Diversity in Education, A legal View
Diversity within a student body is something that every university should strive for. It becomes a serious issue when there are policies that are implemented that place a persons Fourteenth Amendment rights in jeopardy. When the court decided in Grutter v. Bollinger that the Equal Protection Clause does not prohibit the University of Michigan Law School’s narrowly tailored use of race in admissions decisions. It was done to further a compelling interest in obtaining the educational benefits that flow from a diverse student body. The court decided that, because the Law School conducts a highly individualized review of each applicant and no one was rejected based in a variable such as race. The process insured that there were several factors that contributed to diversity (Grutter v. Bollinger, 2003). It is equally important to understand the dissenting arguments and the issues that will surely arise in the future.
The Equal Protection Clause provides that no State shall “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” U.S. Const., Amdt. 14, §2. The Fourteenth Amendment “protect[s] persons, not groups,” all “governmental action based on race–a group classification long recognized as in most circumstances irrelevant and therefore prohibited–should be subjected to detailed judicial inquiry to ensure that the personal right to equal protection of the laws has not been infringed (Grutter v. Bollinger, 2003) .”
The University of Michigan Law School (Law School), choose to follow guidelines in their official admissions policy that seeks to achieve student body diversity through compliance with Regents of Univ. of Cal. v. Bakke, 438 U.S. 265. The focus is on students’ academic ability along with a flexible assessment of their talents, experiences, and potential, the policy requires admissions officials to evaluate each applicant based on all the information available in the file....