In an Aug. 2 article in the Houston Chronicle, President Gregory J. Vincent ’83 reflected on the recent report indicating the Justice Department may redirect resources toward investigating colleges and universities for affirmative action admissions practices.
A national expert on civil rights, social justice and campus culture, Vincent previously served at The University of Texas at Austin as Vice President for Diversity and Community Engagement, W.K. Kellogg Professor of Community College Leadership and Professor of Law. In 2016, he served as university spokesperson in the case of Fisher v. University of Texas, in which the United States Supreme Court ruled to uphold the use of affirmative action in higher education.
The Chronicle article, “Justice Department may reopen case against race-based university admissions,” notes Vincent’s assessment that affirmative action cases have been well litigated and that admissions offices around the country have “faithfully” abided by the 2003 case Grutter v. Bollinger, which upheld the right of colleges and universities to use race as one factor in a holistic process to consider students for admission.
However, Vincent recalled to the Chronicle following the Fisher v. University of Texas case, “elections have consequences.”
“The one thing I did mention was if the composition of the court changed dramatically,” he said, “the door could be opened again.”
In a statement to the HWS community, Vincent affirmed the Colleges’ commitment “to ensure that our friends and neighbors most vulnerable to discrimination are afforded the respect, dignity, support and equal opportunity to pursue an education.”