Tags: Education | Jeff Sessions | Trump Administration | doj | investigates | diversity | harvard

DOJ Probes Harvard's Diversity, Race-Based Admission Programs

DOJ Probes Harvard's Diversity, Race-Based Admission Programs
(Glen Cooper/Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 04 October 2017 07:55 PM

The Department of Justice is investigating race-based admissions practices at Harvard University, BuzzFeed News reported.

According to the news outlet, a Sept. 29 letter from the DOJ in answer to a Freedom of Information Act request suggested the investigation's active status.

The FOIA request — filed by a government watchdog group and a civil rights organization — came after The New York Times reported the start of a probe of “race-based discrimination” against white applicants.

The Justice Department disputed the report, saying an internal announcement was seeking volunteers to probe an "administrative complaint filed by a coalition of 64 Asian-American associations in May 2015."

In the Sept. 29 letter, the department does not specifically say there are records about a probe of Harvard, though the department official explained some records — including those involved in legal action — were exempt from the FOIA request, BuzzFeed News reported.

Nevertheless, a spokesperson for American Oversight, one of the groups that filed the FOIA request, told BuzzFeed News the department confirmed there is an active investigation of Harvard.

"This is further proof that Attorney General Sessions and the Trump administration will continue to invoke civil rights only to further their own political agenda — not provide equal protections for all Americans," American Oversight executive director Austin Evers said in a statement to BuzzFeed.

"It speaks volumes that Jeff Sessions' Justice Department is prioritizing attacking affirmative action at a time when white nationalists are marching openly in the streets."

American Oversight filed the FOIA request jointly with the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, whose president, Kristen Clarke, told BuzzFeed that the DOJ had "launched an unprecedented assault on efforts to promote racial diversity in higher education."

In her statement, Clarke said she hoped the Senate Judiciary Committee would look into the issue as it considers the controversial nomination of Eric Dreiband to lead the department's Civil Rights Division, BuzzFeed News reported.

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The Department of Justice is investigating race-based admissions practices at Harvard University, BuzzFeed News reported.
doj, investigates, diversity, harvard
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2017-55-04
Wednesday, 04 October 2017 07:55 PM
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