In an investigation, the Department of Justice (DOJ) found that Yale University discriminates against Asian American and White applicants through the undergraduate admissions process, a violation of a federal civil rights law.
What We Know:
- The two-year investigation, which stemmed from a 2016 complaint against Yale, Brown, and Dartmouth, concluded that Yale “rejects scores of Asian American and White applicants each year based on their race, whom it otherwise would admit,” the Justice Department said. “Yale’s race discrimination imposes undue and unlawful penalties on racially-disfavored applicants, including in particular Asian American and White applicants,” Assistant Attorney General Eric Dreiband, who heads the department’s civil rights division, wrote in a letter to the college’s attorneys.
- The Supreme Court has previously ruled that colleges and universities may consider race in admissions decisions, however, it also said that it must be done in a narrowly tailored way to promote diversity. But the department described Yale’s use of race as “anything but limited”.
- Prosecutors found that Yale had been discriminating against applicants based on their race and national origin and that race even plays a “determinative factor” in hundreds of admission decisions every year. The investigation concluded that both Asian American and white students have only “one-tenth to one-fourth of the likelihood of admission as African American applicants with comparable academic credentials”. The investigation also alleges that Yale uses race at multiple steps of its admissions process, multiplying the effect of race on an applicant’s chances of admission. Additionally, it said the school racially balances its classes.
- Yale denied the allegation, calling it “meritless” and “hasty”. In a statement, Yale said it “categorically denies this allegation,” has cooperated fully with the investigation, and has been continually providing “a substantial amount of information and data”. The university said if the Department had fully received the data and weighed the information, they would find that Yale does in fact comply with the Supreme Court precedent.
- “The department’s allegation is baseless,” said Peter Salovey, Yale’s president. “At this unique moment in our history, when so much attention properly is being paid to issues of race, Yale will not waver in its commitment to educating a student body whose diversity is a mark of its excellence.” In a statement, Yale said it considers a multitude of factors and looks at “the whole person when selecting whom to admit among the many thousands of highly qualified applicants”.
- As a result of the investigation, the Justice Department demanded that Yale immediately stop its current admission process and agree from now on not to use race or national origin as a factor in upcoming admissions. The Department also told the college that if they do want to consider race as allowed by the Supreme Court percent in future admission cycles, they must first submit a plan to the DOJ for approval. Yale said they will not be changing their admissions process at this time.
- Senior counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Rachel Kleinman, said that she was “shocked but not surprised” by the Justice Department’s finding. “This particular Department of Justice has been laser-focused on ending affirmative action,” she said, adding that she believed the finding was “a foregone conclusion before they started their investigation”.
- Previously, the Justice Department raised similar concerns about Harvard University, where prosecutors accused the college of “engaging in outright racial balancing,” siding with Asian American students who filed a lawsuit claiming the Ivy League discriminated against them. Those charges were later cleared by a federal judge who upheld affirmative action.
The DOJ is expected to attempt to enforce its directive via a lawsuit if Yale does not voluntarily agree by August 27th to suspend the use of race in undergraduate admissions.
Waka Flocka has Received An Honorary Doctorate
The rapper earned his honorary doctorate in philanthropy and humanitarianism on Sat. October 3 in New York City. Wake Flocka’s family and friends shared photos and videos from the commemoration. He was dressed and looked very excited in his cap and gown.
What We Know:
- Over the weekend, video and photos of the ceremony were seen online showing the “No Hands” rapper dressed in his graduation cap and gown as he received an honorary doctorate in philanthropy and humanitarianism. During the commemoration, the 34-year-old was praised and recognized for the philanthropic work that he has done over the years.
- His wife, Tammy Rivera, and their daughter, Charlie, were the first ones present to watch him receive the honor alongside friends and family members.
Waka Flocka received his Doctorate degree in Philanthropy and Humanitarianism 👨🏾🎓 pic.twitter.com/wbGRmQELxr
— Rap All-Stars 🏆 (@RapAllStars) October 4, 2020
- This comes after Waka Flocka, whose actual name is Juaquin James Malphurs, announced earlier this year that he would dedicate his life support to mental health awareness and suicide prevention. According to MTV News, in 2013, Waka Flocka lost his younger brother, Coades Scott, who tragically died by suicide.
- Waka Flocka later uploaded a photo of himself on Instagram on Monday, October 5, celebrating the achievement.
View this post on Instagram
- With this new achievement, Waka Flocka has joined a list of other artists who have also received honorary doctorates such as; Common, who received his from Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina.
- Other artists include Kanye West who received his from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Diddy from Howard University and Missy Elliot from Berklee College of Music.
Congratulations to Waka Flocka on his achievement.
12-year-old Georgia Boy Begins Sophomore Year of College as Aerospace Engineer
Those who have survived post-secondary education can understand “the struggle,” but for 12-year-old Caleb Anderson, college classes are his middle school. Young Anderson is a sophomore at Chattahoochee Technical College in Marietta, Georgia, and is currently studying aerospace engineering. His parents became aware of his little bright mind at a very early age.
What We Know:
- According to his family, Caleb started to imitate his mother’s speech at only four weeks old, some infants can’t do this until a couple of months later. At nine months old, he had already learned more than 250 words in American Sign Language. Fast forward to the age of four, he was already reading at an accelerated level.
“I was getting my master’s in education so I knew that there was something special about that,” Claire Anderson, Caleb’s mother told USA Today.
- Caleb’s plans after Chattahoochee Technical only consist of continuing his education at other schools. He wishes to attend the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) and later the Massachusetts Institute for Technology (MIT). One of his biggest long term goals includes getting an internship with Tesla CEO Elon Musk, a dream he has developed over the span of his short educational career already.
- Instead of thinking about the next video game or toy he wanted to get, Caleb mentioned he had his sights on space since has was a toddler. “I figured that aerospace engineering would be the best path,” he said.
- Caleb’s mother has stated that due to his incredible intellect, she feared a small number of things such as his sense of self. She noted how he didn’t need to study or get help with many subjects other kids struggled with. While other parents wouldn’t see this as an issue, Claire said that she “didn’t like the character that was building in him”.
- Moving forward, his parents decided there were other things that needed attention rather than what if’s. Claire is a former teacher and her husband, Kobi, is an IT salesman. Over time, their initial worries faded and they started to teach him things books couldn’t, such as “compassion, kindness, looking for the good in others”.
When Caleb’s mother noticed that he quickly outpaced the work of his grade levels, she was concerned that a lack of a challenge could be holding him back. She now advocates to other parents to pay mind to their kids’ educations, even as early as she did with her son. Caleb has two siblings, 7-year-old Hannah and 8-year-old Aaron, who are also just as gifted in their studies.
White Ohio Police Chief Explains BLM Support: “We Have to Listen to People”
Ohio police chief, Doug Swartz, who is white, is motivating Black Lives Matter protests in his town.
What We Know:
- Although there has not been a single Black Lives Matter protest in the mainly White city of Canal Fulton, Ohio, their White police chief wrote an article welcoming them, stating, “the Black community needs us”.
- According to CNN, Canal Fulton’s police chief Doug Swartz has been the author of a monthly column that addresses various topics for the past eight years. He used the month of September to speak on and bring to life the Black Lives Matter movement that was revitalized following the tragic death of George Floyd in May.
- Swartz writes that he was asked many times why Fulton had to assess with race as there have not been protests in the area for now. He replied by saying to lay with the U.S. Constitution as declared on July 4, 1776. He cited how the Black community was still not free of racism regardless of the document’s ideals and continues to face significant obstacles such as housing and education discrimination.
- Swartz stated:
“How do you know about it, if you don’t know about it,” he states. “If there are struggles that are going on in mainly Black neighborhoods, we don’t know about it; our kids go to predominately white schools, and we’re a byproduct of that history with the things that are wrong in today’s society.”
- He continues to say that’s why we have to listen to people and hear from them to see how we can make things better.
- Swartz mentioned that he does not support riots, vandalism, or calls to defund the police. He stated those actions were “causing hate,” and he wants to follow the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to come together and work together as a community of one.
He encourages protests and voting for legislation that would improve African American’s lives.
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