SAN DIEGO, Calif. – The Supreme Court’s decision to bar race-conscious admissions, after more than five decades of creating more diverse student bodies and more significant inroads toward racial equity in higher education, is one that we expected but one we strongly disagree with.
The facts are clear: affirmative action ensures qualified students can get into highly selective institutions that, for generations, have been unattainable for many, but especially for historically underrepresented and racially minoritized students. The wide-ranging consequences of this decision remain to be seen, but one thing is certain: students of color and our larger principles of democracy will be hurt by this decision.
Now more than ever, as community college leaders, we must redouble our racial equity efforts and ensure that Black and Brown students successfully achieve their academic and career goals, including transfer to four-year colleges and universities. Nationally we serve the majority of first-generation and historically underrepresented college students allowing us to champion progressive and unapologetic opportunities that center on racial equity. Let us not disregard the legacy of structural racism, the lived experience of millions of students, and the fact that access to higher education and economic prosperity has historically been available for some and not others. Let us continue to disrupt, engage, educate, and empower.
Dr. Keith Curry