The faculty at Wayne State University Law School on Wednesday unanimously approved a new admissions policy they say will produce a diverse student body and negate the expected harmful impact of a voter-approved affirmative action ban.
Last month, Michigan became the fourth state to ban some affirmative action programs when voters overwhelming approved a constitutional amendment that prohibits consideration of race and gender preferences in college admissions and government hiring. The ban is expected to go into effect Dec. 22.
In addition to considering grades and LSAT scores, the new policy considers factors including a student’s history of overcoming adversity. The policy also favors Detroit residents, American Indians, who are economically disadvantages, those who are first in their family to graduate college, and students who speak another language.
“In the public discussion of Proposal 2, its supporters said consistently and clearly that they, too, supported access to higher education and equality of opportunity. They objected only to what they characterized as ‘preferences,’” said Frank Wu, dean of the law school. “We’ve done everything we can to ensure we meet two goals: attracting, recruiting, and supporting a range of applicants, including people of color; and complying with the letter and the spirit of the new law.”
Faculty at the University of Michigan’s law school also are looking at changes in admissions, the Associated Press reported.
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