduce its importance and measure it only by statistical models misses important context.” Biggs added that UNC “continues to have much work to do” to improve diversity in its student body.

“This decision makes clear the university’s holistic admissions approach is lawful,” UNC spokeswoman Beth Keith said in a statement. “We evaluate each student in a deliberate and thoughtful way, appreciating individual strengths, talents and contributions to a vibrant campus community where students from all backgrounds can excel and thrive.”

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